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Helen St. Clair

Helen St. Clair

Helen St. Clair

New England gallery-goers need little introduction to Helen St. Clair or her immensely popular paintings. A St. Clair painting is subtle and atmospheric. In addition, she easily moves from figures to landscapes and still-lifes. Recently, she has also returned to collage.

According to arts writer Genetta McLean, Ph.D., “It is a pleasure to encounter the work of a pure painter. Helen St. Clair is one of these rare individuals. When you see her paintings, you sense what it is like to be in a lush world. It is her pure painting that transports you there.”

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New England gallery-goers need little introduction to Helen St. Clair or her immensely popular paintings. A St. Clair painting is subtle and atmospheric. In addition, she easily moves from figures to landscapes and still-lifes. Recently, she has also returned to collage.

According to arts writer Genetta McLean, Ph.D., “It is a pleasure to encounter the work of a pure painter. Helen St. Clair is one of these rare individuals. When you see her paintings, you sense what it is like to be in a lush world. It is her pure painting that transports you there.”

Educated at prestigious Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design, St. Clair spent the 1970s and 1980s in Albany, New York. In the mid-1980s, with children grown and husband Jerry retired, the St. Clairs relocated to an antique cape overlooking the bay and islands of Boothbay Harbor, Maine. With a studio of her own, and the solitude needed for painting, St. Clair blossomed as an artist.

Despite being one of Maine’s most successful artists, St. Clair still finds the process of painting exciting and full of surprises. Famously unassuming, St. Clair admits she finds it difficult to put into words the enthusiasm she feels while painting. Pressed to put together a few thoughts for her work, St. Clair says:  “The excitement of art is in the continual learning process. An unexpected response to even one brushstroke may lead to a whole new thought—and to learning more about oneself.  My moments of greatest enlightenment occur when I realize that I have understood the subject and the act of paintings it on a subconscious level.”

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