Some of the area’s art offerings require a 20-40 minute drive. The Gafney Library has gained the reputation for the offering some of the best of who Strafford County has for art. And, since I showed there last month…
This whole corridor of southeastern Maine and New Hampshire, including the Berwicks, York and Kittery in Maine, and Dover, Somersworth, Rollinsford, and Rochester in New Hampshire have literally come alive since I moved back to the area in 2005. I have become very involved in two of the art associations, and the I am Show Coordinator for one, as well as on the curatorial board of the Rochester Museum of Fine Art.
The area has not kept up with gallery creation, and the economy still doesn’t support that kind of a venture without a “safety net”, but there are many great supportive venues like the libraries in the area.
I have shown five times at the Rochester Library in the new wing, where Peggy Trout arranges monthly shows with local artists and art groups. The old wing, or the Carnegie wing, displays some of the permanent collection of the Rochester Museum of Fine Art on the main floor. The Carnegie Gallery on the 2nd floor, is where the rotating and borrowed exhibits are hung.
Beth Wittenberg is on display on the main floor. Beth is a very active member of the Berwick Art Association and also a member of Blackbird Studio and Gallery, so we have shared lots of walls together. Beth and I also share a very special connection with art-making, where it seems neither of us have to rely on a muse, inspiration or even a good cup of coffee to need to make art.
What I love about Beth’s work is there is always more than meets the eye. In these pieces from 2013 and 2014, she works very splattered and loose watercolor abstracts into pen-ink fantasy characters, that have color. As an abstract painter, I get lost in looking at the paint below the ink, and then float back to the finished work, appreciating it on multiple levels.
Upstairs, in the Carnegie Gallery are a collection of Dawn Boyer’s oils. Until I brush on my critiquing skills, I will respond as I have to Beth’s-as it relates to my work. Though she is responding to florals, I am looking beyond that again at paint and color. The brush work is solid and experienced. There isn’t hesitation. Nor, is there any immaturity in the palette-it is also self-assured.
Both of these shows will be up through the end of the month.
And, I will probably need to expand the corridor as I described it because I have been invited to show at the Gafney Library in Sanbornville, New Hampshire next month. Another 20 miles north of here.
Since the show closes tomorrow, I will keep this brief and simple!
This was an open “themed” show, though an adherence to the theme, on a strict level, is not “enforced”. We also had area floral designers who matched their designs to chosen pieces.
Here are my contributions.
It is such a gorgeous day-and it reminds me of the day that I was inspired to start cutting these photographs, almost a month ago.
There are parts of all of seasons in this piece, with the burst of color from fall as the bottom layer, the snow-encrusted oaks as the next (and main layer), and the rose “pieces” as the next two (alluding to the coming spring and summer). I was looking at the natural “lace” created as I cut into the oak. Since I used it twice, and inverted it, I was also able to get a greater play with the negative space
This piece is presently on display at the Rochester Public Library, in Rochester, New Hanpshire.