New exhibit at URI Library: Orchards in the Ocean State

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New exhibit at URI Library presents photography and interpretive texts on Rhode Island orchards

KINGSTON, R.I. — September 26, 2006 – Photography of Rhode Island orchards by Alexander Caserta and interpretive texts by Michael E. Bell will be on display in the URI Library next month.

The exhibit, Orchards in the Ocean State, will run from Oct. 2 to Oct. 26, and includes black-and white and color photography as well as eight panels of interpretive text exploring the world of apple-growing families and workers.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. There will be an opening reception on Thursday, Oct. 5 at 4 p.m. The gallery is open Monday through Thursday 8 a.m. to midnight, Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to midnight.

Orchards in the Ocean State gives a behind-the-scenes view of fruit stands, farmers’ markets, and the yearly cycle of planting, pruning, harvesting and marketing of different varieties of apples over the generations.

Caserta earned his CAGS in Educational Administration from Rhode Island College, his MAT in Art Education from the Rhode Island School of Design and his BFA from the University of Rhode Island. He is a full-time instructor of the visual arts and has received grants from the Connecticut Humanities Commission and other agencies. Caserta has exhibited his work in several states and currently runs a traveling exhibit of his photography, which will soon move to other countries.

Bell holds a Ph.D. in Folklore from Indiana University, an M.A. in Folklore and Mythology from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a B.A. in Anthropology/Archeology. Since 1980, Bell has been an independent public-sector scholar and a consulting folklorist at the RI Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission in Providence.

Bell’s book, Food for the Dead: On the Trail of New England’s Vampires, was the winner of the Lord Ruthven Assembly Award for Best Nonfiction Book on Vampires.

This is the third photographic exhibit in which Bell and Caserta have collaborated.

For more information about this exhibit, please contact Karen Ramsay, Acquisitions Librarian, 401-874-4625.

This project was funded through a grant from the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities and sponsored by the Cranston Public Library and the Rhode Island Historical Society.


Pippin Orchard, Cranston, in the winter.