Still Lifes & the Legacy of Charles Ethan Porter

Arts Center East

Apr. 1, 2024 - Apr. 30, 2022

709 Hartford Turnpike
Vernon, 06066
PHONE 860-871-8222

Arts Center East is pleased to present an exhibit of contemporary Still Lifes alongside artwork and information about 19th and early 20th century Rockville artist, Charles Ethan Porter.

Charles Ethan Porter was a renowned Still Life Artist in the 19th and early 20th Century. He lived in Rockville, CT for most of his life. Porter not only studied art at the National Academy of Design in New York City, he was one of the first Black artists to exhibit there. He was the only Black artist at the turn of the century who painted still lifes. His work can be found in collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Wadsworth Athenaeum, and more. Most recently, a painting of Porter’s was acquired by the Florence Griswold Museum in Connecticut. It is also likely that much of Porter’s work is owned privately but has not been officially authenticated.

With this exhibit, we are shining a light on Charles Ethan Porter and celebrating artists who are working in the style of still lifes today. Open to artists 18 years and older working in acrylic, pastels, oil, watercolor, charcoal, and colored pencil. Subjects can vary from traditional still life or memento mori composition (flowers, fruit, timepieces, etc.) to more contemporary or surreal compositions.

As part of the exhibit, Arts Center East is also having a series of talks about Charles Ethan Porter, his family, his work, and his connection to Rockville.

This exhibit is made possible by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving Vernon Greater Together Community Fund.

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