Gail Page
Greeting Cards


My background is fashion design. In 1970 I graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City and then worked on 7th Avenue designing dresses for Sue Brett Inc. While in New York I also worked for the Clover Embroidery Company designing butterflies, flowers, and other appliqués that we were sewing onto our jeans.

Realizing city living and the fashion business was not for me, I left to travel and three years later settled on the coast of Maine. The need to create was a constant in my life and I struggled with finding the right medium. Years of ‘on again/off again’ clothes designing and construction seemed to limit my creativity. Courses in creative writing and drawing provided avenues for my creative energies but it would be years before I would combine the two.

I began to paint small, narrative pictures but a course on textile design led me back to clothes and a line of hand-painted jackets, shirts, and dresses. Still feeling confined by my own fashion sensibilities I broke out into the broader realm of floorcloths. The functionability of a floor allowed me to remain eligible for craft fairs which was a key element in my marketing strategy. The floorcloths were paintings to be walked on and that concept broke the emotional as well as physical barriers that were holding me back from ‘just painting’. At a craft fair in Boston, two art consultants saw my floorcloths and commissioned me to paint 38 paintings and a mural for the Children’s Hospital in Boston. A couple of years later I received another commission for a mural and six banners for a Maine elementary school. The colorful, whimsical animals and people I use to depict a simple narrative lends itself well to the child’s world, and adults can easily relate as well.

Teapots were a constant theme throughout my paintings. Their obvious symbolic connotation of warmth, nourishment, and social comfort, and their womb-like presence, make for a natural affinity and understanding. In my paintings the teapot becomes a vehicle for the act of sharing, the giving and receiving, the care giver and the one being cared for. The teapot is a quick link for our needs and desires. I tried shaking the teapot theme, but to no avail, and now I happily include it when it makes it’s presence necessary.

My palette changed when I went through breast cancer. The muted, soft colors that I had become so accustomed to gave way to a bolder, brilliant range. I’m fascinated with the power of color and it’s ability to heal, which I became acquainted with during my own healing process. My series of energy circles came from the practice of visualizing colors while spinning my charkas to promote a healthy energy flow. I love giving color the primary role in my abstract paintings, and allowing emotions to emerge from colors in their own space and in relation to each other.

My reaction to 9/11 was to drag dead branches out of the woods and bring them back to life with color. Painting rings of color proportionately onto an organic shape was for me similar to designing clothes. The finished pieces are very sculptural and cheery.

Most recently, three new projects have developed for me.  Bloomsbury has offered me a contract to publish one of my children's books, of which I am both author and illustrator.  It will be released in the spring of 2006.  In April of 2004 I met my daughter in Vietnam and painted five murals in an orphanage in Saigon. This hopefully will lead to a series of 'Paint the Orphanages' projects and the establishment of an ongoing art program in this particular orphanage.  Thirdly, I've just purchased an 8 acre field of blueberries and will be growing organic blueberries so everyone can eat beautiful color and stay healthy.

 

Personal
Born in Sag Harbor, New York 1950
Moved to Brooklin, Maine 1974


Education
Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, New York 1968-1970
Basic Drawing – Robert Shetterly, Blue Hill, Maine 1991-1994
Painting- Daniel Hodermarsky, Deer Isle, Maine 1992-1993
Textile Design- Haystack, Deer Isle, Maine 1993
Pastel Class- Tom Curry, Brooklin, Maine 1993-1994
Life Drawing- Blue Hill, Maine 1995-present


Work
Painter and illustrator

Present
Painter, illustrator, and author.
Sales through commission, galleries, studio, and online.
 
2004
Painted five mural in the GoVap District Orphanage, Saigon, Vietnam
 
1994
Free-lance illustrator for Audio File Maganzine

2001
Percent for Art Project, Bridgton Elementary School, Bridgton, Maine

1999-2000
12’x4’ mural and six 3’x8’ banners.
Belfast Bearfest, Belfast, Maine 2000 “Mount Rushbear”.
Winner of the 1999 Poster Contest for the Maine Arts Festival, Portland, Maine
Boston’s Children Hospital, Boston,Ma.

1998-1999
38 paintings and a 3’x9’ mural.
Designer and manufacturer of floorcloths 1997-present.
Christmas card designer, freelance, Borealis Press, Surry, Maine.

1996
Designer and manufacturer of handpainted clothing,



Galleries and Shows
Bruno Gallery, Hancock Point, Maine 2003-04
L/A Arts, Lewiston Auburn College, Lewiston, Maine 2002-04
John Edwards Gallery, Ellsworth, Maine, 2004
Blum Gallery, College of Atlantic, Bar Harbor, Maine 2002-04
Elle’n, East Longmeadow, Ma. 2002-03
Café Outback, Brooksville, Maine 2002-03
The Gilley Museum, Southwest Harbor, Maine 2002
10x10 Show, Portland, Maine 2002-04
12x12 Show, Orlando, Florida 2001-02-04
8x10 Show, Ellsworth, Maine 2001-02-04
University of New England, Portland, Maine 2002-03
Frankies, Ellsworth, Maine 2001-02-03
Orlando Gallery, Orlando, Florida 2004
Davidson and Daughters, Portland, Maine 1999-2000
Maureen O’Connell Gallery, Cambridge, Ma. 1999
Turtle Gallery, Deer Isle, Maine 1999-2000
Grand Auditorium, Ellsworth, Maine 1995, 1999
Gayle Willson Gallery, Southampton, New York 1994-2000
Clark House Gallery, Bangor, Maine 1998
Handworks Gallery, Blue Hill, Maine 1998
Crafts at the Castle, Boston, Ma. 1998
Lincoln Center Craft Fair, New York, New York 1998
Bay School Winterfaire, Blue Hill, Maine 1995-1998
Directions, Bar Harbor, Maine 1998
Flemington Fair, Flemington, New Jersey 1998
Haddonfield Craft Fair, Haddonfield, New Jersey 1998
Harbor Square Gallery, Rockland, Maine 1997-present
Leighton Gallery, Blue Hill, Maine 1996-1997
McGrath-Dunham Gallery, Castine, Maine 1997
Between the Muse Gallery, Rockland, Maine 1996
Sandra Webster Gallery, Geneva, Illinois 1996

The 1998 summer issue of Good Housekeeping Do It Yourself Magazine features my floorcloths and me as a floorcloth artist.

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