MERIDEN — Gallery 53 is starting the new year with a fundraising raffle and a new exhibit.
Gallery 53 will be raffling off two different styles of portraits — a house portrait and a pet “pawtrait.” Tickets are $5 each and the drawing will take place March 6 at 12 p.m.
Southington artist Jane White has specialized in watercolor house portraits for about 40 years. She will create the house portrait for the raffle winner.
“What I do is I go to the person’s house and I take photographs of the house, preferably with the owner because we all carry a view of our home in our heads,” White said. “... I make them walk back and forth in front of their property until we figure out that view that they carry in their head. (That is) their portrait of their house.”
Artist Rose Devlin, a Gallery 53 volunteer, will create the pet portrait using oil paint.
“Usually when I do them I work from a digital photo,” Devlin said. “Occasionally I work from a print … Sometimes pet owners will have millions of pictures of their pet and we’ll go through them and we try to select one that would best capture the pet’s personality.”
Gallery 53’s in-person and online exhibit, “Saying Goodbye to 2020: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly” will have its opening reception Feb. 6 at 1 p.m. and will run until Feb. 26. The gallery is located at 53 Colony St.
“This is an open media event, meaning that they could bring in any form of their medium and they did, which is really exciting,” said Sandy Goodyear, director of Gallery 53. “We have everything from textiles, regular paintings, photos, we have oil and pastel, watercolor, which I love. I’m overwhelmed with the show. It’s really fun.”
Since the show is also online, Goodyear said it has gained notice from people outside of the country.
“Somebody from Hungary saw this show listed and saw that we also do virtual shows and contacted Rose Devlin and asked if they could enter just the virtual show,” Goodyear said. “For the first time ever, our Gallery 53 show is going to have somebody from Hungary in it … The pandemic has changed a lot of the things that we do and the way we do it and I think some of it like this is for the good.”