The always-popular annual holiday exhibition All Paintings Great and Small featuring historic and contemporary works of art 12″ in size or smaller is on display at The Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme through Jan. 12, 2013. For many in the area this annual exhibition, in its 24th year, has become an unspoken kick-off to the holiday season.
Over 60 artists from around New England, with a concentration in Connecticut, participate in this annual show. Some well-known to Cooley Gallery enthusiasts are returning including Ralf Feyl, Maurice Sapiro, Michael Theise, Mary Bourke, and Maureen McCabe to name a few. There will also be new artists showing for the first time at the gallery.
“The idea of a small painting exhibition seems to have caught on in galleries everywhere. After so many years, and with the format as ubiquitous as it is, we thought we would step away from it but people kept asking us when would we bring the old show back. In retrospect I think it was good to take a little time off from the little painting show. The economic climate hasn’t been very inspiring but there’s a sense of anticipation in the air now. People are more inclined to allow themselves to enjoy what they have and maybe even add to it,” says Jeff Cooley, owner of The Cooley Gallery.
As in years past, All Paintings Great and Small offers a wide range of subjects and media carefully chosen by the staff at the gallery. Cooley notes, “Everyone here gets involved in everything around here, but especially with this exhibition — suggesting artists and choosing their favorites.”
He continues, “Lorre Broom, our gallery manager, orchestrates the logistics and Nancy Pinney, our website, guru makes sure the images are perfect and gets it all posted in time for people to get a start on their holiday shopping. It’s a big job and a truly group effort.”
The galleries at 25 Lyme Street are hung salon-style meaning multiples from floor to ceiling, with a wealth of varied artwork. Prices range from the low hundreds up giving collectors at all levels a chance to acquire some original works of art.
The gallery celebrated this exhibition last Thursday, Nov. 15, with the largest opening reception of the year. Betsey Cooley commented, “People have said to us on numerous occasions that this is their unofficial start to the holidays. The artists are here, their friends come, collectors and well-wishers arrive and suddenly we have this huge and very enthusiastic extended family celebrating these artistic accomplishments. The spirit certainly gets us in the holiday mood.”
Located in downtown Old Lyme, The Cooley Gallery is an ideal spot to enjoy the best of American art while celebrating the season in the New England tradition.
Founded in 1981 and located in the heart of historic Old Lyme, the Cooley Gallery specializes in fine American paintings from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries, including the Hudson River School, American Impressionism, and select contemporary artists. Regular gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 10am to 5pm. Visitors are welcome and encouraged Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. or online anytime at www.cooleygallery.com. For more information, call (860) 434-8807