Everything Gourmet

Critic’s Choice: A Carefully Curated Coney Island

The B & B Carousell at Coney Island painting by Christopher Spinelli, 2022, acrylic on canvas. Photo courtesy Christopher Spinelli. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Brooklyn, New York — Some days Coney Island seems to have emerged from a dream, good or bad. With its boardwalk, beach, Mermaid Parade and carnival ambiance, it makes for one of New York City’s most colorful and iconic neighborhoods which has over the years despite its ups and downs become a destination for visitors from just about everywhere. It’s a community, an amusement park and rides, a beach, an aquarium, which is the oldest continually operating aquarium in the United States and which just re-opened in July after extensive repairs to the damage it suffered from Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

Luna, the full size Upright Baldwin piano painted by Christopher Spinelli on the boardwalk at Coney Island depicting scenes from the Luna Park amusement park., 2019, acrylic. Credit Sing for Hope Photo courtesy Christopher Spinelli. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

And it has been a place that has inspired artists from all mediums of all generations and for many decades. The Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition (BWAC) is hosting an exhibition showcasing Coney Island entitled More Art of Coney Island. Curated by Alicia Degener, the criteria for the selected works was using Coney Island as a muse, individually or collectively. The show brings together 100 artists who have drawn their inspiration from Coney Island, its past, present and future. Featured artists include Marie Roberts, Philomena Marano and Richard Eagan.

The Hamburger Lady painting by Christopher Spinelli, 2022, acrylic on canvas. Photo courtesy Christopher Spinelli. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

There are superb artist’s renderings of what was, is and will be Coney Island while the eye of Critic’s Choice turned to highly colorful, highly evocative and in some ways nostalgic paintings of Coney Island. One of the artists exhibiting in the show is Brooklyn native Christopher Spinelli who has been creating works of art in Brooklyn for the past 40 years. His body of work is collectively entitled Brooklyn Dreamland and is marked by a dashing use of exuberant, joyful color. His works at the current BWAC show include depictions of the emblematic Coney Island: the historic B & B Carousell and the Water Balloon Clown game that many a New Yorker played.

The Water Balloon Clown game painting by Christopher Spinelli, acrylic on canvas. Photo courtesy Christopher Spinelli. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

For more than 44 years, BWAC has been exhibiting the artwork of local Brooklyn artists. The Brooklyn Waterfront Artist Coalition is a non-profit, volunteer-run organization whose stated mission is to provide opportunities for artists and viewers to share and be transformed by the experience of art.
©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette
Coney Island show until August 28th
Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition (BWAC)
481 Van Brunt St.
Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York 11231
bwac.org
http://www.brooklyndreamland.com/index.html

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