Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Children create clay Christmas ornaments

DERBY - Valley Arts Council President Rich DiCarlo showed three students how to sculpt clay ornaments during last week's workshop at Derby Public Library. 

The session was the first of a two-part series.

Aryana Ryan, 10, of Ansonia, shows off her Santa ornament.

Alexys Ryan, 12, Aryana's older sister, works on a Christmas tree ornament under the watchful eye of DiCarlo.

Derby resident Greg Maiorino,13, shows off an elf he is creating...

 and here he concentrates on a gingerbread man. 

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree ...

DiCarlo shows off the evolution of sculpting a clay ornament, from right to left.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Ho, ho, ho! Gallery@37 open for holiday shopping

Welcome to the Gallery ...

DERBY - From traditional to quirky, there are all sorts of pieces of art at the gallery at 37 Elizabeth St. for those looking for that one-of-a-kind gift. 

I've heard of that guy...I think!

Plenty of handmade ornaments available...


for every taste.

Aren't these gingerbread people cute? 

Arts council President Rich DiCarlo has a 'Night in the City' theme going on with several different pieces of art. 

Very cool.

Stop by soon and get inspired! 

For info and shop hours call Rich DiCarlo, 203-906-4343.  

Monday, November 25, 2013

Arts council prez to teach clay workshop at Derby Public Library

DERBY - The Derby Public Library invites young adults ages 12 to 17 to a two-session Working with Clay Workshop, from 4-5:30 p.m. Dec. 5 and 12.

Local artist and Valley Arts Council President Richard DiCarlo guides participants first through ornament sculpting, followed by the painting of the holiday-themed sculptures.

Registration is requested.

For more information, stop by the Library at 313 Elizabeth St., call 203-736-1482, or visit

Note: I also posted this press release from the Derby Public Library today on the View from the Valley blog.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Night Gallery puts focus on frightful fun

DERBY - The Gallery@37 at 37 Elizabeth St. was the place to be on the Friday before Halloween as the arts council hosted 'Night Gallery.'

About 100 people attended the open house throughout the evening.

The autumn and Halloween-themed show featured a variety of artwork - everything from paintings, drawings and sculptures to photos.


Guests were greeted at the door by this loveable (?) guy.

Arts council president Rich DiCarlo of Derby, left, and his wife, Wendy, center, take in the show.

You could say that all who attended had a devilishly good time. I know I did.

Artist Maria Romano won first and second place for her graphite drawings. First place was called "Slight of Hand."

Maria holds her second place award for her devil drawing, "Alistair."

Shelton artist Len Grayeck won third place for his painting, "Shadow Cat Moon." 

 Arts council vice president Steve DiRienzo of Derby chats with Romano.

I thought this was a spooktacular way to keep wine and beer chilled. The jack o'lanterns are filled with ice.

And here Shelton artist Gerald Joyce photographs the photographer.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Artists have fun with food, cook up 'Delicious!' works

Show in Derby restaurant was a hit
Wallace Slove's 'Apples in a Blue Bowl' won 'Best in Show' at 'Delicious!' exhibit.

'Honey Bun!' by arts council president Rich DiCarlo took first place in the People's Choice category.

By Rich DiCarlo
Valley Arts Council
DERBY - Our Sept. 26 art exhibition, "Delicious!" was a smashing success!
More than 150 artists and art lovers packed Marco Pizzeria & Restaurant and experienced 
some great art and tasted some great food.

The juried show attracted more than 55 entries. The competition was fierce; there were many "high caliber" entries ranging from photographs to oil paintings.
Some pieces just dominated the hall. Greg Karas' painting, "Corona and Lime," and Steve DiRienzo's classic "Baked Ham and Potatoes," both made your mouth water. 

Four paintings were sold before the night was over. 
The show attracted many new artist members to the ever growing ranks of the Valley Arts Council. Judges were the family owners of Marco Pizzeria who graciously offered their beautiful
restaurant and catering for the show.
They painstakingly scrutinized every entry. In the end it ended up a battle between two Valley Arts Council members who both happen to belong to the Derby Senior Center. 

Wallace Slove's masterpiece "Apples in a Blue Bowl" won the coveted "Best in Show" Award
along with a $50 gift certificate!
In addition, this was also the first time that we, or any other arts organization in the region, had ever
attempted a "People's Choice Award."

Attendees were asked to cast a ballot for their three favorite works. The paper ballots jammed a makeshift ballot box. More than 165 votes were cast! 
The results were compiled a few days later and counted by the Delicious! Committee.
First place with 53 votes, went to my painting "Honey Bun!" 
Second place, with 35 votes, went to Francesco Tobacco for his painting, "View from La Cocina." There was a tie for third between two photographers: Keary Nichols for "Peaches" and Patricia Villers for "Strawberries."
Honorable mention went to two sculptural pieces which were the talk of the evening.
They were: Floatin' Fred's provocative work, "Fast Food Junkies," which cleverly featured McDonald's French fries as hypodermic needles nestled in their container; and George Pudimat's humorous experiment with twisted utensils titled "The Trouble Between Forks N' Spoons,"  which had everyone smiling and having a great time. 

