Saturday, April 26, 2008

Our New Photo Exhibit in Tuckahoe, New York!

This article also appears on our Italian Journal page.

We are preparing for an exhibit of selections from my photographic collection, Italy, Through the Eyes of Love, at the Westchester Italian Cultural Center in Tuckahoe, New York ( The exhibit opens with a reception on Tuesday, April 29 from 6-8 pm and continues until July 31.

We’re very excited and proud to have been invited to show the photographs at the Center. We’re working with some wonderful people, like Evelyn Rossetti, Executive Director and Anne Marie Annuciato, Director of Events.

The Westchester Italian Cultural Center is associated with the Generoso Pope Foundation. It's the focal point for lovers of Italian culture in the area. They sponsor artistic exhibits (naturally!), Italian films, lectures, cooking classes, language classes, special children’s programs and highlight the wine and culture of particular Italian regions throughout the year.

If you’ve never been to the Center, it’s an elegant and impressive building. After a recent multi-million dollar renovation, it houses exhibit halls, a theater, library, professional kitchen and wine cellar. The architecture is gracefully appointed with careful attention to detail. It’s a feast for the eyes.

There are so many details that need attention and we’re hoping not to miss any! Jefferson designed the banners that will hang outside of the building announcing the exhibit.

He also designed the postcards that will be mailed to Center members. Still to do: design a slideshow of images and text for the electronic totem that stands in the front lobby; design the price list complete with images of each work, create the title cards for each photograph, decide where each work will be displayed, and that’s only what I can remember right now!

We’ll be showing works in various mediums; some will be matted and framed, some printed onto canvas without frames, and some on unframed on photographic paper. The unframed works will be displayed on black metal grid panels.

Our goal is to create a visual environment that invites each viewer into their own personal experience of Italy.

For this exhibit, I had to create a new Artist’s Statement and write my bio. I thought you might like to see them:

Artist’s Statement:

My journey as a photographer reflects my relationship with Italy itself.

I’d never been interested in photography until I started traveling to Italy. For my first few trips, starting in 1995, I didn’t even bring a camera. Although I was happy to share stories about my trips, At that time, I had the sense that I didn’t want to share what I had seen with anyone when I returned; I wanted to keep my visual experience private. I couldn’t explain why. But looking back, I see it more clearly. Those initial trips were my first steps on a personal healing journey. In many ways it was like entering therapy; both wonderfully liberating and at times, deeply painful.

At some point, as I was preparing for an Italian trip, it crossed my mind that if I took pictures there, I would come back with some great images. So, I bought a camera (I’m not kidding; I didn’t own one!) and saw Italy through a lens for the first time. I never expected anyone but me to care about my photographs, so I was surprised by the positive responses they received when I returned home.

The camera became my constant companion in Italy, and it continues to be an integral part of my healing journey. My relationship with Italy is like that of a lover; it brings me great happiness and some of my deepest disappointments.

But I can't imagine my life without it.

My photographs reflect what I value most about Italian life: its subtle surprises, freshness and the constant invitation to consider the familiar in unfamiliar ways. In that spirit, Italy continually invites me to look at myself with new eyes.


Carolyn Masone was born in Brooklyn New York to an Italian-Swedish family, where the Italian influence always dominated. Her upbringing in New Jersey was filled with Italian culture; the music, dancing, cuisine, celebrations and strong sense of family. Her father Nicholas, a first-generation Italian-American, spoke longingly of someday traveling to Italy, but never had the opportunity. Nonetheless, the family traveled often and Carolyn's wanderlust was born.

She journeyed to Italy for the first time in 1995 and has never been the same. Enchanted by feeling at home in a place she had never been before, she remains under its spell. Carolyn knew that first trip would change her life; perhaps gradually, but nonetheless profoundly. Over time, her traditional career path took a back seat to more creative professions that would further connect her to Italy. She joined a company that planned weddings in Italy and became a destination wedding planner. Although no longer with that company, she continues to plan weddings for couples from all over the world who dream of marrying in Italy.

Carolyn's photographic collection, Italy, Through The Eyes of Love, has received worldwide attention. They appear in private collections nationwide as well as in Australia, England, France and of course, Italy. Her work has been exhibited in New Jersey, New York and, in 2009, in Lucca, Tuscany.

In 2004, together with Jefferson Harman, they created a venture called Essence of Italy, showcasing her unique perspective on the Italian experience. In 2007, they launched a website,, through which Carolyn presents her beautiful photographs and publishes lively tales of her travel adventures. Thanks to the connections she's made through these experiences, she researches, writes and records podcast interviews with interesting people who highlight unexpected aspects of Italian life.

She often returns to Italy to attend various classes, workshops, festivals and to visit dear friends. All the while her camera goes with her, allowing images to speak through the lens to the viewer, evoking emotion, history and dreams.

"If I had to sum up what the photography, writing and interviewing are really about, it's about the journey of setting your dreams free. It doesn't matter what form they take. It's where real joy and deep healing come from." For Carolyn, her photographs truly present Italy, Through the Eyes of Love.

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