Nature is Rarely Right - Whistler

May 27, 2020

“Nature contains the elements, in colour and form, of all pictures, as the keyboard contains the notes of all music. But the artist is born to pick, and choose, and group with science, these elements, that the result may be beautiful—as the musician gathers his notes, and forms his chords, until he bring forth from chaos glorious harmony. To say to the painter, that Nature is to be taken as she is, is to say to the player, that he may sit on the piano. That Nature is always right, is an assertion, artistically, as untrue, as it is one whose truth is universally taken for granted. Nature is very rarely right, to such an extent even, that it might almost be said that Nature is usually wrong: that is to say, the condition of things that shall bring about the perfection of harmony worthy a picture is rare, and not common at all.” - James McNeill Whistler on Aestheticism (https://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/whis/hd_whis.htm)

"I found this spot a few nights ago and kept thinking about the late afternoon glow on the leaves. As the leaves come in, there's a color pop that just sings, and that's what I wanted to paint. One of the reasons I saturate colors so much in my work is to recreate a sensation of light or energy. The colors aren't actually this intense, but the feeling of them is, and I want to share the excitement of my experience in the woods, instead of an exact copy of the slightly dulled color scheme that's actually there." - Colin Page

Related posts:

Colin Page on Color and Light
Wolf Kahn on Painting Nature
Color Key with Colin Page
The Artist's Perspective

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/whistler-on-aestheticism


A Moment Suspended

May 25, 2020

Sal Taylor Kydd's photographs and poems distill our lives down to the essence of our most treasured memories. Her work is romantic. Each form plays off the other - her photographs have a visual poetry, and her poems brim with potent imagery.

In the current exhibition, Out of Curiosity, Sal's photographs capture the wonder of childhood and our own curious nature. Her poem, A Gift for Evening, articulates how profoundly the fleeting moments that delight and enchant us can stay suspended to shape our perspective and form our most precious memories.

A Gift for Evening 

by Sal Taylor Kydd

Finally it is evening.
In the kitchen,
the children chatter,
Outrage, then
laughter breaks
over the dishes.
I am washing up,
bent over, 
wiping away, 
the endless remains
of dinner.
We careen through chaos, 
in each others way —
yet pulled together,
like random space junk
orbiting the sun.
Intent upon routine,
I find comfort in
this domestic rhythm. 

Through the window, 
the Spring light strikes 
a stand of trees, 
the sky behind them,
thunder-dark.
The lone birch, 
where the swing 
hangs vacant,
is lit, as if by torchlight.
All alive in limb and sinew
it calls on us to notice.
We pause and stare
at this, the world cracked open,
light pours in
silver-swift.

Just as quick, 
the moment’s gone, 
an evening gift
we hold forever.

Related posts:

Hailstones and Halibut Bones

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/a-moment-suspended


Weekly Round Up 05/22/2020

May 22, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

Three Penguins Visit the Kansas City Zoo 

https://time.com/5838033/kansas-city-zoo-humboldt-penguins-nelson-atkins-museum-of-art/

Podcast with Gideon Bok 

http://www.soundandvisionpodcast.com/blog/2020/4/2/gideon-bok

How to See, in Four Minutes 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/22/arts/wendy-macnaughton-diary-project.html

Interview with Roberta Smith 

https://www.artagencypartners.com/transcript-roberta-smith/

National Cowboy Museum Instagram 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CAd7fKbBugf/ 

and the story behind their social media 

https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/04/23/839551073/meet-the-security-chief-making-a-cowboy-museums-social-media-feeds-extra-delightI

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/16/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/24/2020
Weekly Round Up 05/08/2020
Weekly Round Up 05/15/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-05-22-2020


Figures in the Natural World

May 20, 2020

In these two landscapes, we see the relationship between figures and the natural world by their viewpoint, scale and detail.

In Colin Page's painting, Hazel is immersed in nature. She is a part of her surroundings with her blonde hair in the bright yellow grasses, her position below the horizon line, and her scale among the coastal Maine landscape. But she is jubilantly advancing through it. Her rainbow dress and running gait convey optimism. She is an equal character to the grove of trees, the coastal rocks, and the islands in the distance. The painting feels like an allegory for her coming of age. She is of this place, and she is running confidently towards her bright future. 

In Jessica Lee Ives's painting, the hikers on the ridge of Katahdin are small and insignificant against the panoramic mountain. Despite the ostensible subject of this painting, hikers who have scaled Maine's tallest peak, this is not a painting about conquering nature. The big sky and changing weather, the large boulders and wild texture of the grasses all indicate nature's power as transcendent. The ordinary stance of the figures, active and appreciating of their surroundings but small in it, tells of their insignificance.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/figures-in-the-natural-world


Rockport, Maine Bridge History

May 19, 2020

Siri Beckman's wood engraving of Rockport shows us the Goose River Bridge in 1932.

Historically, the Goose River Bridge was critical to the decision to split Camden and Rockport into separate towns in 1891. The cost of the bridge was the source of great debate. "Reuel Robinson wrote in his book, History of Camden and Rockport, that “sectional feelings ran high and sectional virulence became so acute that for a time it was hardly safe for a Rockport man to favor the proposition to ‘divide’ or a Camden man to oppose it.” [Pen Bay Pilot]

Goose River Bridge - and train tracks to the lime kilns. (image from Camden Public Library.)
Goose Rive Bridge (image from Town of Rockport - Legacy Rockport Facebook Page.)
Rockport, Maine, Postcard (image from Bridge Hunter)

The metal bridge was destroyed in 1946 when a driver took out one of the bridge posts and the structure collapsed. The current steel stringer bridge was built in 1951, and still today gives us one of the best views of Rockport Harbor. [Pen Bay Pilot]

Goose River Bridge today (image from Rockport Garden Club Facebook Page)

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/rockport-bridge-history


Ask an Artist: Colin Page

May 18, 2020

Each week, we ask Page Gallery artists the same five questions. This week, we asked Colin Page.

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

My interest in art grew out of a love of drawing as a child. I found myself drawn to oil painting when I studied art in high school and college. I had a natural affinity for how the paint felt when I was first learning. My interest grew through the influence of friends and teachers, and by studying my favorite artists.   

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience?

One of my college professors took our class to a Pierre Bonnard retrospective at MOMA. His love of color opened me up to a new way of seeing the world through a painter's eye. In some of Bonnard's paintings, color alone seemed to be the subject. 

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

Either audiobooks or podcasts. I love being a passive listener while I paint. It occupies the logical part of my mind, which allows me to focus more easily on painting and respond to visual ideas.

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you?

My favorite things in the studio are paintings made by friends. Often their work drives me to see differently, which pushes my work in new directions. 

