New art exhibits spark nostalgia Narrowsburg, N.Y. Now at the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance: “Made in 1969” celebrates a transformational moment in history, “Bungalow” pays tribute to Catskill summers.
"Selfie 19," made in 1969 by Deanna Lickey
Two new group exhibits — “Made in 1969,” which includes artworks made in 1969 or by artists born in 1969, and “Bungalow,” photographs and film that recall the past and present of Catskill summers, are now open at Delaware Valley Arts Alliance (DVAA), 37 Main St., Narrowsburg, N.Y., through Aug. 3. The shows are free and open to the public. Fifty years after 1969 stands as an iconic and transformational moment for the generations that followed. It was the year of the Apollo Moon landing and the final performance of the Beatles atop Apple Studios. The government instituted the draft lottery to continue the war in Vietnam. The Manson murders gripped the nation. The Stonewall riots sparked the Gay Revolution. And in Bethel, just 20 minutes from the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance, a half-million people converged on the Woodstock music festival. "Made in 1969" includes paintings, sculpture, drawing, batik, assemblage, and photography that represents many of the trends being addressed in that time. The show’s premise is poignantly articulated in the pairing of drawings by the artist Bill Beirne, made in 1969, and sculpture made in 2019 by his daughter, the artist Brenna Beirne who was born that year. Other exhibited works made in 1969 are by Jane Biron, Mickey Campbell, Betty Craft, Doug Craft, Daria Dorosh, Micheline Gingras, Marion Kaselle, Richard Kreznar, Mitchell Lewis, Deanna Lickey, Elizabeth McAlpin, Brandi Merolla, Marjorie Morrow, Allan Rubin, Hank Schneider, Candy Spilner, Martin Springhetti, Naomi Teppich, John Tomlinson, Gail Tuchman, Nancy E. Wells, and Irenaeus Yurchuk Featured artists born in 1969 include Brenna Beirne, Elizabeth McAlpinand, and Charles Wilkin. The exhibition is curated by DVAA’s executive director, Ariel Shanberg, and its gallery director, Rocky Pinciotti. The eerie beauty of abandoned bungalows The Catskill bungalow has long represented an escape from New York City, and its heat and grit. The bungalow has been idealized in film, literature, and art, from the movie “Dirty Dancing” to the Maus graphic novel. There are many abandoned bungalow colonies and “kuchaleyns” — the Yiddish name for cabins with kitchens, also known as “cook-alones” — throughout the region. They were frequented by middle and working class Jewish New Yorkers and immigrants from Eastern and Central Europe. Luxton Lake in Narrowsburg was a popular vacation spot for African-American New Yorkers in the 1950s and 1960s. With the collapse of the summer tourist economy in the Catskills, more and more structures, from the lowly bungalow to giant resort hotels, have been abandoned and left to ruin, trespass, and vandalism — perfect material for artists. Abandoned buildings are as much a part of the Catskills as its rivers and hills. “Bungalow” presents artists’ works in all media, including film, sculpture, and sound, that recall the past and present of these structures and the rich culture they represent. Their diminished state today has an eerie beauty all its own. The show, curated by Elizabeth Ennis, includes photographs by Robyn Almquist and Glenn Lieberman; films by Lisa Crafts, Caitlin Parker and Elizabeth Ennis; Caitlin Parker’s “Ghost House” multimedia sculpture; paintings by Andrea Brown, Barbara Friedman, Marc Travanti, Amy Talluto, Nancy Sadler, David Sandlin, and James Karpowicz; and fabricated vignette viewers by Michael Staats. Gallery hours Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The activities of the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance are made possible in part by a grant from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. For more information, visit delawarevalleyartsalliance.org or call 845-252-7576.