More people have looked at and loved Rae Solowey than virtually anyone else in the Bucks County art scene, say David Leopold, the Director of the Studio of Ben Solowey. Whether in paintings, drawings, prints or sculptures, Ben Solowey found his primary model and muse in his wife Rae. And his works of her are instantly identifiable by so many people. Bens 1935 portrait of Rae in a green dress than is on permanent view at the Michener Museum in Doylestown is among the Museums signature works, and has frequently been cited as one of visitors and staffs favorites. The Michener Museum has put images of the imposing 45 x 36 oil on canvas on posters, cards, magnets, key chains, and packets of tea.
Artist Albert Gold once referred to Rae as Woman Eternal in Bens work, and I think he was right, explains Leopold. She represented a humanity in Bens work that was both beautiful and ethereal, which is how many people who knew her felt about her. Like Cezannes paintings of his wife, Ben found a constantly engaging subject to paint, draw, or sculpt, whether it was a portrait, a figure study, or nude. Rae was also part of his other work too. For instance, she often picked and arranged flowers from their garden that Ben painted in his award winning still lifes.
This new installation of Solowey works will display Ben Soloweys remarkable versatility in a wide variety of media including oils, watercolor, pastel, and printmaking. It will include old favorites as well as works never exhibited before.
All will be shown in Soloweys handcrafted studio. Visiting the exhibition you understand why Ben gave up the great life he had in New York in the theater and exhibiting his canvases at the top museums and galleries, explains Leopold. He wanted to live on this beautiful farm where his studio maintains the atmosphere of the artist at work. The inviting studio, and the 34 acre property it sits on, were created and landscaped by Solowey after he left New York in 1942. The Studio has been featured in Architectural Digest, Pennsylvania Heritage, The Discerning Traveler, and Bucks County Town and Country Living.
In honor of our opening on June 3rd we will continue our tradition of serving homemade refreshments in the Solowey home, says Leopold. The two hundred-year old farmhouse was restored by Ben and is filled with museum quality furniture handcrafted by him. We only open the house twice a year, so this truly is a special event. Also on June 3rd only we are waiving our $5 admission fee.
Regular admission through June 25th to WOMAN ETERNAL: A Rae Solowey Centennial is $5. Hours through October 30th to Ben Solowey in Black & White are Saturdays and Sundays, 1 pm to 5 pm or by appointment. Regular admission is $5. The Studio of Ben Solowey is located at 3551 Olde Bedminster Road in Bedminster, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. For more information on Ben Solowey in Black & White or directions, contact The Studio of Ben Solowey at 215-795-0228.
© 2005 The Ben Solowey Collection. All Rights Reserved.