Archive for Belfast

Joan Losee’s Farms and Landscapes at Local Color Gallery

Skunk Cabbage by Joan Losee, oil on linen, 20×24

Camden artist Joan Losee will be the Guest Artist this May at Local Color Gallery in Belfast. Her work the past two years has been focused on the farms and landscapes of inland Maine. The experience of visiting these locations and putting them into oil paintings has broadened her knowledge of Maine and beauty found in unexpected places. 

Most of Losee’s work is about ordinary subjects but her approach brings out extraordinary emotion and presence showing that they’re not ordinary after all. She has over 40 years of training in watercolor, egg tempera, pastel, and oil. Her belief is you have to master the rules before you can break them. Keeping that in mind she continues to take workshops while constantly striving to increase her proficiency and maintain a freshness in her artistic expression.

Local Color Gallery is located at 135 High Street in Belfast, open Tuesday-Sunday 11-4, for details visit

Maine Farmland Trust Gallery presents the 2020 Fiore Residents Exhibit

Fiore Germinating Bean, Margot Anne Kelley, photographic image


This past summer, Maine Farmland Trust’s Fiore Art Center offered four virtual residencies. Instead of working at the beautiful Rolling Acres Farm at the Fiore Art Center in Jefferson, ME, the residents worked from their homes, farms, gardens and studios. From January 5-April 9, 2021, the Maine Farmland Trust Gallery website will host an online exhibit of the residents’ work.


Final Performance, Katie Addada Shlon, photograph

Performance artist Katie Addada Shlon, from Maryland, used natural sounds and instruments assembled from pottery shards and other discarded materials to depart from traditional forms and structures. Her goal is to reframe our experience of music, connecting ideas of regenerative agriculture and performance in nature.


Montgomery Co. 4, James R. Southard, photographic image

Photographer and videographer James R. (Rob) Southard, from Kentucky, shared images from his ongoing photography series, The Kentucky Farmer, which documents farmers of all kinds in his home state. His photographs record rural landscapes and studies of everyday agricultural life.

Non-fiction literary artist Margot Anne Kelley, from Maine, shared writings from her essay about seeds and seed-saving, with added exploration of some of the odd connections between seeds and viruses in Germ Lines. Her work ranges from habits of ancient hunter-gatherers and plantings in Roman herb gardens to writings from Henry David Thoreau.


Sophie Kelmenson, 2020, photograph

Literary artist Sophie Kelmenson, presents video excerpts from her dissertation Challenges To and Challenges from Scale in Alternative Food Systems, exploring the promise of using alternative food systems as a mechanism for sustainable economic development.

Virtual artist talks for the exhibit, open to the public, are Friday, February 19, 2021 at 5pm. The artists share their work through Zoom and describe their processes, challenges and achievements during their residencies. RSVP here:

Michele Ratté’s art evokes a primordial connection to the earth and sea

Artist Michele Ratté has recently relocated to Belfast from Vermont and is being featured as a guest artist at Local Color Gallery. 

Ratté’s work is informed by a lifelong fascination with marine environments, both current and ancient. She uses geological and botanical references, and the direct experience of being and working in seaside locations, including the dunes of Cape Cod and the Chazy Fossil Reef Preserve in Vermont.

Precious metals, mineral pigments, printing, collage, stitching and drawing are all unpredictable elements in her work. Each piece evokes a primordial connection to the earth and sea. A combination of handwork, assemblage and natural objects merge in Ratté’s personal vision of the physical world. Her blending of high karat metals with common materials reflects a strong interest in alchemical and transformative processes.

Ratté’s work has been shown widely in the U.S. and abroad.

The show will be up through February.

Local Color Gallery is at 135 High St., Belfast. Hours are noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Learn more at

‘Maine Rivers & Industry’ photo exhibit by Jon Linn

Photo by Jon Linn.

Jon Linn Aerial Photography announces the posting of their new collection at the Jon Linn Gallery, 33A Front St., Belfast, and online at

The show is available to view online now, and prints can be viewed at the gallery starting on Jan. 1. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends.

The “Maine Rivers & Industry” collection is comprised of 34 aerial photographic images of scenes centered on active and defunct industrial mills. Locations include Maine’s eight remaining operating Pulp & Paper mills and towns along the Androscoggin River, Penobscot River and Kennebec River.

All images in the collection were captured in 2020, some even documenting structures shortly before catastrophic events, e.g., the Pixelle Mill six weeks before the digester explosion and S.D. Warren in Westbrook one week before the Presumpscot River landslide.

