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TR’s North Room
Over 40 large color photographs, created by Long Island artist Xiomáro, will be on display at the historic Theodore Roosevelt Executive and Legislative Building in Mineola, Long Island, October 13-23, 2015. The exhibit, Theodore Roosevelt’s Sagamore Hill: The “Unseen” Summer White House, shows the interiors in a historically rare condition: the 23 rooms of the Oyster Bay home where TR conducted the nation’s business are virtually empty of their massive contents. The public is invited to a free opening reception on October 13 at 6:00 pm. and to download a free photo e-Book at www.xiomaro.com.
Apart from these images, the public will never see the interiors in this state. The photographs document an unseen version of the mansion that, despite being nearly vacant, reveals the president’s imposing character and the intimate nature of the First Lady, the children and servants. The exhibit also marks the debut of a new photograph of the master bedroom, created by the artist upon the recommendation of Tweed Roosevelt, TR’s great-grandson. Photographs from the reopening of the house in July are also included.
Portions of the collection have been displayed at Harvard, in Philadelphia at the Northeastern Regional Office of the National Park Service and at Oyster Bay Historical Society. But the largest exhibit to date is at the Executive and Legislative Building through the efforts of County Comptroller George Maragos and his staff.
The site for the exhibit is particularly fitting in that the cornerstone for the Executive and Legislative Building was laid in 1900 by the then governor Theodore Roosevelt. The white domed Classical Revival style structure is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
The National Park Service commissioned Xiomáro (SEE-oh-MAH-ro) to artistically photograph the 26th president’s Sagamore Hill mansion, in Oyster Bay, during an unprecedented 10 million dollar renovation. Xio’s work is the first significant body of interior photographs since the 1966 black-and-white photographs at the Library of Congress, albeit with the interiors fully-furnished.
Xiomáro is a nationally exhibited and published artist, curator, writer and speaker whose work has been extensively covered by the national media including The Huffington Post and Fine Art Connoisseur. His photography is widely exhibited at venues such as Long Island Museum, Fraunces Tavern Museum and by members of Congress. Earlier this year, the artist drew media attention from News 12, Newsday and The New York Times for his photography of the estate of Long Island’s William Floyd, a Founding Father and signer of the Declaration of Independence.
Several sponsors have supported the show with funding and goods. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site contributed partial funding for exhibit costs and other assistance is provided by Oyster Bay Civic Association. Food and beverages for the opening reception is provided by the following local merchants: Bagel Craft in West Hempstead, Key Food in Garden City, Trader Joe’s in Garden City, Shop Rite in Uniondale and Stop and Shop in Hempstead and West Hempstead.