Dragon (shown in situ at Faust Harrison Pianos Gallery)

Dragon.  21 x 66 x 7"  Piano wippens on black lacquered board.

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Piano As Art (Penny Putnam & Shauna Holiman)

About Piano As Art (Penny Putnam & Shauna Holiman)

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Penny Putnam

Penny Putnam is a Greenwich, CT resident working in mixed water media and collage. With a degree in Design from the University of Florida, she launched a noteworthy career in graphic design in New York City in the offices of Raymond Loewy and co-founded the design firm Kollberg/Johnson. Since leaving that career in 1999, she has developed her creativity within the fine art world, participated in juried exhibits, won many awards for her paintings, and has presented several solo shows. Putnam is a member of the Greenwich Art Society, the Art Society of Old Greenwich, the Rowayton Art Center and the Connecticut Watercolor Society. Penny served on the Board of Trustees of The Silvermine Guild Art Center and as a board member for the Greenwich Art Society. 

Website: PennyPutnam.com

Shauna Holiman

Shauna Holiman began her artistic life in music, earning a degree in Music at the University of Colorado at Boulder and completing conservatory training in voice/opera at the Boston Conservatory of Music. After studies, she moved to New York City, sang solo recitals, opera, oratorio and cabaret in the United States and abroad, and was a finalist in such competitions as the Liederkranz and Metropolitan Opera Auditions. Holiman’s poems and opera libretti have been set to music by numerous composers. And along the way, she earned her Masters of Business Administration from Columbia University...just in case. In 2001 she began teaching herself to paint and has since won many awards for her work in oil and ink, participated in numerous group shows and exhibited in several solo shows. She is a Past President of the Greenwich Art Society and maintains studios in Greenwich and New Preston, CT.

Website: ShaunaHoliman.com

The Collaboration

Penny Putnam and Shauna Holiman met while serving on the board of the Greenwich Art Society and, based on the ease of their work together decided to collaborate on an art project. Shauna's friendship with Sara Faust led them to Faust Harrison Pianos and the idea of Piano As Art. They began the project painting in their own very recognizable styles but quickly turned to the piano itself for materials. They dismantled old pianos, peered into their interiors and found shapes, colors and objects of great beauty. They photographed and played with the forms with the glee of children, creating a unique style specific to neither but tuned to the synergy of the two artists together.


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"Fascinating for anyone interested in the piano, music or art, the sculptures of Penny Putnam and Shauna Holiman are both intricate and beguiling, taking what looks on the surface like a familiar form and transporting it into the realm of Surrealism."

John Rockwell, Former Arts Critic, New York Times


Piano as Art, a creative collaboration between Penny Putnam and Shauna Holiman, is full of surprises.  Sculptures made of the innards of pianos take on a life of their own, while suggesting the rhythms and tones that they once produced.  Collages refer more broadly to the world of music, and photographs reveal the beauty of the forms and materials that were once combined in the finished piano.  From sensuous ivories that served as piano keys to the battered wood of old piano legs, the elements of these works evoke the melodies of the past even as the works themselves have a life of their own, freed from the pianos that originally encased them.

Sheila Canby, Metropolitan Museum of Art


"This is a spectacular exhibition.  Piano As Art is truly transformative post-modern art.  Without a trace of cynicism, it is alternately beautiful, thought provoking, rhythmic and musical, often moving and, in several cases, quite playful and funny. Even after 30 years in the piano business, this art has changed forever the way my staff and I view the piano."   

Sara Faust, President Faust Harrison Pianos


"A wonderful re-imagining of the piano as sculpture, architecture and the stuff of mythic creatures.  The grace, wit and vitality of this art are really marvelous."        

Brian Levine, Executive Director, Glenn Gould Foundation