Charles Bluett – Artist Inspiration

02/15/2018 0 Comments
 

Drifting to Shore by Charles Bluett

For Charles Bluett, inspiration has come from his surroundings, the art which surrounds him, the people who surround him and lastly and most importantly, the place and the beauty which surround him.

“Specific artists who I love are wide and varied,” claims Charles Bluett. “Turner’s magnificent energy filled landscapes and skies and Joan Miros’s blocks of confined color fascinate me. Then there is Andy Goldsworthy’s sublime use of natural elements and objects to create pieces that simply astound in their imagination and final effect, as they blend into the natural outdoor environments he creates them. Every day I see artists, both well known and unheard of as yet, whose art triggers all kinds of passions and thoughts for me. I take them into my own sub-conscious and influence my works going forward.”

The Breakers by Charles Bluett Gathering Sea Clouds by Charles Bluett The Connection Between Land Sea and Sky by Charles Bluett

Bluett has been lucky enough to travel to over forty countries in his life. Even the names of his children, Ty and India, came about from his love of travel and the experience of different cultures and continents.

“India, my daughter’s name, comes from my traveling throughout India at eighteen years of age on an old motorcycle for nearly a year,” shares Bluett.  “It was here, probably above all places other than the US, that I first really saw the colors and ethereal beauty of the great outdoors on a grand scale. No one more so than the creator of great outdoors itself keeps me in check every day with my own self.”

England, where Bluett was raised, is, after all, a small island. As a result, for him, the skies never achieve the monumental scale they do in the United States or places like India.

 Distant Breakers Under a Talking Sky

“Natural wonders fascinate me and influence my work daily. Something as simple as a flowing pebble-filled brook or an early morning walk as the low clouds lift over the tree-lined hills,” says Bluett. “Maine is so blessed to have in it such diversity. The wet, winter, windblown, desolate coastline, a field in late summer filled with fireflies, or the warm, dust-filled air as it blows across the landscape turning the light into soft hues, this state has it all.”

The tones and colors of Maine are what pull at Bluett. For him, there is so much to see with every step he takes. He always makes sure to see as much as he can with every footfall.

 

There is an important influence for Bluett when trying to convey in his own work that sense of awe and peace the natural world has to offer. “There is an ethereal sense of being one with the environment. The ability to lose myself in a thought that does not involve thought, just seeing and sensing and being in balance with the natural outdoors is a blessing. Every day there are a thousand things to see and behold when I take the time to stop and look,” Bluett shares.  “I call it peace.”

Bluett has recently been by the gallery and dropped off several new pieces of work that capture this feeling in its purest form.  We welcome you to stop in and see them in person. In February we are open every day from 10 am to 5 pm. As always, his work is available for view by clicking here for his Artist Page. You can also read more about Bluett and his work by going to our blog, Charles Bluett – Artist Stories and Insights.

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A Day in the Landscape of Charles Bluett

12/07/2017 0 Comments
 

Gathering Skies

“I work from my studio, tucked away in the secluded, usually leafy part of my garden in Vermont,” says Charles Bluett, one of Maine Art Painting and Sculpture’s artists. “I watch the seasons as they come and go outside my windows—from deep, rich spring and summer greens to the majestic colors of autumn to the blankets of pure snow and ice.”

Bluett typically works from early afternoon deep into the late evening. He paints nearly every day and believes this to be important for any artist. It has allowed his work to consistently evolve and mature. However, sometimes a break is necessary.

“For me, everything is created in fits and starts with blocks of time where life gets in the way and prevents my brushes from doing as I always wish them to do. At these times, I will simply head for a few days or hours to the outdoors. Maine is one such place for me,” Bluett shares. “There I can unblock my thought process and allow a freedom or abstraction to take over, influenced by what I see and sense.”

It is on occasions such as these, he finds his work swinging in unexpected and untried directions. This is when, for example, his work can move from soft ethereal landscapes to a far bolder use of primary colors. Bold abstract color works are where he started as an artist and still feature heavily in his output, but they contain a softness and flow of his representational landscapes.

“I also work on numerous pieces at any one time. As I mix my paints and mediums, I find new colors that inspire me. I have multiple canvases on the go to accommodate this,” says Bluett. “Experimentation, as I see in the outdoors, with color and the blends of combining color, fascinate me.”

The Bluff Beyond the Dune Grass Low Tide at Early Morning

Charles did not start out as a landscape painter but became one as people asked him to take his use of color from my pure abstract work to create scenes that were clearly marked by this color use, but that had a representational aspect also.

