Artwork

Artist Focus
William Padien

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My first memory of going to Block Island, RI was around five years old.  My grandparents had a house in Charlestown, RI and we would frequently take day trips from there in the summer.  I remember biking past the Surf Hotel, going to Mansion Beach and eating lots of ice-cream.

Block Island

Block Island

Block Island officially got under my skin Labor Day weekend, 1988.  My husband and I booked a room at a B&B at the last minute to escape hot Manhattan.  The B&B had thick shag carpet, a shared bathroom down the hall and a tiny room fan.  We were hooked.

First painting I bought

Our first Padien

Years later, I met my friend and neighbor Bill Padien, an artist on Block Island.  We met after I bought one of his paintings hanging on the wall of Winfield’s restaurant.  My husband loves to remind me how expensive that dinner was.  One painting that night and over the next fifteen years, three more…

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Bill Padien caught the Block Island bug in college and took it with him to Los Angeles, where he got his masters in fine art from the OTIS Art Institute/Parsons School of Design.  Upon graduating, Bill landed a job as the Assistant Curator at Gemini G.E.L. in LA.  Gemini G.E.L. is an elite artists workshop and publisher of limited edition prints and sculptures on Melrose Avenue.

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Bill was quickly promoted to Curator and stayed at Gemini G.E.L. for eight years, working closely with artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Susan Rothenberg, Richard Serra, and Robert Rauschenberg to name a few.

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His east coast roots and desire to spend more time on his art brought Bill back to New York in the spring of 1989.  He rented a cottage on Block Island that summer before heading to Manhattan.

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After completing sixteen paintings that summer, he realized how much the island inspired his art.  Bill continued to work for Gemini G.E.L. in NYC for the next few years as an east coast consultant.  He also traveled to Block more and more, ultimately moving to the island full time in the summer of 1991.

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Painting, bartending and starting a family kept Bill occupied for the next seven years.  In 1998, his wife Allison had the brilliant idea to open The Old Post Office Bagel Shop (thank you Allison!), an institution on the island.  The line out the door for their famous breakfast pastries, homemade bagels, delicious sandwiches and salads is legendary.  I don’t remember a time before the Bagel Shop!

Collection of Gail Ballard Hall

Collection of Gail Ballard Hall

A lot of people who visit Block Island know Bill’s familiar face from the bagel shop, but I still think of him first and foremost as a painter and someone quietly and impressively connected to the art world.

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Visit williampadien.com for more information about his background and his art.  I am putting aside my shekels for another Padien acquisition soon.  Tim, get ready!

William Padien

William Padien

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Artist Focus
Forrest Rodts

As It Should Be

As It Should Be

I have known Forrest Rodts since I was 21.  He is a great friend and VERY talented.  We met through his sister who I worked with at Bain & Company, my first post-college job.  At the time we met, I think Forrest worked in investment banking.  Luckily for all of us, he followed his passion and started painting full time.

Forrest Rodts

Forrest Rodts

Stars and Stripes

Stars and Stripes

What is your training?

“Self taught.”

Inside Out

Inside Out

When did you start painting?

I started painting in college.  I had always liked to draw, but started with paint freshman year, the fall of 1979.  I graduated with a Economics degree and a minor in Studio Art.  Pursued a career in Investment Banking, then Acting in New York, then started painting full time.

Sea Shelf

Sea Shelf

Why did you start painting / motivation?

I liked to draw and painting was the next possible progression, adding color to the creative process.  I also realized I was more suited to painting than banking or acting, I had a knack for it.

What Lies Ahead

What Lies Ahead

Where are some of your favorite place(s) to paint?

Anywhere there is water, but I especially love to paint on Nantucket.  I’ve spent most of my summers on the island and it’s the place closest to my heart.

4th of July

4th of July

What inspires you?

Light and the way it changes.  Especially how it plays off water.  Also memories, times from my past.

Shadow Crossing

Shadow Crossing

Do you paint everyday?

No.  My weekends are for my family.  As much as I love to paint, it is my job and I treat it as such.

After the Rain

After the Rain

Who has influenced your work?

Andrew Wyeth has had the biggest influence on my work.  I love the detail and the feel of his work.  There is such emotion in his painting and I try to elicit that as well.

Assessing the Surf

Assessing the Surf

Who is your favorite up and coming painter?

There is a young guy who lives in North Carolina who is a high school friend’s son who is really exceptional.  He mainly paints fish and birds, but is unbelievably talented.  His name is Ryan O’Sullivan.

Yacht Club Race Day

Yacht Club Race Day

Fantasy place to paint?

I would love to retire to the islands and finish my career painting the light blue waters and palm trees of the Caribbean.  Half the year in New England and half there.

