A new art show has opened at Damariscotta River Grill showcasing local artists Barbara Applegate, Sandra Leinonen Dunn, Kimberly Skillin Traina, and Liliana Thelander. The artwork can be viewed through Sept. 28.
Primarily a studio painter, Applegate relies on her knowledge of composition, color, and design to create contemporary realistic paintings of the Maine landscape. Recently, she has added pet portraits to her repertoire.
“Working from photos, I do several sketches just to ‘get to know’ my subject,” said Applegate. “I look for personality traits in the tilt of their head, brightness of the eyes, and texture and color of their coat. Looking into the animal’s eyes and capturing what makes them unique is hard work but so rewarding when you see their personalities staring back at you.”
Over the past 25 years, Applegate’s work has been featured in numerous publications including: “American Art Collector,” “American Artists,” “American Art Review,” “Arts and Antiques,” and “Down East and Yankee.” Her studio and gallery are in Bristol Mills.
Dunn, a prominent Maine artist residing in Chelsea, is a prolific painter working in both oils and acrylics. Using her intuitive sense of color and her lyrical brushwork, Dunn creates paintings which express both her passion for beauty as well as her interest and respect for classical painting techniques. Born and raised in Maine, Dunn obtained both a bachelor of fine arts and a bachelor of science in art education from the University of Southern Maine. She has also studied at Whitelands College in London, at the Maine College of Art, and the Boston Museum School. She is a member of the Oil Painters of America and her work can be found in many collections throughout the U.S. and abroad.
Traina, a graphic designer and photographer, started exploring painting with soft pastels in 2011 to reconnect with creating art with her hands. Utilizing pure pigments and layering colors give Traina’s work a depth of color and intensity, whether she is capturing the rocky Maine coastline or a dramatic sunset.
“During this time of COVID-19 isolation, creating art has been even more of a lifeline than usual for me,” said Traina. “Spending time at the easel is essential to my sense of balance, simultaneously re-energizing and grounding me in these uncharted waters. These last few months, I have been drawn to paint the ocean. Painting, sketching, being acutely aware of nature and my surroundings have helped me process my emotions, fears, and grief and has brought me to a place of strength and resilience during this time of change and uncertainty.” Traina’s studio is in Edgecomb.
Thelander was born in Caracas, Venezuela, and lives with her family in Midcoast Maine. Thelander’s contemporary realistic style of painting strives to build form and create mood by emphasizing atmosphere with a dramatic use of light. Her paintings are meant to be enjoyed at a distance and close up. She uses oils to make her paintings come to life, with a natural eye for detail and a keen observation of light and color.
“As an artist I attempt to infuse my work with a meaning and depth that transcends the subjects or colors in my paintings,” said Thelander. “Through working from still life settings or photographs with the aim of creating believable paintings, I strive to bring a quiet drama to everyday scenes.”
The grill is open Tuesday and Wednesday, 4 – 8 p.m.; Thursday 12 – 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 12 – 8:30 p.m.; and Sunday, 4 – 8 p.m.