Meet the Staff – Nate Rutter, Assistant Gallery Manager

Nate Rutter is the Assistant Gallery Manager at Maine Art Hill. He was hired in the spring of 2018 right when we were in the middle of all the new gallery spaces and our new branding.  Now that he has made it through a crazy summer season, and still wants to stay around, we thought we might tell you just a little bit more about him.

Nate was born in Evanston, Illinois, a small city block north of Chicago. From there his family moved to Barrington, but it wouldn’t be long before Maine became home.

“After visiting and vacationing in southern Maine our entire lives, my family made a permanent move close to where my mom grew up in Sanford,” shares Rutter.  

The rest, as they say, is history. Once Maine gets in your blood it is hard to move away. “Now I live in Kennebunkport, not far from the gallery, I’ll be trudging through the snow to get to work in January and February,” he laughs. “Expect to see me in my Bean Boots!”

Nate earned his degree in Secondary Education with a concentration in math, but education isn’t where he wanted to be. 

“My very first job was as a soccer referee. If I could do that again on a professional level that would be my dream job. Of course, only if my career as a professional soccer player doesn’t come to be,” laughs Nate. “In reality, I was a bartender and server most of my life. It is where my funny demeanor and winning personality come from,” he explains, with a twinkle in his eye.

With this kind of personality and math skills, Maine Art Hill was very lucky to snap up Nate when he was looking for a change. 

“We were talking with Meghan, over at the Green and Pink Tangerine about ideas for a position we were trying to fill,” says John Spain, owner of the galleries. “She was happy to put a good word in for her soon to be husband. Natalie did the first round, then a second interview with both Jessica and Natalie. Talk about double team. Then one more time, I Skyped with him while Trisha and I were still in Louisiana!”

Now Nate happily greets all of our art enthusiasts, shares knowledge and stories about the work and our artists, and manages the Wind Sculpture orders and inventory. Again, that math brain has worked out well. 

“I think it is cool that Meg connected us. It is a sweet story,’” Rutter says. “Plus now I get to work with some enjoyable people and work right across the street from my new wife!”

As much Nate loves his job (and his new wife), he also loves his guitar and a very interesting sport.

“I’ve always studied guitar and played for friends, family, and a few small crowds,” says Nate. “My other hobby is Disc Golf. Here I battle the winds and weather trying to drill drives and sink putts. I also enjoy stories and immersing myself into others work, be it books, art, music, video games, whatever.”

Nate’s family is still close by and a big part of his world.

“I love my family and will support them all through trials and tribulations,” he says. “That goes for my blood relatives as well as my new family through marriage.”

Overall Nate is a creative person who loves to share ideas and expressions. He is a master problem solver and has been an excellent addition to the gallery. 

So, when you stop in to visit The Gallery, make sure to say hello to Nate. He has a wealth of information about all things Maine Art Hill, and if you happen to think of it, ask him about his new wife. Marriage and Meghan are two of his favorite topics.

A Letter from John – Real Men Wear Pink and The Pink Show

October 10, 2018

Dear Friends,

October first marked the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the Real Men Wear Pink of Maine campaign sponsored by the American Cancer Society. It also marked the beginning of my adventure for fundraising for this cause.

Even though the gallery is sponsoring the Pink Show to support this effort, I wanted to make sure this was a personal endeavor as well as a professional one. With the hope of raising $2500 through my friends and family, I began my facebook campaign.

As most of you know, I don’t stay still once the cold weather takes over, so this “Real Man of Maine” had to bring the Maine Initiative on the road. Sufficed to say, “the road” embraced my cause and then some.

I was immediately blown away by the support my friends and extended family gave by donating. What I wasn’t prepared for was the far-reaching hearts and wallets of so many of the travelers who have touched my life over the years.

Between shared stories in Texas, RV travelers from Connecticut and those near and dear in Maine, my goal of $2500 was reached and surpassed in just a few days. Of course, the effort needs to continue. So now what?

I have decided to set the bar even higher with my new personal goal of $5000.

Tomorrow,  Thursday, October 11,  is the opening day of The Pink Show on Maine Art Hill, but today is the official Real Men Wear Pink Day. To celebrate, I have decided to match any personal donations made today.

Yup, that is right. It’s time to put my money where my mouth is. Any personal donation made today, October 10, 2018, I will match up to $775 which with your help will bring me to $5000. You all have been so generous, and I need to do my part.

