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Lincoln portraits in Huntington Station

Dan Christoffel poses beside his painting titled

Dan Christoffel poses beside his painting titled " All the Things We Would Be by Now If...." Oil on Canvas, 1977. Photo courtesy of Dan Christoffel Credit: Dan Christoffel

Though Presidents Day is over, it’s still apropos to look at the life of Abraham Lincoln.

Nab your chance to do so at “Lincoln and The Civil Rights Mural Show” – a solo exhibit by representational painter Dan Christoffel that highlights portraits of Lincoln and works inspired by the civil rights movement.

Nearly 20 of Christoffel's large-scale oil, acrylic and mixed-media paintings will be exhibited at the South Huntington Public Library through March 11 to commemorate both Lincoln’s birthday and Black History Month.

Living through the civil rights era got Christoffel, 73, of Sands Point, interested in black history, he says, adding that he served in the National Guard unit in Harlem and listened to the experiences of African-American veterans at that time.

One painting in this exhibit is a 30-foot-long mural composed of 10 oil panels that depict such important figures in black history as the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Dred Scott, Angela Davis and several others.

Christoffel, seen above with a detail of one of his works, also describes himself as a Lincoln enthusiast. “I’ve collected over 200 books [on him],” he said. “I’m a member of the Civil War Institute that meets every year at Gettysburg.”

So why the fascination with the former president?

It all started when he was commissioned to do a piece for the country’s bicentennial and continued to think, “Who was the quintessential American?”

“After all the research, it was Lincoln. He really defined what our country was to be,” Christoffel said. “The country found its identity and it founded itself as the United States with his leadership … and his optimism about the universality of the American experience.”

Artist lecture and slide show of rare Lincoln photographs on Feb. 27 at 2:30 p.m. at South Huntington Public Library’s Alfred Van Loen Gallery, 145 Pidgeon Hill Rd., Huntington Station. Exhibit runs through March 11; 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday; 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.


INFO 631-549-4411 or

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