Caren-Marie Michel, “Free Street, Portland” acrylic on canvas 24×24
The Littlefield Gallery finishes up its eighth season with a Fall Group Show featuring Caren-Marie Michel, John Stass, and Joan Freiman. Work by these artists and others can be viewed daily from 11-5:30 through Columbus Day.
Caren-Marie Sargent Michel was born in Portland, Maine and is a lifelong Maine resident. Her work explores the urban, industrial, and pastoral images of Maine and documents the ever-changing landscape in paint. Michel is a devoted plein air painter working in acrylic and pastel on locations all over Maine and New Brunswick, Canada. Michel often portrays a location through series capturing different seasons or times of day with changing light and color. Michel is Past President of the Pastel Painters of Maine and past Treasurer of the Union of Maine Visual Artists.
Michel studied painting with Esther Barney in Portland, Maine for six years and earned her B.F.A. in painting from Portland School of Art in 1978 (now Maine College of Art) where she studied with Bill Collins, Ed Douglas and Johnnie Ross. Michel returned to painting and exhibiting in 2000 after a sixteen year banking career. Her work has been selected for juried shows in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Colorado and Washington. In Maine, Michel’s work has been exhibited at Bates College Museum of Art, Aucocisco Galleries, Atrium Gallery at USM-LA, Carver Hill Gallery, The Jameson Gallery, North Light Gallery, Littlefield Gallery and the College of the Atlantic. Michel’s work has been juried for publication in the University of Southern Maine’s 2002 and 2004 Words and Images.
In 2008, Michel was commissioned to paint three large landscape paintings for the new Mercy Hospital Fore River building’s main lobby in Portland, Maine.
In 2013, her work “Bangor and AR” was included in David Little’s book Art of Katahdin hardcover 200 pages Down East Books (May 16, 2013) and “A Mountain Rises: The Art of Katahdin” at the University of New England Art Gallery. Also in 2013, her first international solo exhibition “New Brunswick Panorama” was shown at the Saint John Arts Centre, St. John, New Brunswick, Canada. This was Michel’s fourth Panorama exhibition since her 2007 “Greater Portland Panorama” at Jameson Gallery in Portland, Maine.
In 2015, Michel’s work was shown in the Maine State Capitol in Augusta as the Artist in the Capitol solo exhibition through the Maine Arts Commission.
John Stass, “Aegis” (Shield of Zeus) wood laminations/metalic enamel 29 x 15 x 13
As an artist, John paints on a variety of supports using various media, and sculpts primarily in wood. Coming out of the corporate world of L. L. Bean in his earlier days, he has been a creative driven entrepreneur for 30 years. In his former career as a management consultant, John counted some of the nation’s most highly regarded companies as clients.
At the mid-point of his life, as a designer of custom furniture, he created and produced the brands of Katahdin Studio Furniture, Zen Harbor Living and Katahdin Home. His work sold world-wide, often to a celebrity clientele, including Melissa Etheridge, Andy Griffith, and the Jay Leno Show.
Today, John is once again an independent artist and designer. Art plays a role in everyone’s existence… sometimes deliberately and sometimes not. I am fortunate to have been able to incorporate art in many of its various forms in all that has occupied my life.