Lit From Within

Lit From Within

Dream accomplishment / project?

I would love to be widely know for being a great painter, beyond Nantucket and the people I know.  Also, to have a painting that everyone recognizes as mine.  It would be nice to just paint what I want and not to worry about sales at all too.

Window Shell

Window Shell

Go-to inspirational cocktail?

Either a Gin and Tonic or Mount Gay and Tonic.  I’m a summer guy.

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Favorite summer activity, besides painting?

I’m a beach person.  My favorite thing to do is to be at the beach with friends and family.

Crossing At Great Point

Crossing At Great Point

Are you working on anything now?

I am always working on something.  There is always something on the easel or an idea in my mind for the next work.  Currently I am finishing work for a show on Nantucket on July 10th at Quidley and Company Gallery.

Forrest Rodts

The artist!

Forrest has original works at Quidley and Company Gallery on Nantucket and Granary Gallery in West Tisbury on Martha’s Vineyard.  He can be reached directly through his website:

forrestrodts.com

and his Facebook page:

ForrestRodts

and his Instagram account:

@forrestrodts

 Some of Forrest’s paintings are available in print form (see on his Facebook page under “prints make great gifts”) and he will also do a commission painting if you are interested.  Father’s Day is coming up!  A painting or print of one of his great pieces would be a wonderful gift.

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Memorial Day Giveaway

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Time for a summer GIVEAWAY.  This little 16″ x 16″ painting could be yours!

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I have used these colorful landscapes in a lot of rooms.

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Bedrooms.

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Living rooms and an office.

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Office

Office

In this office, the painting determined all of the fabric and furniture colors: orange and blue.

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These colorful landscapes get me in the mood for summer!

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So, if you would like a chance to hang one of these paintings in your home, enter my Memorial Day GIVEAWAY.

16" x 16" Giveaway Painting

16″ x 16″ acrylic on canvas Giveaway Painting

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Email me at: liz@thewryhome.com to enter.  Please put The Wry Home Giveaway in the subject line and let me know if there is anything that has inspired you from reading the blog or newsletter.  Please sign up for my newsletter if you haven’t already!

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I will announce the winner the week of May 25th in the next The Wry Home blog post.

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Happy Memorial Day weekend!

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Paintings

"Cow Love" by Ivy Becker

“Cow Love” by Ivy Becker

In my quest for reasonable redesign, I have lucked out finding great paintings.  I’ve picked up gems at trunk shows, antique stores, consignment shops and art fairs.  My parents had a friend who took up painting late in life and did two beautiful portraits of my girls.  A few of my friends paint and have given me a painting or two over the years.  It may not be everyone’s style because it can get eclectic pretty quickly.  But I love the history that goes along with each one.

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My college roommate kicked off my collection with her donation of the cow/love painting for graduation.  Her “Happy Birthday” painting for my 25th quickly followed, as well as “Blue Skyscrapers”.  30 years later, I still have them hanging.

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My friend Ron Chavers painted this floral arrangement.  I fell in love with it when we were having dinner in his Manhattan Beach home.  He handed it to me on the way out the door.  Ron has the matching painting in his Cosmetix West lobby in California.  Absolutely love it.

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S. Randle painted these Venice Palms that I picked up at an Abbot Kinney art fair.

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When we moved to Charlotte, I found these two lemon paintings by Christina Dowdy at a trunk show.  I hang them in our bar so everybody can see them.

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This painting of a man feeding the pigeons by Joseph Barber is so sweet.  I have it on a small wooden stand in my living room.  Discovered it at an antique store in Charlotte.

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Charlotte Forest painted the yellow abstract (above) and this crazy red person.  Very different, but both fun!

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Beth Keim (Lucy and Company) painted this to match a bedspread when she was helping us redecorate our guest room.

Apples #1 and #2 by Beth Rundquist

Apples #1 and #2 by Beth Rundquist

I saw these two small paintings at a friend’s trunk show and grabbed them before anyone else could!

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My parent’s dear friend, Bill Muysken, painted these two portraits of my girls.  He took up painting after he retired and fell in love with it.  Bill managed to capture both of their personalities perfectly.

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Mike Bryce is a Rhode Island artist and paints landscapes that I cannot stop buying…..  The two above are tiny, only 5.5″ square.

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Another Mike Bryce in my office.

Painting by Bill Padien

William Padien

I did a blog post (see here) on Bill Padien this June.  He captures Block Island beautifully in his paintings.

Consignment store find!

Consignment shop find

I like the casual look of an unframed painting, so I usually don’t frame any of mine.  If they come framed, great!  If not, it can really save a lot of money to leave them alone.  For some reason, all of this works well in our home.  A chaos of color, but I love it!

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