Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Artists of Cape Cod

Anne Boucher: it's all about the light - by Susan

I love art and have over 30 original paintings in my house (and 15 more pieces in tubes, waiting to be framed). I love wandering into galleries and I do it as often as I can. When I discovered the Cotuit Brush Off many years ago, it was a great way to get acquainted with a lot of Cape artists all in one day. (See Marty’s Brush Off story).

Four years ago, at the Brush Off, I fell in love with a painting and had to buy it. It was of two young girls down by the water's edge; they reminded me of my daughter and her good friend Emily. What really drew me to it was the play of light on the water and in the girl’s hair. I sat for hours waiting for it to come up for bid and, when it did, some gentleman decided he couldn’t live without it. A bidding war ensued! This didn’t help my pocketbook at all, but I knew in my heart I could not leave there without it. And lucky for me, at the end of the day, I walked out of the Brush Off with my first painting by Anne Boucher.

Since then, I’ve acquired 2 more Boucher paintings. So, when I decided to interview an artist for this blog, Anne was the first one to come to mind. Last weekend, I made my first visit to her gallery in West Barnstable. A former carriage house, it’s now a cozy gallery with big old beams, antique wood floors, and tons of light to highlight the paintings. To view all of this work in one room was breathtaking. Each one captures the color, texture and feel of the Cape. At the gallery, she has original acrylic and watercolors, giclee’ prints and even post cards; something for every budget. Anne also has a beautiful website: Anne Boucher Fine Art.

She attended Michigan’s Cass Tech High School, which is renowned for its graphic arts program. There she had years of intense training in drawing, a skill not every artist excels at. After high school, a variety of odd jobs, and a move to New Jersey, she came to visit friends from Wellfleet and she knew her travels were over. It wasn’t until after her daughter was born that she started drawing again. Anne began using watercolors and discovered how much she enjoyed them. A gifted artist, she paints in both watercolors and acrylics. She is an entirely self-taught painter and has become a master with each medium.

Anne’s process, from inspiration to finished artwork, is a fascinating one. She spends hours, days, even weeks exploring the Cape on foot, bicycle, and kayak. Deep in the woods, down a dirt trail, or paddling miles in a salt marsh, she roams the Cape looking for a scene that inspires her to paint.

Then she will take pictures and make sketches to help her remember every small detail of the setting. Alone, she paints non-stop until the piece is done; her husband often has to remind her to eat and sleep.

Every single one of Anne’s paintings captures that special quintessential beauty of Cape Cod. The play of light and shadow are especially powerful in her art. All of your senses come into play when viewing her work. She has the uncanny ability to capture the heart and soul of Cape Cod. Her passion and love of the Cape is clearly evident in all of her work.

Anne’s work is included in the permanent collection at the Cape Cod Museum of Art and the Cahoon Museum of American Art (two great places to spend an afternoon). She has had a number of solo exhibitions at various local and regional museums and galleries, and has won many awards.

I can't tell you how much I enjoyed talking to Anne. I walked away, not only with an invite to see her play the bass guitar with her band (a woman of many talents!), but actually feeling like I made a new friend. She is a gifted artist and a sensitive, warm person and I feel very lucky indeed, not just to have 3 pieces of her art in my collection, but to consider her a friend. The Cape is a very special place, unsurpassed in beauty; Anne Boucher captures that beauty of one single, special moment on canvas.

(Anne Boucher Fine Art - Rt. 149 - adjacent to the Old Village Store - W. Barnstable, MA - 774-238-2859)


  1. Hi my name is Peter Tighe and I went to school with Anne at Cass, and have seen her at work, always taking photos and finding the right light and subject together to make that majic come to life on canvas. Thanks for giving her a well deserved praise. Her incredible talent and spirit is the ultimate expression of art, in its purest sense. Slamin site! P.T.

  2. I couldn't agree with you more Peter, Anne is just good people. And her talent is.... extraordinary!



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