So here we go….

Check out the two links below to PLAY IT PINK.

Click here to make a personal matched in-kind donation directly to my Fundraising Page at Real Men Wear Pink Maine.

THE PINK SHOW OPENS TOMORROW…..

Click here to view the FIRST ANNUAL PINK SHOW and purchase a stunning piece of original art where Maine Art Hill and their artists will send 20% of the proceeds to the fundraising efforts.

Let’s do this thing!

John

 

The Pink Show – Real Men Wear Pink

Maine Art Hill is hosting  The Pink Show. This show will be held at the Pop-Up gallery space at Studios on Maine Art Hill starting October 11. You may view the show virtually starting October 1. Sales will start at 10 am on October 11.  The show will be open daily from 10 am to 5 pm.  To support the “Real Men Wear Pink” campaign, the gallery and the artists have partnered up to donate 20% of all sales from this show to the American Cancer Society.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE ENTIRE SHOW ONLINE (STARTING OCT. 1)

Real Men Wear Pink is an opportunity and an honor. Not only has cancer touched Spain’s world personally, but many of Maine Art Hill’s employees have fought with this disease, either personally or alongside family members.

Barefoot and Free by Bethany Harper Williams Pink Beach Chairs by Ellen Welsh Granter

“The fact that I am in a position to help focus awareness and offer support to our local community is overwhelming and impossible to resist,” says Spain. “This is everyone’s disease. Be it a survivor who continues to fight every day or someone who battled valiantly but lost the fight. My job in this is easy. My hope is to make the job of others that much easier.”

Pink Buoys by David Witbeck

The entire staff wholeheartedly supports the participation in this campaign. In addition, the gallery also represents several amazing artists who are breast cancer survivors.  They, along with many other artists, enthusiastically climbed on board to help with this cause that is so near and dear.

Gliding Light Over the Bay by Jill Valliere

It is such a privilege to be asked to participate in Real Men Wear Pink, and Spain is excited about being involved in this campaign. It offers him the opportunity not only to personally bring in awareness but to use his business to feature beautiful works art and use his huge network of clients and friends to raise awareness and money for this cause.  

Visit the Pop Up gallery space at Studios on Maine Art Hill beginning October 11. It will be open daily from 10 am to 5 pm.

PARTICIPATING ARTISTS

Rachel Altschuler

Claire Bigbee

Charles Bluett

Donna D’Aquino

Alex Dunwoodie

Margaret Gerding

Ellen Granter

Rick Hamilton

Liz Hoag

Julie Houck

William B. Hoyt

Ingunn Joergensen

John LeCours

Erika Manning

Karen McManus

David Peterson

Donald Rainville

Janis Sanders

Jill Valliere

Susan Wahlrab

Bethany Harper Williams

David Witbeck

Wade Zahares

Dog Days on Maine Art Hill with Artist Gloria Najecki

Featured Artist, Gloria Najecki is the guest artist for Pop Up beginning Septemeber 27  through October 8  (YES THAT IS TWO WEEKS) 

Read on to learn more about her inspiration, her process, and her work.

When I was a young girl, I brought my dog Muffin with me wherever I could, ran to her to soothe my emotional upsets, and confided in her all of my deepest secrets.  Never mind the cliché — she was my best friend.

To this day I remain in love with, and deeply connected to, dogs. Pooches, pups, mutts … call them what you will.  These creatures’ individual personalities, rich histories, and unquestioning devotion to their human companions, inspire and thrill me.

As an artist, I am fascinated by the incredible variety of canine characteristics.  Their differences in head shapes, body sizes, eyes, noses, jowls, ears, paws (not to mention facial expressions, temperament, and propensity for drooling) continually tickle and intrigue me.

I guess you could say I’ve been an artist pretty much from the time I could hold a pencil.  My full-time painting career, however, didn’t start until I shared my life with an incredible being named Trucker.  I do not have adequate space here to describe this brawny American Bulldog, but I submit the following:  strong and confident, all chiseled muscle and bone, my fearless protector and bodyguard, Colonel Bighead, dignified, gentlemanly, a man’s man among dogs.  Oh, to be fair, I will add incessant scrounge and avid chippie-chaser.  Trucker was always by my side, even at my very first solo art exhibit.  In 2007  my dear friend transitioned from this life leaving a permanent mark on my heart.

