The season has opened with a bang in the area, and I have gotten quite a bit of attention. That does not bother me or hurt my feelings, but it does change priorities!
Last Monday, I was able to secure the June slot at the Gallery 280, which is part of Portsmouth Public TV in Portsmouth, NH. I had submitted twice before, and heard nothing back. They changed directors, and I met with the new one last Monday. This will be a two-person show and includes a half-hour interview segment, which will air every Thursday during the month of June. Cool and intimidating!! (I will have about enough room for 20 of the ReDeFine series). That show will open June 4th.
I also have 4 pieces in an upcoming show at artstream gallery in Dover, NH called “Love Letters”. These are all postcard-sized pieces. That show opens late in May.
The Gallery at 100 Market Street submission is due very soon, but the curator has expressed interest in the “Portrait” series. That show will open early June.
Blackbird Studio and Gallery reopened with resounding success with the Carolyn Chute visit and book-signing. We had our first official reception last week-end and had a good turn-out and sales!! Our next opening reception will be May 30, and I plan on having NO work on the walls. I am starting to install a very large installation piece on the property over Memorial Day, and I am developing it daily!
Oh yeah, and the high point, and the reason for this post…I have been nominated in the “Outstanding Painter, Non Traditional” category for the Seacoast Spotlight Awards Editors’ Choice and I am also on the Readers’ Choice ballot. This nomination alone is a huge validation for hard work! And, the group I am “against” are really good painters and I am friends with one of them for the Editors’ Choice. I am friends with several for the Readers’ Choice.
http://www.seacoastonline.com/article/20150507/ENTERTAINMENTLIFE/150509688/101164/ENTERTAINMENT This is the explanation, and listing for the Editors’ Choice.
For the Readers’ Choice ballot, please visit this link: http://www.seacoastonline.com/article/20150507/ENTERTAINMENTLIFE/150509688/101164/ENTERTAINMENT. In the third paragraph, it says click “here” and that takes you to the survey/ballot. And, this will be very hotly contested, so I’d love as much help as possible!! Thanks!!
My show at the Rochester Library looks awesome too. That runs through the end of May.
Thanks for being here!!
Rick Burns approached Carolyn Chute, who is a personal friend of his, to be part of the Berwick Art Association events. Carolyn Chute wrote “The Beans of Egypt, Maine” and has an incredibly well-reviewed book that was released over the summer called “Treat Us Like Dogs and We Will Become Wolves.” The event he had in mind was at the North Berwick Library, a BAA show opening, but it was scheduled too early for him to pick her up and get her there by 10AM. I was contacted about the library possibility first. Since it was already arranged and the library closes at 1, the next alternative was Blackbird Studio and Gallery. 17 of the 18 members of BAA are also part of this great little collaborative in North Berwick. It all made sense to all parties involved, and what an event it became.
For the first hour, people lined up and had books signed. She also gave interviews to Bob Keyes from the Portland Press Herald and Erin Duquette who has the art blog MODspoke, and is also a member of Blackbird. Erin also filmed some of the event.
From about 2:00 to 2:45, she answered questions from the attendants.
Carolyn Chute is an incredibly warm person. As real as real comes. I am so heart-warmed by her honesty that I almost feel like I need all of her books.
Nice way to kick off our new show which also looks incredible!
The next Blackbird Gallery event, which is our grand opening celebration is on May 2. Please join us.
What a way to reopen!
Blackbird Studio and Gallery is very honored to host our reopening for 2015 with a special guest author, Carolyn Chute, who will give a talk and book-signing next Saturday, April 18, from 1-3 pm.
I stopped by today, to see the new ceiling. We will be ready.
The gallery officially reopens on Wednesday.
We are planning a variety of events throughout the season, so please visit blackbirdmaine.org
I have a favorite new work of mine.
As I am allowing myself to explore, reinvent, and recombine that which I’ve done before-none of this is new territory if you know my entire body of work-but I continue to surprise myself.
I am far more comfortable in a larger format on canvas than on paper, but that is changing.
“The Folly of Sentiment” is another flex of my artistic muscle where I am employing some of the new things that I am seeing, but more so, utilizing materials and techniques, palettes, etc that I have in the past and combining them in different ways. “Valentine”, presently at the BUOY Gallery in Kittery, Maine, was the first of the “Portraits” to include assemblage elements, with bits of magazine photos. I found foil paper and a plastic mesh “bag” (which I cut apart and stretched) to integrate into this piece.
