Now through June 30th
"Victorian Springtime at The Octagon House"
July 7 - September 24
"Nothing Is Impossible"Preservation Focus Tour
Thursday through Monday
11:30am 1:00pm, 2:30pm, 4:00pm
“The Octagon House: A Victorian Summer Home”
Historic Landscape & House Tour
Thursday through Monday, 10:00-11:00am
July 7 - Oct 31
“Cabinet of Curiosities” by Ryan Matthew Cohn
An installation of wonders located in The Billiard Room.
Included with the price of admission to all guided tours
The Armour-Stiner Octagon House, The Lord & Burnham Greenhouse, and The Foxglove Garden
The Armour-Stiner Octagon House was built in 1860 as a summer home. To this day, the Spring months here in The Hudson Valley are the most delightful time of the year. Victorian Springtime at The Octagon House, a one-hour tour, includes both a guided exploration of the lush 19th-century grounds and an unforgettable interior tour of this marvelously preserved Victorian Summer Home. Guests will see and smell a vibrant array of Victorian flowers inside the fully restored Lord and Burnham greenhouse, listen to an orchestra of songbirds in the Foxglove Garden, and step back in time with a stroll around the 360-degree verandah. In the interior portion of the tour, see many examples of how the natural world heavily influenced Victorian life and design. A wonderful addition to the third-floor Collections Room will be an installation of framed works on paper by Hudson Valley-based artist, Julia Whitney Barnes. Ms. Whitney Barnes' botanical-themed paintings on cyanotype prints are the perfect pairing with this year's Victorian Springtime Tour. The many and varied floral themes of the Octagon House were the inspiration for Julia's work. Each piece has been artfully framed by Kurian & Co. Frame & Display of Yonkers. Prints will be available for sale in our gift shop.
Image courtesy Julia Whitney Barnes
From the website of Julia Whitney Barnes:
Cyanotype is a camera-less printing process invented in 1842 by scientist and astronomer, Sir John Hirschel, which produces a cyan-blue print when a chemistry-coated surface is exposed to sunlight. The first artist (who was also a botanist) to use this process was Anna Atkins. I manipulate physical impressions of plants grown locally in my Hudson Valley garden and other nearby areas, along with intricately cut-out photographic negatives. Each selected flower/plant is preserved through a pressing process in which I dissect and shape each form—akin to a specimen from a natural history museum—and then lay everything out in massive flat files in my attic studio. Given that sunlight starts the exposure process with cyanotype chemistry, I carefully arrange elaborate compositions at night and utilize long exposures under natural or UV light to create the final prints. Each cyanotype is unique and cannot be replicated in the way I work.