WRITTEN BY MEGIN POTTER | PHOTOS PROVIDED
A tour through the house that Dr. Healy and his wife Patricia designed with John Witt, the President of Witt Construction, reveals room after room of artistic beauty.
“The house functions as my studio as well as my gallery for the art I create.
No artist ever had it so good,” he said.
The home’s largest windows all face north, bathing it in light while John’s art nouveau-inspired stained glass windows add jovial color to the open spaces.
“Our house grows from the landscape and is not an appendage on the landscape. We are so pleased with the architectural style of the house. It is so perfect for Saratoga.”
So much of the furniture in this home has come out of John’s woodshop including; a basswood cabinet with carved sunflowers, a walnut dresser, smooth sycamore and cherry mirrors, lamps and more.
The Healy’s moved to Saratoga two years ago but as a boy, John visited the Adirondacks, often spending the summers with his grandfather in Saranac Lake. He still treasures these memories. In their home is a Saranac-inspired guest bedroom and in John’s studio, he is surrounded with photos and his paintings of the area.
Here too, are works in progress, as well as signed photographs from some of the people he’s completed portraits for, including Mike Tyson and Middleweight World Champion Vito Antuofermo.
There are mementos from the Waldorf school, where John’s creativity flourished. He then went on to Long Island University, and to earn his doctorate in Art Education from Columbia University.
THE ART OF ADVENTURE
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, John participated in judo competitions and earned the rank of Black Belt. He also served as a Lieutenant in the Army Reserve during the end of the Vietnam war. He won accolades for his judo performance against both civilian and US Army Military Academy opponents.
John also adventured through Italy for a time, which is where he completed the bronze ballerina and alabaster snowflake sculptures that now grace his living and dining rooms.
He then became the middle school art teacher at Long Island’s Woodland Middle School for more than 25 years. Under John’s direction, Art Club students painted murals that were displayed at many notable locations, including the United Nations.
His own paintings have been exhibited at The Carlyle (on NYC’s posh Madison Ave), New York’s Athletic Club on Central Park West and others.
A moving speaker, John’s presentations at the Tropicana 50th Anniversary Celebration, IBM Global Headquarters, and the Shaare Zedek Medical Center expressed his passion for art as a collaborative force.
The pop-art Coca-Cola pieces adorning the Healy’s kitchen and pantry hail from the five-year period when John worked as the company spokesman for their “Paint the Town Red” campaign (which later became known as the “Art of Harmony”).
In fact, every piece in this house tells another chapter of John’s life – it’s a story that has always been centered around art.
Simply Saratoga Magazine is published by Saratoga Publishing, LLC, who brings you such award-winning niche magazines as Saratoga Bride, Saratoga Family, Welcome Home and the weekly newspaper, Saratoga TODAY!
We love Saratoga Springs! The people, the shops, the history, and of course racing season. Our Mission is to bring you everything Saratoga.
We would love to hear from you.