I love coincidences. They make situations feel special and bring that little layer of magic into my life. I had a day long graduate seminar yesterday that ended with a nice gallery stroll down Commercial St in Provincetown, MA to Albert Merola Gallery, The Schoolhouse Gallery, ArtSTRAND, and Berta Walker Gallery. While in Albert Merola we were lucky enough to meet Pat de Groot and have her talk to us about her painting on view. This was not a planned visit, so it was gracious of her to be put on the spot and say a few words.
She’s a tiny woman in her 80s and she talked about how she paints what she sees every day from her window. Her paintings are all finished within one day because her aim is to capture the mood and the scene looking out on the bay. Her paintings are smaller in size for that reason and she applies her paint with a palette knife. What you can’t see in the reproduction above are the beautiful scratch marks made by the palette knife in the top half of the image.
The coincidence came in later that afternoon when I finally checked my email for the first time all weekend – residency will do that to you – and saw Pat de Groot’s name in one of the the subject lines. A contributor to Hyperallergic created a piece titled “Beer with a Painter: Pat de Groot” where she detailed a visit to the artist’s house and discussed de Groot’s fascinating history. It was so enjoyable to read about the woman I had met only hours earlier and I marveled at what a lovely and magical place Provincetown really is. If ever I had the chance to sit and have a beer with Pat de Groot, I would definitely jump at it.