Monday, August 11, 2008

Island Inside Out/ Outside In

Summer marches on. Sigh. I sit inside on a cloudy day, overlooking a soggy flowerbox by the open window and listening to the shouts of tourists who are enjoying the lark of riding a bike for the first time in how long. I'm enjoying a moment of reflection on the idea of inside and outside, a theme explored at the Gem Gallery's current exhibit: Island Inside Out/Outside In.
Lane Williamson and Tim Nihoff have paired together to fill the back gallery with surprisingly complementary imagery.

Lane's paintings glimmer with reflections in ponds and marshes. She eschews the well-documented seashore in favor of island interiors, exposing knarly tree roots and mossy stumps. You feel moist looking at these oils, ripe with earthy color. Her focus on the inside of island nature reveals Lane's private side. Her own studio sits beside a luscious lily pond with a field rimmed by deer fencing, right off a road yet unseen by passersby; it is a world apart.

Tim Nihoff's
assemblages and paintings are a whimsical contrast to Lane's realism.
His work reconfigures elements found in either nature, or a dump pile, or a yard sale...then brought inside for a new purpose, such as an amusing mobile, lamp, or coat hook. This gallery wall buzzes with animated personality.

A lithe spirit keeps this piece in motion, conjuring magical powers.

This exhibit plays with natural observations and inventive imaginings in a most delightful manner. Check it out.

Every islander is something of a scavenger. We can't always get what we need, so we make good use of what we have. I not only beachcomb for sea shards, but folks have started to bring me their broken plates and cups. I recently paired with Peg Astarita for an evening of mosaics.

My fish, done as a rehearsal/prep for the class, became a wedding gift:

Leslie worked on this heart, the tiny pieces creating a patterned whole.

Here is Maeve, working on a bird mosaic.

Joy brought in a favorite plate, chipped. I accidentally broke it further, but she pieced it into her fish perfectly.

It's just plain satisfying to salvage a pile of fragments into new form.

In other news, the annual Fifth Maine's Art on the Porch survived threat of thunderstorms for another well-attended event.
The Fifth Maine is a historic gem,
a Civil War memorial building that is both museum and home to countless community events from May to October.

Marty designed this poster:

As Board member and Co-Chair with the unsinkable Suellen, I endured some stress involving table capacity, but all turned out fine: the fog burned off, the food ran out, and the artists did business, including a certain little entrepreneur and her mom.

These were Daisy's best-selling prints:

Acorn House

Panda Kiting

And here are a couple of mine:

This one was done after a hike up to Morse Mountain, past a wide marsh with undulating rivulets heading to the ocean.
I call it Sanctuary.

This pastel was done after a backshore potluck at Table Rock, a favorite gathering spot for festivities. Can you bring a pasta salad, please?

Of course, Daisy outsold me (we sold digital prints) two to one! It was still a good way to share the day, showing our work, meeting visitors as well as neighbors, all coming together in community, in a beloved location.

If you're ever on Peaks Island, do visit the Fifth Maine. It's a charmed place.


Mitali Perkins said...

I love Daisy's prints and your Sanctuary. How large is the original? Miss you, and see you in October for the Jane Addams?

Jamie said...

Yes, I will be going! And I hope to bring Marty and Daisy along this time. The Sanctuary original 16" x 6" and sold already. In fact, I only make prints after selling the original.
I'm looking forward to seeing you in October!
I'm sending you something in the mail on Monday.
Keep your eyes peeled!