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News New England and Beyond

 

ABOVE SPNEA's popular exhibition "From Dairy to Doorstep: Milk Delivery in New England, 1860-1960"

BELOW Pine bench with fretwork backs built into the entrance portico of Colonel Josiah Quincy's country house.

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ABOVE New York artist Lorna Simpson visits SPNEA's Library and Archives

BELOW SPNEA Chief Curator and Director of Collections Richard Nylander

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ABOVE SPNEA will present "Off the Walls," an exhibit and a demonstration of wallpaper block printing by SPNEA licensee and wallpaper specialist Chris Ohrstrom

Blue Ribbon
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SPNEA's popular exhibition "From Dairy to Doorstep: Milk Delivery in New England, 1860-1960" has been awarded a Certificate of Commendation from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH). The AASLH Awards Program is the nation's most prestigious competition for recognition of achievement in local, state, and regional history. If you haven't seen the exhibition at its two previous showings in Lexington, Massachusetts, and Wethersfield, Connecticut, it will be on view at the Maine Historical Society in Portland through May 23.

Please Be Seated
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When Colonel Josiah Quincy built his country house in Quincy, Massachusetts, in 1770, the house boasted a roof balustrade in a Chinese fretwork pattern and a pair of pine benches with fretwork backs built into the entrance portico. A 1933 Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) of the house states, "The entrance portico, in particular, represents the rare survival of an unaltered eighteenth-century entrance." Photographs from that period show that the fretwork balustrade had rotted and been removed (with one panel put away to be reproduced at a future date), and the benches were in poor condition. Evidently the benches soon succumbed to the weather, as they were not mentioned in descriptions of the house when SPNEA took it over in 1937. SPNEA carpenter Steve O'Shaughnessy has recently reproduced the benches, working from photographs from the 1930s with close-up views of the portico. "I strived to create faithful and exact duplicates of the originals to blend into the remaining exterior features," he comments. O'Shaughnessy graduated from Boston's North Bennet Street School, which is dedicated to preserving traditional crafts, and displayed the benches at a graduate show there before installing them at the house.

Looking for Inspiration
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New York artist Lorna Simpson visits SPNEA's Library and Archives while searching for an artifact to include in her artwork for the exhibition "Yankee Remix" (see page 19). Although none of the artists has completed the selection process, they are considering items as various as architectural drawings, traveling trunks, walking sticks, and children's mugs. The exhibition opens in May at MASS MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts, and will be on view for ten months.

Appointments
Anne Bowen, Senior Vice President of Strategic Client Relationships at State Street Bank, Boston, has joined the SPNEA Board of Trustees. Ms. Bowen previously ran the bank's e-Business Incubator unit and Global Financial Technology Services Division. She received her undergraduate degree in education from Boston University and her M.B.A. from Simmons College. She has been a member of SPNEA's Finance Committee, where she will continue to serve, and before that was on the Audit Subcommittee. Ms. Bowen and her husband live in Boston's Back Bay and have a summer home in Little Compton, Rhode Island. They have two daughters.

SPNEA Chief Curator and Director of Collections Richard Nylander has been reappointed by President George W. Bush to serve as a member of the Committee for the Preservation of the White House. Members of the committee advise on the decoration of state rooms and acquisitions for the permanent collection. Mr. Nylander has served on the committee since 1990 and has worked on projects including the redecoration of the Blue Room and the State Dining Room.

Jane C. Nylander Endowment Fund
To recognize in a permanent way the many contributions that President Emerita Jane Nylander made during her ten years of service to SPNEA, the Board of Trustees has established a fund in her name to support museum acquisitions. Proceeds from the fund will provide needed support for purchases of objects and archival material in the competitive marketplace of American art and antiques.

Save the Date
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Don't miss The Designer Craftsmen Show of Boston, March 7, 8, and 9, at the Sheraton Colonial Hotel in Wakefield, Massachusetts. This juried event will feature traditional crafts, contemporary folk art, museum-quality replicas, original artworks, and fine furniture reproductions. SPNEA will present "Off the Walls," an exhibit and a demonstration of wallpaper block printing by SPNEA licensee and wallpaper specialist Chris Ohrstrom. At the opening night preview party on March 7, visitors may bring paper samples and photographs to show to SPNEA Chief Curator and wallpaper expert Richard Nylander for identification.

Getting Ready
SPNEA's Library and Archives holds a significant collection of more than eight hundred daguerreotypes-images created by means of the first successful photographic process. Several of these superb objects will be included in SPNEA's "Cherished Possessions," a major exhibition that will travel nationally beginning this summer. In preparation for their journey, conservator Paul Messier is currently conserving the pieces, cleaning the glass that protects the copper plates and stabilizing the cases.

New England Studies
SPNEA is pleased to announce that it will present the Program in New England Studies, a week-long intensive experience of lectures, workshops, and behind-the-scenes tours of both private homes and the buildings and collections of SPNEA and other museums, from June 21 to June 27. The program is based on SPNEA's esteemed Vale Program, first offered in 1979, which itself was modeled on the Attingham Program in Great Britain. The program will bring together museum professionals and graduate students, owners of historic houses, collectors, and lovers of history from all over the country to learn about New England culture through architecture, artifacts, building design, and technology. For more information and a l ist of local accommodations, please contact SPNEA Director of Exhibitions and Programs Ken Turino at (617) 227-3957, ext. 246

News New England and Beyond