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Meditation In Ink And Color

Hicksville library’s new exhibit looks to the East

East Asian brush painting is a style of art that developed in East Asia, based primarily on Chinese calligraphy. Terry Kimmel has been practicing this art form for decades, and pieces in her gallery range in age from 20 years to just a few weeks old.

Kimmel’s exhibition of paintings using ink and color on rice paper is currently on display at the Hicksville Public Library. About two dozen of her works line the walls of the library’s community room. The paintings of flowers, landscapes, fish and some abstract images will be shown throughout February.

“What’s so unique about this work is that when you’re using ink, it cannot be changed,” said Kimmel. “It’s immediate, it’s spontaneous, it’s direct, and it requires a great deal of concentration. If you’re using oil paint, you can go back to your painting the next day and make changes. You cannot do that with ink paintings.”

The type of brush used for East Asian brush paintings has a wooden, usually bamboo, handle and the brush is made of animal hairs that are very long and taper to a fine point.

“You can use one brush to make an entire painting,” said Kimmel. “The tip of the brush gives you a very fine line, and if you apply more pressure, you have a thicker line. It’s a different way of working.”

“Painting for me is very calming. I can almost say it’s a ‘meditation in ink’ because this way of painting requires so much concentration,” she said. “It is a way of meditating and relaxing.”

Kimmel, who is from Roslyn Estates, has also exhibited her work in group shows at the Manhasset Public Library and in the gallery at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock.

“I have some upcoming exhibits,” she said. “Next month, I am going to exhibit smaller works at the Bethpage Public Library. In April, I’m going to exhibit a floral and spring theme at a restaurant.”

Kimmel has had a passion for art since she was very young. After graduating from New York City’s High School of Music and Art, she enrolled into Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs. Kimmel originally majored in Mathematics, but switched to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Fine Arts.

“I decided to switch my major because after studying art so extensively in high school I wanted to continue,” she said.

And continue she did, teaching painting, art history and art appreciation for almost 20 years at LaGuardia Community College, from which she retired.

When not painting, Kimmel enjoys reading, gardening and walking.

“I enjoy nature, which is another reason why I enjoy East Asian paintings, because the subject is primarily nature,” she said. “It gives me a way of seeing nature and my surroundings differently. It helps me appreciate each day a little bit more.”

News

Vastra boutique finds a niche

in hand-embroidered dresses

Who says a bride has to wear white on her wedding day? For South Asian brides, no color is off limits including brilliant reds, blues and golds. For the past 17 years, Vastra in Hicksville has been helping brides from New York and across the country find the perfect dress for their special day.

There’s no lack of Indian sari boutiques in Hicksville but according to Marketing Director Prachi Jain, what sets Vastra apart from the others is its emphasis on one of a kind, hand-embroidered Indian dresses.

Many would consider it rude to play with your food. That is unless, you’re participating in the Long Island Potato Festival. The event, which was held in Cutchogue, NY, included a mashed potato sculpting contest which was dominated by Hicksville’s Sarah Tsang, who won first place in the youth division.

Contestants were allowed to use any tools and materials to help bring their creation to life. Sculptures were left on display throughout the day and voted on by festival goers.


Sports

Somehow LSA, the Levittown Swimming Association, has always been a part of our Hicksville summers. My family’s introduction to the organization in 1975 began when our two older daughters tried out for the Parkway Swim Team, one of the nine teams that competed through July and most of August.

It was no small task for the younger girl, swimming her first full lap in the deep end of the pool to qualify at age six, but both girls made the team and donned the coveted gray tee shirts as the trees cast their shadows over the pool water at the end of practice.

I’m convinced that the soul and the center of Hicksville is Cantiague Park. And why not? Every weekend it’s a beehive of activity ranging from tennis matches, hand ball games, basketball and baseball games, swimming, hockey and of course ‘the beautiful game’ called soccer. Cantiague has two professional soccer fields that are perfectly manicured and begging to be played on. And they were. This weekend was the finals of the East Meadow Soccer Tournament which is one of the largest youth soccer tournaments in the nation, sponsored by the US Soccer Federation. There were 18 boys and girls teams in the finals and a large staff of referees.

Two of the refs were Steven Orozco and Randy Vogt who told me how soccer had been growing and has now become the second most popular participation sport in America with 25 million of us watching this year’s World Cup.  I also met and interviewed Joe Codispoti who along with Tim Bradbury is the head coach of Rockville Centre United, a U16 boys club.  This U16 team has a group of standout players led by  Jack Graziano, AJ Codispoti and Pat Basile who have been playing together for six years.


Calendar

Close Encounters with Benevolent ETs and Ascended Masters

August 29

Adventures in Genealogy

September 4

Greek Festival

September 5-7



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com