2018-09-13 / Front Page

‘LIKE YOU’RE A KID AGAIN’

Calvert Place woman among eight artists mentored
BY JEREMY CULLEN


Calvert Place’s Wooley Dutton mixes colors Tuesday morning during a weeklong residency at the Jamestown Arts Center. Eight artists, including Dutton, were mentored by Theresa Girard during the residency. PHOTOS BY ANDREA VON HOHENLEITEN Calvert Place’s Wooley Dutton mixes colors Tuesday morning during a weeklong residency at the Jamestown Arts Center. Eight artists, including Dutton, were mentored by Theresa Girard during the residency. PHOTOS BY ANDREA VON HOHENLEITEN Eight artists, from Chicago to southwest Florida, have been sheltered in a studio since Monday, spending upwards of eight hours a day with only their creativity, and the tools needed to release that imagination.

What they crafted will be unveiled tomorrow night, including work from Calvert Place’s Wooley Dutton.

The culmination of the weeklong residency is from 6-8 p.m. Friday at the Jamestown Arts Center, 17 Valley St. Dutton, along with her seven sidekicks, performed under the watchful eye of Theresa Girard, a Providence painter and color expert. While the eight students worked, Girard and her team mentored, inspired and challenged the octet.


South Kingstown artistic coach Kevin Gilmore gives his feedback Tuesday morning to work by Chicago painter Dana Killion at the arts center. Calvert Place’s Wooley Dutton paints in the background. South Kingstown artistic coach Kevin Gilmore gives his feedback Tuesday morning to work by Chicago painter Dana Killion at the arts center. Calvert Place’s Wooley Dutton paints in the background. “It’s almost like you’re a kid again,” Dutton said. “It’s just a lot of fun.”

The Jamestown Art Center’s expansive gallery was transformed into a workspace for five days, allowing the artists to focus completely on their work.

This residency brought them together away from their usual environments so they could bounce ideas off one another. The critics, including Girard, Kevin Gilmore and Ellen Rolli, taught techniques while challenging the artists to take risks. They also evaluated the work.

For 40 years, Dutton worked in the world of marketing and advertising, including her own business, Union Pearl, working with outfits ranging from Downy to the U.S. Department of Defense. Her passion, however, was put on the back burner as she worked 60- hour weeks.

“I’ve wanted to paint from the day that I was born,” she said. “But I needed to earn a living.”

During the last two years, however, Dutton has retired and built her own studio, solving both her time and space problems.

“I always felt that I needed to paint,” she said.

Dutton initially wanted to become an art teacher, earning a college degree in the subject, along with math. Instead, she entered the marketing industry, leading to a career of realism and strategy.

Now that she’s retired, she’s exploring the abstract, which allows her to go anywhere she wants. Dutton said she is learning different mediums by experimenting. By participating in residencies like Girard’s, along with taking classes, Dutton said she is becoming a better artist every day.

Yet, her feelings toward painting have not changed at all.

“It’s hard to explain, but I know I’ve always wanted to paint,” she said.

Other residency artists include Judy Chaves, Middletown; Mark Jensen, Tiverton; Susan Petree, Newport; Christina Rotelli, Narragansett; Tammy Staab, Naples, Fla; Michelle Mara, Mystic, Conn.; and Dana Killion, Chicago.

They were selected through a jury process.

Their work, along with Dutton’s, will be unveiled Friday night alongside live music, food and wine. Admission is free.

Most of the art completed at the residency will be for sale, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Jamestown Arts Center. Also, an original painting by Girard will be raffled.

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