07/09/15 2:35pm
07/09/2015 2:35 PM
(Credit: Tim Gannon)

An art gallery is proposed on this plot between Haiku and Barth’s Drug Store on E. Main Street. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

A proposal from more than 10 years ago to build an art gallery with artist lofts in downtown Riverhead is still alive, according to architect Martin Sendlewski, who represents a pair of renown sculptors proposing the project.

Sculptor Giancarlo Biagi and his business partner Jill Burkee are planning to build a three-story building on the empty lot in between Barth’s Drug Store and Haiku in downtown Riverhead. (more…)

06/27/15 6:00am
06/27/2015 6:00 AM
"Green Leaves" by Karen Bell.

“Green Leaves” by Karen Bell.

• “Translucent,” photographs by Karen Bell and Ennid Berger, will be on view June 27 to Aug. 9 at Alex Ferrone Photography Gallery in Cutchogue. An artists’ reception is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 27.

Ms. Bell’s use of “natural curiosities” in “combined photographic images on airy layers of vellum over paper” will be shown alongside “delicate images from chance encounters found with greenery fragments and petals afloat in still waters,” according to a press release.  (more…)

06/20/15 6:00am
06/20/2015 6:00 AM

Beaded bracelet my Marjorie Oxman

• East End Arts in Riverhead will host an artisan trunk show featuring glass jewelry by Marjorie Oxman of Remsenburg from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 20, in the EEA gallery. Ms. Oxman’s jewelry, which incorporates beads of colored glass with sterling silver and other fine materials, will be available for sale.  (more…)

06/17/15 12:25pm
06/17/2015 12:25 PM
Concert goers enjoy the party at last year's music festival. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Concert goers enjoy the party at last year’s music festival. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Musician and producer Nile Rodgers is overwhelmed with enthusiasm as he remembers the first show he produced on the North Fork two years ago.

It was the “All For The East End” concert, a one-day event held at Martha Clara Vineyards in 2013, which that raised about $70,000 for various East End charities and drew some 5,000 people.

“I do festivals all the time and people told me they had never had a more pleasant time ever than on the North Fork and I’m talking big-name agencies,” said Mr. Rodgers, a Westport, Conn., resident who frequently boats to the North Fork. “The local food, the people, everything, so I thought to myself, Nile, let me build this and get it right.”

Mr. Rodgers is preparing to do it all over again this August with the FOLD (Freak Out Let’s Dance) Festival in Riverhead. The two-day music festival will again take place at Martha Clara Vineyards and feature dozens of performers, including headliners like Pharrell Williams and Beck. The name of the festival comes from two of the biggest songs produced by Mr. Rodgers — “Freak Out” by Chic in 1978 and “Let’s Dance” by David Bowie in 1983.

“We learned from our mistakes,” he said of the 2013 event. “The biggest thing I think we got wrong was someone said the line for the beer was too long. That’s your biggest complaint? If that’s the biggest complaint, we can fix that.”

New to concert producing, maybe, but Mr. Rodgers is no stranger to the music scene. He co-founded the band Chic in 1976, which rode the disco craze with chart-topping songs like “Le Freak,” “I Want Your Love” and “Good Times.”

He’s also had a successful producing career with partner and fellow Chic member Bernard Edwards, working with the likes of Diana Ross, David Bowie, Madonna, Duran Duran and Earth Wind & Fire. He’s won numerous Grammy Awards and has since reunited with Chic, now touring regularly.

Now he has convinced some of the biggest artists of today to come to the North Fork to perform at the beginning of the busy summer concert season. The talent roster for FOLD boasts some major names in music including Duran Duran, Q-Tip, Keith Urban, Janelle Monáe and Chaka Khan.

“I had to think things out very carefully and make sure I dotted all my I’s and T’s,” he said. “This is the first gig for [some of] them this year, after that they’re hopping a plane. Pharrell said, ‘This is the day I can do it.’ Beck said, ‘This is the day I can do it.’ Duran Duran said, ‘You’ve done so much for us,’ so they canceled their vacation to do the concert.”

Working in collaboration with Mr. Rodgers are veteran concert promoters Michael Ostin and Peter Herman.

“I am thrilled to co-produce the Freak Out Festival with Nile and Michael Ostin,” Mr. Herman said. “Additionally I have the great pleasure to be working with the awesome Town of Riverhead and be part of this culturally cool environment.”

So how do North Fork residents feel about the upcoming concert?

