Jaffrey Civic Center

40 Main Street, Jaffrey, NH 03452
Photo by Jeffrey Newcomer. All rights reserved

Photography Winners at Jaffrey Civic Center

Shirley Chodin with "Birch in Autumn's Glow

Standing on left is Shirley Chodin of Winchendon, MA, with her 1st place image, “Birch in Autumn’s Glow”, next is “After Oz”, the Honorable Mention photo by Jonathan Route of Leominster, MA, and the 2nd place image, “Waiting for Tomorrow” by Gerrit Bradley of Swampscott, MA and Jaffrey, NH.

The show was held in two portions: Photography and Multi Media, and ran from November 21 through December 20. The winners were determined by public voting and received awards from the Kana Riley Poetry and Artistic Fund.


"Laissez les bons temps rouler!" The Jaffrey Civic Center invites you to a Mardi Gras fundraising evening & dinner on Saturday, February 14, from 6 - 9:30 pm in the first floor Auditorium Gallery at the Center. Spice up your Valentine's Day!

Enter a glittering world of beads, balloons and brightly colored masks or bring your own! Let your taste buds savor a New Orleans inspired buffet dinner followed by a peak into the intimate life of Anne Hathaway's marriage to William Shakespeare in a staged reading by Project Shakespeare and top off the evening with a decadent dessert accompanied by light jazz music. And who will win the coveted Mardi Gras prize? You will have to pop a balloon to find out!

Tickets may be purchased from the Civic Center at $40 per person (limited seating). All reservations must be made by Tuesday, February 10. Everyone is welcome! Call the Center at 532-6527 to reserve and purchase tickets or for more information.

Call of Entry: Annual Spring Show

Download the call of entry form: COE Spring Area Art Exhibit 2015

The show will run from Friday, February 13 through Saturday March 14, 2015. This first show of the season in the second floor Cunningham Gallery and first floor Auditorium Gallery will start with an opening on Friday, Feb 13 from 5-7 pm.

If you are interested in submitting your work, please note: Each artist may submit two pieces in any medium, and 2 shrink-wrapped, matted pieces of art for the floor portfolio. The entry fee is $25 per person. The sales commission is 30%.

You may bring your artwork to the Center beginning Tues. February 3 through Sat. Feb. 7. After the exhibit, your work should be picked up from Tuesday, March 17 through Saturday, March 21. Please mark this on your calendar.

Oil Paintings by Ann Cross

The Jaffrey Civic Center is proud to announce an exhibit of oil paintings by Ann Cross in the first floor Display Cases from January 15 through through February12.

The majority of works are oil on canvas realistic landscapes, in which Ann specializes, and will be for sale.

She began painting in 1976 and has become enthralled with abstract design within the parameters of composition and value. She has studied with many instructors including Jean Pratt Fisher, Peter Granucci, Robert Collier, Richard Whitney, and Numael Pulido.

Her works have been shown in many places throughout the New England states, and has received awards from Fitchburg Art Museum, Keene Art Shows, such as “Art in the Park”, Jaffrey Civic Center, and Miller Art Center in Springfield, VT.

Ann was raised in Langdon, New Hampshire, left for a few years, returned and remained since 1973.

Multi Media Winners at Jaffrey Civic Center

(L-R) Shannon Stirnweiss, Jan Mercuri Grossman, and Michele Carter

The Jaffrey Civic Center announces the Winners of the recent Annual Autumn Art Show.

Shown left to right are: Shannon Stirnweiss, of New Ipswich, NH, holding his Honorable Mention oil, ”Storm”, Jan Mercuri Grossman, of Amherst, NH, with her first place oil painting, “Red Sock”, and Michele Carter, of Jaffrey, NH with her second place acrylic painting, “Autumn Aspens”.

The show was held in two portions: Photography and Multi Media, and ran from November 21 through December 20, 2014. The winners were determined by public voting and received awards from the Kana Riley Poetry and Artistic Fund.

