CAZENOVIA — As summer comes to an end, CazArts creative alliance is preparing to welcome the change of seasons with its September Autumn Leaves Arts Festival, four weekends of local arts events.
CazArts is a non-profit organization that works to promote the creation and appreciation of the arts in the greater Cazenovia area.
According to a CazArts press release announcing the festival, the schedule features 22 free events at various locations.
“[We invite] you, whether local or visiting for the weekend, to enjoy this beautiful historic village as the leaves are turning and summer breezes off the lake are tinted with the breath of autumn air and the crispness of our fall evenings,” the press release states. “With historic restaurants and inns, outdoor dining, strollable pathways through [the] Willow Patch along the Creekside, and sunsets over Cazenovia Lake, the September Autumn Leaves Arts Festival invites you to take a moment, relax, and thoroughly enjoy art within [nature’s] art.”
The popular Jazz-N-Caz festival will return for its 21st year on Sept. 6-10 with CazArts as its new home.
The event will be sponsored and presented by Nascentia Health and will feature performances by world-class musicians in multiple intimate settings throughout town.
Colleen Prossner, who founded Jazz-N-Caz over two decades ago as an employee of Cazenovia College, is producing the music festival again this year.
Six months ago, after the college announced its decision to close, Prossner joined Nascentia Health, where she now serves as vice president of communications and development.
Founded in 1890, Nascentia Health delivers home and community-based health care in 48 counties throughout New York State. For more information, visit nascentiahealth.org.
Prossner, who sits on the CazArts board, said that following the news of the college, she was asked by many community members whether Jazz-N-Caz would live on.
“I wanted to be able to continue the tradition,” she said. “I asked our Nascentia Health CEO Kate Rolf, a philanthropic-minded leader, [about sponsoring the 2023 event], and she was thrilled with the idea to expand our name into Madison, Oneida, and surrounding counties. . . With over 35 musicians playing in the fest at seven locations over five days, it is an honor and a privilege to be able to continue the tradition.”
Autumn Leaves Quilting
Throughout September, the Cazenovia Public Library & Museum (CPL) will be celebrating the art of quilting.
Since the spring, CPL has been working with the Towpath Quilt Guild to execute a community quilting project aimed at producing a banner to hang in the library.
Quilters of all ages and experience levels were given kits to create their own 10 in. x 10 inch autumn leaf quilt blocks to contribute to the project.
All the squares were collected, and the guild members are now working to connect them.
“We had a great response to the quilt square kits, and we have over 60 squares for the quilt banner, so the Towpath quilt ladies are putting together two,” said CPL Adult Programming and Service Coordinator Renee Joseph.
The completed banners will be on display in the library from Sept. 1-30.
The CPL Gallery will exhibit the works of local quilting artist Sharon Bottle Souva from Sept. 2 through the end of the month.
An artist reception will be held on Sept. 15 from 5 to 7 p.m. for the community to view Souva’s contemporary quilts, the community banners, and historic quilts from the CPL Archives.
Souva, who has been making quilts since 1976, will share her extensive knowledge and some of her quilted creations during a program in the community room on Sept. 19 at 6:30 p.m. Historic quilts and quilts from the Towpath Quilt Guild and the community will also be on display.
The library will show the 1995 American drama film “How to Make an American Quilt” with Winona Ryder, Anne Bancroft, and Ellen Burstyn on Sept. 20 at 2 p.m. in the community room. Refreshments will be served, and a discussion will follow.
CPL’s “Connecting Collections” open book group will meet on Sept. 26 at 6:30 p.m. to discuss “The Runaway Quilt” by Jennifer Chiaverini. Copies of the book will be available at the front desk starting Sept. 1.
CPL will also participate in the September Autumn Leaves Arts Festival by hosting the kick-off Jazz-N-Caz performance on Sept. 6 and by screening the ten finalists of the 26th Annual Manhattan Short Film Festival on Sept. 29 at 6 p.m. and on Sept. 30 at 1:30 p.m. The finalists will screen simultaneously across the world during a one-week period, with the “Best Film” and “Best Actor” awards determined by ballots cast by the audiences in each participating venue.
Cazenovia Art Trail
On Friday, Sept. 29, CazArts will team up with the Cazenovia Art Trail, the Cazenovia Area Painters, and the Carpenter’s Barn Studios to present an open house at Carpenter’s Barn and an opening reception for the 11th annual Cazenovia Art Trail, which is scheduled for Sept. 30 and Oct. 1.
The Art Trail is a self-guided tour of 25 artist studios that offers the public the unique opportunity to meet artists in their working environments and view their artwork.
All month, the Cazenovia Watercolor Society will exhibit its work at the New Woodstock Free Library, and poetry will be posted along local hiking trails.
“AND EAT IT TOO,” a new art installation at Stone Quarry Hill Art Park (SQAP), will also be on display throughout September.
Created by 2023 SQAP Visiting Artist Patrick Costello, the work is a monumental composting structure of plants, hay, wood chips, and elephant dung from the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse.
“AND EAT IT TOO finds joy in our being part of the ecosystem, explores the many relationships we have to land, and invites the notion that we are creatures of joy, pleasure, and decay,” the SQAP website says.
The website also states that Patrick’s work, which is informed by the process of composting, experiments with temporary world-building as a way of accessing the potential for collective transformation and utopian possibility.
On Sunday, Sept. 17 at 2 p.m., Lorenzo State Historic Site will host a fine art tour led by art historian Elisabeth Genter Montevecchio. The 45-minute tour will highlight Lorenzo’s impressive art collection, which includes works by Samuel F. B. Morse, Jasper Cropsey, Sanford Gifford, Dwight Williams, and 17th-century Dutch Masters.
“The variety of paintings reflect a century of trends in art collecting, such as the commissioning of family portraits, the distinctive American style of the Hudson River School, and the family’s pride in their Dutch heritage,” said Jacqueline Roshia, Lorenzo’s interpretive programs assistant.
Seating is limited, so registration is required. To reserve a spot, call 315-655-3200, ext. 106, or email [email protected].
“We want the September Autumn Leaves Art Festival to be a colorful celebration,” said CazArts Board President Geoffrey Navias. “It’s a celebration that invites the community, visitors, and our neighbors to come to Cazenovia and enjoy the spectacular range of the arts in the midst of this beautiful countryside and special village. We celebrate and showcase the many Cazenovia artists, groups, and organizations [that each offer] their art in the way that suits them best. The different art forms that make up the festival invite a variety of people to come, participate, and enjoy.”
For the full September Autumn Leaves Arts Festival schedule, visit CazArts.com.