5 to be honored with arts awards

September 28, 2009 The Broome County Council of the Arts will name an actor-photographer, two theater directors and the founders of an art gallery as winners of the 2009 Heart of the Arts and Lifetime Achievement Awards at a news conference scheduled for today in the Forum Theatre Recital Hall.
For significant, long-term contributions to the arts in Broome County, Bill Gorman will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award.

For more recent contributions, the annual Heart of the Arts Awards will go to Tim Gleason, artistic director of Know Theatre in downtown Binghamton; Naima Kradjian, executive director of Goodwill Theatre in Johnson City; and Bill and Johanne Pesce, co-founders of the Windsor Whipworks Art Gallery in Windsor.

A formal presentation will be made to the winners at 6:30 p.m. Friday during the sixth annual Heart of the Arts Awards Celebration in the Forum Theatre Recital Hall, as part of the First Friday Art Walk. The event will feature a tribute slide show produced by WSKG’s Gregory Keeler.

About the winners:

* Gorman has performed in more than 100 productions at the Cider Mill Playhouse since 1978, including the annual “Christmas Carol.” He is an original member and past president of Cooperative Gallery 213 in Binghamton, has assisted in numerous fundraising activities and currently serves on the boards of Binghamton Downtown Inc. and the Chenango River Theatre.

* Gleason founded KNOW Theatre with a group of other actors in 1992. As artistic director, he produced shows in a variety of temporary venues until the theater found a permanent home in 2006 at 74 Carroll St., Binghamton. He had been an advocate for downtown Binghamton revitalization and active in the First Friday Art Walk and First Night Binghamton.

* Kradjian has been involved in the Binghamton arts community since 1988. She is a co-founder of First Night Binghamton, a New Year’s Eve celebration of the Arts, is a former president of the Harpur Forum, served on the boards of many local arts and health-related nonprofit groups and has won many awards, including the 2003 Jefferson Award for Community Service.

* Bill and Johanne Pesce are co-founders of the Windsor Whip Works Art Gallery. They first vacationed in Windsor from Long Island, where he was an ad agency executive and she was a business educator. After he retired in 2006, they relocated to Windsor, where they purchased a building on the Windsor Village Green and spent five years renovating it into a gallery that has helped revitalize the area arts.

Windsor Whip Works Reborn as an Art Gallery

October 15, 2005 From 1901 to 1949, the building at 98 Main Street housed the Windsor Whip Works, one of three thriving buggy whip manufacturers located here in Windsor.

On October 15th, 2005, the two-story Italianate style building across from the village green opened as an art gallery, a crafters’ venue.

The rebirth of the Windsor Whip Works building is the culmination of years of dreaming and hard work of Bill Pesce, long-time President and CEO of Austin & Williams Advertising Agency located on Long Island.

“The building was a disaster, but with a lot of imagination, my wife and I felt it had potential. We never realized how much it would take – financially and emotionally – to bring it back to its former glory.

Over the years I always dreamed of a time when I could devote myself to full-time painting and to being around people who shared my love of art. Opening the Windsor Whip Works Art Gallery has finally made that dream come true. The gallery has become a creative environment attracting other dedicated artists and art lovers.”

The street level and the second floor houses the art gallery, attracting passionate and noteworthy national and local artists on a regular basis.

The level beneath the gallery is being transformed into an attractive and airy space that features local crafts, such as original pottery and ceramics, sculpture, handcrafted jewelry, woodcarvings, etc. Individual artists share the area displaying their work and greet customers as they actually create their crafts on the premises.

The building was constructed by J. G. Thomas in 1874. In 1901, James Elliott operated the Windsor Whip Works factory, becoming the third buggy whip manufacturing enterprise in the village. With the advent of the automobile, the need for buggy whips waned; but Elliot held on until 1949, selling carnival whips. Since that time, the building has served as a hardware store, an appliance store, an auto parts store, and the last occupant was Flintlock Station—a liquor store.

“The preservation and transformation of 98 Main Street into a cultural arts center fits in perfectly with the growth of the arts we’re seeing in nearby Binghampton. First Friday event is proof that the formula of developing the cultural arts environment in the city center works, evident by each month’s growing attendance all year long. We are excited to be able to extend this great happening to Windsor. The art gallery is having a snowballing effect, attracting investors to Main Street.

The new Windsor Whip Works Art Gallery is attracting art lovers and collectors, locally and throughout the state to Windsor – a proud community with a background of academic learning, and successful manufacturing. We look forward to becoming a part of that proud history in the exciting years to come.”

“Welcome to the new Windsor Whip Works Art Gallery.”

Johanne Pesce (607) 655-2370

Artists Portraying Artists

January 26, 2011 “Artists Portraying Artists,” is a juried show including works from twenty-two area artists. This ground breaking exhibit is one that keeps alive the tradition of previous centuries, artists creating self-portraits as well as images of other artists which provided an important and only record of how the well-known masters looked in the age before photography. With this show, this rich historic tradition in the world of art, is being carried on.

Local art lovers will recognize many of the participants in the show, some who have been featured locally, nationally, and internationally.

Contributing artists include:

Joanne Thorne Arnold / Kit Burham Ashman / Chris Bahr / Edna Bauer / Christoph Blumrich / Shelia Carey / Diana DeSantis / Lauren Floden / Mary Rose Griffin / Tony Locane / Jim Mullen / Bill Pesce / Ron Pokrasso / Judy Salton / Thomas Wells Schaller / Marc Schimsky / Bryna Silbert / David Silbert / David Sillars / Max Spoerri / Ken Weir / Betsy Jo Williams.

We’re fortunate that so much talent thrives in this region. The artists represented in this show didn’t have to search too far to find the ideal subjects for their expression.

Please check our Facebook page to see photos of our latest exhibit.

Johanne Pesce (607) 655-2370