Molly Dee Celebrates 35 Years on Nantucket
July 29, 2021
Artist Reception & Exhibition
After receiving her master's degree in Fine Arts from the University of Buffalo, Molly came to Nantucket with her husband, Joe, on their honeymoon in 1960. It was then that she began painting images of the island. Years later, after raising her five children and teaching art in upstate New York for 27 years, she decided it was time to show her work. In 1986, Molly and her daughter Linda came to Nantucket with paintings in hand and hopes to find a gallery that would represent her.
Molly met Mary Beth Splaine, owner of South Wharf Gallery who represented her for over 20 years, until the gallery closed. Soon after, Cavalier Ebanks Galleries began representing Molly's work and continues to do so today. Molly's unique, large-scale work is inspired by old photographs that have been collected from estate sales, family collections and historical archives throughout the years. Her interpretation of personal historic images evolved from Molly's early fascination with photographs of her own parents, whom she had lost when she was very young.
The result of this intense experience was the beginning of a series of large canvases "Images of the Past." This body of work became the foundation of her now widely acclaimed style of painting, which is marked by nostalgia, memory, and now, the celebration of island life. Molly also paints commissioned pieces inspired by a client's own photographic collection.
"I don't attempt to paint the photographs as they are," Molly says. "Rather, I search and try to transcend time, to look in such a way so they become not just a man or a woman or a child but a faceless pulsation of human emotion."
Over the past 35 years, Molly has been featured in over 30 shows and exhibitions across the country, including galleries in New York, Colorado, Texas, Florida, Virginia, and of course, Nantucket, Massachusetts. Her work has been featured in the Inquirer & Mirror, "Victoria Magazine," "Coastal Living," United Airlines in-flight magazine "Hemispheres," and The Review.
Molly has watched Nantucket evolve over hte past three decades, but her love for the island never wanes. She continues to spend every summer on Nantucket with her family, including 10 grandchildren.
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