My good friend Cookie sent me an article clipped from the NYTimes. It was from the obituary column–the ones written by family and friends to honor the deceased, not one of the separate articles written by the Times as a tribute to the luminary.
Her note said, “On Saturday evening as Whitney [her husband] and I were on the train to the city, he was reading The Times and came across this. He tore it out and gave it to me to read. ‘What does this remind you of?’ he asked. ‘Artsy Girls!’ And then Whitney said I should send it to you.”
After reading it I had goosebumps and a full heart. The tribute was from The Wednesday Ten and said:
It was over 50 years ago that Bill got the idea of bringing together a group of young men who had come to New York to build their careers. The “rules” were simple: we would meet once a month; …we would tell one another about our work and our lives; we would teach one another about the world as we saw it and the opportunities it presented. From that humble beginning sprang a group who continued to meet together…right up to today. It bred lifelong friendships, much learning of the ways of the world and produced a host of successful people.
Cookie (aka Marisabina Russo– pictured left with two of her illustrations at the exhibit) and I had spent the better part of last Friday afternoon at Liz Ball’s Pierce Ball Gallery on the first day of A Common Thread, the exhibit featuring work from 26 of the 50+ Artsy Girls. I formed this group nine and a half years ago with less of a lofty intention than William Safire’s. I just wanted my creative friends to all meet one another and to bask in the glow of their reflected achievements. But over the years as we have continued to gather and now exhibit, the impact of this talented collection of women is inspiring. To be mentioned in the same breath as William Safire is humbling.
Our show attracted terrific press. There was a beautifully written article in The Hour the day before the exhibit started. Then, while several of us Artsy Girls (pictured above) were at the exhibit, the Norwalk Citizen was delivered with our show as the headline news on the front page! It was like receiving a rave review for a Broadway opening–the ‘cast’ assembled to celebrate the moment of recognition.
I told everyone there that I was having an out of body experience. I was so filled up by the excitement of the moment that my mind was rushing way ahead. “I’m already casting the movie,” I told them. I want Natalie Portman to play the younger version of me. Sigourney Weaver can fill the role of the mature Jane. Any other suggestions?!