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    Wednesday, June 19, 2024

    Lee Francis Dadalt’s art is showcased at LaGrua Center

    Mailbox 155, Lee Francis Dadalt, 24x14 watercolor, 2007
    Mystic Bridge, Lee Francis Dadalt, 24x18 woodcut print, possibly 1974
    The Marie and the America, Lee Francis Dadalt, 27x19 watercolor, 1972
    Boro Roof Tops, Lee Francis Dadalt, 50x36 acrylic, possibly 1990
    Stonington Docks, Lee Francis Dadalt, 28x21 Tempera Wash, 2003

    The artistic career of long-time local resident Lee Francis Dadalt is on display at the LaGrua Center this spring. It is the first time the public has the opportunity to view the broad array of Dadalt’s artistic talents, as Dadalt, who lived in Mystic most of his life and died in 2007, kept most of his work in his private collection and seldom displayed or sold it to the public.

    The exhibition, which was curated by Dadalt’s sister and brother-in-law Denise and Steve McGuire of Mystic and New Hampshire, will be at the LaGrua Center through the end of June.

    A special Lyme/Old Lyme day is scheduled from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. June 2. That is in recognition of Dadalt’s career as an art teacher in the Lyme-Old Lyme public schools. He taught there from 1973 to 2003, when he retired. Also, on June 5, Denise and Steve will host family, friends and classmates at the center to view the exhibit.

    Dadalt always remained true to his philosophy that art - both in the creative process and the completed works - should be fun. He looked forward to inspiring and encouraging young artists as he lived his classroom philosophy and led by example.

    The shoreline scenery around Mystic, where he grew up and lived most of his life, as well as the fishing fleet homeported in Stonington Borough, where he was born, provided Dadalt with endless inspiration for his artwork.

    “Our objective is to get his artwork into public view,” Denise McGuire said. The McGuires have worked for more than a year choosing, categorizing and preparing the artwork for display.

    The exhibition features dozens of pieces of Dadalt’s work in a broad spectrum of media.

    Dadalt studied at Mitchell College in New London and earned his bachelor of fine arts degree from the University of Hartford’s Hartford Art School. He got his master’s degree from Wesleyan University in Middletown.

    Dadalt had many works accepted into juried shows, including the Teachers’ Art Show in Hartford and the Connecticut Artist Annual Juried Show at the Slater Museum in Norwich. He was a regular participant in regional shows sponsored by the Mystic Art Association and summer art shows in the area. He won numerous awards, including from the Mystic Art Association and Slater Museum in Norwich.

    The LaGrua Center is located at 32 Water St., Stonington Borough. Visit LaGruaCenter.org for more information.

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