Current Exhibit:

The latest exhibit at The Brookfield Library Art Gallery runs from October 31—December 1, 2019, with work by artist, Bivenne Harvey Staiger. The show is called ‘Watercolor Delights’.

From the artist:

When I was a child, caterpillars morphed in late summer into cocoons and then to butterflies right in our dining room, often open to the outdoors, and ruby-crowned kinglets, hummingbirds, and other garden birds would flit in and out, too. Nature is still intricately woven into my daily life, interesting always and dramatic at others, full of contradictions and variations, and ever changing, much like painting in watercolor.

Contrast grabs my attention most among the many composition principles I include in my designs. Variation and harmony, two other principles, keep me aware not only of hidden gems, such as a bird’s nest in a trellis woven with clematis, or tiny crabs foraging between underwater rock ledges, but also of nuances in color, shape, value, pattern, and line, painting elements I most often use in my favorite motifs of flowers, birds, and other animals. My focus is lately more frequently centered on depicting wildlife, particularly birds in this region where I live because, as harbingers of our changing environment, I fear that some day they may disappear in these times of climate crisis. Many creatures I loved as a child I rarely or never see any more.

Therefore nature and painting are intertwined and seem practically inseparable to me. Watercolor is the perfect, most exciting medium for this happy mix. Like a bird in sudden flight, it is ideal for quick spontaneity or practical for careful study when tiny details are needed. My brush feels like it is an extension of my hand, almost of my brain, and I love to share my painting motivations and techniques with others through my artwork and art instruction.

With a variety of brushes, I paint by first dropping wet, shimmering paint onto wet paper, letting the color dance across the surface. The results are never the same – and so the excitement begins! Contrast, variation, harmony and other design principles are developed by building color saturation, value, shapes and line and by using both negative and positive space painting techniques. No other medium creates endless fascinating surprises while also allowing complete control of the paint.

Painting the subjects I love so much in watercolor is endlessly fun and interesting to me from start to finish.

This Art Gallery space has been made possible by the generous support of The Friends of the Brookfield Library. The mission of this nonprofit organization is to support the library through fundraising, including the annual July book sale, the Friends’ primary fundraising event.

Area artists are invited to submit samples of their work either in person at the library or by sending an email to The Art Gallery Committee will review all submissions and will contact those selected and schedule exhibits. Library patrons will be able to see each exhibit as they attend library programs in the community room. Additionally, several hours each week will be dedicated to viewing for each exhibit.

For more information about this topic, please contact Brookfield Library Director Yvonne Cech at (203) 775-6241 or

Previous Exhibitions and Artist Contact Info

Paula McDonagh
Rural, urban, coastal scenes

Liz Monahan
Oil and pastel paintings

Blake Reuter
Acrylic paintings, landscapes, still life, broad variety of styles

Dawn Kubie
Digital photography

Colin Harrison

Marianne Shahlamian

Painting by Bivenne Staiger, Song Sparrow in the Cherry Blossoms
Painting by Bivenne Staiger, Snowy Egret in Reeds