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Jaffrey’s Monadnock Arts Auction draws variety of artists

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • "Easy Over" an oil and enamel painting by Ed Walters of New Ipswich, features a street musician playing piano, a scene inspired by a visit to New Orleans in the 1990s. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    "Easy Over" an oil and enamel painting by Ed Walters of New Ipswich, features a street musician playing piano, a scene inspired by a visit to New Orleans in the 1990s.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • "Boston Underworld," an oil enamel painting by New Ipswich artist Ed Walters, features the last known location of infamous mob boss Whitey Bulger in the Callahan Tunnel in Boston, before his 16-year disappearance.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    "Boston Underworld," an oil enamel painting by New Ipswich artist Ed Walters, features the last known location of infamous mob boss Whitey Bulger in the Callahan Tunnel in Boston, before his 16-year disappearance.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • "Campodimele," a oil still-life by Jeanne Duval of Jaffrey is one of the two paintings by Duval that will be auctioned off the Monadnock Arts Auction on Saturday night.

    "Campodimele," a oil still-life by Jeanne Duval of Jaffrey is one of the two paintings by Duval that will be auctioned off the Monadnock Arts Auction on Saturday night.

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

    Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night.

    (Staff photo by Ashley Saari)

  • Matt Patterson of New Ipswich, a wildlife artist, carved this representation of a Gadwall duck from basswood, and did the feather detailing with a wood burner. "Gadwall Duck" is one of  two pieces Patterson will have available for bidding at the Monadnock Arts Auction's live auction at the Shattuck Golf Club on Saturday night.

    Matt Patterson of New Ipswich, a wildlife artist, carved this representation of a Gadwall duck from basswood, and did the feather detailing with a wood burner. "Gadwall Duck" is one of two pieces Patterson will have available for bidding at the Monadnock Arts Auction's live auction at the Shattuck Golf Club on Saturday night.

  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • "Easy Over" an oil and enamel painting by Ed Walters of New Ipswich, features a street musician playing piano, a scene inspired by a visit to New Orleans in the 1990s. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • "Boston Underworld," an oil enamel painting by New Ipswich artist Ed Walters, features the last known location of infamous mob boss Whitey Bulger in the Callahan Tunnel in Boston, before his 16-year disappearance.<br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • "Campodimele," a oil still-life by Jeanne Duval of Jaffrey is one of the two paintings by Duval that will be auctioned off the Monadnock Arts Auction on Saturday night.
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Residents gathered at the preview of the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce's preview of the lots for this weekend's annual Monadnock Arts Auction on Monday night. <br/><br/>(Staff photo by Ashley Saari)
  • Matt Patterson of New Ipswich, a wildlife artist, carved this representation of a Gadwall duck from basswood, and did the feather detailing with a wood burner. "Gadwall Duck" is one of  two pieces Patterson will have available for bidding at the Monadnock Arts Auction's live auction at the Shattuck Golf Club on Saturday night.

A dark Boston tunnel a notorious crime boss uses to evade the FBI. A grumpy snapping turtle threatening to take a bite. A quiet, bucolic farm on the outskirts of Peterborough. Tomatoes of varied states of ripeness, sitting, waiting to be eaten. The artwork up for bid at this year’s Monadnock Art Auction is as varied as the artists themselves.

Winter weather didn’t stop art lovers from streaming in to the Jaffrey Civic Center on Monday night to get a first look at the collection of art that will be on the auction block Saturday at the Shattuck Golf Club. The Chamber of Commerce has been running the Monadnock Arts Auction for 11 years now, and each year they bring together in one show an astounding variety of artists and artwork, mostly from the surrounding area, but also from as far away as New Mexico . The pieces up for auction range from photo-realistic to abstract representations and everything in between, in both the silent auction at the civic center through Saturday at noon and at the live auction Saturday night.

Not every artist in the auction takes inspiration from real-life representations. Ed Walters’ work comes from his imagination.

Walter’s depiction of the disappearance of the infamous FBI informant and crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger from Boston, before the man spent 16 years at large, will be featured in the live auction. Walters, who often drives through the Callahan Tunnel in Boston where Bulger was last seen before his disappearance, became inspired by the lights of the cars flashing over the tiles and Bulger’s story.

“I’ve been through the Boston Callahan Tunnel many times, and it’s always intrigued me, the lights and the tiles as the cars go by and the feeling of being confined,” Walters, a New Ipswich resident, said. “I just like to play around with that idea. This is called ‘Boston Underworld,’ so it’s playing with the idea of the tunnel being the Boston underworld, and layered on the theme of Whitey Bulger.”