The last Blackbird Studio and Gallery newsletter reiterated something that I said at an opening, but I am not entirely sure it is 100% correct. It said that I am being “influenced” by whose working around me. I don’t doubt that that is happening but this little piece, painted just after I broke my leg, might show that the “Portraits” have always been there.
The “Portrait” series actually has an even earlier ancestor in a series called “Everyman”, which dates back to 1990. So, it really is too soon to say the influences come from Blackbird, which isn’t a bad thing, but more that those influences have awakened other muses within me, that were just dormant. I don’t have digital images of the “Everyman” series yet, but they are also the predecessors of the large 2014 canvas “Chasing the Sun”.
This and a few other new pieces will be in the opening exhibit at Blackbird Studio and Gallery. We are also very proud to be hosting a visit by Carolyn Chute, author of “The Beans of Egypt, Maine”. Please join us for this event on April 18, from 1-3.
This woman is really amazing.
She is a retired attorney who produces artwork like she has been an art pro all of here life. And, doesn’t stagger or falter at any change in subject.
She is not on Facebook other than to do family things and uses social media sparingly otherwise, and since I am a big fan…I told her I would put her out her in social media land.
Anne at the Berwick Library shows the full range (though honestly, I wish I had helped her hang the show) of her brilliance. Her piece, called “The Refugee” brought tears.
This show will be up through the end of the month. Her opening reception is April 21, from 5-7 at the Berwick Library,Berwick, Maine.
Here is her statement:
I have been painting in oils for some years, but my work has increased since
I retired to lovely rural Maine, to be near children, in 2010, with my husband Niles
Schore. Maine has lots of family history for me: I have four wonderful daughters
(all born in Maine) and my four grandchildren, all who live in New England. My
father’s family is from Bowdoinham. My childhood was spent in Texas, but I
spent my high school years in Massachusetts as a farmer’s daughter on a dairy
Before my 2010 retirement, I worked as an attorney for legal services
programs in Pennsylvania, representing my clients in need of services and
supports. My last employment was providing constituent services for Pennsylvania
Congressman Joe Sestak. I loved the work I was able to do in both jobs. I also
served as a docent for the Philadelphia Museum of Art, designing and giving
tours to our visitors throughout our museum for 10 years. This too was a highly
rewarding volunteer occupation.
I have had a life-long love of art and art history and painting, and now in
retirement I have the chance to indulge this love in my own works. I belonged
to two art groups in Pennsylvania, and now I am a member of and have enjoyed
exhibiting with our local Berwick Art Association, Kittery Art Association and
the Seacoast Moderns and the York Art Association, and our own local Blackbird
Studio and Gallery. In addition to participation in these shows I have displayed my
paintings at Ben Franklin, Second Landing, Poppy Seed, Sarah Orne Jewett House,
University of Southern Maine, and in libraries in Rochester, Dover, Somersworth,
North Berwick and Durham.
My art work varies in subject and treatment, from landscapes to still lifes
to abstracts and family portraits and works with a political theme influenced by
my work as an advocate for disadvantaged people as well as reflecting on current
world events. I look forward to the continuing expansion of the art community in
our region and am proud to be a part of it.
After hanging a show, I usually have time to get a few shots to post-not Thursday!! I hung right until the librarians had their coats on and they were ready to lock me in!
The BAA is presenting its 4th show that I have coordinated. It’s a small one and I hung everything that was left for me, even though two artists dropped off more than one piece. The show includes Victoria Lloyd, Christy Bruna, Daryl-Ann Dartt Hurst, Beth Wittenberg, Jane Lissner, Anne Vaughan, Jean Coughlin, Bob Farrell, Rita Mick-Fuller, Janet Ciechon, MaryAnne O’Mara, Ruth Bleau, Auralie Copp, Chris Kfoury, Michael Bramlett, Roseann Meserve.
Again, a really amazing array of work that is being created by some very talented people in this area! I am really proud to be able to coordinate these shows!
And, more to come-I think I have gotten us a great opportunity for October!! More to come on that!!
The next couple of months will be very big for the visual arts in the area. Events are starting to overlap, and I can only be in so many places at once!!
This is my contribution to artwork offerings.
I hope all can attend!
I never thought I’d have 4 opening receptions in one week. All group shows. And, one in Norway. But, I’m impressed still.