Owners of Marco Pizzeria would like to make this an annual event...and we look forward to that. 

Derby artist Steve DiRienzo, center, chats with Ansonia artist Greg Karas.

Thought-provoking art works lined the room.
Fruits and vegetables - and a sip or two of wine.

Here's another scene from the show.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

'Delicious' pieces of art arriving at the Gallery@37 ~ don't miss out

Delicious! a food-inspired event, is the council's upcoming art exhibit at Marco Pizzeria & Restaurant, 656 New Haven Ave., Derby.

An opening reception will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the restaurant. 

Please join us!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Attention artists: Delicious! dropoffs scheduled

Delicious! is the council's upcoming art exhibit at Marco Pizzeria & Restaurant, 656 New Haven Ave., Derby.

An opening reception will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Sept. 26 at the restaurant.

 Don't miss out on the fun, food and artwork!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Council prez to teach sculpture workshop

Question: The Valley Arts Council would like to know if anyone would be interested in a "Real" Sculpture Workshop?

Please let us know if you are interested in a
Youth program (ages 7 to 14) or Adult (ages 15 -over).

The course will consist of six, hour and a half-long, sessions.
Open to the public, all level artists/non-artists and beginners welcome.

This is a fun and interesting workshop, great for budding artists who are just discovering their talents, as well as those serious about honing their skills for a career in the arts.

Students will learn about the tools and beyond the basic techniques, and how to construct an armature (skeleton/frame) literally...The "ins and outs" of sculpture. 
We'll be focusing on sculpting a free standing figure!
Sounds intimidating? Give it a try... Rich can teach anyone to sculpt!

Instructor: Richard DiCarlo, BFA Fine Arts, School of Visual Arts in NYC.
Master Sculptor, Award Winning Artist, Creator of Urban Fossils, his works have been featured in many galleries and Newspapers and Television including: HGTV's hit program, "That's Clever" and believe it or not...ESPN's "SPORTSCENTER".

Class size is limited and is on a first come, first serve basis.
Cost is $85 for six weeks! (*Price includes $10 materials Fee)

One-On-One or Group Instruction is Available for both Youth & Adult Levels

Contact us to inquire about new session dates and times.
The workshop can be tailored to any age group, any size or any schedule!
Payment plans available.

We will work with professional grade, air dried, terra-cotta clay.
Tools and Materials will be provided*.
Contact Rich at:

Attention artists: Studio spaces available in Derby

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Shelton artist's work on exhibit at Bridgeport gallery

An opening reception will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday at Framemakers Picture Framing and Art Gallery, 3004 Fairfield Ave., in the Black Rock section of Bridgeport.

'In Plein View' is about seeing what is always before us and divining the extraordinary within the ordinary.
These new works will be on exhibit at Framemakers through the month of September.

Hours are 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and evenings by appointment.
For information call 203-388-0332.

This is a press release from Jill Nichols. 

Friday, August 9, 2013

It's delightful, it's delicious! It's art at a Derby restaurant

Note: This is a link to a story I wrote that appears today on the New Haven Register's website,

Derby pizzeria owner to hold delicious exhibit of local artwork  

By Patricia Villers
@nhrvalley on Twitter 


Art and Italian cuisine: They’ve been together since the Renaissance.

In that tradition, the Valley Arts Council is presenting “Delicious!,” a food-inspired exhibition, next month at a new Italian restaurant in the Valley.

Marco Pizzeria & Restaurant, 656 New Haven Ave., Derby, is holding a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Sept. 26.

Please continue reading here


Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Presenting: New signage for gallery

President Rich DiCarlo said we need new artwork in the gallery!

Stay tuned for info about our grand reopening at 37 Elizabeth St., Derby. 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Council to host a delicious event at Derby pizzeria

A message from Council Prez Rich DiCarlo:
The Valley Arts Council & Marco Pizzeria Restaurant of Derby Present:
A Food Inspired Art Exhibition
6-9 p.m. Sept. 26 ~ Public reception
Open to All Artists & Photographers
$10 Arts Council members/ $15 Non-members
entry fee covers up to two artworks
All entries must be food related
For details and entry forms visit:
or stop by The Gallery@37
37 Elizabeth St., Derby

Saturday, July 13, 2013

A note from council prez Rich DiCarlo

We need some fresh art at the Gallery@37. New works will be going up soon. 
If you have work at the gallery...Change it up... Be sure to fulfill your gallery sitting obligations.
The gallery is currently on a summertime sabbatical and will reopen with some new ideas and some fantastic opportunities!
Don't miss out!

Sharing a quote from President Kennedy

"If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him."
 ~ From a speech JFK delivered at Amherst College, Oct. 26, 1963, in honor of Robert Frost, who had died in January of that year.
According to the National Endowment for the Arts' website: 

"In this speech, President Kennedy made clear the need for a nation to represent itself not only through its strength but also through its art and as he said, "full recognition of the place of the artist." Two years later, President Lyndon Johnson signed the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act, creating The National Endowment for the Arts."
What do you think of JFK's quote?