People

 

The kaleidoscope that is Newport is reflected in the dynamic watercolors of William Heydt. His bold palette and painterly technique create a prismatic effect of form and color. Alternating patters of people and places converge and diverge, forming vibrant images of a city and those who make it so vital. More than portraits of significant people, these pictures capture an essence of Newport that the tourist don’t see: Ronnie and his “archive” at Aquidneck Lobster, the late Joe Jarvis manning the ticket booth at Jane Pickens with a view of Touro Street, auctioneer Mike Corcoran at work. Heydt takes us behind the scenes at Salvation Cafe, La Petite Auberge and Flo’s Clam Shack. He juxtaposes a legendary Newporter – Billy Rose – with a legendary place – Redwood Library. Whether his subjects are at the back of the counter – Five o at the Clarke Cooke House bar and Joe Nagle at Newport Ace Hardware – or behind the desk – Maggie Gillis, Newport Daily News’s irreverent columnist and daytrader Lisa Baldwin at home on the point. Heydt had made their daily lives a part of Newport’s life. And then there are my favorites, the indelible portraits of artists at work: Rupert Nesbitt, Natasha Harrison, Ben Butler and Tom Deininger. The arts community is a vital part of the Newport kaleidoscope, something that resonates in these portraits. |  Nancy Whipple Grinnell