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Shelter Island Library Tent Week returns: Popular events for all ages

Grab the guests and bring the kids to the big tent on the Shelter Island Library’s Bateman Road back lawn for a special, post-Pandemic Tent Week — Sunday, July 25 to Saturday, July 31. 

The kids will love edible dirt and worms (cookies) while North Fork wines will be on hand for more mature tastes. Solve a Jazz Age murder mystery, hear about an incredible animal escape from the zoo and Shelter Island’s own Roz Dimon’s “Affair with Abraham Lincoln,” and much more. To register, visit the Circulation Desk at the Library or the Library’s web site (shelterislandpubliclibrary.org).

Tent Week kicks off on Sunday, July 25 at 4 p.m., with Shelby Hearn of Suhru Wines to discuss the finer points of wine tasting and lead a sampling from the Cutchogue winery.

The BenAnna Music Show — Tuesday, July 27, 11-11:30 a.m. — will especially delight small children. 

Gather your family, grab your lunch and come to Picnic & Games, a special family program — Wednesday, July 28, noon.

Thursday, July 29 is a triple-header day — wiggle and dance around at 10 a.m. with Liana from LIfitMoms, learn gentle exercises focused on stretching and stability with LIfit at 11 a.m., and dress for a mess to learn Joyce Raimondo’s Drip Painting method at 3 p.m. — and maybe paint a masterpiece like Jackson Pollack?

Three programs are also slated for Friday, July 30, starting at 11 a.m. with Edible Dirt and Worms when you make your own disgustingly delicious (cookie) dirt, complete with wriggly gummy “worms.” At 1 p.m., Sciencetellers/TaleWise Presents Unicorns: Break the Cage (Virtual Program), a wild adventure about two kids who visit the zoo and discover all sorts of incredible animals who join forces to plan an escape from their tyrannical zoo owner. Do they have what it takes to leave their cages forever?   

In the evening — at 7 p.m. —  a very special Friday Night Dialogue with Roz Dimon: “My Affair with Abraham Lincoln: A Talk and Exhibit.”  The Islander and innovative artist will discuss her most recent work, a series of portraits of Abraham Lincoln in a variety of media from pencil to charcoal to digital pen and various brush strokes. The works will have been on display at the Library through the month of July. (See story, below.)

Tent Week closes on Saturday, July 31 with the Great South Bay Dance Hip-Hop Program for ages 6-plus — an awesome program and a great chance to learn some new moves.

All programs will take place outside, under the tent. Hand sanitizer will be available and social distancing will be required. Programs are free, with the exception of the wine tasting ($10 per person, to be paid at the Library’s Circulation Desk to confirm your registration), with donations gratefully accepted. Registration is required for the wine tasting, for which space is strictly limited, and it’s recommended for others. Patrons may contact Jocelyn Ozelins, [email protected] or 631-749-0042 with questions.

Also note: The Friends of the Library are holding their Big Book Sale under the tent at the library on Saturday, July 24 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.  The sale will include used books, some old books, DVDs, CDs and more.

Roz Dimon shares artistic innovation


If you were driving up to the Shelter Island home of Roz Dimon, surrounded by the beautiful natural setting of Mashomack Preserve, you would never guess that inside is a “mad painter.”  She is in her art studio experimenting with the most cutting edge computer technology. Roz is a pioneer in digital “painting” and she will share her techniques in person at a Shelter Island Library’s Friday Night Dialogue on July 30 at 7 p.m.

Roz’s most recent collection was inspired by the January 6 insurrection at the nation’s Capitol, which caused her to ask, “What would Abe think?” Using her digital paint brush and mixed media she made 18 drawings of Abraham Lincoln’s face, each one representing his reaction to an event in the headlines. This series, titled “My Affair with Abraham Lincoln,” is on exhibit at the library through July 30, when she will discuss the work and her process.

Literally an artist all her life, she could draw “before she could talk,” she credits her grandmothers for passing down that skill. Her earliest work was mostly conventional oil on canvas, but her inventive spirit showed up right out of art school; as she was painting a portrait series, she decided to record the conversations with those who were sitting for her. This led to her first foray into electronic art when she ran the audio conversations with the portraits in her first exhibit named, “Talking Heads.”

One can hear a tiny hint of an accent from her childhood years in Atlanta and the University of Georgia Lamar Dodd School of Art. In 1981 she jumped into her Volkswagen and drove straight to New York City to pursue her creative ideas at the Computer Arts Division of the School for Visual Arts. She honed her digital skills as art director at the Wall Street Journal and other corporations at the World Trade Center, and participated in digital fine art exhibits when the medium was in its infancy.

As her style progressed she developed what she coined “Dimonscapes,” a process of layering multiple images about a subject to create an abstract and interactive painting. These layers can be electronically peeled away to reveal each of the elements that tell the story of her subject. A beautiful example of this technique is on exhibit at the Shelter Island History Center titled “Havens House.” It is coded so that the viewer can uncover each layer and there is audio to enhance the experience.

During the pandemic Roz became an active member of Techspressionism.com, a group of digital artists who share ideas and promote their medium. They have recorded a series of interviews in which they discuss this “next wave” of electronic painting, available on YouTube.

Roz hopes to take her Lincoln series on tour to show at nonprofit venues. We are so fortunate to be among the first to view these works with the artist as our guide. Join us on July 30 at 7 p.m. under the tent at the library. Free, but donations are always appreciated.