Valerie and Robert Hubbard, whose Jamesport property abuts Martha Clara, are already unhappy with the increased noise and activity at Martha Clara on regular weekends and are worried about the traffic and noise of the August concert.

“We’re neighbors, so it’s a sticky situation,” Ms. Hubbard said. “We received invitations to the first concert two years ago, but that was a benefit concert, this doesn’t seem like a benefit concert. It would be a great event for Jones Beach, but not a rural farm. I don’t think I want that in my backyard, I don’t think a rural vineyard should have a Boardy Barn atmosphere.”

Others, like Angela Tondo of Southold, had warmer feelings about the show, which is certainly the biggest concert to happen in her backyard. Tondo purchased four tickets for her 18-year-old son, who attended the 2013 concert.

“He went and he really enjoyed it so I bought tickets for him and his friends,” she said. “I think he’ll be really excited about it.”

Town officials are confident the police department will make sure traffic flows smoothly when an expected 10,000 ticket holders descend on Riverhead each day.

“We’re working on it, but I think we will be able to handle it,” said Riverhead Town Police Chief David Hegermiller.

Nile Rodgers Productions in February presented the Riverhead Town Board with a plan to have one entrance lane on Sound Avenue and four entrance lanes on Herricks Lane, including a VIP entrance, which would serve as a handicapped entrance as well.

They also said they plan to have shuttles to the concert from several locations. A permit for the event was issued in February.

In 2003, Riverhead Town was sued after it denied a permit for a proposed music festival called Field Day, which was to be held at EPCAL. The town denied that permit because it was unable to supply enough police protection.

But Chief Hegermiller says that’s not the case here.

“This one has much fewer people and it’s not an overnight concert like Field Day was supposed to be,” he said.

Last week, Martha Clara winemaker and general manager Juan Micieli-Martinez said the logistics for the event had been discussed at length and organizers had been working with a firm to control traffic flow during the festival. “It’s not some haphazard event,” Micieli-Martinez said. “There is a lot of strategic planning.”

Mr. Rodgers has high hopes for the FOLD Festival.

“Obviously this is not to get rich. I want to show people that once you start something artistic, it can turn into something fun. These are the people I make records with, this is my family. You’re going to see some special things that will never happen again.”

The FOLD (Freak Out Let’s Dance) Festival will take place Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 4 and 5, at Martha Clara Vineyards. Tickets range from $137 for general admission to $999 for Ultra VIP.

For concert information and to purchase tickets, visit foldfestival.com.

[email protected]

With Vera Chinese and Tim Gannon

06/17/15 5:59am
During the Town Board's work session last Thursday morning, illustrator Samantha Neukirch and her assistant, Joe Arias, presented her plans to install a mixed media mural project near the River and Roots community garden. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

During the Town Board’s work session last Thursday morning, illustrator Samantha Neukirch and her assistant, Joe Arias, presented her plans to install a mixed media mural project near the River and Roots community garden. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

The back of the Riverhead Town comfort station by the River and Roots Community Garden will soon not only face the water — it will look like the water.

Artist Samantha Neukirch was given an informal go-ahead last Thursday to begin working on a “mixed media mural based on the local aquatic system” that will be attached to the back wall of the comfort station, which also abuts a new playground.

The 22-year-old Smithtown artist plans to create images digitally on a computer, print them out and attach the prints to boards, which will be affixed to the comfort station. The mural will be about 8 feet by 20 feet, she said.


06/12/15 12:00pm
06/12/2015 12:00 PM
(Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Huntington artist Caitlyn Shea with her self-portrait, ‘Elusive.’ (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Huntington artist Caitlyn Shea presented her self-portrait, ‘Elusive,’ a work in acrylic, spray paint and charcoal, before the opening of her show and gallery talk at Rivehead Free Library’s Elizabeth Overton Gallery last week.

In her talk, Ms. Shea discussed the challenges she faced after a fire at her home damaged some of her work. An art auction event for her benefit is planned for July 10. Her paintings will be on view at the library through July 24.

Ms. Shea was one of the artists who participated in the East End Arts’ JumpstART program last year and is a mentor in it this year.

To donate to help Ms. Shea rebuild, visit her GoFundMe page.

06/12/15 6:00am

Paolo Bartolani at the piano.

Italian virtuoso pianist Paolo Bartolani will perform “A Musical Conversation: Franz Schubert and Philip Glass” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, June 12, at the Jamesport Meeting House. The program will include music by the Austrian composer (born 1797) and Mr. Glass, a contemporary American composer.

