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  • Investing in the next big name artist in Maine: Ramona du Houx

    By Lisa Crothers

    How do we spend wisely considering factors like: a still unstable economy, droughts causing food supplies to increase – only to name a couple of things here. We still want to make investments and decorate our homes, so what can we do if we cannot head to Christies and bid on that Monet? As patrons of the Arts and Humanities commitment and investment are the grounding principles. A few years ago when I became invested in the arts community, I took down all of the “reproduced art” in my living space, recommitting myself to original art. My walls are still pretty bare, but the satisfaction is in knowing that over the years, piece by piece, careful selection by selection, I will have invested in the arts and the economy.

    What does that have to do with Investing?

    Invest in local art!

    It goes back to spending wisely. Investments in original art can often bring in a nice return. I am pasting a link here for a great article written in The Telegraph – “Investing in art: how to make money by discovering the next Monet”

    Where do I find artist to Invest in?

    Finding artists can be easy if you know where to look. Finding art you love and can see sustaining itself in the future takes more time – but you can do it. A great place to start meeting artists is local art shows and festivals. Artists love to talk about their work and want to sell to people who care about their pieces; they want to know their work is going to a good home. You also want to invest in artists who care about their work and who you know will be making art for a long time.

    One one my favorite places to meet artists is the famous Art Walks. Cities large and small across the country have established calendars and galleries who participate in such events. Many times the displaying artists can be found enjoying the positive energy.

    A great Art Walk I have mentioned on this site before is the First Friday Art Walk in Portland, Maine. This Art Walk tends to be more like a festival with different types of music on street corners, sidewalk art sales and refreshments in many of the participating galleries. What you will also find at the August 1st Portland Art Walk is Art at The Constellation Gallery, 511 Congress Street Portland, Maine – by a spectacular artist worth investing in: Ramona du Houx

    RAMONA DU HOUX takes photographs with a painter’s eye. The technique she discovered in 1979 uses the camera’s motion to create a sense of being personally closer to an object through colors, textures, memories, and the seasons by capturing the energy of nature. People, animals, building, landscapes … literally everything becomes visibly interconnected as they merge in, what she calls, a Lightgraph. Gallery Storks of Tokyo, Japan, represents Ramona’s work. She’s exhibited her fine art photography internationally and in cities along the US Eastern seaboard, including New York.

    “The Greek philosopher Heraclitus wrote, ‘You can’t step into the same river, twice.’ Today, most of us are too busy to contemplate how much nature’s motion surrounds us, or is within us. We don’t normally see how interconnected rhythms of nature are apart of us. Modern society plugs us into the Internet, and that can open doors, but sometimes too much of being Internet connected disconnects us from the mysteries of the natural world that can be transformational. Scientists, innovators and inventors throughout history took the time to observe nature and her interconnected rhythms,” said Ramona. “I would like to show how nature’s interconnectedness can lead us to discoveries about our world and ourselves.”

    Lisa Crothers is an independent community educator, passionately advocating for the arts & humanities. She teaches courses in both English and the Humanities at the higher education level. Her ongoing insights about Maine art can be found on her blog here.

  • Ramona du Houx's December exhibit at Berry’s continues until February from popular demand

     by Morgan Rogers

    The inside gallery at Berry’s, 153 Main St, downtown Waterville, features the artwork, Ramona du Houx. Due to popular demand the show, which started in December continues throughout January.

    Ramona du Houx creates fine art photography that looks like watercolor paintings evoking mystery and a sense of wonder. Some find them nostalgic and some mystical. Many have said the images have a healing nature. See more at www.photographybyramonaduhoux.com.

    Ramona is currently represented by Gallery Storks of Tokyo, Japan and is also a member of the Maine Artist Collaborative and the Harlow Gallery. She currently has another exhibit until the end of the month at the Constellation Gallery, 511 Congress Street, in Portland, Maine.

    “For me art reflects where we live in our communities, as well as where an artist is in their heart, mind and soul,” said Ramona. “In 1979 I began to paint with my camera to depict the interconnectedness of nature. I took the initial results to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where they recorded them long ago. The continuing results have been unpredictable, intriguing, and thought provoking.”

    The photographic watercolor technique is always a challenge.

    “I never know exactly what the results will be, that’s the exciting part of the creation,” said du Houx. “I believe every photograph has an audience, someone the work will speak to personally.”

    Buying a piece of art is a lifelong investment. To be able to be transported to another place and time or to find peace by viewing at art is a priceless experience.

    Often people don’t realize the time and expense artists put into their work.

    “How can anyone put a price tag on the time it has taken for any artist to achieve the level of expertise they have obtained to create the work they do?” asked du Houx. “People need art, like food. Art fills the soul in a way nothing else can.”

    The matting, framing and production materials are expenses artists make daily and they add up fast. Many Maine artists barely break even and most have other jobs to support their artistic passions.

    Du Houx is selling her works displayed at Berry’s at a 30 percent discount. “I’d like them to find homes, here in Central Maine,” she said. 

    Locations like Berry’s, throughout the state, offer special opportunities to local artists. They fill the void. 

    “We do what we can,” said Michael Giroux owner of Berry’s. “Waterville has a great community and were honored to be a part of it.”

    Berry’s show space offers local artists a friendly venue to exhibit their work and a way to continue to grow Waterville’s creative economy. With Colby College’s new museum, and Common Street Arts, Waterville is gaining momentum and attention as a place to visit for art.

    Berry’s is open Monday thru Friday from 9:00am – 5:00pm. And Saturday from 9:00-3.00pm.