Tag: Open House

Lighthouse Theatre to showcase musician’s printmaking

Broadsides and Penny Dreadfuls is a printmaking show of artist and musician Ian Bell’s works.

February 14, 2024

Simcoe Reformer

By Brian Thompson

Local folk musician and songwriter Ian Bell is about to showcase another side of his artistic talents.

Broadside Ballads and Penny Dreadfuls is a printmaking show with a musical theme incorporating songs Bell has written.

The artist employed antique wooden and metal type, wood engravings and linocuts, and a 118-year-old printing press to create artworks inspired by the broadsides and street literature of the early 1800s.

“These prints are in the style of the song sheets that were hawked on the streets by ballad sellers in the 19th century, crated with hand-set type and illustrated with (my) wood engravings and linocuts,” said Bell. “Some were printed on (my) 1906 Pearl printing press; others were done on a 70-year-old Nolan proof press.”

Additionally, some songs are presented in tiny, hand-stitched chapbooks known as Penny Dreadfuls.

Bell notes that most of the equipment and type was rescued from newspaper offices that changed printing technology in the 1970s, along with items found at yard sales and flea markets.

A selection of printing artifacts will be included in the exhibit of artworks.

Broadsides and Penny Dreadfuls opens with a reception at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 18 at the Lighthouse Festival Theatre, 247 Main Street in Port Dover.

The show will run throughout 2024 at the theatre.

BROADSIDE BALLADS & PENNY DREADFULS – Lighthouse Festival presents Ian Bell’s Printmaking Show & Opening Reception

Ian Bell’s Printmaking Show Opens at Port Dover’s Lighthouse Festival Theatre on February 18th

Port Dover, ON – February 10, 2024 – Using a 1906 printing press and a collection of antique wooden and metal type, local artist Ian Bell combines old technology with his own wood engravings and linocuts to create new artworks inspired by the broadsides and street literature of the early 1800s. These are now on exhibit at the Lighthouse Festival Theatre in Port Dover.

The show takes music as its main theme, and features illustrated “broadsides” of songs written by Ian. (Who is also well known as a folk musician and songwriter) These works are in the style of the song sheets that were hawked on the streets by ballad sellers in the 19th century – with hand-set lead type, and are illustrated with Ian’s wood engravings. Some were printed on Ian’s 1906 “Pearl” printing press; others were done on a 70 year-old Nolan proof press.

In addition to the broadsides, some songs are presented in tiny hand-stitched chapbooks (“Penny Dreadfuls”) – also printed with handset type and woodcut illustrations. The show also includes other musically themed linocuts and wood engravings.

Art Gives New Life to Old Technology

Much of the type and equipment used in the printing of Broadside Ballads & Penny Dreadfuls has come from the dark corners of local weekly newspaper offices who moved on from letterpress technology in the 1970s. The 1906 Pearl press and drawers of 19th century wooden type were rescued from the Cayuga printshop of the Haldimand Advocate (now the Haldimand Press) just days before the building was demolished in 2022. Other type, borders, and useful pieces of printing equipment were generously supplied by the Port Dover Maple Leaf. Still more has come from yard sales, barns, and flea markets across southwestern Ontario. A few examples will be on display along with the art.

The Printmaking Show opens with a reception on February 18th from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at Lighthouse Festival Theatre, located at 247 Main Street in Port Dover. It will remain at the theatre throughout the 2024 season.

For more information on Ian Bell’s artwork, please visit his website at www.ianbellart.com.

Media Contact

For media inquiries, cast interviews and further information, please contact:

Don Kearney-Bourque,
Marketing & Communications Manager
Simcoe Little Theatre & Lighthouse Festival
Direct: (226) 290-0070
Cell: (289) 541-7410

Art Open House – The Artwork of Cristina Zanella

Cristina Zanella Open House
Cristina Zanella Open House

Lighthouse Festival invites you to join us in celebrating
the work of Port Dover artist Cristina Zanella

Join us as we unveil Cristina’s new art pieces that will hang in the theatre’s long bar for the 2023 summer season at Lighthouse Festival. The Open House will take place on Sunday, March 1st, 2023 from 1 PM to 3 PM in the Long Bar on the 2nd floor of the theatre.

Cristina Zanella is a Port Dover-based artist who, for several years, was the art curator at the Lighthouse Festival Theatre. Her paintings have been exhibited in galleries in Toronto, Halifax, Brantford, Sarnia and various communities throughout Southern Ontario. 

She received her B.F.A from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. Zanella has been the recipient of various awards including the Hazel Race Award for the Norfolk Visual Arts competition and the Peoples’ Choice Award at the Glenhyrst Gallery in Brantford.

Please note tickets are not required to attend this open house. This is a drop in event.

We hope you will join us, 

The Lighthouse Team