“Women in Art,” an exhibit of work by five generations of artists from the same family, will open at Cutchogue New Suffolk Free Library with a reception Friday, Oct. 1, at 6 p.m. 

The show features work by 12 different artists spanning five generations and encompasses a range of artistic mediums, including painting, hand embroidery, photography, film and music.

The family of artists are all descended from Jane Sector (1901-74), a multitalented painter, seamstress and mosaic artist. They include Ms. Sector’s daughter, Martha Jane Paul; granddaughters Jennifer Forstell, Mary Jane Paul and Ann Paul; great-granddaughters Kathryn Hunt, Rachel Burger, Jessica Paul, Rebecca Jane Paul and Emily Paul; and great-great-granddaughters Sienna Jane Burger and Lucy Jane Marvin. 

The idea for the exhibition originated last October with Ann Paul, a

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The Heckscher Museum of Art in Huntington has acquired new art pieces to diversify the artists represented in the museum’s collection as it celebrates its belated centennial anniversary.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, between this year and last, museum officials acquired 36 works by 14 different American artists whose work spans multiple media.

Increasing the diversity of the artists represented in the museum’s collection was key, said John E. Coraor, interim director of the museum.

“It was not uncommon for a collection that was put together at the turn of the 20th century to be largely including only white and male artists and that’s not representative of what’s going on right now, even then,” Coraor said. “We’re striving hard to correct that.”

Laylah Ali (American, b. 1968) Untitled, 2004 Gouache
  • 28 of these works are by 7 women artists, including this work by Laylah Ali

  • 4 are by Black artists

  • 5 are by an American artist of Cuban

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Spirit photography was an important development within bereavement rituals of the early 1860s.

Spirit photographs are portraits that visually reunite the bereaved with the wispy reappearance of their loved ones. Some people perceived these photographs as evidence in support of core “spiritualist” beliefs. Spiritualists held that the soul persists after death and the potential exists for continued bonds and communication between the dead and the living.

Mediums, largely women, worked alongside spirit photographers to enable the “spiritual” reappearance of the deceased. My research shows women to have been integral participants in this development: I name a woman as the likely inventor of spirit photography.

Appealed to women

The emergence of spirit photography in Boston was an exciting and highly publicized moment that continues to captivate people today.

Contemporary viewers sometimes see spirit photographs as amusing historical artifacts. Some Victorian viewers were also accustomed to

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