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

paint year round, but the practice changes with the seasons. In the summer, I am outside more often, painting on location. In the winter, I work on longer term and larger paintings. Most of the winter work is either still life or painting from photos. I love this aspect of living in Maine; changing seasons that constantly drive me to rethink what I'm doing. 

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman
Ask an Artist: David Graeme Baker
Ask an Artist: Ben Breda
Ask an Artist: Jessica Lee Ives
Ask an Artist: David Jacobson

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-colin-page


Weekly Round Up 05/15/2020

May 15, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

Funny Weather: Art in an Emergency: https://www.interviewmagazine.com/culture/olivia-laing-funny-weather-art-in-an-emergency

Pratt SCPS Hosts Online Floral Design Workshops: Join a different Floral Art for Interiors course every week in June 2020 to create beautiful designs with locally sourced flowers delivered right to your home. https://hyperallergic.com/562233/pratt-scps-online-floral-art/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=D051520&utm_content=D051520+CID_dd2e1fc768c0ab195feead78975d136c&utm_source=HyperallergicNewsletter

A short Kindle story: When a widow inherits a Dutch painting from her late husband, she wonders if it could be a Vermeer. It is a fun read and has good descriptions of paint quality and handling.  https://www.amazon.com/Vermeer-Eternity-Kindle-Anthony-Horowitz-ebook/dp/B00XLF8XXM

Podcast: Collaboration is the Antidote: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/79-collaboration-is-the-antidote-to-the-poison/id1203133627?i=1000473019965

Whitney From Home: a treasure trove of activities, essays, videos, and audio guideshttps://whitney.org/whitney-from-home

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/16/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/24/2020
Weekly Round Up 05/08/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-05-15-2020


Hailstones and Halibut Bones

May 14, 2020

Colors are imbued with emotion and are one of the ways art speaks to us (http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/color-key-colin-page.) That remains true even in a black and white photograph. There is a pull of nostalgia because of its historic use. And the subject takes center stage when the colors are distilled, the contrast feels amplified, and can pull you to a singular focus. But equally, our subconscious reading of black and white as colors comes into play. Here is an excerpt from a children's book of color poems by Mary O'Neill:

"WHAT IS WHITE / White is a dove / And lily of the valley / And a puddle of milk / Spilled in an alley - / A ship's sail / A kite's tail / A wedding veil / Hailstones and Halibut bones..."

"WHAT IS BLACK / Black is the night / When there isn't a star / And you can't tell by looking / Where you are. / ... / The sound of black is 'Boom! Boom! Boom' / Echoing in / an empty room..."

Sal Taylor Kydd's nostalgic black and white images conjure just these kinds of emotions. Color is a tool to convey a mood and tell a story, and here the white hand feels supernatural, divine, and the black water a deep pool. Along with subject, lighting, composition, the use of black and white are like characters coming together to tell the story of this photograph. Their use renders the image more powerful, its meaning deeper.

Related posts:

Colin Page on Color and Light
Color Key with Colin Page
Blue Sky Blue Sea

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/hailstones-and-halibut-bones


Coloring Book Now Available

May 12, 2020

The Colin Page Coloring Book is now available to purchase. We hope you’ve enjoyed the preview pages we have shared on the blog. And now here is a book you can color or share with 20 coloring pages based on Colin’s original paintings.

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Fish!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Snowsquall
Colin Page Coloring Book - Windjammer

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/coloring-book-now-available


Ask an Artist: David Jacobson

May 11, 2020

Each week, we ask Page Gallery artists the same five questions. This week, we asked David Jacobson, who has glass birds in our spring windows this week.

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

My freshman year at Kent State University,in Ohio, I was walking on the commons one spring day, and noticed that the glassblowing studio had set up outside to do a demonstration for everybody. I saw two guys, holding blowpipes, running in opposite directions with a strand of hot glass stretching out between them like a taffy pull. I went over to watch more closely, and that was it. I said to myself that I had to learn how to do that. And that was the moment. It took a few more years, and a few more colleges before I pursued glassblowing for my college degree. And even then, I got sidetracked with a professional career as a cartoonist for newspapers and magazines. But, I always knew I would return to glass.

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work. Book, exhibit, experience?

I was fortunate enough to get accepted into the very first class at the Corning Museum of Glass new glass studio, in 1996. The class was taught by Lino Tagliapietra, from Murano, Italy, and considered to be the best glassblower in the world. And still is. A maestro. Lino started working with glass when he was 13. He was probably around 65 for the class. This class was held just two years after my return to glassblowing. To watch Lino at work was magical. I had never seen someone with such artistry and fluidity work like that before. His mastery of the material, his timing, the confidence with which he executed his moves was beauty to behold. We all got to help him in his process, and to actively assist him in the making of his pieces, and ask questions. But, the highlight, the turning point, was when I was working on a piece, having difficulty with the new technique, and Lino came over, sat down on the bench with me, leaned over my shoulder, took the tool I was using, changed the grip on my hand, and said,Like this, like this, in a very encouraging voice. He stayed there for a while, watching, correcting, repeating. I really appreciated him taking that direct approach with me. That, and watching him work for a full week filled me with inspiration that I can still call upon.

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio?

Music is always on in the studio. As soon as I walk in. In fact, a good sound system is critical to me. And I love to listen to all types of music throughout the day. I change the music depending on my mood, what kind of work I will be doing, who are the people in there with me, and what time of day it is. I have settled into using Spotify. I have various stations. Electric Blues Guitar, Classic Rock, Motown (my favorite, and my Go To when I want to smile), World Music (what I play when I give lessons. It seems to be universally enjoyed), jazz, and meditative/yoga music (generally, when I first get in there.) Music and its energy are a very important component to glassblowing.

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Is there a non-work related item in your studio that has significant value to you?

I think I would have to say that my glassblowing bench is my favorite item or supply in my studio. For a couple of reasons. For one, it is the center of all the creativity and the making of any piece. Glassblowing is very active, but all of the activity always come back to the bench. The design of it is extremely important. The height, the width, the length. Its ability to hold all of the necessary tools in an efficient manner. Everyone’s bench is basically derived from the standard Murano bench blueprint from hundreds of years ago. And then everyone customizes it. The other reason my bench is my favorite item is that I chose to make it using some of my 200 year-old wood from my house. My home was built in 1814. Wide plank floors run throughout the house, and even up in my attic. There are extra boards in my attic , and I took two of them to act as the sitting part of my bench. Gorgeous, pumpkin pine, 26 inches wide, grace the top of my bench. Varnished in an Eggshell finish, this wood and the bench overall add a history and energy to my studio that I appreciate every time I see it.

