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Fri: 9-6pm

Sat: 9-5pm

Art Exhibits Archive

James C. Varnum, October 2017, Gallery

Opening Reception for Dichotomy and Dialog: LINE / COLOR by James C. Varnum, Wednesday, October 4, 7:00 pm, on view October 3-30, Gallery: As an “experimental watercolorist” James Varnum takes a non-traditional approach to the medium. His paintings are combinations of layered colors, movements and various textures on traditional watercolor papers and surfaces such as Yupo and Terra-Skin. He uses a variety of materials to create texture including plastic wrap, waxed paper, masking fluid, salt and spray bottles with water or alcohol. He moves the pigment with various tools including brushes, combs, squeegees and palette knives. Finally, he adds lines and marks with ink or graphite. Ultimately his methods create a “give-and-take relationship” that emerges to guide the work. These paintings are a synopsis of the artist’s experimentation and exploration of pigment, texture and lines.

President of the Newton Art Association, James Varnum holds a B.F. A. from the San Francisco Art Institute. He is a member of the New England Watercolor Society, Concord Art, Cambridge Art, Provincetown Art, Cape Cod Art and South Shore Art.

Ellie Brown, October 2017, Main Hall

Drawing Dad is Dizzy will be on view through October 30. Ellie Brown’s father was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 64. Memory is a trickster to begin with, and so these works honor memories with and of her father who still inhabits a physical body as a fragment of the person he once was.

These images are the second stage of two years of documenting the artist’s father photographically. The mixed media pieces reflect the metaphors, fears and emotions that photographs alone couldn’t capture. The transfer of photograph to gel medium represents a layer of removal from reality. The degradation of the image is another layer of loss. The addition of ink adds narrative based on free-association, conversations with her father, stories of Alzheimer’s disease and imaginary scenarios for her father to live in. The show is also about everyone else who suffers from Alzheimer’s. Everyone’s story is different, but the one common thread is that this disease is like watching a car crash in slow motion. We all know how it ends.


Displays October 2017

Teen Gallery and Second Floor Display Cases:

Opening Reception for North and South, Newton High Schools Student Showcase, , Thursday, October 12, 4:00 pm, the show will be on view through spring 2018: Join us for the first combined show of works by Newton High School Students. With representation from both Newton North (NNHS) and Newton South (NSHS) high schools, the show features photographs on the gallery walls and ceramics in the free standing display cases. An ensemble of student musicians will delight us with chamber music as part of the festivities. Whole Foods Market will provide food for the reception. The library wishes to extend its gratitude to Eric Blomster of Abraxis Framing Co. in Newton, who generously provided the frames cost-free. The public is welcome to attend this special event. (Image by: J. Champion)

October displays will be on view through 10/30.

Atrium Case 1: Highlighting the library’s Newton Reads selection, Inside the O’Briens by Lisa Genova. All are encouraged to read the book and participate in a variety of programs this month. Visit our Newton Reads page.

Atrium Case 2: Learn about the Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo (MICE) that will take place October 21 – 22 at University Hall, 1815 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA. The expo is free and open to the public. MICE focuses on the art of making comics by connecting local creators with local audiences. They also run a number of workshops for children and adults, as well as panel discussions on the craft and relevance of the comics form.

Three Main Hall Cases: Learn about Food Day with Newton Community Farm, the last working farm in Newton! Celebrate sustainability and real food and learn how you can make a difference. For info contact Danielle White at or visit the farm's website.

Third Floor Language and Literacy Center Country Display: Learn about Hungary from a display of books, CDs and DVDs! On view October 3-30.