H. ALAN FEIT
Jazz 8 / Oil and graphite on paper / 1981
Alan Feit began his career as a press photographer for the United States Navy. He moved to Long Island in the 1970’s where he was a well-known teacher at Bellport High School and Suffolk Community College until his retirement. He was among a group of art teachers on Long Island who supported each other’s work in and outside the classroom. Jazz is a gift to the Museum from Paul Glorioso, who was Feit’s friend and fellow teacher at Hauppauge High School. A work in the Museum’s permanent collection, The Unknowns by Paul Glorioso, is a gift from Feit.
Feit holds a BFA in Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute of Fine Arts and received an MS and MFA from Long Island University, C.W. Post. He participated in additional graduate studies at Kodak Color Workshops, NY, Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, FLA, and at Towson State University, MD. His work has been exhibited extensively throughout the North East.
Summer Aspen / Oil on linen / 1960
Born in 1905, John Ferren was one of the leading abstract painters during the height of the Abstract Expressionist movement in the 1950’s.
In 1925, he moved to France where he achieved great success. Writer Gertrude Stein prophetically said of him “Ferren is the only American painter in Paris whose work interests the Parisians. He is young yet, and might soon do that thing called abstract painting.”
In Paris, Ferren was part of a community of artists working in Europe in the 20's and 30's, including Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Hans Hofmann, Alberto Giacometti, Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, Piet Mondrian, and Pablo Picasso. Picasso mentored him, and together they stretched the canvas for Guernica, in 1937.
He returned from Europe to Manhattan in 1938 where he was a founding member (and later president) of The Club, a group of artists who were at the heart of the emerging New York School of abstract expressionism.
In the 1950s, Ferren collaborated with Alfred Hitchcock. In the movie The Trouble With Harry, the artworks of main character were painted by Ferren. In Vertigo, Ferren created the famous nightmare sequence as well as the haunting Portrait of Carlotta.
He studied Zen and eastern philosophies and sought to express the reality behind appearances in his paintings and light sculptures. He married the artist Rae Ferren and lived in East Hampton until his death in 1970. The work in the Islip Art Museum’s Permanent Collection is a gift from Judith Sneddon, an artist and long-time resident of Sayville.
Young Girl with a Doll’s House / Black and white photograph / 1981
Man in a Wicker Chair / Black and white photograph / 1981
Since 1974, when he settled in Amagansett with his life partner, Jonathan Silin, Robert Giard photographed the inhabitants of the East End of Long Island, with particular emphasis on the gay and lesbian artistic community. His photographs are seldom traditional portraits. They often show subjects in natural landscapes posing with mysterious or incongruous objects.v
Born in Hartford, CN, in 1939, Giard studied English literature at Yale and Boston University and was a friend of many writers. His portraits of gay authors such as Larry Kramer, Edward Albee, Allen Ginsburg and Adrienne Rich became a travelling exhibit to many museums and were eventually compiled into a popular book. At the time of his death in 2002, he was creating portraits of older women who were noted for outstanding achievements late in life. His books and photographs are in collections at the Brooklyn Museum, the New York Public Library and the Library of congress. His archives are at the Yale University Library in Hartford.
Three Magnetized Map Lines / Oil on canvas / 1988
Burt Hasen served in the armed forces in World War II where he studied aerial bombing maps as an Air Force navigator. The maps, with their overhead perspective, became a prominent and ongoing theme of his work. His paintings seem abstract at first glance, but quickly resolve into realistic depictions of targets and bombing paths.
Three Magnetized Map Lines depicts the path of bombs as they fly toward targets in Germany. In this anti-war message, Hasen has embellished the bombs with deadly barbs and painted the bombing targets the color of blood.
Born in Manhattan in 1921, Hasen studied with Hans Hoffman and taught for many years at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. His paintings are in numerous collections, including the Smithsonian, the Library of Congress and the National Academy of Design. He received a Fulbright Grant and was featured in Time Magazine when he was chosen to appear in the Whitney Biennial.
In 2006 Mr. Hasen, his wife and the other tenants of a five-story building near the South Street Seaport made news when they organized against their landlord’s attempt to evict them from the rent-regulated lofts they had occupied for more than 30 years. They subsequently had their leases renewed. The lawsuit highlighted the ongoing need for affordable studio and living spaces for artists. Hasen died in 2007 at the age of 85.
Double Negative / Photo document of earth installation / 1970
Michael Heizer is one of the seminal figures in the Land Art Movement of the 1970’s, along with Robert Smithson, the creator of Spiral Jetty in the Great Salt Lake, Utah.
Heizer’s Double Negative is a multi-acre manipulation of the Mormon Mesa near Overton, Nevada. It consists of two deep trenches cut through rock that form a series of geometric negative spaces. When asked about his massive undertaking, reminiscent of the Egyptian Pyramids, Heizer famously said “It is just not my inclination to make small work.”
Because the site is nearly inaccessible, Double Negative exists in the public realm as documentation. This photograph was purchased at a charity auction by Madeleine Burnside, the Islip Art Museum’s first director.
Heizer is supported by the DIA Art Foundation. His works are on permanent exhibit at the DIA museum in Beacon, NY. He lives a reclusive life on the outskirts of the dessert and is working on City, the largest piece of contemporary art ever attempted.
He was born in California in 1944 and educated at the San Francisco Art Institute. Heizer’s father was an anthropologist, and his grandfather was a geologist. Both men influenced the artist’s interest in creating environments by changing the shape of existing terrain.
ARNOLD HOFFMAN, JR.
On the Way / Silkscreen / 1982
Arnold Hoffmann, Jr. founded the Screen Print Workshop in East Hampton in 1972, a time when prints were being recognized as an important art form. He was considered one of the master printmakers of his day.
He not only created his own silk screen editions but worked with and encouraged other artists, including James Brooks, Esteban Vincente, Roy Nicholson, Robert Gwathmey, Jimmy Ernst, Robert Dash, Priscilla Bowden and Tino Nivola. His prints are in major museums and private collections. He was the focus of a one-person exhibition Silkscreen-Arnold Hoffmann, Jr. and the Art of the Print, curated by Helen A. Harrison, director of the Pollack-Krasner House and Study Center in East Hampton.
Hoffmann was born in Manhattan in 1915, and studied at the National Academy of Design and the Art Students League. He was the art director at Dell Publishing, the World Telegram and The New York Times. At the Times, he designed the Sunday Magazine and other supplements. He lived on Long Island until his death in 1991.