City arts panel hosts Art and Jazz Gala

By TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

The City Arts and Culture Commission took part in the annual Mum Festival by hosting the Art and Jazz Gala, which took place last Thursday and Friday.

Twelve local artists participated during Thursday’s gala, offering the public a look at different art forms.

Samantha Cloutier, an Arts and Culture commissioner, said public exposure to different kinds of art is one of the reasons she wanted to join the commission.

“I think that the arts in Bristol have been missing for so long,” said Cloutier. “There’s a basis for it. There are people who are interested in the arts, they’re interested in culture, and I think it’s just been missing as a support from the city.”

There were traditional forms of painting, such as Joan Cloutier, a watercolor painter, who was able to present her artwork to the first time since taking classes at The Studio, on West Street. Joan said the Bristol community has been very supportive of her work.

There were also painters and drawers that offered less traditional pieces, such as comic book artists Seana Bombard and Evan Maguire, and Cody Martin, who used video games as a reference point for plastic sculptures.

Attendees were introduced to young talent, such as embroiderer Ashlynn Jefferson, who was a part of the gala the year before, and 14-year-old portrait artist, Janelle D’Emanuele, who was inspired to show her work due to positive social media feedback..

Photographers Janessa Corso and Lindsay Vigue each had a table to display their work.

“This is my first art show, so I was a little nervous at first,” said Corso. “I want it to be therapeutic for people as well, to hang one of my photos in their house.”

For attendees who like to keep their art closer to their hearts, Hartford County Tattoo was available to showcase the talent of their resident artists. They were also able to discuss their in-house art gallery, and an upcoming fundraiser they have planned.

“On Oct. 6, we’re going to have a lot of local community interaction and donations to raise money for Wade’s World, which is a local foundation for children with cancer. That’s going to be [Saturday] Oct. 6, from 7 to 11 at night, entertainment, wine tasting, things like that.,” said Tricia Lockhart. “A lot of people have never been in the studio, so this is a great opportunity for them to come in and see that we’re not just tattoos – although we do fantastic tattoos, we’re not just tattoos. We’re also very community oriented, we’re very supportive of the local art community, we feel very strongly about supporting the local artists in our community, because we are artists ourselves.”

And Patty Gamache, founder and creator of Pacha Moonbeam Acres, had a booth to display her herbal tinctures and balms.

By the end of the evening, all of the artists had said they would return to show their work at Mum Festival.