Park Closures September 7, 2014
Please note that on Sunday, September 7th, the parking lot, visitor center, Weir Studio, and Young Studio will close at 1 pm for the annual Jazz in the Garden event. The 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm tours of the Weir House will not be offered.
Visitor of the Month
September 2014 Visitor of the Month: Bobbie Eike Mullen
September is upon us, and Weir Farm National Historic Site is proud to celebrate our newest Visitor of the Month, Bobbie Eike Mullen! Bobbi is a fine artist and started working here as paid artist, but now volunteers with the Take Part in Art program; the park's free to borrow art supplies (available when the visitor center is open). She came here before this was a national park, as a member of the Comstock Drawing group for a session on figures in the landscape. Bobbi has been coming back to paint ever since because she loves the visual appeal of open spaces, old barns, and old farms; something the park has in great abundance.
Bobbi enjoys coming here and painting in oil or acrylic but does not have a favorite spot because, "everyplace you look there's a composition." If you were here for the official Grand Opening Weekend, this past May, you would have seen Bobbi out in the landscape painting and offering informal lessons in watercolor. Reflecting on the opening this spring, Bobbi loved the restoration because the Weir House does not feel like a museum. "It's someone's home and feels cared for and loved down to the last detail."
However, Bobbi was also at the park for the original dedication in 1990. Her favorite memory, and something that brought a smile to her face, was working on a portrait of a young girl on the stone terrace near the Burlingham House Visitor Center. Bobbi's subject was curious about what Bobbi was doing and had to take a peak;upon seeing the work, she said, "Oh it's so good you can't even see the numbers!"
The little girl's enthusiasm for art encapsulates the reason why Bobbi loves to come to the park and interact with these budding artists. She says, "they're [the children] uninhibited in the artistic process and therefore have a natural instinct for watercolor."
Besides visiting the park for more than 24 years, Bobbi has seen most of the well-known national parks, but would now like to concentrate on the hidden gems of the National Park Service. Her favorite national park is Grand Canyon National Park, because "it's so different"; Bobbie says, "there are no words that can describe the Grand Canyon."
A resident of Connecticut since she was three; Bobbi and her husband have been married for 50 years and residents of Georgetown, Connecticut for the past 40 years. Bobbi teaches oil, acrylic, and water media painting at G & B Cultural Center; conducts workshops throughout New England; is a member of Connecticut Women Artists, New Canaan Society for the Arts, Rowayton Arts Center, and ArtWhirl. Having exhibited in many group and solo shows, Bobbi has received numerous awards. She also loves to paint the farming areas of Vermont and upstate New York because of their wide-open spaces.
If you would like to see Bobbi's artistic view of the open spaces at Weir Farm National Historic Site, stop into the visitor center and see six of her original Weir Farm NHS paintings along with works by two other amazing artists, Ann Kromer and Jen Shelley! The Burlingham House Visitor Center is open until November 30th, Thursdays through Sundays from 10am-4pm.
Keep an eye out for more of Bobbi Mullen's artwork at an upcoming co-exhibition with Dmitri Wright. "New American Impressionism: Lands Far & Near" runs from October 1-30 at the Wilton Library. October 10th is the lecture and gallery reception at 6:30pm.
All of the staff here loves seeing you in the landscape Bobbi and cannot wait until you are out there again! Thank you so much for all of the work you have done, including inspiring countless young artists. Julian Alden Weir would have been thrilled that you're continuing the artistic tradition here at Weir Farm National Historic Site.
Did You Know?
Painter Julian Alden Weir wanted to build a rural retreat in the Keene Valley area of the Adirondacks, but decided instead that his farm in Branchville, Connecticut, now preserved as Weir Farm National Historic Site, would make a more suitable home for his family.