Poems: In a Larger Frame

The Visual Poetry Collective will present an exhibit of poems and art on display in the first floor Auditorium Gallery of the Jaffrey Civic Center. The show will run January 9th through February 7, 2015, with an opening reception on January 9th at 6p.m., and a poetry reading of the featured work on Friday, January 23rd at 7p.m.

The project was conceived when Becky Sakellariou and Patrice Pinette, both members of Monadnock Writer’s Group, sat together in Aesop’s Tables at the Toadstool Bookshop in Peterborough admiring photographs on the wall. They imagined such a venue for poetry. By its very nature, most poetry is reserved for private moments when we open the covers of a favorite book, or leaf through the new issue of a literary journal. Poems find public expression in readings, of course, but why not expand the possibilities – look up from a cup of tea in the café, or enter a gallery, and find there the kind of fellowship that comes from connecting heart-to-heart with a poem?

This idea is not new, of course. Poems as public art have been finding their way onto the sides of buses, subway walls, parks, and closer to home, have appeared in windows in the Monadnock region when shops and cafes displayed poems by New Hampshire poets as part of the Keene Literary Festival, Sept, 2012. The six members of the Visual Poetry Collective, (Candace Bergstrom, Stoddard; Alice Fogel, Acworth; Kate Gleason, Keene; Rodger Martin, Hancock; Patrice Pinette, Wilton; and Becky Sakellariou, Peterborough) have taken a further step by pairing their poems with visual arts such as pastels, photographs, paintings, pen and ink, collage, graphite, and assemblage.

The stretch between different yet related images of poem and picture suggests a third act of imagination that bridges the mediums, (each with their own feelings, ideas and images) into a synthesis greater than the sum of its parts. The dynamic relationship bridging words and visual art shines new meanings onto each one, and beyond into this third creation—the visual poetry panels on exhibit at the Jaffrey Civic Center.

The poets reflect on their works-in-progress: Kate Gleason describes her interest in braided poems that “weave together the strands of many different topics in an attempt to create a simultaneous sense of fragmentation and wholeness, multiplicity and oneness, reflective of the contradictory nature of our postmodern times.” Her poem for the exhibit, “After My Father Died in His Hospital Room” is a long meditation that includes such diverse topics as her father’s death, Darwin, human genetics, “opera-bots” (opera-singing robots), and dying languages. Her assemblages, inspired by Joseph Cornell’s boxes, are a natural choice for a medium to complement her poem. “Each assemblage is a small Orphic quest to put the lost and scattered beauty of the world back together, the fragments hinting toward what Charles Simic called ‘an unutterable whole.’”

“When I was invited to participate in this ‘visual poetry’ project,” Alice Fogel adds, “I was thrilled, partly because of the company I'd be in, and partly because the theme of it fits right in to what I've been doing this past year. I've been writing what I think of as abstract expressionist poems. Each one is based on a specific piece of Abstract Expressionist art. Although I might include a reference to a color or texture or other feature, the poems don’t describe the paintings that inspire them, but are more a kind of response to their emotional or material tones as I perceive them. Mostly, these poems strive to mimic what happens when we are (or at least I am) in the presence of expressionist art. In this sense, the poems are about consciousness.” Alice asks herself, and therefore her readers and viewers, “Can language put us in that realm of pure experience, however unsettling, inexplicable or thrilling, that abstract art does?”

Patrice Pinette echoes Fogel’s interest in the alchemical relationship, rather than exact correspondence, between word and image. “What interests me most,” Pinette says, “is the imaginal space between my poem and pastel. For example, the poem ‘Finger Painting’ begins: First picture a sun rising in the body of your enemy. / It may be an angry sun at first, stamped or smudged with a red fingerprint. The oil pastel does not illustrate the poem, and instead offers an inside-out perspective as inner fire is transformed in the visual piece to a red sky reflected in marsh waters: The whole world is on fire with an ‘angry sun,’ or warmed by the inward possibility of self-awareness and forgiveness.”

