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Environmental Art Show to Feature Local Artists & Artwork Made From Recycled Oil Drums

Save the First Thursday in September to See Exciting Art
Mayor’s office to Proclaim September 6 as Hartford’s Oil Drum Art Day

Greater Hartford Region, Connecticut -  Oil Drum Art’s Aesthetic and Environmental Exhibition will take place in Hartford in September. This exciting event will showcase local artists that use recycled 55-gallon oil drums to create aesthetic and environmental statements with the purpose of inspiring positive change in our community.

Oil Drum Art is a non-profit organization that has brought about change through oil drums transformed into art for over 4 years. During that time 17,500 people have seen 15 shows by 250 artists and 1,500 children painters. The organization was created by artist Jack Lardis after an epiphany he had from the attacks of September 11, 2002.

The Hartford show will feature 35 artists and has three events. The first event will be held as a First Thursday Event in Hartford on Thursday September 6, 5-8 p.m. at the ArtSpace gallery at 555 Asylum Ave. This event is the kick-off reception and awards ceremony. The office of the Honorable Mayor Eddie A. Perez will declare the day to be Hartford’s Oil Drum Art Day” in honor of the change and inspiration the organization has had on our community. A speaker from the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection will speak to attendees about recycling and the affects it has on our environment. There will be live music, a reception sponsored by local restaurants including Hot Tomato’s Restaurant Group, It’s Only Natural, Agave Grill and Chili’s, as well as over $750 of awards will be presented. It will be a gala affair and attendees will be dressed for the evening.

The second event will be held on Saturday, September 15, 12 -3 p.m. at the ArtSpace gallery at 555 Asylum Ave.  This event is suitable for families and children. Doors open at noon. At 1:00 p.m. BT Pan Jam, a father and son steel drum duo featuring 13 year old Benjamin Michael Toth and his father, Benjamin Joseph Toth (Professor of Percussion at The Hartt School, University of Hartford) will delight attendees with  music of the Caribbean performed on hand-crafted steel drums (or “pans”) created from finely tuned 55-gallon oil drums by a Trinidad-native. Between songs, the duo will include informative descriptions and an historical perspective and cultural background of the art form.  At 2:00 attendees will be able to participate in a FREE oil drum painting workshop. This event is a fun way to spend a Saturday with family and friends.

The third and final event of the Oil Drum Art in Hartford Exhibition is a Poetry Reception. On Sunday September 30th, 12 – 3 p.m., poets from the Connecticut Poetry Society will read their personal poetry about the environment. Ana G. Alfaro from the CL&P will speak about the state of our environment and what attendees can do to help. She has over 20 years of diverse experience in public, media and community relations to presentations and production of television programs. She is the host of CH18 Univision - El Show de Analeh – a half-hour Spanish talk show, and serves on numerous volunteer committees throughout Hartford. At 2:40 p.m. there will be a book signing be several poets.

“Come join us for all three of these exciting events,” invited Jack Lardis, Oil Drum Art Founder and President. “Oil Drum Art brings art into direct contact with our civilization so as to inform it, perhaps for posterity.”

All three events are free and open to the public. For more information on Oil Drum Art call event coordinator Chi LaBossiere at 860-295-0433 or visit www.oildrumart.org.  The event is made possible by grants from the Edward C. and Ann T. Roberts Foundation, the Greater Hartford Arts Council, and sponsors such as Jerry’s Artarama.