THE HARTFORD COURANT                                               September 5, 1992


Art lovers think big in latest acquisition

                                                                                                                               Stephen Dunn / The Hartford Courant
Airbrush artist Ray Gatica of Waterbury works on a mural he created in a private home in Newington. The mural captures a street scene from the 1920s.






Also, they said they are very particular of the art they choose, so they are sure not to get bored with it.
    "We basically don't like one type of art. We like what we like piece by piece," Cohen said. "When we buy that way we generally never tire of it."
   Having a mural in a house is different, but the way this mural was painted makes it even more so. The airbrush is a rather inexact implement is usually reserved for painting T-shirts and cars.
    But with the help of some tape and cellophane, Gatica is able to turn it into an exact science. The airbrush is small, with a trigger on top that can provide a wider or narrower spray. Small paint car­tridges are plugged into the gun.




In order to control where the paint is sprayed, Gatica uses tape or cuts the desired shape out of a piece of d wall, and sprays.
   "You get a real slick, smooth finish with the airbrush," he said. "It's my medium of choice. I really enjoy it."
    Gatica may use several colors in one area to get a layered effect and every once in a while will use a traditional paintbrush for minute details.
    For the Cohens, the piece is a unique addition to their varied art collection, which they have gath­ered during their 27-year mar­riage. David Cohen said they have kept all the art they have collected and continue to display it.





NEWINGTON — The Cohens could have done something traditional with that blank wall in their pool room. They could've put up some pictures or a painting or something, but that's not their style.
    "We have very eclectic taste in art," said David Cohen. "We want­ed to do something totally different."
    And they did. They commis­sioned Ray Gatica, an airbrush art­ist from Waterbury, to paint a large wall mural in the room.
    "We showed him the room and told him what we wanted," Cohen said. "He started getting some ideas and we said 'Let's go for it.' The end result is really,, tremendous."
    The mural shows a street scene from the 1920s in a one-dimension­al art deco style, including an "out-side-looking-in" view of a pool hall. The figures are tall and lean, with the men dressed in three-piece suits and the women in tight dress­es and furs, dripping with jewelry.
    "I find it romantic," said Gatica, as he was putting the finishing touches on the mural. "It's some­thing you don't really get tired of looking at."
   The Cohens, who own a shoe store in town, agree they'll never get sick of studying the work. "The more you look, the more you see."