Linn’s landscape photos seek to create mood and drama through light and shadows, texture and layers, drawing the viewer’s attention to the horizon and back. Their focus is on the sky, horizon, hills and foreground, with Anthropocene structures as context. 

Prints are available for sale at the gallery and online (metal prints, dye-sublimation on aluminum). They are all landscape oriented, 16:9 aspect ratio. Sizes range from 12” to 48” wide. Contact Jon Linn for details at

Learn more about the artist at

Local Color Gallery opens ‘Big and Small Show’ in December

“Tree Foliage 1,” by Suzanne Roberts.

Creative offerings by local artists will deck the walls of Local Color Gallery during December. The “Big and Small Show” will feature eclectic creativity that’s perfect for unique gifts.

The gallery will have work by guest artists Sheep Jone and Margaret Griffith, as well as new pieces by member artists Suzanne Roberts, Sandi Cirillo, Judy Graebert, MF Morison, James Toothacker, Betty Schopmeyer, DiTa, Debbie Mitchell, Leslie Moore, Jamien St. Pierre, Conny Hatch and Sally Brophy.

Local Color Gallery is at 135 High St., Belfast. Hours are noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Learn more at

Local Color Gallery showing Guest Artists

“Gardener Ten” by Sheep Jones, oil, 10×10

Local Color Gallery will be featuring four guest artists this November including Sheep Jones, Abbie Read, Liz Donald and Margaret Griffith. Belfast artist Sheep Jones’ work begins with layers that build up adding extra interest and leaving swatches of colors in their wake. These are perfect tidbits for the imagination. She has exhibited in numerous solo and group shows in the US and Europe. 

Abbie Read of Appleton finds that the natural world has always in some way informed her art. As a graduate student she taught herself the rudiments of making books but it wasn’t until she began taking classes with Rebecca Goodale in Maine that she honed her skills in Book Arts. She incorporates these skills, as well as her passion for collecting old books and odd objects, into her constructions.

Liz Donald from Camden has been creating and studying art throughout her life. She works in oil, acrylic and pastel preferring a vivid palette inspired by extended stays in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. She is a member of River Arts in Damariscotta Maine and the Boothbay Region Art Foundation.
Margaret Griffith of Little Cranberry Island works in oil using a juxtaposition of quirky Maine buildings combined with strong landscape elements. Her landscape paintings move from the shifting ocean water to the purple mountains, often incorporating the uniqueness of Maine’s architecture. 

Local Color Gallery is located at 135 High Street, open Thursday-Sunday 12-4, details at:

Local Color Gallery’s October show to include guest artists David Estey, Margaret Griffith and The Winterberry Collective

Leslie Moore, “Squirrelly Whirls.”

Local Color Gallery will be featuring several guests artists in October, including Belfast artist David Estey. Estey’s work reflects years of extensive study that celebrate the rich use of color and texture with an innovative exploration of form. As a Mainer, he says he can’t escape the serene beauty of the snowy fields, the blue-black waters and the rugged coast. They are all a visceral part of his work.

Margaret Griffith of Little Cranberry Island will bring her paintings that use a juxtaposition of the sometimes odd buildings together with strong landscape elements. Griffith is drawn not only to the ocean water and purple mountains but to the uniqueness of Maine’s architecture. She is aiming to have the viewer really look and hopefully see something new in her landscape paintings.

The Winterberry Collective is a group of Midcoast Maine block printmakers who meet regularly to practice creating original relief prints by hand. For their “Maine’s Forest Floor” project, each printmaker designed four interpretations of the forest floor, one for each season. A selection of these original, hand-pulled block prints are on display, and a forever calendar showcasing their forest floor prints is also available. To purchase a calendar, email

Holly Berry, a celebrated printmaker, an award-winning children’s book illustrator, and an esteemed teacher, facilitates the Winterberry Collective from her home studio in Waldoboro. Members include Emily Davis, Barbara Gorrill, Leslie Moore, Dianne Morgan, Natalie Norris, Carolyn Steeves and David Swetland.

