Abbott Graves was an American artist who lived and painted in Kennebunkport during the early 20th Century. The Kennebunkport Historical Society just opened an exhibit of his paintings. The show runs from early June through Aug 30th, 2010. Graves was a prolific painter of buildings; he loved New England’s old homes. However, he also loved painting flowers and gardens. This exhibit features examples of both types of his work. Here is a link that will take you to a press release and descriptive write-up about the current exhibit; it is featured at Seascoastonline.com.
Bev and I learned about Abbott Graves when we first came to Kennebunkport and The Captain Lord Mansion32 years ago. We had a neighbor, Janet Gould, who lived in the 1799 home which is located next door to the Mansion’s Carriage House. Janet was a gracious, friendly neighbor; Bev used to take her fresh vegetables from our garden. On several occasions Janet gave us a tour of her home where we saw a large (approximate 30″ x 40″) Abbott Graves painting of two women on a summer day in a small row boat. The painting was rich in color and light. You could almost believe you were there in the painting experiencing that long-ago day as you looked at the painting. It was mesmerizing! Such was the talent and God-given ability of Graves. Janet claimed to know the women in the painting; Bev and I often wondered if one of the women was Janet herself! I took this image off the Internet and believe this is a copy of Mrs Gould’s painting. It was sold at auction after her death.
Bev and I know that you’ll enjoy spending a couple of hours visiting the Historical Society and seeing this exhibit. Rick Litchfield, your innkeeper