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

I tend to warm up creatively with the seasons. So, I feel myself ramping up in March, and I am at my strongest, most prolific, during the summer months, and continue through Christmas. Winter time I regroup.. Fortunately, that coincides with my production needs for galleries and my studio. I never take any extended breaks from creating. It makes me itchy and restless. I am always working on something, in some form. I am also a cartoonist, so I am always thinking and sketching for that, as well. And, I see how I can incorporate that thinking into my glass, sometimes.

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman
Ask an Artist: David Graeme Baker
Ask an Artist: Ben Breda
Ask an Artist: Jessica Lee Ives

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-david-jacobson


Spring Comes to Camden

May 9, 2020

Shop the window here: https://www.thepagegallery.com/tag/window-spring-2020

"An optimist is the human personification of spring." -Susan J. Bissonette

"It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade." -Charles Dickens

"A Light exists in Spring / Not present on the Year / At any other period – / When March is scarcely here / A Color stands abroad / On Solitary Fields / That Science cannot overtake / But Human Nature feels…" - Emily Dickinson

"From you have I been absent in the spring, / When proud pied April dress’d in all his trim / Hath put a spirit of youth in every thing, / That heavy Saturn laugh’d and leap’d with him…" -William Shakespeare, Sonnet 98

"In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt". -Margaret Atwood

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/spring-comes-to-camden


Weekly Round Up 05/08/2020

May 8, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

The cultural history of Prussian blue:  

https://www.theawl.com/2017/11/prussian-blue-the-color-of-great-waves-and-starry-nights/

Alice Neel on the Getty Podcast:

https://www.getty.edu/recordingartists/season-1/neel/

Joyce Tenneson Flower Portraits at the Farnsworth:  

https://vimeo.com/405142279

A beautiful essay in the Paris Review:  

https://www.theparisreview.org...

Five artists to follow on instagram:  

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/15/arts/design/best-artists-instagram-.html

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/16/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/24/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-05-08-2020


S is for Summer

May 7, 2020

Siri Beckman’s print, S is for Summer, Blue is for Calm, reminds us of the halcyon days of summer. This peaceful scene is a tonic for our uncertain times. This print and five others can be purchased for $80 on our homepage, with 20% donated to our local food pantry, which has been doing great work to serve people in need. More than ever, they have rallied to keep the food-insecure fed and to lift our community with support.. 

Prints can be mailed to you, or you can send one to a friend as a gift. Check our homepage to see the other images, and to make a purchase. Prints are available from Siri Beckman, J.T. Gibson, Sal Taylor Kydd, Colin Page, and Anneli Skaar through our website until Tuesday, May 12.

Related posts:

Art Mail
Gratitude

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/s-is-for-summer


Colin Page Coloring Book - Windjammer

May 6, 2020

Here is a picture of Camden's Windjammer Angelique for you to download, print, and color! Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Print this

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Fish!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Snowsquall

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/coloring-book-6


Jessica Lee Ives Magic Water

May 5, 2020

In Jessica Lee Ives paintings, light and reflection move with ripples in the water. Fluid shifts reveal what’s below before obscuring it with the reflection of the sun and sky above. The surface of the water acts as the magician, redirecting our eye, and making us question reality. 

Painting water always feels a bit like a magic trick. Water is constantly in motion. Jessica has to freeze a moment in time, while also suggesting the seconds and minutes before and after. Her water feels alive and changing, despite the confident clear strokes of color that hold us in a moment. These paintings are about the enigmatic qualities of water being affected by time, light, movement, and it’s own transparency. 

When we look at one of Jessica’s swimmers we immerse ourselves, remembering the taste and smell of lake water, the sound of water lapping and the feeling of buoyancy. There is wizardry in these paintings that take us out of our bodies, transporting us to a different time and place.


Related posts:

Blue Sky Blue Sea
Ask an Artist: Jessica Lee Ives

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/jessica-lee-ives-magic-water


Ask an Artist: Jessica Lee Ives

May 4, 2020

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

I took an evening oil painting class as a freshman in high school and fell hard. Oils were my first love and have been my only love. When dabbling in other mediums — printmaking, book arts, calligraphy, gouache — I can feel my thinking brain and act with a heavy hand. I’m aware of making the medium do. what. I. want. But what I want is...so limited! Bore-ing. When I paint in oil I definitely can’t do what I want, and because of this some of the limits get thrown off. The medium has a mind of it’s own. There’s mystery, surprise, and hugely humbling momentsApplying oil paint on a surface between four edges is my controlled way to grapple with letting go of control.


2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience.

Going to massage school was hands-down (pun intended) the best decision I’ve made in my art career. When the direction of my paintings demanded that I learn to paint the human body more effectively, I put the brushes down and got busy with anatomy, kinesiology, and palpation. Finding an oblique way to confront a creative challenge can be exponentially effective. Not painting for a full year and diving deep into the living, breathing reality of my subject was the best experience I’ve ever had as an artist and I draw inspiration, confidence, and humility from it continuously.


3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

I love listening to podcasts! They keep my thinking brain busy so I can drop into a flow state more easily and just move with the paint. Plus, I get to maintain that oblique approach to learning about my subject matter with podcasts about somatics, movement ecology, rewilding, traditional ecological knowledge, and quantum biology.


4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you. 

A window, any window! I only paint with natural light. Also, a window with a long view allows me to take intermittent eye breaks, balancing the near work I do as a studio painter with distance looking in order to maintain the health of my eyes.


5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice? 

There’s less daylight hours in the winter and therefore less time for painting when only using natural light in the studio. In the summer, although wonderfully long light cycles are present, the season itself is short in Maine and so  there’s a rush to fit in all the swimming, hiking, and fishing adventures that fuel my paintings. I make most of my work in the spring and fall when both light and time are more moderately available.

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman
Ask an Artist: David Graeme Baker
Ask an Artist: Ben Breda

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-ives


Activity: Origami Stars

April 29, 2020

We decorated our Mystery & Magic windows with origami stars this week. Watch a tutorial with Colin Page and make your own at home!

Watch here: https://vimeo.com/413080512

Related posts:

Connect the Dots
Andy Goldsworthy Activity

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/activity-origami-stars


Mystery and Magic

April 28, 2020

Like mystery, art has an element that is not quantifiable. Like magic, art has the ability to show us the world and somehow transform or change it. This week our windows are themed Mystery and Magic, with artwork that enchants, conjures illusions or suggests a riddle.

In Colin Page’s painting, Columns, we feel the serendipity of discovering an island field strewn with column capitals from long ago. These carved stones on Dix Island in Maine are remnants of it’s early granite history. Learning their origins does not take away from the mystery of these ornate ghosts. Stumbling onto a scene like this, we can’t help but believe in magic.

