The Bigg-est Coming Out Party
|by Bridin Reynolds Hughes|
|Rehoboth Beach residents Bill McManus and David Nelson are sponsoring the Bigg-est Coming Out Party of the Year. Yes, the pun is intended as the swanky spring affair is a promotion and fundraiser for the Biggs Museum, one of their favorite cultural haunts in Delaware.
Slated for Saturday, April 2, the party will a feature a champagne, wine and beer bar as well as entertainment and upscale catering.
"The museum is a place we truly enjoy and the Biggs executives want to reach out to the local gay and lesbian community who may not know that it even exists. They strive to be a neighborhood museum but Biggs is also a national treasure," said McManus, who is thrilled to host the event along with Nelson in their Rehoboth Beach Yacht and Country Club home.
Bigg's Museum Development Director Lee Lott is enthusiastic about the party, not only for its fundraising potential but for the excitement it may bring to those looking to take a journey through the historic artwork of the Delmarva Peninsula.
"We know this is a community with a penchant for cultural pursuits. We want to see more and more people coming to enjoy Biggs. We are the only museum on the Delmarva Peninsula with a collection this comprehensive," said Lott, former director of Main Street Dover and the Rehoboth Beach Downtown Business Association.
Located less than an hour from the resort area in historic Dover, The Biggs Museum of American Art houses the personal collection of Sewell C. Biggs, a native of Middletown, with strong family ties to the history of Delaware. His devotion to the arts resulted in a spectacular and important collection. His amassed paintings span two hundred years and survey major periods in American art, from colonial portraiture to twentieth-century Impressionism. The furniture and silver represent some of the best Delaware and Philadelphia craftsmen in the colonial and federal periods.
The Bigg's Museum occupies the top two floors of 406 Federal Street, overlooking Legislative Hall, with fourteen galleries arranged in chronological order. Curator Ryan Grover feels the subtle, rich colors employed as the backdrop for this magnificent art collection are an appealing combination for visitors to enjoy a calm and cultural experience. Founder Sewell Biggs personally oversaw the installation of objects in a symmetrical or balanced composition reflective of aesthetics of the 18th century.
Ryan, who specializes in 18th and 19th-century interiors as well as the ceramics and textiles used in early America and 20th-century, American visual culture, is particularly pleased with a new retrospective exhibition of works by Bridgeville, Delaware native and leading Pennsylvania Impressionist artist, Edward W. Redfield, which opened January 26. Edward W. Redfield: Just Values and Fine Seeing features 20 works spanning the artist's career. The exhibition runs through April 26 and includes student drawings, a personal journal, seascapes, a cityscape, as well as the Bucks County seasonal landscapes for which he is best remembered. The exhibit is displayed in the Biggs gorgeous Reception Hall which is used for temporary exhibitions.
"This is exactly the caliber of art we believe would appeal to many people in the Rehoboth area. It is intriguing. Redfield had a rugged craziness about him and produced an incredible body of work," said Ryan. Lott added, "This is what we want people to knowwe are not a stuffy old museum, we have fun programs and amazing exhibits. The founder funded this museum himself and never concentrated on marketing it, but we want to share the collection with more people so in a way, we're coming out!"
For more information on the Bigg-est Coming Out Party of the Year call Lee Lott at 302-674-2111.
The Biggs Museum is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, and Sunday from 1:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Admission is free. The Museum is located in the Delaware State Visitor Center.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 15, No. 1February 11, 2005