Local Color Gallery is at 135 High St., Belfast. Hours are noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday. Learn more at

Maine Farmland Trust’s Bicentennial Celebration

“Grace Helping Dad,” Deborah Flood, oil on linen panel, 12 x 16

200 Years of Farming: A Bicentennial Celebration, July 13- October 2, 2020. The history of farming in Maine is rich, bountiful, creative, and diverse, as is the talent and variety of its artists. In celebration of Maine’s Bicentennial, Maine Farmland Trust’s virtual gallery exhibit focuses on the history, practices, and triumphs of farming in Maine over the last 200+ years–from early homesteading to dairy, potatoes, blueberries, the local food movement, and present day changes and challenges. This show encompasses 53 works from 18 artists in a wide range of media to depict the rich history of farming in Maine, including oil, acrylic, and watercolor paintings, charcoal drawings, 3D wooden assemblage, ceramic vegetables, full color photography, plus black and white photographs and glass plate photographic prints on loan from the Penobscot Marine Museum. MFT is proud to partner with the Penobscot Marine Museum to exhibit seven glass plate photographic prints on loan from the Eastern Collection, of oxen, draft horse teams and scenes of the harvests of corn and potatoes. Also on display are six black and white photographs from PMM’s new collection by Kosti Ruohomaa, courtesy of Black Star Publishing Company, depicting crisp, clear images of hard working farmers in their daily lives.

Lynn Karlin’s exquisite full-color photographs of artfully arranged vegetables add vibrant color to the exhibit.

Deborah Flood and Kevin Mizner use illustrative and luminous compositions in their oil paintings to tell the stories of farm families working their draft horses on the land and at the fair. Textures and rich color are part of the appeal of the depictions of barnyard animals, tractors, and the bounty of harvested vegetables in the paintings of Joan Losee, Erica Qualey, and DiTa Ondek.

Sharon Yates and Frances Hynes share their interpretations of iconic Maine cows in colorful oils and pastels, while Kirstin Engman adds Belted Galloway cows, vegetables, bees, and Common Ground Fair scenes in her layered style of painting patterns and textured backgrounds.

“David’s Folly Sheep,” Leslie Anderson, oil on panel, 18 x 18”

Carol L. Douglas, Leslie Anderson, and Peter Walls depict colorful, sweeping, seasonal landscapes and scenes of farms, and blueberry fields in pastels, oils, and watercolors.

Thérèse L. Provenzano, with charcoal, and Leslie Moore, with sepia ink, crafted dramatic drawings of old farm scythes and a horse-drawn sulky plow.

André Benoit, Jr. is showing a wonderful large assemblage of a gardener picking flowers, made from repurposed wooden pieces and objects, and Anne Alexander has contributed three of her beautiful ceramic vegetables.

Because the gallery is not open to the public currently, please view the full virtual show by visiting the Maine Farmland Trust Gallery webpage to access the links to each work in the 200 Years of Farming exhibit:

There will be a Virtual Opening Reception, with artists talk and special guests, Friday, August 21, 5-6 pm via Zoom. RSVP via the MFT website:

This exhibit is funded in part by a grant from the Maine Bicentennial Commission.

Artists transform chairs for charity

“Garden Chairs,” by Conny Hatch.

Local artists will be turning chairs into art for a silent auction to support the Belfast Public Health Nursing Association. The Association provides health care and other critical support services to the most disadvantaged and vulnerable members of our community. They contribute to helping Waldo County General Hospital in Belfast prepare for emergencies including natural or man-made disasters, through education, providing treatment, holding community immunization clinics and monitoring outbreaks. The Association also works with schools to assist with resource management, food insecurity or oral health care, and they link people to needed health services. One example of their work was last week when they gave out 140 meals for three days to Waldo county children.

All profits will go to the nursing association. The artist’s chair creations will be on display at Local Color Gallery through Aug. 15. The final bidding day August 15 will include an outdoor display of the chairs as well as safely spaced clipboards for making bids. Stop by the gallery to view the chairs and consider your bids.

Local Color Gallery is located at 135 High Street in Belfast. Hours are noon to 4 p.m. Thursday through Sunday.

Local Color Gallery Reopens Featuring DiTa Ondek

“Daffodils on a Farm Table,” by DiTa Ondek, acrylic on canvas

Local Color Gallery announces a partial reopening, with hours from noon to 4 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Work by one of its new artists, DiTa Ondek, is currently featured in the space. Her work includes acrylic paintings with evocative colors, unexpected patterns of light and the sublime quality of ordinary objects. Canvases primed in purples and black evolve with fearless strokes and bright colors from drawings, plein-air sketches or photographs. She has developed a style of her own — moments frozen fresh and bright, impulsive and whimsical.

Ondek believes there is an inherent intimacy in everyday life, be it in the garden, the field or a farmhouse kitchen. Her intent is to draw the viewer into this vision of intimacy in the everyday.

Local Color Gallery is at 135 High St., Belfast. Updates are available at