Simon van der Ven’s vessels are intricate, organic, meditative. They conjure ideas of nature, the human form, mortality. Their glaze is its own magic of fire painting. These clay pots are made in an Anagama wood-fired kiln. The complex interaction between flame, ash, and the minerals of the clay body forms a natural ash glaze, the pots in the front marked with more fly ash than the ones in the back. The markings and coloration from the fire are unknown until the pieces are unloaded from the kiln, after 8 days of firing using 7 cord of wood and an additional week suspense while the kiln cools.

Camille Coleman’s photo of the night sky over Acadia National Park captures the magic of a starry night, when we sense a limitless universe and feel that anything is possible.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/mystery-and-magic


Ask an Artist: Ben Breda

April 27, 2020

Each week, Page Gallery asks an artist the same five questions. This week, we asked Ben Breda, who is featured in our Gallery Windows this week, and has knives available to view and purchase here

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

At one point I deciding I needed a new career path and wanted to focus on something I loved.  I’ve always had an interest in knives as well as metalwork and metallurgy. Combining the two was a perfect fit. 

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience?

I get so much inspiration from other full time artists. Hearing or seeing success stories or hearing artist’s thought processes, or way of doing things is incredibly valuable to me. When I’m inspired by other artists/makers my best work always follows. 

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

I mostly listen to music. I like many different genres. I’ll listen to one type of music and once that gets old I’ll switch to something new. But sometimes just working in silence is best. 

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you. 

The old American machines I use are definitely my favorite. Like lathes, milling machines, surface grinders, and power hammers. They are just so nice to use and are built much better than most machines today. 

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

The seasons don’t change my processes much. Winter is a good time to get a lot of forging done. It helps keep the studio warm. Being a full time artist, I like being in my studio everyday. If I need a break, I’ll take some time off, but so far not for extended periods of time. 

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman
Ask an Artist: David Graeme Baker

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-breda


Weekly Round Up 04/24/2020

April 24, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

David Jacobson, Page Gallery glass artist, was a cartoonist in his former life. Follow along on his blog for some levity: https://www.davidjacobsonglass.com/blog

The New York Times feature, Still Lives, is a diary of photography during Coronavirus. Camden based photographer, Cig Harvey, has a beautiful series of images that will make you hopeful for the springhttps://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/21/us/coronavirus-photographers-diary.html.

Betsy Wyeth, widow and muse of Andrew Wyeth, dies at 98https://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2020/04/22/us/ap-us-obit-besty-wyeth-2nd-ld-writethru.html

Award winning Primo Restaurant has been feeding us through the pandemic. We are lucky to have a world class restaurant (multiple, really!) in midcoast Maine. Here is an interview with chef owner Melissa Kellyhttps://mumbaitomaine.com/2020/04/the-gospel-according-to-melissa-kelly/.

A calm place on the internet https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/05/style/self-care/the-calm-place-on-the-internet.html

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/16/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-6


Andy Goldsworthy Activity

April 23, 2020

We invite you to make a site specific installation or sculpture involving natural objects and the passage of time, and photograph it. This can be in your yard, the nearby woods, or the sidewalk out front. Sorting and arranging rocks, leaves, branches, or sea shells reminds us to pay attention to nature’s beauty. We’ve found it is soothing to sit outside and move things around, and wonder if the next person to come by would even notice this little patch of order. You can see some Goldsworthy pieces for your inspiration here, and a few of our own creations:

Send us your finished work by tagging @thepagegallery on social media, or emailing it to kirsten@thepagegallery.com

Also worth a look: RIvers and Tides, Andy Goldsworthy documentary, followed 15 years later by Leaning Into the Wind.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/activity-andy-goldsworthy


Optimism

April 22, 2020

“Happiness is being on the beam with life - to feel the pull of life.” -Agnes Martin

Art can be a vehicle for optimism, through playful or hopeful subjects, color, and gesture. Art can resonate with our own experience of happiness and capture a spirit of positivity. Art can show us a way of seeing and materialize the universal and internal sensation of optimism. These four artworks are grounded in this world, echoing our own experiences of happiness. David Jacobson’s glass bird swoops up, its gesture lifting off, a universally joyous signal. Jessica Lee Ives swimmer places us in the water; through her brushwork we can feel the laps of water, the warmth of the sun, and our body in motion. Our connection to the human form creates a mirror sensation of being submerged in the light filled pool of water. Colin Page’s painting of Hazel running conjures our own memories of childhood, discovery, and exploration. As in Jess’s painting, seeing her from behind and in motion, we feel ourselves running through the painting. The majestic natural setting, the warm palette, the freedom of space around her, the fresh and confident brushwork, all serve to invoke a deep personal happiness. Siri Beckman’s Breakfast Table, with the table set and the chairs open, we are invited in, anticipating the joy of a window side meal. Art’s power to reframe our outlook is most wonderfully applied when it lifts us and inspires optimism.

Related posts:

Bridget Riley on Active Observation
The Artist's Perspective

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/optimism


Colin Page Coloring Book - Snowsquall

April 21, 2020

Here is a picture for you to download, print, and color! This page is based off the painting used on this year's Maine Boats Homes and Harbors poster - order yours here. Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!
Connect the Dots
Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Fish!

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/coloring-book-page-5


Ask an Artist: David Graeme Baker

April 20, 2020

Each week, Page Gallery asks an artist the same five questions. This week, we asked David Graeme Baker, who is featured in our Gallery Windows this week, and has paintings available to view and purchase here

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

When I first thought that a life in the arts was a possibility, I was drawn to sculpture. I had taken an internship with a figurative monument company in the Boston area and then went to art school planning to focus on figurative sculpture. However, as my first semester at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts was coming to a close, it was clear to me that I was more drawn to painting. I had found an inspiring figure painting instructor and quickly felt comfortable with oil painting as a medium. By the end of that first year I had switched tracks and was fully committed to painting. 

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience

One of the greatest influences on my work is the photography of Sally Mann. I have a clipping from a magazine of her photograph “Jessie and the Deer” on the wall in my studio. Each time I look at the image I’m drawn into a deep rabbit hole thinking about the beauty and brutality of rural american life. Her work inspires me to look deep into the scenes that surround my life in Downeast Maine in search of a mix artistry, elegance, and grit. 

