Dick Button exhibit traces history of ice skating

At Fenimore Art Museum
From Dick Button's collection, the lithograph "Central Park Winter: The Skating Pond." Inset: Dick Button.
From Dick Button's collection, the lithograph "Central Park Winter: The Skating Pond." Inset: Dick Button.

Baseball isn’t the only reason to go to Cooperstown. For the next nine months, it’s a destination for fans of figure skating.

The Fenimore Art Museum opened for the 2017 season on April 1, and one of the new exhibits is “The Art of Figure Skating through the Ages: The Dick Button Collection.”

Button, a former champion figure skater and sports broadcaster, is sharing his diverse collection of paintings, prints, posters, sculptures, costumes and folk art depicting and honoring ice skating, from 17th-century Dutch paintings to 20th-century sculpture, along with skating costumes, photographs, advertising art and antique skates.

The 87-year-old Button, who lives in Westchester County, will also make two appearances at the Fenimore.

At 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13, he’ll give a talk about skating and gardening, his other passion. Tickets are $25 and available at www.fenimoreartmuseum.org.

On Saturday, July 15, Button will join skaters JoJo Starbuck and Dorothy Hamill at a panel discussion and symposium moderated by Douglas Webster, Artistic Director of Ice Dance International. The event will includes Olympic screen clips and an audience Q&A. Before the symposium, members of Ice Dance International will perform on glice, a warm-weather alternative to ice. Tickets are $60.

Button dominated the world of figure skating for a seven-year period, winning two Olympic gold medals (1948 and 1952), five consecutive World Championships, seven U.S. National titles and North American and European Championships.

From 1960 to 2010, he was a commentator and analyst for skating competitions, including at the 1980 Olympics in Lake Placid.

Sixteen years ago, Button fell and fractured his skull while skating. He recovered and became a national spokesman for the Brain Injury Association of America.

And of course, skating isn’t the only focus at the Fenimore.

Another new show, open now, is “50 Years, 50 Works, 50 Reasons, Maurice Sendak: The Memorial Exhibition,” about the world-renowned illustrator and creator of the children’s book, “Where the Wild Things Are.”

On May 27, the Fenimore will open “Andrew Wyeth at 100: A Family Remembrance,” with guest curator Victoria Wyeth, granddaughter of the artist.

Fence Show

The Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy is calling for entries to its annual Fence Show.

Artists are asked to deliver their work from Sunday, April 30 to Wednesday May 3. (See www.artscenteronline.org for hours)

The Fence Salon, an exhibit of all entries, is scheduled from May 18 to July 2, with a reception on May 26.

Fence Select, juried by Michael Oatman, will run from July 22 to Aug. 26, with a reception on July 28.

Breathing Lights

At 10 p.m. Monday, WMHT-TV will debut its documentary, “Behind the Lights,” about the “Breathing Lights” public art project that illuminated vacant houses last fall in Schenectady, Troy and Albany.

The 60-minute film airs again at 9 p.m. Friday, April 21 and at 7 p.m. Sunday, April 23.

Reach Gazette Reporter Karen Bjornland at 395-3197, [email protected] or on Twitter @bjorngazette.

Categories: Art, Entertainment

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