Mr. Bartolani explained in a release: “By having a conversation between the music of today and that of the past, we discover the invisible thread between composers and how their music resonates with each other.”

Mr. Bartolani, who lives in Southold, was director of the Association Resonnance-Italy, a nonprofit group that promotes classical music throughout Europe and the United States.
Tickets are $18 in advance (jamesportmeetinghouse.org) and $20 at the door. Student tickets are $8 and $10.

• New land- and seascapes by North Fork artist Max Moran will be on display through Labor Day in the tasting room at Lieb Cellars on Oregon Road in Cutchogue. The show, entitled “Vintage: Twenty Years Painting the North Fork,” opens Saturday, June 13, with a reception from 5 to 7 p.m.

In a release, Mr. Moran reflected on two decades of local inspiration by saying, “… seeing those Connecticut clouds drifting over the L.I. Sound or farmlands still gives me a rush. There are still plenty of places that are quiet and hidden away that are a delight to paint and discover for the first time.”

• An exhibit of hooked wall hangings by fiber artist Marilyn Bottjer will be on display June 13-27 at Southold Historical Society’s Cosden-Price Gallery, housed in the Reichert Family Center on Main Road, where a reception is set for Friday, June 12, 5:30 to 7 p.m. Her “colorful and inventive” pieces, according to a release, “can depict anything from local and regional buildings and landscapes to special events and independent creations that appear almost abstract in nature.”

Ms. Bottjer has shown and taught at the American Folk Art Museum in New York and been featured at many other major museums and institutions, as well as on HGTV and in publications on rug hooking, the release stated.

• Suffolk County Historical Society in Riverhead will host two arts-related events in conjunction with its current exhibits, “From Shore the Shore: Boatbuilders and Boatyards of Long Island” and a maritime art exhibit in the new Noel J. Gish Gallery.

Boatbuilder Christopher Hale will demonstrate his skill as a crafter of half-model boats indigenous to Long Island’s South Shore at 1 p.m. Saturday, June 13. Using specialized hand tools and line drawings, he will create working models of a 1970s-era Garvey and a sail-powered tonging boat from the early 1900s.

Gallery owner J. Russell Jinishian will give a talk on ‘Maritime Art of Yesterday and Today’ at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 18. Mr. Jinishian is the author of “Bound for Blue Water,” a guide to contemporary marine art, and the publisher of Marine Art News.

Admission to each event is $5 for nonmembers and free for members and includes entry to the exhibits. An RSVP is requested; call 727-2881, ext. 106.

• A showing of paintings by Dolores Castrucci of Southold opens Friday, June 12, with a reception from 5 to 7 p.m., at Town and Country Real Estate on Main Road in Southold. According to a release, Ms. Castrucci’s passion is painting “en plein aire” to “capture the visual poetry of seas, earth and sky.” Her latest works are described as “earth paintings” — compositions that incorporate textures such as sand, grass and seeds.

• Applications are being accepted for an intensive nine-week, tuition-free soul and R&B vocal ensemble workshop for high school musicians this fall. The East End Arts’ Music Masters Fellowship Program will be led by professional vocalist Anastasia René, accompanied by pianist Mark Mancini. Singers ages 14-18 are welcome to apply.

Sessions will be held Monday evenings, Sept. 28 to Nov. 30, at East End Arts School in Riverhead. A performance will be held Tuesday, Dec. 1. There are no fees.

The deadline to apply is July 17. Students must submit an online application at eastendarts.org (go to Events), along with a recorded performance sample. For more information and the online application, go to eastendarts.org under School. Contact Diane Giardi at 369-2171 or [email protected].

• Student string musicians are invited to play in East End Arts’ third annual student orchestra collaborative project with the Perlman Music Program. Violin, viola, cello or double bass players ages 8-18 may participate in an open rehearsal conducted by Itzhak Perlman alongside the Perlman Music Program String Orchestra at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, July 30. The venue has not yet been determined.

A series of rehearsals will take place at East End Arts in Riverhead Mondays, July 13, 20 and 27, with a mandatory full rehearsal Wednesday, July 29, all from 4 to 6 p.m.

There are no auditions, but students must be registered by Friday, July 10. Go to eastendarts.org under School. For information, call 369-2171 or email [email protected].

Butterfly photography by Patrick Haggerty is on view through June at Southold Free Library.

To send arts news, email [email protected], fax to 298-3287 or mail to Times/Review Newspapers, P.O. Box 1500, Mattituck, NY 11952.