Meet the Artists!

ArtistsLooking to break out of your winter-induced depression? Put a little art into your life.

This Saturday, February 2 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., and the first Saturday of every month marks open studios at Western Avenue Studios, a chance to meet and mingle with the 200 artists who hone their craft in those old mills at 122 Western Ave. and purchase some art to brighten your home or office.

On a smaller, but just as impressive scale, the public is invited to visit with the 13 artists of the Brush Art Gallery and Studios Wednesday through Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

As a primer before heading out into an adventure in the Lowell art world, check out the third episode of “Artists of Lowell: Their Stories,” a documentary series from Subes Acharya, his wife Soumita Acharya and Peter Tsaklis from Lowell Telecommunications Corp, highlighting the work, inspirations and challenges of Lowell’s artists.

This episode profiles oil painter J.J. Long and Pamela Wamala, who paints in pastels.

Long, a full-time artist who earned a bachelor’s degree in oil painting from the University of New Hampshire, can be found in studio 518 at Western Avenue Studios. His work ranges from realist landscape and street scenes to more surreal fantasy pieces.

In an effort to keep art affordable for everyone, he not only sells original pieces on canvas, but also prints, posters, calendars and mugs that feature his work.

His work will be exhibited at Brew’d Awakening Coffeehaus on Market Street in April.

Wamala has a studio at the Brush Art Gallery and Studios on Market Street. She began painting with her grandfather in Maine at the age of 5 and hasn’t looked back since, creating beautiful, peaceful landscapes in pastels.

She said her goal in creating a piece is “capturing the feeling of a place through color and composition” and she prefers pastels due to their “buttery” nature and rich colors.

Wamala also started the Elder Art Initiative, a program through which she and other artists conduct art workshops for nursing home residents.

Previous episodes profiled artists Debra Bretton Robinson, Rachel Kowalik, Gay Tracy and Frank Tadley.

Subes Acharya said the purpose of the series is to help the artists market themselves both in and outside of the city and to serve as a learning tool for young people who are considering an art career.

The series is part of an effort spearheaded by the Acharyas and assisted by Tsaklis to “rebrand” Lowell and erase some of the inaccurate negative perceptions of today’s Lowell.

In addition to the artist profiles, they are also working on a larger documentary project focused on highlighting the evolution and successes of Lowell over the last five years. Check out www.brandlowell.com.

For more information contact Subes Acharya at 508-395-6379 or by email at thenetsearch@gmail.com.

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