Southport Memorial Library

Artists of the Month: Margie Boynton and Mischelle Wilbricht

Sun, 06/26/2022 - 10:15am

Story Location:
1032 Hendricks Hill Road
Southport, ME 04576
United States

    Southport Memorial Library welcomes Margie Boynton and Mischelle Wilbricht as Artists of the Month(s) July 2 through Aug. 27. Meet the artists on those dates  9 a.m. to noon. “Maine Renaissance,” an exhibition of their work, sings of renewal and hope in the midst of a wearying global pandemic, grief and healing.

    Margie has a deep connection to and love for the state or Maine. Her family has had a summer cottage on Capitol Island, in the Boothbay Region, for three generations on her late father’s side. Her father, artist Lee Boynton, loved to paint the lobstermen and the rugged beauty of the rocky coast while he and his family spent summers in Maine. Margie grew up painting with him. He was her first teacher and laid the groundwork in her for a serious pursuit of art.

    Margie’s world split in two after losing her father Lee to cancer in 2016. The following year, Margie, her mom Martha, and Mischelle put a show of his work together at the Southport Memorial Library. It was then that SML put them on the calendar to do their own show. Postponed by COVID, they have been working on this show for the past five years. Margie began a process of recovery through her work while traveling in Maine with her friend Mischelle, as they visited the places she had painted with her father. The title of the exhibition, “Maine Renaissance,” speaks of the idea of rebirth, for Margie the joy of discovering her own voice and identity as an artist — and finding inspiration instead of loss in Maine.

    For Mischelle, her first visit to Maine was the setup of Lee Boynton’s work at the Southport Library in 2016. She has been a plein air watercolor painter since then. She has been back to Maine every year since. The Batik landscapes in this show were inspired by those yearly visits. That time for her has become a way to heal from her current battle with Breast Cancer, and to focus on her passion for art and adventure. Mischelle has been a Batik artist for 15 years. Her work is done on cotton fabric, with fabric dye and beeswax. She works from her home studio in Annapolis Maryland, where she lives with her family and sails on the Chesapeake Bay. Her travels throughout Maine with Margie have been the foundation of a wonderful friendship, that has come full circle to their show “Maine Renaissance.”

    Margie draws on her father’s influence of painting the effects of light through juxtaposition of color, but adds to it her own playful approaches. She paints in oil and appreciates layering oil paint. She considers the painting process a type of mediation, that helps to refocus the eye to swiftly capture the ephemeral qualities of nature. In her work she strives to let a painting be playful. She likes to experiment with mixing neutral tones to heighten more saturated color passages, and using select brilliance to be a focal point in the composition. Margie likes to paint on location, like her father did, but for this show, she had to use photographs, drawings and studies to capture a sense of place of Maine.

    “At some point, it’s important to know when to put the reference material away and begin creating a painting,” Margie said. “Painting  teaches me how to see from within; it’s a search for the self as much as finding the right moment in nature to portray that voice. Painting is perceiving with a complete sense of awe the ever changing beauty of nature. Putting this show together has given me more maturity, it’s given me my ‘sea legs’ in trying different approaches to the painting process; it’s given me a new beginning in finding my way in the midst of COVID and the loss of my father’s guidance.”

    Southport Memorial Library is at the southern end of Southport at 1032 Hendricks Hill Road. Library summer hours begin on July 1. The library will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays with additional evening hours of 6 to 8 on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

    For more information, call the library at 633-2741.