Madison Art Studio Celebrates 20th Anniversary With ‘Summer in New England’ Exhibit

Susan Powell's "Summer in New England" exhibit runs from June 23 to Aug. 12 at Powell’s gallery at 679 Boston Post Road in Madison. (CT Examiner)


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MADISON – The Fourth of July weekend is replete with numerous outdoor activities, from backyard grilling to spending time on the beach and watching the annual town parade. But for a quieter and more serene moment of culture, Susan Powell Fine Art studio is celebrating its 20th anniversary with the annual “Summer in New England” exhibit. 

The exhibit runs from June 23 to Aug. 12 at Powell’s gallery at 679 Boston Post Road, with an official opening reception on July 7 from 4 to 8 p.m. 

The “Summer in New England” exhibit has been an annual event since Powell opened the gallery 20 years ago after moving to Madison. 

“We have over 30 artists in the show,” said Powell, who has been an art dealer for over 40 years. “I curate all of the shows. I choose the subjects, I choose the artists, and then I market them. It’s exciting for me to see new works by artists I represent.”

Paintings in the exhibit range from cat boats on Long Island Sound to egrets to beach houses, and feature artists from New Jersey to Maine, she said. 

The “Summer in New England” exhibit includes a painting of cat boats on Long Island Sound.

Before the opening reception, award-winning pastel artist Jeanne Rosier Smith, of Sudbury, Massachusetts, will be doing a demonstration until 4 p.m. in the garden behind the gallery. Several of her works, including “High Rollers,” a pastel of waves crashing onto the shore, will be on display.

“She’s won the top first-place prize in the Pastel Journal,” Powell said.

Following the demonstration, food and wine will be served. Both free events are open to the public, Powell said, but people need to RSVP to attend the pastel demonstration through the gallery’s website,

“Many of the artists are here, and the public gets a chance to meet them and talk about their paintings,” she said.

Avon artist Kelly Birkenruth is also scheduled to be in attendance. Her painting, “Oyster Snack,” a still life of oysters on the half shell reminiscent of 19th-century still life works of Lilly Martin Spencer or Francisco de Goya, is on display.

Powell said children are more than welcome to attend the event and visit the gallery as well.

“I think a lot of families don’t know their children are welcome,” she said. “They have so many wonderful insights and they leave enjoying it, and I think it’s a nice thing to do with your family. Especially the demo, I think that would be a great interest. We get many young kids who do pastels.”

Paintings are available for purchase and can be reserved for pickup at a later time, Powell added.

The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The gallery can also be made available through appointment.