I currently share my life with a 100-pound American bulldog named Dozer and an incredibly supportive partner named Jim.  When I am not in my studio, you will find me out and about in NH usually with a camera strapped around my neck looking for fascinating subjects to paint.

To view the details about purchasing a commision piece click here. DOG DAYS ON MAINE ART HILL

More of Najecki’s work for the show will be live on Wed. Septemeber 26.

Follow this link. DOG DAYS ON MAINE ART HILL

 

Round Pond – Artist Insights from William B. Hoyt

We all have our spots, the places we love that hold pieces of our hearts that no matter how things progress and change, they remain our favorites. Round Pond is one of those places for the artist, William B. Hoyt.

Round Pond is a small, secure harbor, not a pond at all, on the west shore of Muscongus Sound, westward of the north end of Louds Island. The village of Round Pond is at the head of the harbor and a perfect place to visit on any trip to Maine.

From the Granite Hall Store to the Colonial Pemaquid State Historic Site, there is much wandering to do. However, in true William B. Hoyt style, he prefers to stay close to the water.

Two of Hoyt’s pieces from his 2018 Solo Show, Double Enders and Round Pond Evening capture wonderful views of the harbor and celebrate a classic village in coastal Maine.  It is the quiet side of Maine many enjoy. To many, these may look like landscapes, but to Hoyt, they are memories.

“Round Pond is where Spenny, one of my best friends, kept his boat, Mist,” says Hoyt. “We sailed on her together for twenty-five years.” Twenty-five years of memories build on and around the waters near Round Pond have a way of reflecting in an artists’ work.

Seaweed and Red Lobsterboat Unloading are also scenes from Hoyt’s beloved Round Pond, but they show off a different side. These two feature the working harbor side of the village.

“This is a place I visit and revisit often. It’s a place of memories and stories,” shares Hoyt.  “It’s my one of my favorites.”

With a whirlwind success of the first week of this one-man show, two of the above pieces have already been sold and will be on their way to their new homes at the end of the show. Please note, there are still many lovely works from Hoyt available, including  Seaweed and Red Lobsterboat Unloading.

Come in before October 11 to see the show in its entirety. It is a do not miss. If you can’t make it,  please check out the 360 Virtual tour on our website. CLICK HERE FOR THE 360 TOUR

CLICK TO SEE OUR COMPLETE AVAILABLE WORKS OF WILLIAM B HOYT

CLICK TO READ MORE INSIGHTS AND STORIES FROM HOYT

The Eggemoggin Reach Regatta – Insights from Artist William Hoyt

The Eggemoggin Reach Regatta is a wooden boat race held in Brooklin, Maine.  Humble in its beginnings the race now boasts over one hundred and twenty-five boats. One of which artist William B. Hoyt was happy to crew.

Black Watch and Santana

Hoyt is no stranger to the sea or the sail. He spends a great deal of time off the coast and is always up for days on the water. As hard as he works as crew, know that his camera is never too far from reach.

“The Eggemoggin Reach Regatta is always a great day. It’s a celebration of wooden boats and Maine history,” explains Hoyt. “In this show, there are two paintings with views from my perch on Raven 24 during the race. It was an amazing day to be out on the water.”

Both Approaching Windward Mark and Blackwatch and Santana are works in Hoyt’s 2018 Solo Show. They each show intense moments captured during the race. 

“We were just a tiny boat among giants, says Hoyt, “but it was so much fun. Watching the skill and stamina of these vessels as they compete is a rush.”

Hoyt’s love of sailing and all things ocean is seen often in his work. It is the highest compliment to transfer memories to canvas with paint, and Hoyt ’s understanding and respect of the sea show in his detail. Often called “photographic” in style his works are amazing.

The Eggemogin Reach Regatta is now co-hosted by Brooklin Boatyard and Rockport Marine. Organizer of the race first envisioned it as an opportunity for wooden boat owners to get to together and enjoy each other’s company as well as a bit of friendly competition. 

For more details, please visit their website. erregatta.com

Click here to see our entire collection of paintings from William B. Hoyt.

Click here to read more Artist Insights from Hoyt.

Kevin Keiser – New to The Works at Maine Art Hill in Kennebunk

Kevin Keiser is a new artist for us here at Maine Art Hill. We are excited to be representing him and show off his ceramics year-round at The Works.

