The CT State Capitol in Hartford is featuring “Weir Farm–Restored,” a solo photographic exhibit by artist Xiomaro, revealing the dramatic before-and-after restoration of artist Julian Alden Weir’s house and painting studio at Weir Farm National Historic Site. The exhibit opens today, Monday, Oct. 3, and runs through Oct. 28.
“Weir Farm–Restored” also celebrates the Centennial of the National Park Service as Weir Farm, which is located in both Ridgefield and Wilton, is Connecticut’s first national park unit and the only one in the country dedicated to American Impressionist painting.
Xiomaro (pronounced “SEE-oh-MAH-ro”), Weir Farm’s Centennial Visiting Artist, is a nationally exhibited and published artist, curator, writer and speaker whose work has been covered by The New York Times, the Hartford Courant, News 12 and Fine Art Connoisseur. The National Park Service commissioned him in 2011 to artistically photograph the empty interiors of the key historic structures at Weir Farm, which were being restored for the first time in the history of the park. After the restoration was completed in 2014, he returned to photograph the stunning change.
The exhibit will occupy 250 feet of wall space at Connecticut’s seat of government: the Upper Concourse is the main underground passage between the Legislative Office Building and the Capitol Building. Visitors can also use the moving walkway there to slowly peruse the large photographic prints measuring 17″ x 25.” Through these immersive views, one can experience the significant contrast between the rarely-seen empty interiors–stark, rustic and ethereal–and the rooms restored and furnished to their original colorful and wildly eccentric stylings.
The spirited décor is the result of artists having continuously occupied Weir Farm for 123 years. The property was acquired in 1882 by J. Alden Weir, the father of American Impressionist painting. After his death, Weir’s daughter, painter Dorothy Weir Young, and her husband, sculptor Mahonri Young, took up residence followed by New England painters Sperry and Doris Andrews. Today, the 60-acre farm, which also includes barns, gardens, and Weir Pond, is one of the nation’s finest remaining landscapes of American art–and artists still reside there.
Through the park’s Artist-in-Residence program, the tradition of visual artists living and creating at Weir Farm continues. Xiomaro was a part of that program and that indirectly led to “Weir Farm–Restored.”
The exhibit runs from October 3-28,, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., at the Legislative Office Building, 300 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, and is funded, in part, by Weir Farm National Historic Site. For more information, visit Xiomaro’s website or call 860.240.0100. For more information about visiting Weir Farm National Historic Site, visit the Weir Farm website or call 203.834.1896.