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

My studio soundtrack varies according to the type of work that I’m doing. When I am in the preliminary stages of sketching and plotting out a project, I tend to work in silence or with music. Once a project is underway and I have a clear direction to my day, I will often switch over to podcasts. My music taste is mix of retro acoustic, but I do dip a toe into some more pop oriented artists. My current playlist has music from: Yola, Amy Winehouse, Lori McKenna, Sturgill Simpson, Florence and the Machine, Buckwheat Zydeco, Harry Styles, Leon Bridges, Mandolin Orange, Wilson Pickett, Coldplay, and Willie Nelson. For podcasts I have a few in regular rotation, the subject matter is usually soccer or politics, though there are a few random ones thrown in. Among the regulars are: The Football Daily from the Guardian, Total Soccer Show, That Peter Crouch Podcast, Pod Save America, The Daily (NYT), Dear Hank and John, and Broken Record with Rick Rubin and Malcolm Gladwell. 

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you. 

TBH, I don’t really have a favorite tool or supply. That said, when I feel like I’m treading water with a project, I will often reach for a brand new brush to give me a little boost. 

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

Honestly, I don’t vary my process much with the seasons; in the studio my routine is pretty stable.  However, I am more inspired by the colors of late fall, and early spring, so I spend more time looking for project ideas at those times.

Related posts:

Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-baker


Weekly Round Up 04/16/2020

April 17, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

Painter William Bailey died this week at 89. Here is a look back at some of his work: https://fineartconnoisseur.com/2019/09/contemporary-still-life-paintings-william-bailey/

17 Artist Capture a Surreal NYC From Their Windows: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/04/16/nyregion/coronavirus-nyc-illustrators-window.html

Rilke's Letter to a Young Painter: https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2017/11/27/rilkes-letters-young-painter/

Patrick Stewart's Daily Sonnets: https://www.instagram.com/sirpatstew/?hl=en 

15 Documentaries That Get Inside an Artist’s Head: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/16/arts/design/art-documentaries-streaming-virus.html?referringSource=articleShare

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-5


The Artist's Perspective

April 16, 2020

"Art is nature seen through a temperament."  -Emile Zola

An artist’s work is guided by their own curiosity and interest. The artist is a filter, showing us how they perceive things, their art a byproduct of their obsession with a visual sensation or idea. Each new creation is proof of the creator’s curiosity, and drive, and their singular vantage point. We show the products of this searching at the gallery, but what makes each piece so meaningful is the years of studying, learning, practicing, and living that went into it. For instance, Gideon Bok paints an interior over weeks and months, recording the way the space is used and changes, recording the effects of time on a space. This creates a much different effect from the work of Peggi Kroll Roberts who uses blocks of color to create poetic works that show how light and color affect a form. Jessica Lee Ives' paintings of swimmers capture her interest in body movement and a sense of awe in nature. Simon van der Ven's sculptural forms echo those of nests, eggs, riverbeds, stone because he is drawn to timeless organic shapes and patterns. None of them could be mistaken for another, but they are all driven by a similar desire to share their excitement about how they engage with the world. Artists have the potential to teach us to see different kinds of beauty, to understand in a new way.

Gideon Bok, TVC-15, oil on linen, 35x55"

Peggi Kroll Roberts, Objects on Melon, acrylic on canvas, 16x20"

Jessica Lee Ives, Lightly Suspended, oil on panel, 5x7"

Simon van der Ven, Brown Egg, wood-fired stoneware, 22x14.5"

Related posts:

Wolf Kahn on Painting Nature
Alex Katz on Painting Your Own Backyard
Neighbors by T. Allen Lawson

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/the-artists-perspective


Bridget Riley on Active Observation

April 15, 2020

“The eye can travel over the surface in a way parallel to the way it moves over nature. It should feel caressed and soothed, experience frictions and ruptures, glide and drift. One moment, there will be nothing to look at and the next second the canvas seems to refill, to be crowded with visual events.” -Bridget Riley

Bridget Riley was part of the Op Art movement with decorative abstract paintings, but her understanding of viewer perception applies to all styles of painting. The way our eyes move across the canvas is very similar to the way they move across a natural landscape. Great paintings move your eye around the painting, giving you places to pause and busier moments of interest. The experience of viewing involves time and inquiry, starting with the initial impact of the whole scene, leading into an examination of smaller moments. 

Some canvases pulse with so much information that with each viewing we see something new. As with the people and places we experience every day, a painting becomes more complex and interesting the more time we give to it. There is great reward in allowing the time and inquiry to let your eye explore. 

Here is a selection of paintings from four artists that invite a longer viewing:

Jessica Lee Ives, Inhale Light, oil on panel, 8x10"

Peggi Kroll Roberts, Simple Shadow Series 5, gouache on paper, 8x11"

Colin Page, Crab Cookout, oil on canvas, 36x48"

David Graeme Baker, Saturday Morning, oil on linen mounted on panel, 13.5x20.25"

Related posts:

Wolf Kahn on Painting Nature
Alex Katz on Painting Your Own Backyard
Neighbors by T. Allen Lawson

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/bridget-riley-quote


Colin Page Coloring Book - Fish!

April 14, 2020

Here is a picture for you to download, print, and color! This still life of the bounty of summer is a welcome feast for the eyes. Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!
Connect the Dots
Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Fish!

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/coloring-book-page-3


Ask an Artist: Siri Beckman

April 13, 2020

Each week, Page Gallery asks an artist the same five questions. This week, we asked Siri Beckman, who is participating in our Home Delivery art mail program with an etching, and has wood engravings available to view and purchase here

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

I quite accidentally discovered wood engraving by picking a book off a shelf!

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience

This book, titled The New Woodcut and published in 1930, with its remarkable wood engravings inspired me to buy the needed materials and tools and give it a try. Living in Stonington, Maine, provided imagery for translation into prints for decades! And Later I won a number of Artist Residencies in the National Park System broadening my scope.

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook? 

For the first decade of living in Maine I had no electricity and depended on batteries for radio (WERU & PBS).
However, the sounds of the natural world around me were most important during that time. Over the years radio and audio books remained intermittent companions in the studio.

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you?

My father's drawing board and my adjustable arm light, plus about 6 favorite engraving tools.

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

Well, Winter of course, meant time to keep fires going! Spring brought roaming the outdoors. Summer it was gallery business, gardening, visitors, complete exhaustion, and Fall, clean up time for just about everything, then travel to visit family and friends! When I'm away from my studio I usually take a hand made journal and watercolors with me so I can at least do some journaling and sketching wherever I may be. The largest break occurred when I moved to Bath in 2017. Resettling has taken two years.

