May 31, 2007


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Monique Sakellarios shows her unique painting style locally and around the country
By Heidi Masek

Monique Sakellarios says she didn’t really expect to be a professional painter. Yet 25 years later, she is represented by 20 galleries across the country and participates in national juried shows.

She travels to Europe to paint, and studied at Leonardo Da Vinci School of Art in Cairo, Egypt. But for all her international ties, she’s very attached to her own Nashua gallery and the region she’s inhabited for 37 years. Her activity with the downtown revitalization group, Great American Downtown, led her to get involved with Art Walk Nashua.

Those Art Walks have helped more people discover her cozy space, called Maison de L’Art, at 57 East Pearl St., formerly the headquarters of the Nashua Area Artists Association. You can also see her impressionist oils at the Nashua Library during Art Walk, Saturday, June 9.

Sakellarios’ technique is very much her own. Save for the drawing and advertising painting classes she took in Cairo, she is self-taught. She uses a wet-on-wet oil technique, and tries to finish a painting in a day or two, to remain in the same mood she started it in. Her paintings are often distinguishable by her color themes; she prefers warm colors. She starts each painting with a red canvas, and loves purple. Even her winter scenes include some warmth, such as leftover fall leaves.

She seeks to portray intimacy in her paintings, and chooses landscapes or places that are usually overlooked.

“I like to make [viewers] notice things they do not notice otherwise,” Sakellarios said. A painting of hers should give the viewer something to dream about. “I want something that people are going to look at and say, ‘I wish I was there,’” Sakellarios said.

In Manchester, Sakellarios is displaying the product of two weeks of painting in southern France at the Franco-American Centre, 52 Concord St., Manchester, 669-4045, through July 1. Sakellarios rented an apartment with an artist from Maine and two other Granite State artists in Villefranche-sur-Mer last spring. They went outdoors early each day to paint scenes in the town and surrounding area, and she continued to paint from photos after she left France. French is Sakellarios’ first language. She lived in Egypt for 18 years and also in Lebanon, which had been a French protectorate.

Skellarios took up oil painting when her youngest son started school, and she entered a Nashua Area Artists Association show in a mall. Now, she’s a signature member of the Oil Painters of America. That requires being juried into the organization’s national competition for three consecutive years. She’s also a signature artist in the National Oil and Acrylics Painters Society, and belongs to a women’s professional artists group in New York, Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Art Club. For Skellarios, being able to sell her art is important but so is competition. It “keeps me on my toes,” she said.

Sakellarios shows her community spirit through more than Art Walk. When a Nashua Symphony executive director asked Sakellarios to paint the orchestra, Sakellarios donated a painting and the image was used for the 2003-2004 season program. She has also participated in art auctions for area fundraisers.

Sakellarios sells jewelry and work by other local artists at Maison de L’Art, but only pieces that she loves, and she sticks with New Hampshire or regional art.

Sakellarios now lives in Merrimack. She has two grown sons. One will return to Boston after his wedding in Turkey this month. The other teaches English in Japan.