“Boston Underworld” is an oil painting that incorporates mixed-media and 3-D elements, which help to create depth on the wood surface. This is his signature style.

Walters hasn’t always incorporated metal and other elements in his paintings, he said. It became part of his process after he and his wife took a trip to New Orleans in the 1990s. He became inspired to add additional bits of plastic or metal to his paintings by the vibrant life he saw there, and these elements have become a staple in his work ever since.

“Easy Over,” Walters’ silent auction piece — also oil and enamel on wood — was more directly inspired by his trip to New Orleans, and depicts a street musician playing a piano.

“My wife and I were walking down the street one day and all of a sudden we heard this piano music, and there was this person playing a piano right in the middle of the street. In New Orleans, there’s music all over, and to me that was exciting.”

Walters combined the image of a street musician with an old sign he bought from a restaurant several years ago, which declares the restaurant can make “Eggs, any style.” The sentiment fit with the free-form style of the music he heard and the art he was trying to paint, Walters said.

Both of his pieces contain textured or three-dimensional elements, ranging from flat-mirrored surfaces that give the car whisking Whitey Bulger from the Boston underground headlights and chrome, to pieces of aluminum wire curling from a cafe sign’s coffee cup behind the New Orleans street musician.

Walter’s style differs dramatically from one of the best-known veteran Monadnock Arts Auction artists. Jaffrey’s Jeanne Duval’s work has been featured in New York’s Metropolitan Museum. She has exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions across the country. Her work has appeared in the auction every year for the past decade.

Duval can depict light in tiny gradations as the colors slip from light to shadow in such a way that many people think she works with glazes, Duval said in an interview at an Arts Auction held Monday at the Jaffrey Civic Center. But it’s all done with oil paints. Duval’s work has been described as hyper-realism, she said , but that’s not how she likes to think of it. She considers her work to be representational.

“I just paint what I see,” she said.

Duval said she is varied in her subject matter, painting landscapes, figures and still-life as the mood strikes her. But she has been submitting still-life work to the Monadnock Arts Auction almost every year she’s participated, she said. Duval never works from photographs, she said. She must have her subject sitting before her. Still-life is a big part of her work, she said, because she can create a sustained, controlled environment for her subjects with which to work from.

“I love to compose close to the edges,” Duval said of her still-life work. “A lot of it is about space and light and how the objects move throughout the rectangle. I like the tension of it. It’s a challenge and I like the challenge.”

Matt Patterson of New Ipswich is another artist that likes a challenge, and had to face one to pin down a model for a painting he submitted this year: a grizzled, old snapping turtle, painted with acrylic and stained with coffee, entitled “Snapper.”

He’s always been a fan of animals and art, Patterson said during an interview at the auction preview, and it came naturally to him to combine his two interests when it came time to choose a profession. Patterson was trained as an illustrator, and has published a field guide on fish, entitled “Freshwater Fish of the Northeast,” and has another one planned for reptiles.

Sometimes he is inspired to work on his art by the wildlife he sees around him, but other times the opposite occurs, and he must seek out his desired subjects, he said. Patterson said he was inspired to paint a snapping turtle earlier this year, and had to go looking for a suitable subject.

Patterson drove to Banky, a pond in New Ipswich, and spent the day hunting snapping turtles to take reference pictures. He successfully snagged a model for his painting, although the turtle lived up to its name, and Patterson was bitten for his trouble, he said.

“I got a picture right before it got me,” he admitted with a laugh.

His other submitted work, a wood carving, depicts a Gadwall duck. Both pieces are typical of his usual subject, Patterson said.

“I grew up painting and catching animals, so I’ve just continued to do that,” he said about his artwork.

Other artists try to capture more of the feeling of the moment, than a photo-realistic picture. Jaffrey artist Chris Reid’s works, one each for the silent and live auctions, are pastel landscapes, a specialty of Reid’s. Both contain the soft representations of her chosen venues: a Christmas tree farm in Hancock for the silent auction and Rosaly’s Farm Stand in Peterborough for the live auction.

She is attracted by interesting perspectives, and especially color and light. Rosaly’s Farm Stand in particular attracted her because she loves to paint gardens and gardening, she said.

The silent auction began Tuesday, and bidding continues through noon on Saturday at the Jaffrey Civic Center. The live auction will be held Saturday at the Shattuck Golf Club in Jaffrey, and is black tie optional. The reception will begin at 6 p.m. and the live auction starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $40 in advance or $50 at the door, and can be purchased at the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce, Steele’s Stationers in Peterborough or the Sharon Arts Center Craft Store in Peterborough. For more information, visit www.jaffreychamber.com or contact the Jaffrey Chamber of Commerce at 532-4549.

Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter at @AshleySaari.

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