Related posts:

Wolf Kahn on Painting Nature
Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar
Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson
Gratitude

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-siri


Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020

April 10, 2020

A design project for the whole family, from the granddaughter of Rube Goldberg, the cartoonist renowned for designing absurdly elaborate contraptions to accomplish the simplest tasks: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/08/arts/design/rube-goldberg-bar-of-soap-challenge.html

Color albums to get lost in, compiled by Catherine Kehoe: https://www.kehoeimagemine.com/THE-WHITE-ALBUM/

Fred And Ginger Cheered Us Up During The Depression. Might They Do It Again? https://www.npr.org/2020/04/08/825696927/fred-and-ginger-cheered-us-up-during-the-depression-might-they-do-it-again

Artist Stuart Shils, who will be showing with Page Gallery this summer, on color and his palette: http://www.powersofobservation.com/2009/03/stuart-shils-on-color-and-his-palette.html

A great documentary on Netflix about forgotten Polish sculptor, Stanislav Szukalski: https://www.netflix.com/title/80109551?s=i&trkid=13747225

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020
Weekly Round Up 04/10/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-4


Gratitude

April 9, 2020

Page Gallery is grateful to be able to help the local AIO Food Pantry through our Home Delivery art mail program. We have a new 2-color woodcut print from Siri Beckman entitled Gratitude that speaks to our aim beautifully.

This is a limited edition print of 8, and as with all of our Home Delivery artwork, 20% of the sale goes to AIO Food Pantry. You can purchase it online here: https://www.thepagegallery.com/.

When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed. -Maya Angelou

On April 3, AIO announced, "650 bags of food containing kid-friendly snacks and a family meal have been packed and distributed to 16 schools since the school closures, ensuring that kids and their families have food on the weekends. Food has also been provided to AIO's four in-school-pantries. 1200 more bags will be distributed over the month of April."

Related posts:

Art Mail

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/gratitude


Blue Sky Blue Sea

April 8, 2020

Let the blue sky meet the blue sea and all is blue for a time. -Moncy Barbour

[source: http://institutions.ville-geneve.ch/fr/bge/]

The Cyanometer is used to measure the blueness of the sky, and was shown to us by Jessica Lee Ives in her Color Workshop last fall.

Anyone who has tried to paint the sky knows there is no such color as sky blue. Depending on the time of day, the type of day, and which part of the sky you are looking at, there are a wide range of blues (and other colors) that can be seen. Often the sky becomes a bit pinker or greener near the horizon, depending on atmosphere and light. The blue sky on a clear day is deepest in color directly overhead. Atmosphere reflects and refracts, changing the way sky color is observed.  

Living in a coastal town, the comparison of the sky and sea is ever present. The color relationship is perpetually changing, each reacting to the other, to the changing angle of the sun, the presence of clouds, rain, snowfall, to the waves in the wind and the droplets in the atmosphere. There are endless greys, pinks, teals, browns and greens. When a clear blue sky and a deep blue sea meet, there is cheer and comfort to the day. Those bright blues signify a sunny day that lifts us up.  

The cyanometer, a tool from 1760 is used to measure the blueness of the sky, is a scientific way to compare how clear the air is with a simple color observation. Through the color of the sky we can observe weather, pollution and atmospheric conditions. It’s proof that an artist’s obsession with color perception is more than just a whim, but is vital to more fully understanding the world we inhabit.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/blue-sky-blue-sea


Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!

April 7, 2020

Here is a picture for you to download, print, and color! This one from Curtis Island feels like a great escape in these homebound days. Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!
Connect the Dots
Colin Page Coloring Book - Pirates!

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/Colin-Page-Coloring-Book-Pirates


Ask an Artist: J.T. Gibson

April 6, 2020

Each week, Page Gallery asks an artist the same five questions. This week, we asked J.T. Gibson, who is participating in our Home Delivery art mail program with an etching, and has sculpture available to view and purchase here

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

After college and a number of years working in photography and as a fine art black and white printer (Avadon, Arbus, Horst, et al.), I left NYC to work at the renowned sculpture foundry, The Johnson Atelier, thinking that perhaps metal casting would fit. It seems to have stuck. That was over thirty years ago.

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience?

There was an image printed in the New York Times – an electron microscope image of zircon crystals imbedded in rocks that proved the earth was cooler than scientists thought at the time of the Hadean period of earth’s early formation. That picture was a grid of what looked like small beach stones emerging from a background. I immediately knew how to create that image in three dimensions.  My Tidal Suite was born.

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

All of the above.  I seldom work in silence.

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you. 

A model of a human skull – Memento Mori.

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? Do you ever take an extended break from your art practice?

I have never taken an extended break.  I am always working. The seasons force me to cast in the warmer weather outside, and I paint more in the colder months inside.

Related posts:

Minimalism
Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-jt-gibson


Weekly Round Up 04/03/2020

April 3, 2020

3 Art Gallery Shows to Explore From Home: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/02/arts/design/art-galleries-virtual-tour.html

On Twitter, museums share medical themed art to thank healthcare workers: https://twitter.com/hashtag/museumsthankhealthheroes

One of the country’s most prominent African American artists, David Driskell, died last week. Maine was proud to call him a part time resident since 1961. He was introduced to Maine as a student at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and it remained an inspiration for him since. “I came to the Maine scene with a sense of color already embedded in my mind,” he said in 2008. ”But when I got here, things were so different. The light was so different. I was just so taken by the greenery, I started painting pine trees. And I haven’t really stopped.” https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/david-c-driskell-dead-1202682906/

CMCA has posted resources for artists in response to COVID-19: https://cmcanow.org/resources-for-artists/

Page Gallery artist, Chris Van Dusen, has been teaching us how to draw characters from his beloved Mercy Watson illustrations in “Chris Van Doodles” on instagram: https://instagram.com/chrisvandusenbooks

Related posts:

Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020
Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-3


Color Key with Colin Page

April 2, 2020

For years, I would hear about painters working within a color key, and I would wonder what that meant. Color key is a simple idea, but it has taken a lot of work to fully understand and implement in my own work. 

In painting, color is a direct connection to viewer's emotions. In the same way that the key of a musical composition can describe a feeling, color key can also set a tone. C major is often described as innocent and happy. A light blue painting tends to be calm and peaceful. The musical key of E minor is known to sound melancholy. A dominant red painting can read as hot, angry, and dramatic. There are some commonalities in how colors are understood, but our reactions to color are very personal, and can vary from person to person. So in the end, each painter is making color choices based on their own cultural and sensory memories of how each color makes them feel. 

Sometimes the key of a painting refers to how dark or light the image is. Sometimes it refers to a dominance of warm or cool. Maybe it's a tendency toward green, or purple. Color key doesn't have to refer to just one color taking over. It can also refer to the interactions created between colors. A painting can have soft, pastel color shifts that describe a quiet scene, or it can be full of contrasting colors that vibrate and push against each other. Is the painting quiet or loud, harmonious or dissonant? (Isn't it interesting how often we rely on musical terms to describe visual ideas?) 