Keiser is experienced in many mediums all which seem to build and intertwine while supporting his natural skill and talent.

“My transition to ceramics from photography and graphic arts has allowed me to bring my skills of composition and design into the 3-dimensional medium of clay,” shares Keiser. “I’m fascinated by the way glazes interact with surface texture and other glazes. Each new piece pulled from the kiln is built upon an earlier idea and a piece I’ve completed.”

When Keiser walks the beaches of Maine, his eyes are drawn to organic and manmade materials that have been transformed by the sea. 

“The friction of waves wears down form and finish to reveal the hidden structure and burnished surfaces,” he explains. “My studio is crammed with bits and pieces of ceramic trials, failures and wins serving as jumping off points for new artistic expression.”

Many artists are often asked to pick favorites, to chose a piece or pieces of work that have a particular connection to their hearts. For Keiser, he always refers to a quote from photographer Imogen Cunningham, “Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.”

For this artist, it is the trial and error of forms and glazes that are part of the fun, and part of the heartbreak, of seeking new results.

“I’m not looking for the perfect piece, I’m savoring the path of discovery with all its challenges,” says Keiser. “The ethos of my ceramics is communicated through the work, and I hope my work inspires people to explore their creative energies.”

Click here to visit Kevin Keiser’s Artist Page and see his complete collection of work.

The Works at Maine Art Hill is open every day at 10 am. You can find us at 5 Chase Hill Road in Kennebunk, Maine or visit us online at maine-art.com/studios/the-works/

Pop Up Artist Jeff Fioravanti

Featured Artist, Jeff Fioravanti is the guest artist for Pop Up beginning Tuesday, September 18 through Monday, September 24. Read on to learn more about his inspiration, his process, and his work.

September 18 to September 24

“Painting today, to preserve the past, for tomorrow!” This is my mission, it is my inspiration. It is what drives me to create pieces of tangible art. Art designed not just showcase the deep, physical beauty of our country, but art that tells the story of America itself, her people, their struggles, and triumphs. What I often call Painting the Soul of America.

When I stand or walk upon the great earth that is our nation, I am forever scanning the horizon, scanning how best to read and render the majestic landscape. From its’ swaying grass, sturdy trees, flowing rivers, translucent brooks and streams to how to catch the constant give and take between land and sea. The complex and the simplicity of color dancing across the countryside and the breathtaking vistas kissed and embraced by the sun are awe-inspiring unto themselves. Yet I find they become truly rich and magical, alive, when the extraordinary stories of our nation are intertwined with the natural beauty of these magnificent lands.

Though I work in other mediums, including oils and watercolor, it is pastels that are my medium of choice for the majority of my finished work. They are pure, immediate, and luminous, all important components in my interaction with and interpretation of the American landscape. They are durable and offer great flexibility, which I find, allows me the freedom to express and apply a wide range of techniques, necessary to capture the power and strength of the treasured lands, shores, and properties of our country.

Although many of my earlier pastels were created using Canson Mi-Teintes paper, today I find myself using more and more, the papers produced by Kitty Wallis. I often wash them with burnt sienna gouache or with an alcohol pastel wash. I am always looking for other substrates on which to create.

I tend to be blue-green sensitive. Toning or using toned papers that complement my senses really help to make the colors pop. I also find that the Wallis, Art Spectrum, UART and similar papers allow me a more natural feel to each composition. I use less blending of the pastels with my fingers, or other implements, which allows more of the pastels themselves to interact and blend with each other via multiple applied layers. I have also recently experimented with watercolor board and toned canvas, among other supports for my artwork.

My art, my focus, and my passion are my mission. Painting today to preserve the past for tomorrow. I am dedicated to giving a voice, a connection, a link, to those who no longer can speak, but whose spirit forever lives in the bosom of the plants, fields, and waters of our nation.

Fioravanti will be showing his work at Pop Up on Maine Art Hill at 5 Chase Hill Rd. in Kennebunk from September 18 to September 24. The gallery is open every day at 10 am. For more info about Jeff Fioravanti and his work, follow this link to his website. www.fioravantifineart.com

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Intuition Takes Over – Artist Insights from John LeCours

“I am an intuitive painter,” says artist John LeCours. “I have a lot of training, but at a certain point I need to put all that aside and grab what is around me and start making marks.”

