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March in the Matz Gallery

Alice Gardner began her art career in 1989 when she took a watercolor class with Miles Batt in Arlington, Vermont. Miles was a very non-traditional watercolorist who used bright bold colors in playful and unusual compositions. He was adamant that no one in the class should even think about painting a barn. “There are enough barns. I want you to paint something out of the ordinary.”

Over the years Alice has taken many workshops with artists such as Don Andrews, Carlton Plummer, Robert Burridge, Mary Whyte, and Skip Lawrence. She also returned to study with Miles Batt. She likes to work in gouache, pen and ink, and acrylic. She likes bold flat color and black line.

Alice has always been fascinated with what makes people happy. For her, it is the circus, carousels, Ferris Wheels, Swan Boats, parades, and holidays – places and occasions where people gather to enjoy life. Alice’s paintings are mostly set in Cape Ann or Boston, Massachusetts.

A member of the Rockport Art Association, North Shore Art Association, and Guild of Beverly Artists, she has received many awards including the Carleen Muniz Award, in 2012, from the North Shore Art Association.

Recently, Alice wrote and illustrated a children’s book called St. Peter’s Fiesta. The book was published in June 2017, in time for the 90th Anniversary of St. Peter’s Fiesta in Gloucester, Massachusetts.

Artist’s Statement

My art is about painting joyful, spirited moments in people’s lives using bold color and simple shapes.

What makes people happy? Riding a carousel at the Frog Pond or Greenway? Climbing aboard the quiet, graceful Swan Boats? Perhaps buying a balloon animal from the balloon man, watching the annual Duckling Parade, or attending the Fourth of July concert on the Esplanade?

I keep the initial drawing for my paintings as simple as possible, with distinct shapes. Then I paint with bold primary colors in gouache. After the paint has dried, I cover the entire painting with India Ink and then wash it off to reveal unpredictable and often exciting textures. I finish the painting using gouache and some acrylic.

It is my hope that my paintings bring joy, a little whimsy, and memories of fun times.