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Portage Hill Art Gallery opening busy summer with Art Trail this weekend

May 25, 2016
Westfield Republican

Audrey and Donald Dowling, owners of Portage Hill Art Gallery, are prepared for an active summer. The Gallery schedule starts off with the Annual Chautauqua Lake Erie Art Trail (CLEAT) held on Memorial Day weekend from 10-5 both Saturday, May 28 and Sunday, May 29.

In addition to the Memorial Day Art Trail, this summer the gallery will be featuring a show of recent paintings, mixed media wall pieces, clay sculpture and functional ware by Audrey Kay Dowling in the gallery's skylight room.

The gallery's parlor and fireplace rooms will feature new work from the gallery's favorite artists as well as work by artists new to the gallery.

Article Photos

Submitted photo
Audrey Kay Dowling (left), Karen Glosser (center) and Nancy Ensign Nixon get ready for the upcoming ART HUB at Portage Hill Art Gallery for the Chautauqua Lake Erie Art Trail.

The CLEAT Art Trail events also have a fresh twist this year with designated "ART HUBS" locations where the work of several artists who have chosen not to show at their own studios will be exhibited. The Portage Hill Art Gallery is pleased to host three of these artists in Art Tents set up on the Portage Hill Art Gallery grounds. The three-juried CLEAT artists joining Audrey will be Nancy Ensign Nixon, Karen Glosser and Tim Sivertsen. They will be showing their new work and talking about their art processes along with Audrey Kay Dowling, who will be discussing her work in the gallery indoor Gallery spaces. There are also two other ART HUBS this year - in Thomas Annear's Studio and the Gate House in Fredonia.

CLEAT trail artist Nancy Nixon Ensign is a classically trained painter who will be sharing paintings subtly inspired by locations from her extensive travels. She has created sixty new quietly beautiful acrylic landscapes of New Zealand, Mexico, Lake Tahoe and Wyoming. She is pleased to have the opportunity to share these with CLEAT visitors.

CLEAT photographer Karen Glosser has been exploring layering with multiple exposure imagery and the occasional use intentional camera movement to capture her emotional reactions to her subjects. Several of her new pieces convey her love of the many moods of Lake Erie and the beauty of the local landscapes and woods. Karen is looking forward to sharing her photographic processes and the results of her experimentation.

The third CLEAT artist, Tim Sivertsen, is a veteran regional painter who started his painting journey many years ago studying under Revington Arthur on the grounds of Chautauqua and then receiving an art degree from Syracuse University. He has continued a lifelong commitment of capturing the human figure by using layering, abstraction, and sometimes even adding collage to his large expressive abstract paintings. Tim will also be including some of his unique one of a kind sculpted and painted large vessels for outdoor planting.

Audrey Kay Dowling is a well-known regional artist who has spent this year focusing on creating collage work, paintings, and clay work that reflect her deep love and commitment to clean water, garden flowers and pristine landscapes. The landscapes include several works inspired from local scenes and others from a recent camping trip to Maine's wild Schoodic Peninsula section of Acadia National Park. Audrey's Lake Erie cottage and its environment have also inspired many of her recent clay pieces.

Portage Hill Art Gallery will also be hosting another set if artists during the second CLEAT event on Aug. 20-21.

CLEAT trail maps are currently available at many of the trail locations, including Portage Hill Art Gallery. The maps will be available from all 24 artists during the trail weekend. More information and maps are available anytime from the CLEAT website:

The Portage Hill Art Gallery is also pleased to announce the expanded options of custom matting and framing available this summer with exciting new choices of frames and fillets to further enhance the impact of your art.

Also new this year in addition to our existing framing services, the Gallery will also offer small group or individual framing lessons led by our Larson Juhl certified framer, Donald Dowling, at our historic storefront at 9 West Main Street (Rt. 20) in the village of Brocton. The framing lessons are for people who would enjoy an informative, hands-on framing experience under Donald's guidance. If you do not want to participate in the framing process, Donald will do your framing for you after consulting with you to find the perfect choice for the piece that you want framed.

Portage Hill Art Gallery, located in a historic 1830s Greek Revival house at 6439 S. Portage Road (Rt. 394) midway between Mayville and Westfield., is a privately owned art gallery now in its 34th year of representing regional artists as well as serving as the studio and show space of artist Audrey Kay Dowling. More information about the gallery is available at or by calling 716-326-4478.



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