ANSON SMITH AT 203-332-5229 OR
ROBBIN ZELLA AT 203-332-5052


BRIDGEPORT -- Illustrating Connecticut: People, Places, and Things, an exhibit that explores the history and culture of Connecticut through the art of illustration, will be on display in the Burt Chernow Galleries at  the Housatonic Museum of Art, Feb. 7 - April 4.

In the exhibit, leading illustrators whose work has appeared in national periodicals will act as “storytellers,” conveying such things as the  rocky solitude of Connecticut’s farms, its inventors (Elias Howe: the sewing machine), its military contributions helicopters (Sikorsky) and submarines (Bridgeport, Simon Lake), and the shaping of a national identity through a shared language (Noah Webster).

The list of illustrators exhibiting includes notables such as Bernie Fuchs of Westport, Guy Billout of Fairfield, Kinuko Craft of Norfolk, Randall Enos of Fairfield, Bob Kessel of Norwich, and Hal Mayforth of New Hampshire whose work has appeared in publications such as Time, Newsweek, The Atlantic, The New Yorker, Fortune, Barron’s, Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, National Lampoon, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal, among others.

“Since colonial times, Connecticut has been a major player on the American stage, be it in business, technology, literature, or art,” said Robbin Zella, director of the Housatonic Museum of Art. “In view of this leading role, it’s appropriate that we have some of the most important illustrators in America today capture this prominence in their work.

“With the show opening in February, this is truly a Valentine to the state of Connecticut,” she said. Images in the show include.

  • Danbury – Zadoc Benedict, Hats,  illustration by Blaine Kruger (New Haven)
  • Norwich/New London – Benedict Arnold, illustration Christopher Passehl (Essex)
  • Shelton/Sikorsky – Illustration by Kinuko Craft.
  • Hartford/Cutis Veeder (image includes Hartford- built Columbia bicycle and Veeder's invention, the cyclometer) – Artist unknown.  The illustrations, originally commissioned by the G. Fox Company, are provided courtesy of the CT Historical Society.
  • Coventry/Nathan Hale – Illustrations by Walter Korder, an important Connecticut Artist during the W.P.A. period in the 1930's. The image is providedcourtesy of New Britain Museum of American Art. (Hale, who has been named a Connecticut state hero, was a patriot and America's first spy).
  •  New Haven/Louis' Lunch – First Hamburger, Leslie Cober-Gentry (Fairfield)
  • Woodbury/Sugar Time – Maple sugaring in Connecticut by Robert Crawford (Woodbury)
  • Killingworth/Roast Meat Hill Road – Randall Enos (Easton). The illustration explores the story of how this place acquired it unusual name.
  • Connecticut/New England -- The Barn, by Bernie Fuchs. The barn, once a common sight dotting the New England countryside, is fast disappearing due to neglect and development.

Other images in show include the Wiffle Ball, the Old State House, Connecticut’s  first Cook Book, Mark Twain, Samson Occom, Prudence Crandall and a rubber factory in Colchester, and the state mammal (Sperm Whale).

The exhibit is sponsored by the Woodbridge-based Werth Family Foundation. The foundation, which supports educational, cultural and medical-related causes throughout Connecticut and in Asia, has previously donated funds to the Housatonic Museum of Art for special exhibitions, an inventory and conservation assessment of the collection, and the docent outreach program.

The opening reception for the exhibit will be held Feb. 7 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in the Burt Chernow Galleries. The exhibit is free. For more information, call 203-332-5052 or log on to

The museum is located on the campus of Housatonic Community College, 900 Lafayette Blvd, Bridgeport, CT, less than 150 yards off I-95 (Exit 27) and Rte 8 (Exit 1) in downtown Bridgeport, one block from the Arena at Harbor Yard. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.