“Initially I struggled with the concept,” Bluett admits, “but I have discovered I have an enormous affinity with landscape painting. I can now achieve it in a way whereby my love of the abstract and blending of color and tone is not affected by the need to create an actual scape within the work, yet does so at the same time.”

The Breakers

Bluett works with acrylics mainly. As a self-taught artist, he was never exposed to using oils. As a medium, acrylic gives him the versatility he desires. “Although some people may consider acrylic to be the ‘poor cousin’ to oil, I find I am able to create work that contains exactly the same depth and effects I feel oil would afford me,”  states Bluett. “And so, I am in no rush to make a change for the foreseeable future.”

Working with brushes, sponges, pallet knives and his fingers themselves, he achieves the effects he desires. “I have been known to literally sand down works which contain multiple layers of paint, to achieve underlying layers of color applied beforehand and allow them to subtly come forward into the work and layers of paint above them,” Bluett says. “At the end, I typically varnish my work but normally only with a matte finish. This allows the natural colors to do as they must.”

Summer Moon

Bluett feels blessed to find himself in an environment of passion, color, and peace, regardless of the ups and downs of the process and the final results he creates. He puts everything he has into a days work of painting.

“There, in a second, is something in front of you, over which you have no control, that is so splendid that you can’t help chuckle to yourself at how effortless and beautiful what you see has in-turn taken to create compared with that day’s huge efforts with one’s own painting. This is how I gauge success with my work in a real sense and excites me hugely upon my return to the next canvas I work upon.”

Charles Bluett

Maine Art Paintings and Sculpture is thrilled to have a variety of works from Charles Bluett. We welcome you to stop by to view each in person during this holiday season. They may be a bit large to stuff in a stocking, but we would be more than happy to help you wrap one up for someone special. Check our website for holiday hours or call with any questions.

To read more about Charles Bluett – Charles Bluett – Stories and Insights

To see our entire collection of Bluett’s work – Charles Bluett – Artist Page

A Growing Gallery – New Works from Our Artists

07/17/2017 0 Comments
 
A Growing Gallery – New Works from Our Artists Welcome to summer in the Kennebunks! What a wonderful beginning to such a beautiful season.  We are in the middle of our third show of the year, Craig Mooney, a Solo Show. The first two, Rebecca Kinkead and the 6th Annual Choice Show were both complete successes. We are just about done filling the fabulous schedule for the 20th Anniversary Show, as well. Be sure to check out the calendar of events. There is something fun and exciting going on every day.

In the meantime, many of our artists are stopping by to drop off new work. We can’t even begin to explain how happy we are to share it. With our season being so short, it is impossible to offer the “show” experience to all of our artists. However, as many of you know, being at Maine Art Paintings and Sculpture is a show in itself.

We would love to highlight just a few for you.

 

Charles Bluett

Ice and Stone by Charles Bluett The Joy of Floating by Charles Bluett The Good Life by Charles Bluett

Bluett is one of our newest artists. His work is unlike anything else in the gallery. His images are wonderful, and the color and space is even more fabulous in person. Bluett’s goal is to capture the ebb and flow of life, and the light and color of the everyday. The Joy of Floating, Ice and Stones and The Good Life are perfect examples of exactly what he does. Though his work has abstract qualities, they certainly evoke memories.

Click here for Charles Bluett’s Complete Collection

 

Trip Park

Gonzo Beach by Trip Park Keep Off the Dunes September Beach

We claim some of the most beautiful beach scenes in all of Kennebunkport, and artwork is the best way to take a piece of the coast home with you. Trip Park has captured small moments of our favorite beach memories in three of his new pieces this summer; Gonzo Beach, Keep Off the Dunes and September Beach. The colors and compositions of these images are extraordinary.

Click here for Trip Park’s Complete Collection.

 

James Rivington Pyne

Pyne is one of our sculptors. Using composite and mixed media, he captures our winged friends perfectly.  Wether it be 18 Bee-Eaters, 3 Stilt Sandpipers or Warrier Penguins VII, Pyne’s work is original and captivating, especially for our bird lovers.

Click here for James Rivington Pyne’s Complete Collection

 

Alex Dunwoodie

October Marsh Evening by Alex Dunwoodie Small Whelk on Blue by Alex Dunwoodie Pink Stripe by Alex Dunwoodie

The work of Dunwoodie has such a photographic quality. With images like October Marsh Evening, a second look is needed to see the brush strokes and detail. As in Small Whelk on Blue, many of her works recreate the little things and capture memories and moments held by them. Her water pieces, like Pink Stripe, convey the sensation of water, light and motion depicting a time of day, a sensation, and again, that one special moment.

Click here for Alex Dunwoodie’s Complete Collection.

