BAYarts displays local woman's memories of Maine

"Around the Bend" is among the paintings of Maine in Eliza Wing's exhibition at BAYarts this month.

Eliza Wing has lived in Bay Village since 1994, but ask her to talk about Maine and she admits, "I have always considered Maine my true home." It is this strong sense of home that Wing has conveyed in her artwork for the BAYarts exhibition, "Memory Served."

There's a reason why Maine is so cherished by Wing. "I've been going every summer for as long as I can remember and my father and grandparents before that," she shares. "It's in my heart. Monhegan Island, which has long been an artist retreat (since the early 1900s), was always a magical, faraway destination for me. We sailed the coast for weeks at a time and the island (which is about 10 miles off the coast) was always this faraway, alluring beacon. In recent years I've been lucky enough to be able to spend time out there plein-air painting and just capturing images that I want to use later in my studio." And the inspiration proved plentiful for her exhibition in the Diane Boldman Gallery. 

Thematically, the focus in most paintings draws on the sentimentality that roots and blooms from childhood. "These paintings are all from recent plein-air trips (the last few summers) but there are also many images of girls and young women. They are from photographs that I took and that resonated with me. The resonance is directly due to my senses as a young girl and a young woman."  

Images of the present still transport Wing to earlier days. A keen ability to tap into the place through senses is multiplied by the tremendous amount of life that Wing says Maine offers in its every moment. "All my senses are stimulated by Maine, the smell of the salt, the feel of the cool breeze, the crunch of mussel shells under my feet."  

What is impressed upon us in our youth often stays with us as we mature into adulthood. The pull towards home never leaves. Rather than deny it, artists like Wing are pursuing ways of honoring the feeling. "There is always (even when I am there) a sense of nostalgia, almost regret. Time passes doesn't it? I felt that same pull as I worked on these images."  

An opening reception will be held at BAYarts on Friday, Jan. 8, from 7-9 p.m. The artwork will be on display through Jan. 30. 

Jessica Stockdale


Read More on Arts & Entertainment
Volume 8, Issue 1, Posted 9:53 AM, 01.05.2016