5/24/2007 Local color

5/17/2007 Stieglitz in Manchester
5/10/2007 They're artists and they vote
5/3/2007 Lowell is the canvas for a summer of art
4/26/2007 Local color
4/19/2007 Local color
4/12/2007 Local color
4/5/2007 A Saint paul student returns to show recent work
3/29/2007 Local color
3/22/2007 Compassionate cause
3/15/2007 Local color
3/8/2007 Making money
3/1/2007 Local Color
2/22/2007 Local Color
2/15/2007 Local Color
2/8/2007 Local Color
2/1/2007 DreamFarm Cafe's big show
1/25/2007 Built world
1/18/2007 Expressions of character
1/11/2007 Best practices
1/4/2007 Nominate your favorite for Governor's Arts Awards
12/28/2006 Art in 2006 in southern New Hampshire
12/21/2006 Time to learn
12/14/2006 Frisella's new studio; sell art for animals; girls only time
12/07/2006 Stained glass, found objects and ornaments
11/30/2006 No shortage of art sales
11/23/2006 A Granite State greeting
11/16/2006 Santa Claus hangs with artists
11/9/2006 Visual art meets poetry
11/2/2006 Local Color
10/26/2006 Local Color
10/19/2006 Local Color
10/12/2006 Almost 80 artists in Hollis ...
10/05/2006 Fine art in a field
09/28/2006 Local Color
09/21/2006 Local Color
09/14/2006 Local color
09/07/2006 Bel Espirit, a happening of chance
08/31/2006 An artistic endeavor
08/24/2006 The almost-all architecture edition
08/17/2006 Half century of creativity
08/10/2006 Obsession with the Isles of Shoals
08/03/2006 See the precise craft of carving with a chainsaw
07/20/2006 For museums or your living room
07/13/2006 Making their mark
07/06/2006 Sense of place
06/29/2006 New ground
06/22/2006 MAA honors scholars an artists of the year
06/15/2006 Galleries open doors
06/08/2006 It's sticky up here
06/01/2006 Mural for MCAM
05/25/2006 Scenes from the air
05/18/2006 Vanguardians sit down
05/11/2006 Public masterpiece
05/04/2006 Art helps kids at MAA show
04/27/2006 In-house artists on display
04/20/2006 No Pinocchio here
04/13/2006 School's out art's in
04/06/2006 Meet Michael Toomey
03/30/2006 Art builds community ...
03/23/2006 From Celtic design to Ayn Rand
03/16/2006 Got Cow?
03/09/2006 A creative view of China
03/02/2006 Monastery Arts open new show
02/23/2006 Love and art in one location
02/16/2006 Job loss leads to artistic success
02/09/2006 Art in the key of Adam and Eve
02/02/2006 Art to make you think
01/26/2006 New York artists to show at Derryfiled School
01/19/2006 A new age of artwork
01/12/2006 Photography buffs unite
01/05/2006 Jeweler teaches her trade
Alison Williams
All together now
A forest through the trees
A light in the dark
An event for artists, by artists
Anne Dufresne
Armand Szainer: never forget
Art group picks artist of the year
Art In The Park
Art in the Park sees attendance dip
Arts In Education Conference
Art like Crayons for grown-ups
Art you can sit on (if you own it)
Better Living Through Artistry
Capturing history with a panaramic view
Ceramic Biennial
Currier Kicks Off 2005 With NHSS Show
Die fotografieren
Doug Mendoza: Body Artist
Enjoying the Open Doors Trolley Tour
East Colony Fine Art has gone jazz
Equal Arts Opportunities
Exploring purgatory and paradise
Expressions coming from within
Fighting cancer with creativity
Free food, free music and plenty of art
Harry Umen: New Work

Head of the class
Heating up the canvas
Inside the artist’s studio
It’s art, and it’s even practical!
James Aponovich

James Chase
Jan De Bray
Local Artist, Global Message
Lollipops and Hand Grenades
MAA Adds New Dimension To Gallery
MAA Gallery Mixes It Up
Making Book With Children
Manchester Art In 2004
Morgan's "Danse" Comes To Manch
Morin Avoid Typecasting
NHIA chalks it up to May 14
Open Doors Manchester Returns
Open Doors Trolley Tour, The Winter Version
Looking for a crowd? Just add art
McGowan Fine Art Turns 25
Nita Leger Casey
Patti Matthis
Saint Anselm Favorite Returns
Searching for the extraordinary
Small Town Art Hits The Big City
Spirit Of The Holidays Exhibit
Step into the Art Pad at Langer Place
Stride and ride
Tagging goes to wall, gets legit
The art and craft of Glendi
The art of signs to art and stuff
The Art Of The Qashquai

The Return Of The Art Trolley Tour
The Ubiquitous Ann Domingue
Two-continent painting exhibit opens
Using nature as a canvas
Women's Art Group Marks 10th Year
Wyeth Works Return To The Currier