 

Sandra L. Dunn

Red, Green and Gold by Sandra Dunn Headless by Sandra Dunn Five Gold Pears by Sandra Dunn

Dunn creates paintings that range from realistic, old master style, to more modern impressionistic pieces. This summer she has added a few still life paintings that truly capture the light and shadow of her subjects. Red, Green and Gold, Headless and Five Gold Pears show, in detail, the skill Sandra brings through her brush.

Click here for Sandra Dunn’s Complete Collection

 

Karen McManus

5 O'Clock Ferry by Karen McManus Evening Sail by Karen McManus Gull Friend by Karen McManus

Karen has been with Maine Art for many years. She works in watercolor and oil, but always with the landscapes of her home.   5 O’Clock Ferry, Evening Sail and Gull Friend all capture a different piece of Maine, but each are quintessential images that hold time and place in a way we love here on the coast. McManus combines realistic detail with the imagery created by color and light and gives each painting a life of it’s own.

Click here for Karen McManus’s Complete Collection

 

All told, we have over thirty artists at Maine Art Paintings and Sculpture, and many have new pieces that have been or will be featured in shows this summer. New works arrive every week. Our website is in real time and is always up-to-date. Be sure to watch our Facebook page, as well,  for new additions to our inventory.  If you want to be contacted when new works arrive from any specific artist, please add your name to our email list, indicate which one, and we will be sure to contact you.

To add your name to the email list click this link – Maine Art Email

To see all of our artists click this link – Maine Art Artist Pages

Charles Bluett – A New Artist at Maine Art

06/01/2017 0 Comments
 

Along the Coast

This is always an exciting time for us here at Maine Art. With so much going on this summer already, it is an added bonus to be able to introduce you to another amazing New England artist, Charles Bluett.

Charles was born in Brussels, Belgium in 1965 where his parents happened to be working at the time. Both his parents are English, however, so they soon moved to the county of Kent, England, where he grew up.

Bluett says, “At 13, we moved again. Westminster, the heart of London, was quite the opposite from Kent’s natural beauty. We lived about 700 meters from Big Ben, the iconic Houses of Parliament and five minutes from the Old Tate gallery, before the New Tate was constructed on the South Bank of the Thames. This is where I first discovered my passion for art, but especially painting. I spent many hours sitting in the Rothko Room there, surround by his ethereal color panels.”

Bluett has spent the best part of his adult life in the US. He didn’t start painting in earnest until he moved to New York City as a young man back in the late 1980’s. Even then, it was purely as a thing he took huge private pleasure from doing; a hobby.

The Little Valley View

“It was a visit from Charlie Phillips who changed all that. Charlie ran an influential gallery in the West End of London with Harry Blain. He came to the house for dinner, saw my work, and offered me my first solo exhibition. This was back in the early 90’s. In the same month, I was also selected by The Royal Academy of Art in Piccadilly, the epicenter of British art for centuries, to feature in the Annual Summer Exhibition. This is where I sold my first work ever commercially. It was a great honor and a humbling experience. I remember taking my dear mother up the hallowed steps of the Royal Academy the day before the opening of the exhibit. We viewed my work in the most prestigious art institution in England. She had always been very supportive of my painting, and this was a definite ‘ah-ha’ moment for me.”

Bluett had a number of solo exhibitions in London and the US, but it was not until January of 2016, that life finally showed him that he must do this full time.

“Life is simply too short not to follow your passion. My wife had fallen ill with cancer, and after we were blessed to come through the other side, I decided it was time to stop compromising and use the gift I had been given to its fullest.”

For Bluett, this decision stays with him daily. After he spends what he considers a highly productive day completing a piece of work, he leaves his studio for the day walking backwards. He stares at the final piece through his studio door windows and contemplates.

“I am always still considering whether it is complete or not. Then, I turn toward the outdoor view ahead of me and see a twilight sky, a blazon sunset or simple tree line, and I am filled with so much color and energy. I smile to myself, realizing I should never take myself that seriously. In all I do, given what is laid out before me by ‘the powers that be’ in such scale and natural wonder, I keep perspective. I always try hard to be a part of it all. It is the important message I am left with, and I enjoy and relish the gifts I have been given, whatever they may be. This always makes me smile. Thankfully, it happens very often.”

Upstate

Bluett currently resides in Vermont with his lovely and hugely understanding wife, Suzy, his two kids, Ty and India, and a large number of critters, from horses to cats and dogs.

Be on the lookout for more posts about Charles Bluett, his inspirations and his process. His work is like no other in our gallery and certainly is worth a peek in person. We are open every day, but please check our website for hours.

**If you can’t make it to the Kennebunks soon, check out our complete collection of his work on his artist page. Charles Bluett – Artist Page.

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