Damariscotta's Savory Maine Dining & Provisions is happy to present an exhibit of oil paintings by Sarah Carter of Bristol.
Sarah Carter came to Maine for love, she says, not art. “But since I'm here, I paint! And how lucky am I that the man I fell in love with happened to live in such a very paintable place? Two strokes of luck in one fell swoop."
A few years before luck had not seemed so kind. Ms. Carter closed her business of twenty-odd years, designing everything from custom tile to custom rugs, lamps, mirrors, even furniture. It was fun, but it was over. Done in by fickle fate and a faltering economy, not sure what was next, she picked up a paint brush, stared down that blank canvas, and dove in. Paint Therapy.
Sarah says, "It's a lifelong habit, this creating of things. Maybe ‘fascination’ is a better word. Because it is, for me, forever fascinating. When I paint, or draw, or imagine, I never know for sure where it's going. Whether it's a rug, or a mirror, or a painting, I'm amazed and often surprised by what emerges.
"But painting is a real hooker. The smell of the paint. The feel of it. All those colors glowing on the palette. Endless possibilities. If you let it - and you're lucky - something takes over and carries you along. Time stops, the music plays, you dance, you sing, you play with what’s in front of you, back and forth till suddenly…there it is. Almost magic.
"After the ultra-tight discipline of designing for manufacture,” she continues, “all this goo-ey, glow-ey paint is such a joy to push around. With a rug, it's months from mental image to finished product. You've almost forgotten what you were thinking by the time you see it. Making a painting is more or less instant gratification. What a blast.
"But for all that, my time spent towing the design line trained my eye, and hand, and sensibilities. Taught me about economy of line, chameleon color, pattern, texture, empty spaces. And last but certainly not least, how to recognize the moment when it all comes together and sings. Then you stop. 'Less is more,' as the saying goes."
Sarah paints Maine land and seascapes with a loose, colorful brush. And then there are the dogs. She calls them "Color Dogs." About five years ago, Carter “fell into the fabulously rewarding job of painting people's dogs.” High spirited, fun loving, color driven, bang-on portraits of dogs (cats too, of course). "Old dogs, new dogs, tried dogs, true dogs”, she paints them all with a fresh eye and the intention of conveying more than just a likeness. "It's all about energy and personality. Just like every person, every Color Dog and Color Cat has a unique persona, and it's my pleasure to paint them."
The artist concludes, “The moral of this story is this: You Just Never Know. In life, as in painting, you never really know where it’s going. I mean really, ‘who’d of thunk it’? Me, a grown woman, a born and bred Virginian, living in a barn in Bristol Maine with an ex Rugby player from South Africa, painting landscapes and dogs?"
Must be magic.
The Carter exhibit is in Savory Maine’s main dining room from April 17 through May 29. An opening reception for Carter will be held on Friday, April 27 from 3-5. Savory Maine will provide delectable finger food. Beer and wine will be available for purchase.
~ Family Style Suppers! ~
Family style suppers are on the menu for every Wednesday night at Savory Maine this winter. We’ll put the tables together and serve one hearty meal at the fixed price of fifteen dollars including tax and gratuity; eight dollars for kids under 12. Come at 6 o’clock -- alone, in pairs or in groups -- and sit together with the local foods enthusiasts you already know or will meet. A selection of organic beer and wine will be available for purchase. Let's fill this beautiful, warm space at 11 Water Street, Damariscotta, with the group spirit it is (and we are) meant for.
Many local farms will be the source of the organically grown and grass fed ingredients for this meal. Beets from Goranson Farm, greens from Sparrow Farm and The Good Shepard's Farm, beans from the Green Thumb Farm, beef from Kelly Brothers, tofu from Heilwa, onions from Treble Ridge Farm, garlic from Harvest Moon, blueberries from Red House Farm, herb tea from Avena Botanicals, milk, cream and butter from the Moo Milk Cooperative and grains from Crown of Maine.
- Special Order Gluten-Free Desserts or Rolls. You can also order whole Quiches
The Goings On