Whether conscious or not, all painters are keying our paintings around a color idea. Sometimes we are just responding to the subject in front of us. Sometimes we want to convey a specific emotion. Sometimes we are just in a rut of certain color habits. Even in representational painting, artists are making choices that set the tone for how that image will be read. It's either telling the story of our own emotional connection, or trying to create direct contact with the viewer through feeling. Color is the most direct path to our hearts. The longer I paint, the more I try to understand and implement that idea. 

Related posts:

Colin Page on Color and Light

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/color-key-colin-page


Connect the Dots

April 1, 2020

Here is a fun Connect the Dots activity from Colin Page. Connect the Dots and reveal the image! Color it in and post it on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpageconnectthedots and we will share on social media.

Click on the image to download a printable pdf of Connect the Dots. Click here and here for our Coloring Book pages.

Related posts:

Colin Page Coloring Book!
Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/connect-the-dots-1


Neighbors by T. Allen Lawson

March 31, 2020

“A community is the mental and spiritual condition of knowing that the place is shared.” Wendell Berry

“When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.” Aldo Leopold

This painting is from T. Allen Lawson’s series, Neighbors. Lawson says of the paintings, the Neighbors in this series “are not the people next door or the ranch down the way. These paintings are portraits of the often unnoticed or forgotten neighbors that are around us every day – the chickens, horses, deer, cows, crows and magpies that share our yards, woods, skies and lives.”

T. Allen Lawson has captured this pig in a range of chromatic grays and browns. The colors move in tint from grey to lavender to ultramarine to burnt umber. The paint is layered and textural as the viewer travels through the foreground, inviting you to keep looking.

Geese appear high over us,

pass, and the sky closes. abandon,

as in love or sleep, holds

them to their way, clear

in the ancient faith: what we need is here.

and we pray, not for new earth or heaven, but to be

quiet in heart, and in eye, clear.

what we need is here.

- What We Need is Here by Wendell Berry

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/neighbors-lawson


Ask an Artist: Anneli Skaar

March 30, 2020

Each week, Page Gallery asks an artist the same five questions. This week, we asked Anneli Skaar, who is participating in our Home Delivery art mail program with a linocut print, and has paintings available to view and purchase here. She has two books coming out this summer with Two Ponds Press.

1. How did you end up focusing on your chosen medium?

I’ve always loved oil paint because it feels like a live, organic medium. Acrylic feels like a static material to me. This is not a disparaging comment to those who work in acrylic because I know lots of people who do incredible work with acrylic, and who need the quick drying qualities. But, because I--with few exceptions--work from memory and imagination rather than life/photos I appreciate the fact that the medium waits for me as I figure out where I’m going with something. I don’t always know where I’m headed when I begin a piece, and oil gives me more control over drying time and malleability as a work evolves.

2. Tell me about an inspiration to your work? Book, exhibit, experience?

Generally, I think I am inspired by themes of seeking connection to others, and often this takes the form of disappearing arctic landscapes. But in fine press work, I am very much inspired by history and how it relates to us today. My latest project, a fine press book that has nothing to do with painting, is inspired by a Norwegian polar explorer who became an important humanitarian in post World War I Europe. Finding the relevance of his work to tell a story about today and to the future is a creative exercise that has been very satisfying not just as an artistic project, but as a whole concept, including not just artwork, but also writing and design. 

3. What do you listen to when creating in the studio? Favorite music, podcast, radio, audiobook?

I get way too distracted by music and am pretty comfortable in silence. When I do listen to music while working it’s often something I’m very familiar with and have listened to a lot so it doesn’t distract me too much with novelty and new information. I like repetitive compositions while I work, some favorites are by Bach, Michael Nyman, or Philip Glass.

4. What is your favorite tool/supply? Or is there a non work related item in the studio that has significant value to you?

I love to collect small, beautiful vintage frames from antique stores. It allows me to frame my small sketches easily, since small modern frames are often way too clunky for small things. I like that the frame has a value in itself. Also, people don’t always have the real estate on their walls for big pieces, and sometimes “jewelry” for the bookshelf is a perfect fit. 

5. How does your studio process change with the seasons in Maine? 

I’m more inspired to make work in the winter when I’m cooped up. I work a lot in the summer, too, but I find that being out and about in the summertime fills me with experiences and social interaction and discussions which end up being the grist of the winter mill.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/ask-an-artist-anneli


Weekly Round Up 03/27/2020

March 27, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week

We have been having so much fun with Colin Page's coloring book pages, that we wanted to share two other coloring pages from the NYTimes to keep you busy: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/03/23/opinion/covid-coloring-activity.html and https://static01.nyt.com/packages/pdf/arts/27COLORINGBOOK.pdf

Appreciating this idea of the resilience of artists in this dark time. "“Darwin said that survival depended on those “most adaptive to change.” Boom! That’s what art does, maybe better than anything!” https://www.vulture.com/2020/03/art-galleries-and-museums-in-the-time-of-coronavirus.html

Our friend and artist Antonia Munroe has a tea paper collage craft to share: https://newbackend.thepagegallery.com/blogfiles/files/TEA%20PAPER%20COLLAGE.pdf

Google’s Art Camea allows you to zoom in on the brushstrokes from thousands of paintings. It is a fun rabbit hole. Try it here with George Bellows painting Men of the Docks: https://artsandculture.google.com/asset/men-of-the-docks-george-bellows/3AELCGI0WHIKsw

We really enjoyed this podcast featuring artist Zoey Frank, who will be showing work with Page Gallery this summer: https://zoeyfrank.com/news/2017/11/15/podcast-interview-with-john-dalton

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-2


Art Mail

March 26, 2020

During this extraordinarily difficult time, Page Gallery artists wish to brighten your mailboxes with art for everyone. On our homepage, we will be offering a selection of handmade prints to keep your mailboxes full. We will be changing the selection weekly, so continue to check back for new work! All prints are unlimited edition but available for the limited time we are closed. 20% will be donated to our local food bank.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/Art-Mail


Eponymous in Camden

March 25, 2020

“Eponymous in Camden” is the innovation of our friend, Dick Costello, the advertising executive behind the iconic Absolut ads and the benefactor and brains behind the Rockland the Art Capital of Maine campaign. Page Gallery is branded with the tagline Eponymous in Camden, as the gallery named for founder/owner Colin Page. Here are a few of the four line verses from the ads in our Eponymous series:

Why be
Sleepless in Seattle
when you can be
Eponymous in Camden?

Why be
Busted flat in Baton Rouge
when you could be
Eponymous in Camden?

Why spend
Autumn in New York
when you can be
Eponymous in Camden?

Why spend
April in Paris
when you can be
Eponymous in Camden?

