A week ago today we were opening up the trailer and unloading paintings for the Granary show. After a whirlwind of a week on Martha’s Vineyard we are taking our time coming back down to earth. I wanted to share a few pictures with you here for those who could not make it to the island. Unfortunately, my new pocket camera was not working as hoped so we have only a couple pics from the actual opening. I managed to get more the next day and have included them.
We left a day early as our dear friend Polly was ailing. She had celebrated her 95th birthday the week before and we sadly got the news a few hours into our trip that she had died. We were grateful to be there that evening with her husband Ted and their son Terry and share some tears and some stories and begin to celebrate her wonderful life. (As a tribute, we all wore a necklace of Polly’s to the opening.)
Here she is on her birthday with Katie as they help sort strawberries for her traditional birthday shortcake.
The rest of Day One
With the early morning start, we were first in line for the ferry by 4pm.
Day two …
I pine all year long for Chef Hesi’s sushi at the Net Result in Vineyard Haven. He is a master and a kind, creative soul. Dragon Rolls are his specialty and a must if you’re on the island. Stop in and tell him I said hello.
This trip we reconnected with our friend Marni and stayed at her wonderful B and B in Vineyard Haven. She had our tree top room ready for our late arrival complete with fresh flowers and her gentle hospitality. A couple days into the visit Sid and Peg arrived to share in the adventures. Here we sit on Marni’s porch with one of her magnificant breakfasts before us. She makes a loaf of fresh bread for each visitor every night and I can attest to the extra mile that she goes to which made us feel both comfortable and at peace.This link will take you to her web site, and maybe someday to her door…http://www.marnishouse.com/
It was such a grand treat to have three days with S and P. Their love and support has carried us through many decades and to get to play on the island with them was a rare gift.
We had a detour in our show week on Sunday morning as we drove out the long sandy road on the atlantic side of the island to meet up with Tappan Heher, a filmaker who contacted me about including some of my artwork in his current production, Mistover, a remake of Thomas Hardy’s The Return of the Native…which was filmed on Martha’s Vineyard. I’ll be posting a separate entry on this project and some of Tappan’s other works but in the meantime here is a pic of Tappan and friends solving all the problems in the world.
The parking lot was full when we drove up and the first great surprise was seeing my oldest friend Stephanie walking across it. Steph was my first supporter from our days in junior high school in Swarthmore, PA. Through the years she and her husband Tim and two growing gentleman sons have become among my top patrons and I can’t tell you what it was like to see her there…WITH her sister Julie, husband and son AND her mother, Mrs. IP ! Blew me away, and broke my heart when they had to leave early to make a ferry. I think Steph got some pics to prove their attendance which I will post here when they come but in the meantime here’s a pic of the Hunter family when they visited the studio last month…
It is always tense when an artist first walks into an opening. Will anyone show up ? Will anything sell ? For this show there was a yes to both and the welcomed red dots took a back seat to the welcoming crowd. Since I don’t have but a couple pics to give you the feel, I’ll just add a thank you to all the friends who took the time to come out on that steamy summer night, and to all those whom I met for the first time who were gracious with their kind words and encouragement. Both Pat and I continue to be amazed by and humbled at the vineyard audiences who go out of their way to greet us and the work with such positive energy. Feeds this artist’s soul all winter.
Among this year’s audience was the Diva herself….Suede ! Another surprise, and I must say a very special one. Suede is a renowned performer and we have enjoyed her music for decades…As Pat told her, long before there was electricity !… She has a new album out with her Dangerous Big Band and it became a favorite when I was preparing for my show this year, as I turned up the volume and danced to her sultry jazzy blues while varnishing and framing. We had exchanged a few emails wherein I congratulated her and then, after seeing the new work on my website she congratulated me, and said she might come to the show. Well, as a fan, I thought …dream on.
But mid-way through the evening, across a crowded room…there she was in the gallery, with some wonderful friends who flew in for the event ! Yep, a bit star struck was I, but very soon settled into feeling like old friends. We got one blurry pic but the memories are crystal clear.
I encourage you all to check out the new music at her web site and buy several copies www.suedewave.com
And now, here are the rest of the pics from the show. Our special thanks to all the staff at the Granary Gallery. They are so generous and professional and make the work shine.
I’ve got lots more to share but this is enough to give you the flavors and colors.
The show will hang along with the work of fellow artists, David Wallis and Ken Vincent,
for the rest of the summer at the Granary Gallery . You can also keep track of the new paintings and soon to be updated exhibitions schedule at my website www.heatherneill.com . Much more later, but for now…it’s back to the real world and the lawn that needs my attention.
Be safe, and stay cool… HN