Sherry Ashby began Paint Eastport Day by setting up a booth of artworks and handmade jewelry at the Lubec Farmers’ Market, then as the shoppers waned, quickly packed up and headed for her boat to journey over to Eastport to get working. With her boxful of art supplies, Ashby headed straight for Trecartin Avenue, home of the late Arthur Cadieux, to paint a part of Eastport dear to her heart—Arthur’s door. Using Golden acrylic paints bequeathed by Cadieux’s son Adam, Ashby sat in Arthur’s yard and experimented with his paints. “It was really just about honoring him and spending the day with him,” said Ashby, who recalled Paint Eastport Days past when Arthur would invite her over for a respite from the day’s work and the two would enjoy a coffee and cigarette together. “I enjoyed any time I spent with Arthur and wish I had taken him up on more of his invitations, but I had a young family at the time and usually rushed back to them, but on Paint Eastport Day there was no rush, I had all day.” Ashby mentioned that this was her first Paint Eastport Day in three years after separating from her husband. She and Cadieux both attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and were Eastport Gallery members. Ashby, who was known at the time by her married name, Sherry Ashby Cunningham, found that Arthur’s door was always open to her when she was in town for ‘art stuff.’ “Arthur called me the first summer I was on my own, just to ask me if the kids and I were getting enough to eat,” she recalled. Ashby found the hot and sticky weather during the event, coupled with the slower drying time of the Golden paints challenging, but also felt closer to Cadieux through the experiment. “The funny thing about having his paints is learning about how his mind worked with color. “It's just color opposites,” he would tell me … now I get what he meant. Many of his colors were from the tube and he worked direct (didn't mix all of them on a palette); I found myself using my fingers to apply the paint in the end.” Ashby’s painting was part of a very successful Paint Eastport Day which boasted 52 artists (up from the count of 43 of the last two years) and 61 works sold to an exuberant crowd of bidders. Of nearly $3,389 paid for the works, $1,155 was raised for the gallery; a few of the artists generously donated their entire share to the gallery, which usually receives 30% of the sales. The high bidder on Ashby's piece, a Texan, was pleased to hear the tale behind her auction find. More information about Ashby and her work may be found at More information about the Eastport Gallery can be found at or…. For more stories like this one, and news about ongoing and upcoming events, sign up to receive Eastport Arts Center's free weekly email newsletter here:

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Coleman R. Brice

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