Here is one of those things that happens when you least expect it. Our first meeting was at the Thrift Store as we were selecting items to outfit our studios. Ilona was trying to squeeze through a narrow hallway in the shop and I moved to let her go by. Just that little courtesy was enough to have her comment on what a nice person I was. I was more impressed with the energy of this little lady as she worked her way around the shop and gathered her treasures to have the cashier take her money–all of 3.50 I believe. Then she donates several small coin pouches which she is lightening her load as she is packing to go back to New York for the winter. What a memorable experience and we have only been in Ptown for two days.
Next we head to a life drawing class at the Provincetown Art Association Museum (PAAM) a beautiful facility with many famous artworks by historic painters here on the Cape–Charles Hawthorne, Henry Hensche, Franz Kline, Paul Resika to name a few. And in walks Ilona, who will draw and moderate the timing for the life drawing session. Perfect timing, all business, and ends the class by letting us know this is her last session as she is heading back to NYC. I couldn’t stand it any longer, I has to get a photo with her and some of the class members were kind enough to take the shots. As you can see Ilona is a hoot. Had to fix her bright orange hair before the photo was taken–not sure I can tell the difference but more importantly she could. And adjust her extra long false eyelashes. At age 94–yes 94–she could out think any one of us. She is a well known character around here and we (Barbara Greenstein, another Copley Fellow also in the pic on the right) are very pleased to have met her. If this is a sign of things to come, we can now see that our experience will be way more than what meets the eye.