Family Counseling Service’s Third Annual Artist Studio Tour

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Glimpses into the creative life will be on full view this weekend when artists spanning from East Moriches to Quogue will be displaying their various art forms during the third annual “Family Counseling Artists Studio Tour,” to be held on Saturday, July 30, and Sunday, July 31.

For the first time, the artist tour is free, according to artist and co-chair Candyce Brokaw.

“We felt like there are lots of really great artists in our community who deserve exposure,” she said during a recent phone interview. “It also gives people in the community an opportunity to see working artists and allows us to give this gift of art to the community.”

All told, there will be 37 artists and 15 private studios and galleries participating in the tour, as well as 14 advance placement high school senior art students from the Westhampton Beach High School, who will be displaying their best work.

“This will give the students a real hands-on experience in the art world too,” Ms. Brokaw said.

Various art mediums and styles will be featured, including acrylics, watercolors, ceramics, textiles, sculptures, painting on furniture, landscapes, photography, metal sculptures and more.
“There is an array of really interesting work,” Ms. Brokaw said. “It’s such a diverse group. There is nothing run-of-the-mill.”

Ms. Brokaw’s own work will be on display at her studio on Montauk Highway in Quogue. She said her genre is called “visionary art.”

“I am self-taught and create primarily stream-of-conscious,” Ms. Brokaw said.

Photographer and East Quogue resident Meryl Spiegel has been participating in the artist tour since its inception three years ago and will be showing her work at Galerie BelAge in Westhampton Beach.

“It gives me the opportunity to meet and gather with other artists in the immediate area,” Ms. Spiegel said. “And also to share my latest work with the public. It has really brought the artists west of the canal together and strengthened our art community.”

Another artist on the tour, Mia Wisnoski, specializes in film photography, shooting images in black and white and black-and-white infrared.

“I produce silver gelatin prints on fiber paper which I then hand paint with oils and oil pencils,” Ms. Wisnoski explained. “Painting the images is a process that produces soft, dreamlike and often nostalgic images. I love this medium.”

Ms. Wisnoski also became involved in the tour during its first year.

“It is such a wonderful way for artists to support Family Counseling Services and it has connected me with so many creative individuals, introduced me to an artist community that I wasn’t aware existed,” she said. “The tour has become a springboard for opportunities to develop programs, artists circles and connections to get the exposure, we, as artists need. I am honored to be a part of it.”

Ms. Wisnoski’s work will be showing at her private studio on Baycrest Avenue in Westhampton.

Artist Lance Corey has experimented with several forms of painting in his lifetime of creating, he said during a recent interview. He explained that getting feedback, and offering the artistic point of view is a real draw for his participation in the tour.

“Having had no formal training other than modelling for art classes, and given that my work is raw and primitive, I am in need of feedback from my audience,” Mr. Corey explained. “The tour is a chance to interact with and encourage folks to go with their gut and their heart when looking at art. Too many members of the public have absolutely no confidence in their ability to select very good art; these tours are meant to remedy that by removing the mystery often associated with artists and their work.”

In conjunction with the tour, an exhibit at the Remsenburg Academy will has been running Thursday through Sunday, and will remain on view through July 31. Each artist on the tour will show one piece of art, which will be for sale.

According to Ms. Brokaw, 35 percent of each sale will be donated to Family Counseling Services, a community-based, United Way agency providing treatment, prevention, education, crisis intervention and supportive services. The other 65 percent of each sale will go directly to the artists.

“The Remsenburg Academy exhibit is a great way for the community to get a sense of which art they are interested in viewing before the tour begins,” she said.

There are 12 private studio stops on the tour, including three galleries where artists will be showing, and in some cases, demonstrating their talent.

“What’s so great is that they get to speak to artists, see what they were thinking when they created that piece of art and what their process is,” Ms. Brokaw explained.

A fundraising party will also be held at the Remsenburg Academy on Friday, July 29, from 5 to 7 p.m. to benefit Family Counseling Services. There, guests will have a chance to meet the artists and enjoy refreshments.

“We’re so happy that Family Counseling is the non-profit receiving the money because what they do is an invaluable service to our community,” Ms. Brokaw said.

Tricia O’Hare, Director of Events and Community Relations at Family Counseling Services, said that the tour was started to help expand visibility for Family Counseling, while also exposing local artists.

“The artist studio reception is a unique opportunity to meet 40 local artists, gain insight into their work and meet with other community members, all while helping family counseling services provide counseling and supportive services to the children of our own community,” she said. “It’s a great evening for a great cause.”

Maps and legends that lay out the third annual

Family Counseling Artists Studio Tour

are available at various locations, including the Family Counseling office, Galerie BelAge and Fitzgerald Gallery in Westhampton Beach, and Art and Soul Gallery in Eastport. Tickets to the Remsenburg Academy reception are $35 and can be purchased by calling 288-1954.

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