Tuesday night, the show that I coordinate for the Berwick Art Association opened at the Berwick Public Library, Berwick, Maine. The show is 46 pieces strong, and includes 20 artists from around the region including: Beth Wittenberg, Christine Kfoury, Anne Vaughan, Bob Farrell, Jean Coughlin, Erika Carty, Rita Fuller, Christy Bruna, Michael Bramlett, Laura Tuininga, Gloria Houlne, Eric Pomorski, Roseann Meserve, Daryl-Ann Dartt Hurst, Jane Lissner, Lee Copp, Gene Galipeau, Tom Gillis, Ruth Bleau, Bruce Bacon.
Turn-out was light, but we had a good time! And, it is a great show. It will be up through March 27.
Thursday, I was part of an opening in Moss, Norway. I am not going to import Facebook or Twitter images here. It was a benefit, and I was happy to donate a piece-and it’s cool to say I have been shown in Norway!
Friday, was crazy. I am done with openings…until next Friday.
The Gallery at 100 Market Street is an important place for me to show for a spectrum of reasons. And, this was my 5th appearance on these walls. I have two small pieces on the 4th floor that I didn’t shoot for the blog. This was not my most impressive appearance, but there are more to come.
The show was filled with gems, as usual. I will have to go back to shoot more, because what I shot last night was awful.
The BUOY in Kittery, Maine hosts an aRtPM Challenge annually where the only restriction for inclusion to this show is it has to have been created within the month of February. I included “Muzykzny” last year, even though the sides were still slightly wet. This year, a piece called “Valentine” graces their walls. She’s the faceless watercolor to the bottom left.
“Valentine” at BUOY
I saw a ton of other people’s art today.
Don’t underestimate this area!
I was feeling like I was either sliding on ice, or my paint really needed a little hint as to where land on the canvas. So, rather than set up shop, I decided to do some business and hopefully get some hints as to what to try next.
I started with Timeless Frames. I ordered mat board, and priced frames and talked about setting up a solo show there in the next couple of months. The work that is up there is work from the BAA that has been up since last month. So, no new work to see.
From there, I went back to downtown Rochester to RiverStones Framing and Gallery. A colleague told me that the owner would be interested in showing the BAA so I wore my Show Coordinator cap, and strolled in. Kris was very receptive and marked us on her calendar for July. As I was chatting with her, Ross Bachelder showed up to hang his show, and the three of us discussed an upcoming show at Drift Gallery at Zev Yoga, a solo by my dear colleague, Jeannie Griffin-Peterka. That’s an opening that I am hoping to not miss.
Ross’ opening at RiverStone’s, 33 North Main Street, Rochester, NH will be next Saturday, from 12-3.
I drove to Dover, and artstream wasn’t open.
Mill River Custom Framing & Art Gallery no longer shows art, but it was “old home week” because I showed with Sandi when her shop was in the Rollinsford Mills. We had a good chat.
(Can you see where this is going…)
Next stop was Michaels for foam core. As per usual, I always seem to be asked a technical question when I am in the store, and today David needed to know what gel medium was. I happened to be looking at canvases, in the same aisle. Timing is everything.
Nahcotta gave me something to look at, though I can’t gush about much that I saw. I do like Jeremy Miranda’s work, so I’ll start there.
Because I “borrowed” this image from Pinterest, I can’t enlarge it much further without distorting it completely out of recognition. I don’t like all of his work but where he rips away a wall to these really homey, pleasant spaces, exposing them to something a great deal less comfortable I find to be captivating. They brilliantly describe how vulnerable everything is without taking out the floor or the roof. And, I love how quiet they are.
Who knows what’s going on with this depicted Christmas. I come from an alcoholic family, where Christmas could really be ugly, when I was growing up. Or not. But, I can relate to those waves. As a child, I never really knew how rough the surf would be.
I will cut Nahcotta “slack” because this really is off-season, but the rest of the show was “off”-not hung as well as they usually present work, and didn’t have any real flow.
But, I saw art.
I also stopped at the Portsmouth Library to get info on who to contact for the BAA shows, and the librarian was lovely and gave me a few more suggestions as to who in Portsmouth to contact.
The final stop was the Levy Gallery (NHAA). I never saw all of the SHAPES show because I was instantly drawn into the side gallery when I noticed two pieces by my compadre Elaine Mendzela on the wall. She is one of the new members. When I came back to the main gallery, I was caught up in conversation with Barbara Alberts, who is also a new member. Barbara is a new transplant from Pittsburgh, and is now a new friend.
So, a day about reconnecting and connecting and new connections.
That’s art, too.