Why spend 
Christmas in Killarney 
when you can be 
Eponymous in Camden?

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/eponymous-in-camden


Colin Page Coloring Book - Town!

March 24, 2020

Here is another page from the upcoming Colin Page Coloring Book to download and print. In these homebound days, this is a great activity for you, your kids, your friends. Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Click here to download last week's picture too.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/coloring-book-page-2


Alex Katz on Painting Your Own Backyard

March 23, 2020

“My father said why don’t you paint your own backyard. Which is extremely intelligent and I resented it a great deal. I couldn’t see a picture in the backyard. All I saw was a mess. But I kept the idea — the idea seemed like a really good one: paint your backyard, paint what’s in front of you, don’t paint anyone else’s backyard.”

— Alex Katz

As Katz suggests, there is something to painting what is yours, familiar, and there, offering your mind the freedom of creativity. And there is power in giving attention and importance to the daily and mundane in your life. Gideon Bok’s paintings of his studio depict the passage of time in the most familiar of places, the one right in front of him. His studio is his repeated subject, each time showing furniture, objects, figures and light as they move and shift, and each time exploring different conceptual and formal aspects of painting.

Gideon Bok, TVC-15, oil on linen, 35x55"

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/alex-katz-on-painting-your-own-backyard


Weekly Round Up 03/20/2020

March 20, 2020

a short list of things we have been talking about this week.

Ten University Art Classes You Can Take for Free Online: https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-10-university-art-classes-free-online

Jeff Koons Redux on the David Zwirner Podcast, “In uncertain and even scary times, host Lucas Zwirner revisits the first episode of Dialogues, in which Jeff Koons and the curator Luke Syson turn to art as a way of connecting and communicating through making something—an ethos that feels even more important now.”: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/jeff-koons-redux/id1400997563?i=1000468837430

Susan Lichtman will be showing her paintings with Page Gallery this summer! This interview covers her influences, painting from memory, the process of building an image, the advantages of a limited palette, and her love of paintings where the figures are revealed slowly. A great read: https://paintingperceptions.com/interview-with-susan-lichtman/

Nightly Metropolitan Opera Streams are a gift to us all. Next week is all-Wagner, with the Ring Cycle, arguably the most epic musical drama of all time, starting Tuesday: https://www.metopera.org/user-information/nightly-met-opera-streams/

If you are looking for arts and crafts ideas with your kids, local friend Julie O’Rourke (@rudyjude) has some inspiring content saved in her instagram stories, “Staying Put”, https://www.instagram.com/s/aGlnaGxpZ2h0OjE3OTA0MzUzOTQ3NDMzMjY2?igshid=67pb1firat35&story_media_id=2257672899076885956

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/weekly-round-up-1


Wolf Kahn on Painting Nature

March 19, 2020

“Chaos in nature is immediately challenging and forces a good artist to impose some type of order on his or her perception of a site. “

“People mistakenly think that art is about nature, or about an artist's feelings about nature. It is instead a path of enlightenment and pleasure, one of many paths, where nature and the artist's feelings are merely raw material.” 

quotes by Wolf Kahn

Wolf Kahn (October 4, 1927 - March 15, 2020) influenced many with his exuberant color and brushwork, showing us that the subject of the painting is an excuse to play and explore in paint. Painting, sculpting, artmaking is an act of abstraction, taking the world in front of us and translating it through the artist’s chosen medium. A subject cannot be copied without the influence of the artist’s experience and feelings, and their own method of seeing and organizing. 

Here are three artists taking on the same subject: water. Each of these artists describes their own visual interest, interpretation, and how they interact with the water they depict. Siri Beckman uses lines that weave and overlap to imply the movement of a current. Jessica Lee Ives paints patches of color in fluid shapes that show water’s reflective and transparent qualities. JT Gibson’s casting of colored glass mimics the depths of a translucent sea, with a surface that can read as either massive waves or tiny ripples. Water as a subject pushes them to think, react, and create in the way that is most meaningful to them. They are searching and creating, finding their own way to make sense of the world through making.

Siri Beckman, The Crossing, 66/100, wood engraving, 4.5x10"

Jessica Lee Ives, You Are Alive, oil on panel, 48x48"

J.T. Gibson, Green Mariner's Dream, kiln cast glass, 2.5x4.75x4.75"

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/wolf-kahn-on-painting-nature


Colin Page Coloring Book!

March 18, 2020

Here is a page from the upcoming Colin Page Coloring Book to download and print. In these homebound days, this is a great activity for you, your kids, your friends. Post your colored in pictures on Instagram and Facebook with the hashtag #colinpagecoloringbook and we will share your images on social media.

Click on the image for a printable file.

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/colin-page-coloring-book


Colin Page on Color and Light

March 17, 2020

For me, the initial desire to paint usually comes from a striking color relationship or an interesting sense of light, no matter the subject. My goal is not to copy the scene exactly, but to recreate my sense of visual excitement. This is often done by focusing on color temperature and vibration. When I talk about temperature, warm colors are those that lean more toward oranges, yellows and reds, while cool colors are closer to blue and purple.
 

Often two colors of opposite temperatures next to each other create a vibration. If you've ever noticed a clashing color interaction that made you want to look away, it was likely a color vibration. It can be unnerving, and hard to look at, but it can also create energy in a flat picture plane. That energy can be a wonderful tool for activating a painting and describing strong light. For example, a bright lemon yellow piece of glare next to ultramarine blue water will jump with electricity, saying much more about the intensity of the sun than just using plain white on a gray-blue. The trick is not just trying to match the color you see, but learning how much you need to exaggerate and push the color's saturation to tell the viewer how the light felt that day. 
 

The power of color vibrations can add interest to every part of a painting, even to the point of making shadows richer and more alive. Many times a warm color will be reflected into a shadow, right next to an area of cool blues. In fact shadows are often the best place to look for mini-vibrations, where warm and cool colors come together in subtle ways. An old white New England house can be a perfect place to look for reflected color. Green grass will bounce into the same shadow that turns pink where it reflects the red truck parked out front. . When I see this kind of color story, I want to put it on canvas to tell everyone how striking it is. To be a painter is to see spots of color that lilt, harmonize, clash, push, and pull. Vibrations, whether strong or subtle, can be used to great effect to create interest and energy in a painting. 

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/colin-page-on-color-and-light


Minimalism

March 16, 2020

“We find beauty not in the thing itself but in the patterns of shadows, the light and the darkness, that one thing against another creates.”

from a 1933 essay called “In Praise of Shadows,” by the Japanese novelist Junichiro Tanizaki, referenced here: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/24/opinion/sunday/minimalism-definition-history.html

Shareable link to this blog entry:
http://www.thepagegallery.com/blog/minimalism