In some cases artwork has inspired the poems, and in others, the poem has prompted the artwork, as for example, with Rodger Martin’s pieces. Chad Gowey’s pen and ink creations were inspired by the historical poems of Martin, and then elaborated by his own vision. “History means little if we cannot make that metaphorical leap which gives it value to a contemporary, makes it relevant and personal,” Martin says about the content of both art and text.

Candace Bergstrom and her partner, artist Michael Cherry, have a mutual interest in the unconscious, dream images and symbols. “For my poem ‘Mothering,’” Candace relates, “I chose Michael’s drawing ‘8 Thoughts,’ an abstract meditation on the nature of the infinite, on the birth-life-death-re-birth cycle. The poem at the surface is simple and in the realm of the ordinary. At dusk, a brown house spider, under the porch eave / crawled toward a dead wasp caught in her web. But it also lives in the realm of the extraordinary, the cyclical, and the regenerative. When the poem and the drawing appear together in the exhibition, they will represent the ways in which seemingly disparate works of art are profoundly linked.”

Becky Sakellariou, who discovered subtle and otherwise hidden elements when pairing her poems and photographs, spoke of this link as a marriage between words and images. She refers to the creative process, as well as the power of the blended art form, to add an element of surprise, and to change the way we read when she says, “The experience of the poem will be exponentially expanded and something very different and unexpected will happen–to all of us because of this.”

Members of the Collective are teachers and artists involved in the rich NH community and beyond, and have a number of individual distinctions between them: 17 books, awards and fellowships from NH Council on the arts, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, as well as many others, have been nominated for 6 Pushcart Prizes, and published widely in literary journals and anthologies including the Best American Poetry series.

Tuesdays with Bridge

Attention men and women… Tuesdays at 12:30, the Jaffrey Bridge group will welcome beginner and seasoned players to join. The group meets in the first floor Auditorium Gallery each week. There is no limit for enrollment and no cost.

No competition, just FUN!

Call the Center to sign up now.

Caroline Hollister Honored for Her Civic Leadership

Caroline Hollister receiving the Marion Mack Johnson Civic Leadership Award from Bill Driscoll on behalf of the Center’s Board of Directors. Photo by Tom doane

Caroline Hollister of Jaffrey was the recipient of the Marion Mack Johnson Civic Leadership Award, the annual honor bestowed for exemplary leadership by the Jaffrey Civic Center.

The ceremony was held at the Center on September 17 and attended by many friends and admirers of Ms. Hollister’s years of selfless commitment to the betterment of Jaffrey and the Monadnock region.

The Jaffrey Civic Center has instituted the Marion Mack Johnson Civic Leadership Award as a way to honor the commitment of citizens who have worked tirelessly for civic goals. It was Mrs. Johnson who built the Center forty-five years ago.

The Mission of the Center is to provide and sustain a public venue where citizens of the Monadnock region can pursue artistic, educational and civic activities. The Center’s goal is to contribute to the cultural enrichment and enlightenment of the community.

The Jaffrey Civic Center Partners with TD Bank Affinity Program

The Jaffrey Civic Center recently received a cash contribution from TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, through the bank’s Affinity Membership Program.

The Jaffrey Civic Center is pleased to work with TD Bank in this program for a second year. The Center is a beautiful building, which has become integral for many school and community organizations to meet. The Affinity Program is helping fund structural upkeep and replacement projects, such as a much needed entire second floor ceiling replacement, interiors of all windows painted, and an installation of a new furnace.

TD Bank’s Affinity Membership Program helps non-profit organizations raise money by receiving an annual cash contribution from TD Bank based upon the participation of qualified member accounts.

For more information about TD Bank’s Affinity Membership Program or to find a store near you, call 888-751-9000.

The Civic Center provides and maintains a public venue where citizens of the Monadnock Region can pursue artistic, educational, and civic activities. The Center’s goal is to contribute to the cultural enrichment and enlightenment of the community.

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