Tag Archives: Acorn Press

BREAKING #GloucesterMA: Passing the legacy– an historic Folly Cove Acorn printing press for the outstanding art department at O’Maley Middle School

Thanks to Mayor Romeo Theken, teacher Brett Dunton, Principal Lucey, and the extreme generosity of Manship Artists Residency & Studios (MARS) under the direction of Rebecca Reynolds, the O’Maley Innovation Middle School ramped up in a powerful fashion with an amazing and enviable addition to the art department:

a rare Folly Cove Acorn fine art printing press for the art room!

Acorn printing presses were used by Gloucester’s legendary Folly Cove guild of artisans, most notably Virginia Lee Burton, an internationally renowned artist, children’s picture book author-illustrator, dancer, teacher and Folly Cove co-founder. O’Maley students study Gloucester, printmaking, and the history of Folly Cove artists through a myriad of units in each grade and subject, often in partnership with Cape Ann Museum, local artists and other community partners. And now, to have this pedigree press, … Wow! Enjoy some photographs from Brett Dunton from the exciting installation day.

 

teachers Brett Dunton and Ashley Doke with 8th grade students admiring the newly installed famous Acorn press O’Maley Innovation Middle School, Gloucester MA

teachers Brett Dunton and Ashley Doke with 8th grade students admiring the newly installed famous Acorn press O'Maley Innovation Middle School, Gloucester MA

The O’Maley press is one of the last actual Folly Cove presses remaining on Cape Ann. It was owned and used by Elizabeth (Libby) Holoran and Isabel Natti, eventually taking up Holloran’s floor space in the Sarah Elizabeth Store which she opened in 1974. Superstar sculptor, Paul Manship, was Isabel Natti’s grandfather. Aino Natti, Natti’s uncle, was one of the Folly Cove co-founders and the original owner of this particular press. Acorn printing presses were fabricated and distributed by companies like the Adams Brothers in Boston circa 1830-1870. The name “Acorn” comes from the cut away which resembles the shape of an acorn; the presses are RARE and beautiful. One is on view at the Cape Ann Museum.

Mayor Romeo Theken was hopeful that MARS would consider the schools and Gloucester’s students when determing a most suitable location. Teacher Brett Dunton knows Natti and all about this famed press. He was thrilled to build a print room around it and get going. Natti had already given him some of her drying racks. This opportunity would not have happened without MARS working with donors to rescue the press and Mr. Dunton’s expertise and enthusiasm for taking it on. This has to be one of the nicest feel good full circle art stories coming home ever! I look forward to sharing some of the results from the inaugural student printmaking classes, original print editions from this stellar art room addition.

 

Julia Garrison’s New Take on Her Shop & Studio!

Julia Garrison of the Sarah Elizabeth Shop in Rockport recently updated the shop’s interior and displays. I love the way the black storage/display pieces complement the antique acorn press. Check it out at 10 Whistlestop Mall in Rockport. And if you can’t make it to Rockport, you can see Julia’s line at www.sarah-elizabeth-shop.com. By the way, the shop’s previous owner was the very talented Isabel Natti. Joey did an interview with her before she passed away, which you can find through this link.

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Well Look Who Made InStyle Magazine–The Sarah Elizabeth Shop’s Acorn Press Lobster Place Mats

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Check them out at the Sarah Elizabeth Shop- www.Sarah-Elizabeth-Shop.com

View my interviews and pictures from the Sarah elizabeth Shop with the Late Isabel Natti in the links below

GoodMorningGloucester
Video Interview, Part II, Part III, More

Isabel Natti Tribute Day II

Isabel Natti in the doorway of The Sara Elizabeth Shop where she been created for decades.

I’m not sure how to express how fortunate I feel to have been able to capture the interviews with Isabel and document so much of what it is that makes our community special.

These videos belong in an archive somewhere.

Video 1- Isabel Natti At The Sara Elizabeth Shop

Video 2- Isabel Natti At The Sara Elizabeth Shop Part II

Video 3 Isabel Natti at The Sara Elizabeth Shop Part III

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Isabel Natti Squid Factory Print At The Sara Elizabeth Shop

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Isabel Natti Cape Ann Postcard At Alexandra’s Bread

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Sara Elizabeth Shop at Whistlestop Mall Rockport

Here’s Isabel Natti in the doorway of The Sara Elizabeth Shop where she’s been creating for decades. Part III of our interview will be posted at 9:00AM with a demonstration of the Acorn Press.

Isabel Natti Herring Plant Print

Isabel Natti’s Herring Factory Print is incredible on many different levels.  One is that it is visually gorgeous, but what the casual observer may not understand is how much detail and how accurate the entire scene is to how we actually did things back in the day.  Isabel worked for Wally Maggot, a guy who rented a pier that no longer exists on our property. They did the same type of whiting, squid and herring packing that my Grandfather Captain Joe, and Father and Uncle’s company did.

If you look at the photo up in the top right corner she tells the entire story starting with the two pair trawlers catching the herring.
Next in the middle, the boats are offloading at the dock where the herring get weighed and go up a conveyor into the pen room.  From the pen room they would travel down on conveyors down the packing lines where they would get packed into 45 pound cases.  Then they would get covered, weighed and then placed on big freezer racks.  Next along you can see the person making up the boxes on the same box stapling machine that we used where you would press down with your foot on the pedal and it would swing the arm to staple the corners of the cardboard boxes.  Lastly they get loaded on the truck to head off to the freezer.
I can’t believe she captured the entire scene in one frame. It is all there- the story of many many people’s day on Gloucester Harbor.  I can see it all and it will live on through her work even though the piers have long fallen into the ocean.
Part II of our interview will be posted at 9:00AM

Lobster Placemats Made With The Acorn Press

These lobster placemats can be purchased at The Sara Elizabeth Shop where Isabel Natti hand presses them with the Acorn Press.  Part II of our interview with Isabel Natti will be up at 9:00AM

Sara Elizabeth Shop at Whistlestop Mall Rockport

All of these prints were made using the Acorn Press.   For more of the history of The Acorn Press, and The Folly Cove Designers click this highlighted text.   Interview with Isabel Natti due at 9:00AM

Acorn Press At Sara Elizabeth Shop

Here is the Acorn Press still used today at the Sara Elizabeth Shop at The Whistlestop Mall in Rockport.  Part one of my interview with Isabel Natti who maintains this tradition will run today at 9:00AM.

Sarah Elizabeth Prints At Alexandra’s Bread

Sara Elizabeth prints available at Alexandra’s Bread.  Check Out The Acorn Press that the Folly Cove Designers use to press these by clicking the highlighted text.

Sarah Elizabeth Prints, originally uploaded by captjoe06.