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As the season comes to a close…

Fall Approaches Us

The September pop-up group art exhibition was inspired by the colors of fall.  Many people don't want to see summer end, yet so many of us love the fall weather!  So, not only did I showcase art with autumn colors, but also incorporated works of art with a summery color palette.  At times, curating the show was a challenge as I attempted to place different styles and genres nearly side-by-side, but then I've never backed down from a challenge!  It was enjoyable and visually appealing.

Linda Murray Artist Reception

A Hommage to Zao Wou-Ki

During the winter and spring months, Linda Murray spent some time reading and learning about Zao Wou-Ki.  Murray visited the exhibition, "No Limits:  Zao Wou-Ki", several times during its showing at Colby College Museum of Art.  His abstract artwork inspired Linda to create "A Hommage to Zao Wou-Ki" for her solo art show.

Awarding Best of Show

It was an honor!

I had the pleasure of judging The Art Guild of the Kennebunk's August art show.  It was an honor and privilege to be invited as their judge.

Categories for judging were oil, acrylic, watercolor, pastel, photography, three-dimensional artwork, and mixed media.  There were at least five entries for each media.  A first place award was given in each category, plus Best of Show.

Post Pop-up Art Exhibit

When a collector extends an invite, we accept!

Michael Guinane and I were pleased to accept an invitation to visit a Sharpe Gallery customer's newly-renovated home in Kennebunk.  I had been to their home before and knew of its already top-of-the-line interior, exterior, and landscaping features, so I was curious to see its new look.  Their home is filled with numerous pieces of fine art collected over the years, as well as fine antiques and family heirlooms.  Michael and I were delighted to see his period piece painting that Mark and his wife, Kris, acquired in 2013 situated perfectly above the master bed, as seen in the adjacent photo.

Mark, the gracious host that he is, opened a 1990 bottle of Chateau Figeac and then gave us a full tour of their home, pointing out the stunning craftsmanship throughout.  There is endless hand-crafted detail in every room that one could only describe as work of art.  But it doesn't stop there; even the interior design choices by Mark and Kris are spectacular, which were arranged by Hurlbutt Designs of Kennebunk.  Mark is an intelligent retired corporate attorney with a vast knowledge of art, fine wines, and more - - so, you have to love a wise man who also has a playful personality enough to ask us if we all could fit into one of their showers!

When we returned to the kitchen, Mark expressed his interest in one of the only two horse paintings in Michael's solo show of mainly paintings of France.  Already in their collection is one of Guinane's horse scene paintings, so I wasn't surprised to hear of his interest in another.  Mark opened a 1995 bottle of Chateau Meyney and they became the owner of "Trotting".

Mark and Kris have not only collected several Guinane and other works of art from The Sharpe Gallery, but have also been huge supporters of the gallery - always recommending it to others, attending every art show and introducing new people to me.  My gratitude is beyond measure.  Thank you, Mark and Kris!

 

Michael Guinane Solo Art Exhibit

From France to Maine

What I really enjoy about Michael Guinane is the ability to experience his life through the artwork he creates.  I am fortunate to know Michael better because I have the opportunity to spend hours with him.  But you can too by following his career because his paintings reflect where he's been, what he's been doing, and what he enjoys or what brings him inspiration.  Over the course of six years, I've witnessed Guinane move from his period paintings (which I absolutely love!), to polo scene paintings after attending his first polo match, to island landscape paintings upon his return from a destination wedding.  His trip to France, as with many artists, provided Michael with an abundance of ideas and inspiration.  Paris was the theme of his solo show in July and he did not disappoint!

The popularity of pop-ups!

Pop-up Art Exhibitions at the Nonantum Resort

It was in 2015 when The Sharpe Gallery held its first pop-up art exhibit.  I was fortunate to have it in DC during its lovely springtime season!

It was that exhibit which sparked the interest in conducting more pop-up art shows and what wet my appetite to bring the gallery out from a single location in Maine.  The DC show gave me the opportunity to meet new people under different circumstances and environments.  I love "change" and I love traveling, thus an ideal business model for me to embark on designing.  And what perfect timing as it's evident that pop-up events are becoming increasingly more popular and hip!

That's how the pop-up and "traveling art gallery" idea came to fruition.  The way I see it, in our fast-pace and busy world, let The Sharpe Gallery come to you!

Friday, May 19, 2017, was our first of a series of pop-up exhibits at the Nonantum Resort in Kennebunkport, Maine.  The event showcased new artwork by all artists represented by The Sharpe Gallery.  It exceeded my expectations and I trust it did the same for attendees.  I was delighted to see long-time gallery customers and new gallery visitors attend the show.  And I am ever so grateful for local friends showing their support by stopping in. 

If you missed the show in May, Friday, June 9, 2017 will be the second of the series of events at the Nonantum Resort.  Similarly, we will be featuring new artwork by all artists represented by the gallery from 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  And on July 14th, come by to meet artist, Michael Guinane, during his solo show of new artwork (more information to come).

Art Walk

Why do you attend art walks?

