Regenerating an artist’s passion after loss: Fundraiser for Kevin Beers

Event has passed

    ROCKLAND — On October 21 and 22, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Blue Raven Gallery 374 Main St Rockland, will host a fundraiser with over 50 of Kevin Beer’s finest paintings on view and available to purchase, helping Kevin recoup his financial losses. He’ll be at the event to speak with supporters who may purchase his paintings of Monhegan, trucks, and other subjects — including the four paintings that survived the fire and a photographic replica of the panorama. They can also make a donation at the event, with 100% of the sales going to Beers.

    The tragic fire in Port Clyde Sept. 28 made national headlines when it was discovered that three paintings by Jamie Wyeth and one illustration by N.C. Wyeth were destroyed.

    As the local community mourns the loss of those works, it is also painfully aware that another artist — Rockland resident Kevin Beers — has suffered a devastating blow. Over the summer, the Monhegan Boat Line had been exhibiting 17 of Kevin’s oil paintings, including a 360-degree 16-panel painting, one of Kevin’s finest works.  All were of Monhegan, an island that Kevin has been visiting and painting for 40 years.

    When the fire ripped through the second floor of the Boat Line, it destroyed 13 of Kevin’s works. Four paintings that had been on display downstairs survived. None were insured. 

    Disasters leave behind many different kinds of loss, but the destruction of an artist’s work is uniquely tragic.

    There is, of course, mourning for the loss of the work itself, but also for the creative experience that brought it into being.

    “Art is created out of passion,” said Beers, in a press release. “You see something and you’re compelled to paint it.”

    He is particularly haunted by the loss of one of the paintings that was destroyed in the fire: a 16-panel panorama of a scene on Monhegan. The circular series of paintings, “always felt special to me,” he said. “It wasn’t calculated but evolved naturally.”

    It started with one small canvas on which he painted a house on a hill. Then he saw that he could expand the vision by adding a painted panel on one side, and then the other, until he had completed the entire circumference of the scene. To view the panorama, Boat Line visitors ducked underneath the ring of panels and spun around inside to marvel at the 360-degree view. 

    Blue Raven Gallery had already been showing one of Kevin’s large paintings, and he was pleased to be exhibiting at the Rockland venue. But now, as he struggles to comprehend this loss, he finds it especially gratifying to share his art at the fundraising event.

    “For me, it’s kismet. In the midst of all the chaos, everything gets regrouped,” said Beers. “What’s disorganized comes together and regenerates.” 

    * Art purchases and donations can be made by cash, check, or credit card. Payments for art purchases will be processed by Blue Raven Gallery which will provide buyers with a certificate of authentication. 100% of proceeds will be sent  to Kevin Beers.

    Event Date: 

    Sat, 10/21/2023 - 11:00am to 5:00pm
    Sun, 10/22/2023 - 11:00am to 5:00pm