This month’s First Friday event took me to Gleason Fine Art’s opening reception for Andrea Peter’s new exhibition. Andrea is one of the most colorful, talented artists in the region. I asked Andrea, Dennis and Andrew how many openings she’s had since being represented there; her first show was 1999-ish so the consensus, although slightly vague, was fewer than 20 but close to 15!
The show, “Painting From the Heart,” features one of Andrea’s big paintings, a 48” x 48” one titled “Ready to Pick” that is so gorgeous, I couldn’t help but wish I had the wall space (and a lottery win!) to handle it ... but, not to worry, she’d sold six by the seventh of the month and the show runs through the 20th … so, Andrea will fare well without me!
Back to “Ready to Pick” with the heavily fruited blueberry barrens in the forefront … the trees in their varying shades of green drew me into this piece – in addition to its size! It’s a cloudy day on the blueberry barrens, which are heavily fruited, and it’s the blues that enliven the scene. I could see myself on a blanket between the two tree groupings close to the berries. The rocks amidst those blueberries are stepping stones that lead the eye to the upper right of the piece where there’s another clearing between the trees. This is a moodier piece, I think, for Andrea – and I like it.
Colors fairly pop off the canvas in many of the other new works. Take “Oceanfront Garden” – the daisies dance, the seaweed strewn along the beach, and the islands in the sea ... yes, I’d like to set up a lawn chair in that garden, stretch my legs and breathe in the salt and sweet depicted there.
All of the bright and colorful paintings in this show are new, created from spring to a few days before the opening, Andrea said. And, again, all the framing is done by her husband, Mark.
“I love colors and they make me happy,” Andrea said. “It ’s why I paint like this. Basically I’m a happy person. I want the world to be a happy place like these (paintings); and if you can’t find it on the out there, you can find it in one of my paintings; they can transport you.”
Next up was Studio 53. Co-owner Heidi Seidelhuber has a new show up, more of the looser style paintings of the Northwest that are dynamite. She lives out in Seattle – as does Terry Seaman her hub and co-owner of the gallery – and the greens are vivid! Heidi paints in watercolor, which only heightens the effect of the paintings on the viewer.
One of the pieces is called, “Early Start Moonlit.” You cannot see the moon, just its effect edging the pine trees lining the sides of the two-lane road. I love how sections of the road are a darker shade, something I attributed to patching them up … and a little from the moon on the sides of the road. The other, “Fur trimmed,” is a similar stretch of road leading the driver right into some rather dense fog, which does look like a fur wrap dangling down from the tree branches. Gotta love the fog.
The David Dupree Memorial Show is up and will remain so through September, at least. And, check it out: Four, or was it five, of his paintings sold that night.
One of Dupree’s works I’m quite taken with is titled “The Octopus Garden” in color pen and ink. The octopus, blue with a dizzying array of patterns, like tattoos on its body, are fascinating.
Over to Boothbay Region Art Foundation things were pretty busy. Between the members’ show downstairs and two solo shows upstairs, Sarah Wilde “Wilde Abstractions” in the Harbor Room and Elizabeth Palmer’s watercolors and abstracts in Gallery One, there was a lot for First Friday art fans to experience. This will be a major stop for the October event on Oct. 7 for me.
September First Friday participants also included Joy to the Wind, Black River Gallery and Ae Home.
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