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Scents & Soles Opening Reception

Scents & Soles Opening Reception


Scents & Soles features 230 watercolor paintings by renowned  photorealist painter, Robert Cottingham, and 23 witty shoe sculptures by  Nina Bentley.


Join us at the opening reception for cocktails and dancing on the deck!

About Robert Cottingham:

Robert Cottingham has been an icon in the world of photorealism. He received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in[masked] and had a retrospective at the Smithsonian Museum in 1986.

Four years ago Cottingham turned his attention to the new subject matter of perfume bottles. “In my search for gifts over the years, perfume departments became standard destinations. At some point I began to envision these containers as subjects for a small exhibition that I would title, “TWENTY-FIVE SCENTS.” Because of its fluidity and clarity, watercolor became the obvious choice of medium. I eliminated the product labels from the artworks in order to focus completely on the bottles’ incredible range of designs… what began as a series of 25 watercolors has grown to 350 watercolors…and counting.”

Much has been said of Cottingham’s photorealist paintings, however it is easy to apply these thoughts to his perfume watercolors. Cottingham once remarked, “The more I drill down into these shapes, the distinctions between the image and the abstracted forms tend to merge into a cohesive ‘thingness.’ I can’t really say more beyond realizing that each object possesses its “essence.”


About Nina Bentley:

Nina Bentley is an assemblage artist who has lived in Westport for 21 years. She has exhibited in Europe and America, and has been featured in several juried shows including Art of the Northeast, the Mattatuck Museum, the Katonah Museum, the Discovery Museum in Bridgeport, and the Westport Arts Center on several occasions. In 2005 she had a solo exhibition at Silvermine Art Guild and was also chosen by Barney's New York in 2004 to be their featured artist in the annual show "Madison Avenue: Where Fashion Meets Art" in 2004. In 2001 she was a New/Now artist at the New Britain Museum of American Art, which has one of her large assemblage sculptures in their permanent collection.

Nina describes her work as being “conceptual in nature and concerned with social issues.” She continues, “From early childhood I have been moved both by aesthetics and the human condition, not only matters affecting me personally but those evident on a broader social scale. I create art in order to gain some perspective on the world around me while trying to retain a sense of humor. In short, my work can be seen as multi-dimensional social commentary.”


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  • Cathy M

    Perfume bottles, beautiful little sculptures...draw attention as water colors, paired with whimsical, witty, assemblages of shoes. Bustling fun reception, all and all a great night.

    June 17, 2014

  • Karyn

    A great event and venue...We had to get out before the storm but happily showed up early enough to see everything. Especially loved the perfume exhibit. The ice cream and black lobster shoes also made a memorable impression. Thank you Cathy for organizing!

    June 16, 2014

  • Charlie

    Wonderful event: art, people, food & drink!

    June 14, 2014

  • Dave C.

    Westport Arts Center opening are always interesting... Thanks Cathy for organizing this event!

    June 14, 2014

  • Eleanor D.

    Loved the shoes and who knew there were so many different perfume bottles!

    June 14, 2014

  • Dal

    After attending this opening I will certainly look at my perfume bottles in a new way, and Nina's whimsical approach to footwear certainly gave me a chuckle ! Lively company made for a very pleasant evening..

    June 14, 2014

  • Ralph

    Nice reception, a bit of an odd ball exhibit. Don't forget that today, June14, is Connecticut Open House Day. Many interesting things going on around the state. See:
    Down my way I would recommend the Bruce Museum and Bush-Holly House, both free admission today.

    1 · June 14, 2014

  • Carol M.

    Dear Laura (?) and Cathy,

    I love what this group does under your leadership! Sadly, I ask that you take me off the group's membership, since virtually all activities are in Connecticut, and I live on Long Island.

    I did go to the Jewish Museum with the group, and it was lovely. Thank you for that!.


    June 12, 2014

    • Sean

      Helpful tip: you can leave any meetup group by selecting the "My Profile" link in the top right of a groups page, then select "Leave this group".­ ;)

      June 13, 2014

  • Craig

    Enjoy the fine evening, unfortunately I am still in Manhattan, too late to make it.

    June 13, 2014

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