After the Storm

LeCours joined Maine Art Hill last fall with a fabulously successful kick off show. Since then he has displayed his work at The Gallery at 14 Western Ave. Right now, we are excited to have him as one of three featured artists at Shows on Maine Art Hill, the gallery at 5 Chase Hill Road.

LeCours has a very distinctive style. Using oil paint and a graphite stick he creates one of a kind classic landscapes that are capturing attention daily. Of course with this new popularity comes the inevitable question, how does he do it?

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A few years ago, after a few months of prodding, LeCours caved and joined fellow artist Peggy Murray in a plein air session. It had taken Murray quite a bit of time to convince LeCours to change it up and come “paint outside.” She took him to Four Tree Island in Portsmouth which, by the way, is still one of his favorite places to paint.

Portsmouth Harbor, Four Tree Island View

“I admit to becoming a bit stale in the studio. I needed a change. I brought a 10×20 canvas with me and was throwing paint around, scratching with my palette knife, and using some pencil marks,” explains LeCours. “I don’t know what was getting into me. I don’t remember learning this. I believe I picked up bits and pieces from different teachers, but I was combining some weird things. I just said… ‘Why not?’”

At one point during this day, a man and his daughter stopped to talk and later inquired about purchasing the piece. This interest caused LeCours to take pause, especially once he returned to his studio and compared this work to others.

Piscataqua Buoy

“I had just finished this plein air sketch in an hour. Compared to my studio work that I had spent hours on, it just blew them away. There was no comparison,” says LeCours. “The plein air work had more energy, more vitality. It was more real than the studio work. Because it had come from a three-dimensional world and I was reacting to the elements, even the wind, it had more life. It had all fed into my creativity.”

To this day, for LeCours this is still the best way to paint. To be outside in the elements and to react. He lets those marks respond authentically. He still takes work back to the studio and adds layers, but often he finishes the entire piece outside.

Harbor Lights

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John LeCours is one of three artists with featured work at Shows on Maine Art Hill. This show runs through September 20. We are proud to represent LeCours and always have a collection of his work between all four of our gallery spaces.

Please stop by for a visit or see his work online by clicking this link. John LeCours – Artist Page

To read more from John LeCours click here – Artist Insights – John LeCours

Discovering the Landscape – Insights from Artist Ingunn Joergensen

Artist Ingunn Joergensen has a very distinct style and often a different subject matter. For her summer show at Maine Art Hill, she wanted to do something a little more.

“In this show, I have explored different landscapes, a subject matter I have not visited in a while,” says Joergensen.

With the new landscapes also come a pop of color of which even Mother Nature would approve. The peaceful and serene scapes hold swatches of purples and golds and blues that grab the eye and hold interest.

Homestead 2 Changing Seasons Homestead 1

“Color. It is truly is how I see many things, not so much in shapes or lines but in patches,” says Joergensen. “This may come as a surprise to many, as I am known for a somewhat neutral palette in my work.”

As someone who spends much of her time outside, landscapes were a natural choice. This spring and summer Joergensen spent many hours alongside the Kennebunk River observing the constant change of colors. 

Quiet by the River Kennebunk River Sketch 2

“I watched how deep indigo turns into a rich turquoise or the brightest of blue fades into a soft purple,” she says. “I have so many favorite spots right here in my immediate surroundings, whether it is the woods, rivers, marshes or by the ocean, it is here.”

Even though Joergensen does not strive to recreate the landscape in a photo correct way, she certainly captures it. 

“Instead of photorealism, I rather focus on the emotion the landscape brings out, the transparency or translucency of it,” she says. “I try to recreate my impressions in a simple, and hopefully to the viewer, peaceful and contemplative way.”   

For those of you who love Joergensen’s Barn Series, have no fear. In the show, there are several small works from her Barn Series. There are also a few more significant pieces in other galleries on Maine Art Hill. 

Belonging 1 Belonging 3 Belonging 4 Belonging 5

“I could not entirely let go of my passion for barns in this show,” shares Joergensen. “To me, they are more of a shelter or a homestead safely rooted or grounded. A sense of belonging to something deeper.”

To Read More 

Artist Insights – Ingunn Joergensen

Come to Kennebunk and visit Maine Art Hill. Many of our galleries are open year round, and Joergensen’s work can always be found at our main gallery. Her 2018 Summer Show will run through September 20 at Shows on Maine Art Hill, 10 Chase Hill Rd. Kennebunk. Open every day 10-5.