A picture-perfect reception Saturday kicked off a showcase for photographic excellence at the Fairfield Museum and History Center.
"Images 2014" is the museum's sixth annual juried photo exhibit, and features 70 photographs culled from more than 900 entries by professionals, amateurs and students from four states. Twenty-seven of the winning photographers are from Fairfield and Southport. The show runs through June 22.
Complementing the Images display is a solo exhibition of world-renowned fine arts photographer David LaChapelle.
Food, wine and a silent auction, with goods ranging from sports tickets to spa getaways, were part of the event.
Photos on display include landscape, portrait, architecture, nature and abstract images, as well as a new category -- "Iconic Fairfield" -- to highlight the 375th anniversary of the founding of Fairfield this year.
Proceeds from the event support the museum's educational programming according to Meri Erickson, the director of external affairs. "Our reach is expanding every year as we extend access to the arts beyond Fairfield's borders," she said.
LaChapelle is no stranger to Fairfield. Though born in Hartford, he and his family moved to Fairfield when he was 14 and he attended Roger Ludlowe High School. At 17, he was discovered by Andy Warhol and his career took off. The photographer currently lives in Maui and is focused on social causes. Three of his oversized photographs are included in the Images show and each speaks to his environmental concerns.
Emily Sharp, a 16-year-old student at Fairfield Ludlowe High School, was pleased her photo, "Beached," was chosen for the exhibit. The photo is an image of kayaks in racks at the mouth of Southport Harbor. "This is my first time being accepted into a photo show," she said. "It increases my interest in photography and maybe more of my work will be recognized."
Michael Jehle, the Fairfield Museum's executive director, noted that it's a challenge to pare down the hundreds of photo submissions to a few dozen and he gave credit to the show's judges: Helen Klisser During, Lisa Larson-Walker, Philip Trager and Jordan Schaps.
Jehle also announced the grand prize winners for the show. In the Professional Serious Amateur category, Andrew Smith was named for his "Iconic Fairfield" photo "A Soldier's Funeral." In the Student category, Morgan Macey was chosen for "Portrait in a Painting." Smith will receive a 10-day exhibit of his work at Southport Galleries; Macey will receive a professional portfolio review with photographer and exhibit judge Trager.
"Images 2014" is on display through June 22 at the Fairfield Museum and History Center, 370 Beach Road. For more information, check here http://bit.ly/1nlPjmi or call 203-259-1598.