As Spring is bursting forth in the beautiful Allegheny-Clarion River valley, so is the 2022 season of Allegheny RiverStone Center for the Art’s Red Brick Gallery surging with artistic vitality both with five new Cooperative Artists added to its roster and the opening exhibit of painter Paul Means. The exhibit featuring Paul Means’ paintings of Western Pennsylvania rural landscapes, wildlife, and portraits will be open weekends from Friday, April 8 thru Sunday, May 15 on the second floor of the historic Gallery on Main Street in Foxburg, PA overlooking the Allegheny River.
Bring your family and friends to the Meet the Artist Reception on Sunday, April 10 from 4:00 to 6:00 PM immediately following the 2:00 PM concert Poets of the Piano concert in Lincoln Hall with Nathan Carterette playing Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev. The Red Brick Gallery is located at 17 Main Street in Foxburg. The 2022 season Gallery Hours are Fridays 1:00 – 6:00 PM, Saturdays 11:00–7:00 PM, and Sundays 12:00–5:00 PM.
The mission of the Red Brick Gallery is to foster and present the work of Regional visual artists through rotating exhibits of guest artists in its upstairs gallery and the ongoing presentation of Cooperative Artist works in its first floor Gift Shop where offerings range from pottery, woven rugs and placemats, and fine silver jewelry to paintings, photographs, cards, stained glass - and much more! This is the perfect place to purchase thoughtful gifts for birthdays, weddings and anniversaries.
This season five exceptional artists join the RBG roster of Cooperative Artists: Kim Bissett, John M. Karian, Karen Mortland, Nissa Rappoport and Rachel Q. Stine. RBG Artistic Director Donna Edmonds said, “We are grateful to the many patrons who supported us during COVID. The Red Brick Gallery’s 2022 season promises to be more exciting than ever with six guest exhibits curated by Jason Floyd Lewis as well as the beautiful and diverse art of our five new Cooperative Artists - including fiber art, purses and accessories, sculpture, paper constructs, paintings and transcendent photographs of the Allegheny River Valley. We invite the public to stop by and discover the creative brilliance of artists in our midst.”
Artist Paul Means, featured in the first guest exhibit, had always wanted to be an artist; after a stint in the Air Force as a sign painter, he obtained formal training at the now defunct Ivy School of Professional Art in Pittsburgh, PA. This training expanded his skills in color theory, design and composition, which allowed him to experiment in many media and styles. Later working for a church restoration company for several years, Paul gained the skills of classic craftsman gold-leafing, wood graining, and marbleizing. This also allowed him to work with a team of artists on large-scale murals, mosaics and Tromp l’Oeil. Drawing from that experience, Paul, who currently resides in Butler, PA. has been self-employed as a decorative artist and muralist.
Paul’s numerous residential and corporate commissions include such diverse topics as a 10 x 15-foot mural of a Mennonite Barn raising, and two 23-foot long landscapes of Alaska and Africa created as a backdrop for a big game hunters’ collection of trophies. He has painted murals of Italian scenes in a breakfast room and coral reefs in a condominium in the Bahamas. A partial list of his clients includes executives from H.J. Heinz Co., Alcoa, and U.P.M.C.
Paul’s interests include painting scenes that have their roots in historical subjects, such as can be seen in his Civil War representations; however, he draws inspiration for most of his paintings from nature. Whether during his travels to Europe and in the Unites States or in his own backyard, Paul first captures moments in time through photographic imagery. He then uses a strong color palette and lighting effect to transform the subjects of his photographs into drawings, oil paintings and etchings always seeking to follow the advice of Impressionist Camille Pissarro who said “I paint because I can’t not paint. Don't proceed according to rules and principles, but paint what you observe and feel… One must have only one master– nature; she is the one always to be consulted.” It’s this concept of nature-as-master that Paul has always heeded; his muse is the world itself, and he seeks to better his skills so that he can better represent our world and the feelings he finds there.