Virtual Gallery: “By the Waters of the Winds” Artwork by Maureen Egan
Monday, March 1, 2021 – Wednesday, March 31, 2021
During the month of March, the Camden Public Library will host midcoast artist and author Maureen Egan for a virtual art show entitled By the Waters of the Winds. The exhibit is accompanied by a Zoom program (recorded during the live presentation on March 11), featuring the screening of a film by Egan and her husband, Tim Seymour, which documents an eight-day hiking adventure in Wyoming that served as inspiration for the artwork in this show. Egan begins the evening by describing her art-making process, and both answer audience questions at the conclusion of the film. Click below to watch.
In this, my second show at the library, I’m excited to feature work completed over a two year period, inspired by two wilderness trips to the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming that I took with my husband, Tim Seymour in 2017 and ‘19. Backpacking brought me face to face with stunning landscapes, dramatic weather, and my physical limits. I experienced each day as a series of simple events: I woke, dressed, ate, broke camp, walked, snacked, walked more, made camp, ate again, dug a hole to relieve myself, and finally, slept. I naturally learned to sync the rhythm of my breathing with my movement, and to conquer a long, steep pass by taking hundreds of small steps. Eventually, I grew more comfortable about being at altitude, plunging into glacial waters, and dealing with all the uncertainties (weather, bears, exhaustion, to name a few).
Back home in the studio, I relived the most vivid scenes in order to recreate them to share with those who want to be reminded of or inspired by such places. We are so privileged to have vast swaths of wilderness in this country, and I hope to encourage others to experience some of them. Face your fears (of grizzly bears, cold nights on hard ground, and jagged trails), because when you do, I promise that your bravery will spill over into other parts of your life.
My childhood near fields and woods in southern Massachusetts, and my Jesuit education (College of the Holy Cross) fueled a love of the land and a curiosity about the intricacies of the human soul. These settings gave me the foundations of wander and wonder, but it wasn’t until I moved to Maine as a young adult in 1983 that I discovered my heart’s home and my calling as an artist, initially using pastels to make still lifes and to illustrate a column for Down East Magazine, and then, after 15-year hiatus, to paint acrylics on canvas, starting in 2007.
I am drawn to color, light, and imagery, inspired by the post impressionists, especially Pierre Bonnard, Paul Gaugin, and Van Gogh; the Canadian painters in The Group of Seven; and the trailblazers and storytellers of the modern movement like Georgia O’Keefe, Marc Chagall and Marsden Hartley.
Each of my paintings evolves over many studio sessions and is driven by a storyline that combines real and imagined places that inform the colors, symbols, and composition of the work. I journey into the scene, seeking the nuances of the story, listening and responding to what I sense should be expressed. The process is healing for both me and the viewer, who is invited into the scene to be moved, soothed, and rooted in the reassuring and timeless strength of beauty.
These and other images are available as giclees prints on eganart.com