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Darien Historical Society Looks Back At Town's Art, Design Past

Committee members prepare for the Darien Historical Society’s upcoming exhibit, "Darien 1925-1950 ~ Golden Age of Art and Design."
Committee members prepare for the Darien Historical Society’s upcoming exhibit, "Darien 1925-1950 ~ Golden Age of Art and Design." Photo Credit: Contributed

DARIEN, Conn. – The Darien Historical Society soon will be taking visitors on a trip back in time with its exhibit, “Darien 1925-1950 ~ Golden Age of Art and Design,” opening Friday, April 22, with a champagne reception from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

The exhibit, which continues through Sunday, Sept. 11, will showcase the work of a wide variety of artists and their influence on the town.

The exhibit begins with the story of how Darien formed New England’s second earliest art colony, the Guild of the Seven Arts, and how the new world of radios, magazines and Victrolas created a demand for artists in the New York metropolitan area, many flocking to live and work in Darien.

Significant contributions were made by artists like Robert Pallesen, co-founder of the guild, who painted the murals in the lobby of Darien Town Hall, then Darien High School.

Creativity and talent thrived during the Golden Age and historical works of a multitude of Darien’s cultural icons are included in the exhibit. The town’s heritage includes a world famous photojournalist, a three-time America’s Cup winning yacht designer, a renowned muralist, designers of the Electrolux canister vacuum, Macy’s holiday decorations and America’s best basic wooden boats.

“The show is not so much about art as it is about the exciting adolescence of this evolving town,” said Ken Reiss, historian for the historical society. "The birth of the Darien Guild of the Seven Arts gave that world some organization at a time that was both exciting and fun.”

The society also will host several evening receptions featuring talks by the key curators and a souvenir program booklet.

The hours of the exhibit are from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, and noon to 3 p.m. Sundays. A non-member donation of $5 is suggested.

Click here for more information about the exhibit .

The Darien Historical Society is at 45 Old Kings Highway N.

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