Why do you go to an art walk? For me, there are many reasons. The most notable one is that I enjoy art. Yet, an art walk is a resource for many things. It can simply be a social activity: meeting and catching up with friends, a cultural event to feed our soul, or an activity in conjunction with other plans, such as dining out. But art walks offer so much more. They provide an opportunity to learn about art, artists and their processes for creating art. The sheer fact that there’s a cluster of artist studios and galleries in a central location allows for individuals to compare and contemplate various styles of art nearly side-by-side. We can discover within ourselves why we find a particular work of art to be exquisite and another not. I find art walks to be a great avenue for strengthening our knowledge about art and the more we know and understand, the better equipped we are to appreciate and value art.

Sunday, I drove to Boston to spend the day in the SoWa Art & Design District. SoWa is an acronym for South of Washington. The SoWa Art & Design District guide book describes the district as,

…a vibrant community of artist studios, contemporary art galleries, one-of-a-kind boutiques, design showrooms, restaurants, and entrepreneurs unified by a passion for creating and curating exceptional artworks, products and experiences. Once known as a parcel of neglected warehouses in Boston’s South End, the SoWa Art & Design District has experienced a dramatic renaissance, blossoming into a world renowned retail & arts community that includes the famous SoWa Open Market, the SoWa Vintage Market, and a fashionable residential neighborhood.

I met my friend, Gina, for brunch and then we set out to enjoy one of our favorite activities, visiting as many studios as possible. I knew it wouldn’t be hard to find at least a few extraordinary artists among the one hundred plus who rent studio space in SoWa. While there were many whose work I enjoyed, a few stood out. I enjoyed Jennifer Ellwood’s abstract paintings and David Kasman’s sculptures. Had Kasman’s studio not been buzzing with people eagerly wanting to learn about his process, I would have loved to chat with him. I couldn’t take my eye off of Beth Dacey’s oil paintings. Dacey describes her process, “Each painting begins with a vintage black and white photograph that captures an incidental moment in time. The shadows, poses, and fragments from an unknowable past feel compelling to me; and while I paint from a record of someone else’s gaze, the images pass through me and become mine.”

Our last visit was a studio and an artist who left a lasting impression on me. I describe this kind of artist as “having the whole package.” Yes, of course I want art to move me, have it stir something within me to make me think deeply about the artist’s message or make me search for why it makes me come alive, feel emotion, or why it takes my breath away. Yet, I want the artist herself to be intriguing. I found Mae Chevrette to be this whole package. Chevrette’s life story is fascinating. She’s from Seattle and came to the East Coast for college. And, although Mae took her area of study and went into the workforce, she ultimately changed directions and is focusing entirely on her art career. It’s an admirable quality and takes guts. Chevrette is a self-taught mixed media artist whose paintings begin with a backdrop of her photography work combined with layering of objects and vintage paper giving her final piece a lightly textured quality and appearance.

It was an art walk I’m glad to have attended.  If you’re in the Kennebunkport area, our art walk begins June 9th.  Check out the Exhibitions and Events page for dates and time.  The Sharpe Gallery will be exhibiting artwork at the Nonantum Resort during the art walk.  See you there!

Activities Abound at the Nonantum Resort

Celebrating Women

Sunday, I attended The Women’s Spring Expo 2017 at the Nonantum Resort hosted by Maine Women Magazine.  Ticket proceeds were donated to Crossroads.  Crossroads offers individualized treatment plans for substance abuse recovery and mental health disorders. 
 
The resort was packed with many exhibitors.  Categories included shopping, beauty, spiritual healing, full body rejuvenation, health, nutrition, fitness, home décor, and more.  It was a fun afternoon where I had a chance to catch up with a lot of people who I haven't seen all winter while we all jetted off somewhere warm! 
 
Additionally, I had an opportunity to discover how well the "Front Porch" room (seen here) works as an event space.  The Front Porch location at The Nonantum Resort is where you'll find The Sharpe Gallery group art show on May 19th from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.  The public is welcome and I look forward to seeing you!

No Limits: Zao Wou-Ki at Colby College

An exhibition worth the trip to see!

Today, I, along with artists Sandy Dunn and Linda Murray, made the drive to Colby College Museum of Art to see the work of Zao Wou-Ki.  It was an amazingly powerful show of an artist who combined eastern and western aesthetic sensibilities in his artwork. Indeed, in his paintings, I could see how his life in China and France influenced his work.
 
I'm generally attracted to subtle and cool colors, which tend to guide my liking a particular piece of art.  But that's not exactly true one hundred percent of the time.  I couldn't get my eye off of Zao's "27.02.98," 1998, oil on canvas.  It is strikingly beautiful marked with a sense of loss and sadness.  Perhaps the calmer, cool colors framing the fiery center, is what relaxes me while I contemplate what is the source of loss deep within the meaning of the painting.  But my favorite was "Homage to John Kennedy", pictured here.  (Image courtesy of AsiaSociety.org.)
 
I can say that I left this exhibit placing Zao Wou-Ki as one of my favorite artists.

Lavender, Lilac & Lupine

A June Festival at the Captain Lord Mansion in Kennebunkport

The Sharpe Gallery is honored to be participating in the Lavender, Lilac & Lupine June Festival at the Captain Lord Mansion in Kennebunkport on Saturday, June 17, 2017.  Artist Sandra Dunn will be on-site painting one of her floral scenes for their guests during the afternoon garden party.  To attend one of the garden parties, visit the Captain Lord Mansion website, www.CaptainLord.com, for room availability.  The Inn is the only AAA, Four Diamond Bed and Breakfast in Kennebunkport, Maine.