John Tunney, an award-winning photographer who teaches classes at the center and sits on the association’s steering committee, says, “Today’s cameras and software give photographers the same freedom that painters have to control tone, color, composition, and all the other elements of an image.”
The Cape Cod Art Association has always represented artists in a variety of media, from watercolorists to sculptors. “We aim to be inclusive,” says Miller. Dr. Fritz Talbot, a pediatrician from Boston who summered in Osterville, founded the CCAA along with several local painters in 1948 with the hopes of using the space as a gallery for their work. Over the years, its membership swelled to a current tally of 1,100, most of whom are juried members. Each is allowed to submit two pieces annually for display, and everything hung is for sale.
After a series of moves from its original grounds on Main Street in Hyannis, the association moved to Route 6A in Barnstable Village in 1972. With donated land from what was once the Bacon Farm Inn by owner Ensio Rapo, fundraising efforts, and the goodwill of members and neighbors, they were able to construct a permanent home with a wood-sided, modern design that, Miller allows, would probably not have been permissible with today’s tighter building codes. The grounds are dotted with sculptures and understatedly lush landscaping; the wings soar and look more like a contemporary beach house than a stolid museum. Inside, the wide-pine board floors and rough-hewn ceiling beams are augmented with natural light that seeps through an opaque skylight.