The Northport Historical Society’s March pop-up exhibit, “Northport Through Artists’ Eyes,” highlights local artists and their works. At the exhibit’s center is a newly acquired painting by Stanley Twardowicz, who lived in Northport from 1956 until the late 80s. His studio was located on the second floor of 57 Main Street [currently Posey School of Dance], often listening to John Coltrane while he worked.
Twardowicz formed a strong friendship with fellow Northport resident and author Jack Kerouac; the two would drink at the many bars then located on Main Street, including Gunther’s. Twardowicz’s painting, an abstract gouache and ink on paper now on display, is titled #44. It is an earlier work, painted in 1958, and was purchased by the donor’s father, Robert Seaman, in 1961 for five dollars. Patrons of the exhibit will be able to scan QR codes to hear an interview with Twardowicz about his time in Northport, courtesy of the Northport Public Library.
Other works on display which depict scenes of Northport include the original “Work in the City, Play in Northport” poster printed during the Great Depression and several paintings of the Red Barn Theater, a summer stock theater popular in the 50s and 60s. Watercolors by Louise Schneider and Ward Hooper depict scenes from Bayview Avenue, Crab Meadow, Karl’s Mariners Inn and more.
“Little Miss Liberty,” a print done by Susan Beyer, who taught art at Bellerose Elementary School from 1971-2004, depicts a young girl standing on her porch on Scudder Avenue, an American flag draped behind her. Another print was made by long-time Society board member and exhibit curator, Dick Simpson, and was inspired by an Edward Lange painting of upper Main Street in 1888.
The exhibit is on display until March 31 and will be followed by our April pop-up, “Northport During Prohibition,” celebrating the 90th anniversary of the end of prohibition. In addition, the Society will host a Prohibition Pub Crawl where Education Coordinator Carol Taylor will take attendees on a tour of prohibition-era Northport while stopping at local establishments to enjoy refreshments along the way.
Terry Reid is curator at the Northport Historical Society. For information about exhibits and to register for upcoming events, visit www.northporthistorical.org.