‘Isolation’ at the BAA spotlights local artist Susan McCarthy

in Arts by

From staff reports

“Isolation,” the next show at the Beaufort Art Association (BAA) Gallery, will feature the work of Lowcountry artist Susan McCarthy.

The show will run from Jan. 5 to Feb. 26. An artist’s reception will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 8 at the Gallery at 913 Bay Street.

McCarthy, who moved to Beaufort nine years ago, maintains a studio at Atelier on Bay. She says her interest in art really started when she was young and lived in Pennsylvania close to Chadds Ford, the winter home of Andrew Wyeth.

In 1973, McCarthy and her husband Bill moved to central New Hampshire where they purchased an old inn in Tamworth. There she met an artist who had an incredible influence on the rest of her life – Barbara Fromm, who painted under the name of Willey Fromm. Well-known for her oil paintings and woodcuts throughout the state of New Hampshire, Fromm taught McCarthy to paint in oils in her impressionistic style; they worked together for 10 years.

McCarthy says her real love was not impressionism, but realism. She learned to paint with acrylics with another New Hampshire artist Ernie Brown and developed her own style, selling her work in area galleries.

A few years later, life became more complicated when they sold the inn and opened restaurants in the area. Then, their sons married and grandchildren became the focus. It would be more than 20 years before McCarthy returned to oil painting.

McCarthy loves painting area marshes and says her show is about the marshes, but also about isolation, both sought and imposed.

Besides McCarthy’s work, the work of other artists who are members of the Beaufort Art Association will be on exhibit, as well.

Chartered in 1957, the Beaufort Art Association is a tax-exempt membership organization. Currently, about 175 local artists belong, with about 65 of them exhibiting their work in the Gallery. To find out more, go to www.beaufortartassociation.com, or call 843-521-4444.