Damariscotta River Grill

New show features Pamela Browne, Jon Luom and Margaret Merrill

Fri, 09/16/2022 - 11:15am

Story Location:
155 Main Street
Damariscotta, ME 04543
United States

    A new show at the Grill opens Monday, Sept. 19 and runs through Oct. 31, with three Maine artists who have not shown here previously. Pamela Browne, Jon Luoma and Margaret Merrill each have very different styles, approaches and mediums, including watercolor, Chinese inks, encaustics and acrylics. Join us for dinner Thursday evening Sept. 29 to celebrate the artists. The Grill is hosting a Prix Fixe three-course menu that will be offered for $29, with a choice of wine pairings for $10, or choose a selection from the regular menu.  A portion of the dinner proceeds will be used to fund a scholarship for a Lincoln Academy student pursuing an art education. Please call ahead to make a reservation.

    Pamela Browne worked as a social worker for many years, retiring in 2018, to focus more on her art. “I always loved design and any form of art but never had enough time for any serious practice time. For the last four years I have dedicated my time to art classes, on line and in person from various teachers. The wonderful thing about Zoom, which I discovered mainly after COVID entered our lives, was that I could take classes from some of the very best artists in the world. My interest in encaustic art started at the Maine Art Hill Galleries in Kennebunkport. I fell in love with the technique and texture right away and began taking classes. The process involves heating Encaustic medium and adding pigment. Using wooden cradled panels, the layering begins, fusing with a torch between each layer so they meld together. I sometimes have 10-20 layers of wax on a panel. It gives a dreamy quality that is most appealing. It is an ancient art form used thousand of years ago to encase mummies for preservation. It’s complicated and time consuming which brings me to the love of cold wax and oil and acrylic. Depending on the day and my mood, I can be a dramatic seascape artist using hot molten wax, or a whimsical artist creating silly characters in acrylic. I mostly paint in an impressionistic, abstract style that allows for all possibilities.”

    Jon Luoma has lived in Maine for 45 years. His unique style of watercolor painting combines Western and Chinese techniques, approaches and materials. He studied traditional Chinese painting in Sichuan, China in 2006, and has traveled in Asia and the Himalayas. Jon is an enthusiastic hiker, canoeist and cross-country skier and his visits to northern and Downeast Maine also inform his work. “Most or all of these paintings are ‘of the natural world’ in one way or another, and mostly landscapes from Maine or abroad. They are watercolor paintings, but often with the addition of black or colored Chinese inks, not traditional ingredients in Western watercolor technique. Although these are not Chinese or Japanese ink paintings, they are influenced by oriental ideas and approaches. Of course, nature, wildlife, and landscape are ancient, and continuing, inspirations for Chinese artists, and I try to use this background in my own way, and in my own surroundings, close to home, at Maine’s coast, or in our North Woods.”

    A watercolor artist, Margaret Merrill has been painting since childhood. “I am drawn to the fluidity and movement of the medium and its behavior on the paper. I use a lot of water and pigment which does well with heavy paper and rough surfaces. I am inspired by shapes, shadows, movement of light and air which shows itself in the presentation of values in the scenes I observe and in my work.  I am primarily a self-taught artist and have had the good fortune to work with two amazing watercolor artists – Nancy Sargent Howell and Judith Kinsman. I studied with Nancy Sargent Howell for many years and recently traveled to Italy with her and a small group to paint. Being able to move beyond perceived limitations is my goal, one I am working on daily with the encouragement and support of those around me.”

    The Grill’ is open Monday thru Saturday at 4 p.m., closed Sundays. Happy Hour is 4-5:30 p.m. To make a reservation, please call 207-563-2992.