Art hangs in honor of Fine Arts Center's 40th anniversary

A new exhibit at the Milford Center for the Arts, 40 Railroad Avenue, celebrates the 40th Anniversary of the Milford Fine Arts Council.
The exhibit features 13 Connecticut artists, selected from more than 100 artists whose works are represented in Milford’s Permanent Art Collection.

“Many of the works displayed were first displayed at juried art shows sponsored by the Milford Fine Arts Council,” said Marion Morra, curator of the permanent art collection. “Much of the art was purchased over the years by donations from local businesses.”
Among the artists featured is Roger Van Damme (1912-2008), a former Woodmont resident, best known for his paintings of white and black enamel cups. During World War II, when he was severely wounded in Belgium, Van Damme survived mostly lying on his back and drinking liquids from metal field cups. Van Damme also painted human figures, still-lifes and seascapes.
Also highlighted at the exhibit is a portrait of Joseph A. Foran, by Edward Kasper. Foran was superintendent of Milford schools from 1947 to 1967.
Kasper, a longtime Wilton resident, was mostly known for his sport art and worked freelance for Sports Illustrated from the 1960s through the 1980s. When he was a teenager attending Milford High School, Kasper painted a mural of the history of mathematics on the wall in the high school. His art teacher alerted the dean of the Yale School of Fine Arts, who upon seeing the mural offered Kasper a full scholarship. The mural is part of the permanent art collection and hangs at the Parsons Government Complex.
A third artist whose work is in the new exhibit is William Meddick, an oil painter whose subject matter includes landscapes, figures and interiors. His oil painting Cornfield received the Devon Rotary Purchase Award in 1989. Executive director of the Milford Fine Arts Council since 1984, Meddick worked as a scenic painter for numerous Broadway and off-Broadway productions in the early 1970s. His series of Milford schools, featuring both buildings and students, was painted while he was the schools’ artist-in residence in the late 1970s.
Other artists featured in the exhibit include Rosemary Markham, Nick Pavia, Eleanor Birks, Wilford Loring, Jan Riviere, James Grabowski, James Jafferis, Doris Malota, S.M. Cooper and David Dunlop.
The 13 Stars exhibit will be at the Milford Arts Center through July 18. The art will then be returned to the Milford Permanent Art Collection, which consists of nearly 200 works, and is continually on view at Milford’s Parsons Government Center.