A new show will open Monday, Aug. 21 at the Damariscotta River Grill featuring seasoned artists Sandra Leinonen Dunn, Susan Tilton Pecora, and Kimberly Skillin Traina. Three distinct styles and mediums will explore a number of themes, each capturing a unique viewpoint depicting the natural beauty of Maine. The show will be on display through Oct. 16.
The Art at the Grill opening reception is from 4-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 24, featuring a special prix fixe, three-course menu for $29 with a choice of wine pairings for $10. Reservations are encouraged.
A portion of the dinner proceeds will be used to fund a scholarship for a Lincoln Academy student pursuing an art education.
Born and raised in Maine, Dunn is a prominent Maine artist. Her works are part of collections throughout the U.S and abroad, and she is represented by several galleries in Maine and Massachusetts.
Using her intuitive sense of color and her lyrical brushwork, Dunn creates paintings that express both her passion for beauty as well as her interest and respect for classical painting techniques.
“I am a traditional painter working mainly in oils. Painting for me is like mediation,” Dunn said. “When I am working on a subject, I am in my right brain where logic and words do not exist and where the world becomes only nameless shapes and infinite shades of color. The more I look at my subject, the more I see!
“I find inspiration for paintings all around me, and often it is the shape, or color of a subject, which interests me as much if not more than the object itself,” Dunn said. “I want my paintings to contain a little bit of something beautiful frozen in time. The only thing certain in this life is change. Through painting, I can capture, (and hold onto) a moment, a bit of light, a splash of vibrant color, which I can then share with others.”
Dunn has a studio at her home in Chelsea.
Pecora was raised in Marblehead, Mass. In this seashore community she grew to appreciate the quality of light and the intrinsic beauty of New England, painting the streets and seaports of New England since she was a child.
“I have been painting the harbors, farms, and factory towns of New England since childhood. I have made a living as an artist for over 40 years,” Pecora said. “I work in watercolor, egg tempera, and oil. My paintings begin with a pencil or ink sketch, then a watercolor or underpainting in oil on location. I finish the piece in my studio.
“New England is so beautiful and diverse, I hope to be painting it for another 40 years,” she said.
Pecora exhibits and sells her work through galleries and art associations throughout the country and is a signature member of The New England Watercolor Society.
Traina is a graphic designer, photographer, and pastel artist living in Edgecomb. She lived on Peaks Island for 10 years, where her love affair with islands began.
Traina creates her pastel paintings utilizing the pure pigments of soft pastels and her fingers to layer many colors on top of an underpainting, creating depth and luminescence. Her work is a spiritual interpretation of nature, light, and atmosphere through her depiction of skies, clouds, islands, reflections, water, and waves.
“Making art is how I make sense of, and honor, both my challenges and joys in this life,” Traina said. “I love being outdoors, observing and connecting with nature, creating in my studio, losing all sense of time and place. Whether I’m painting en plein air or from a photograph, the end result is always its own story, conveying my passion for this beautiful place I call home. I hang my pastels in my studio for months, picking them up to add a color, or change a shape until the story that wants to be told is complete.
The Damariscotta River Grill, at 155 Main St. in Damariscotta, is now open seven nights for dinner starting at 4 p.m. Brunch is offered 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Daily happy hour, with discounted drinks and appetizers, is from 3-5:30 p.m.
To make a reservation, call 563-2992. For more information, go to damariscottarivergrill.com or find the Damariscotta River Grill on Facebook.