A cookbook, a camera and paint – local artists shine light on maternal influence ahead of Mother’s Day

As Mother’s Day draws near, it’s not only a time to honor mothers, but also to celebrate their profound impact on shaping our lives. For many artists showcasing their work at various exhibitions, including the iconic Festival of Arts, the influence of their mothers has been a guiding light throughout their creative journeys.

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Courtesy of Chris Allwine

Chris Allwine with his mother

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Courtesy of FOA

“Afterglow” by Chris Allwine

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Courtesy of Chris Allwine

Young Chris and his mom

Christopher Allwine, a fine art photographer, credits his mother’s encouragement and support for igniting his passion for photography. “My mother was a classically trained animator for feature films and television. As a working artist herself, she always encouraged my brothers and me to embrace our creative pursuits without boundaries,” shared Chris. “Her unwavering support paved the way for my path in fine art photography; she actually gifted me my first camera on my eighth birthday. The rest is history.”

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Courtesy of Kate Cohen

Young Kate Cohen with her mom, dad (dressed in red), sister and brother

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Courtesy of FOA

Artwork by Kate Cohen

Kate Cohen, known for her experimental approach to art, fondly remembers her mother’s role in nurturing her artistic spirit from a young age. “My mother, a professional portrait artist, would bring down huge pieces of wonderful papers and pastels from her attic studio for me to use,” said Kate. “Experimentation has been my approach to art ever since.”

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Courtesy of FOA

“Persimmon” by Jill Maytorena

Jill Maytorena’s vibrant works mirror her mother’s eccentricity, shaping her artistic expression. “My mother fills spaces with the unconventional and the quirky possibilities of unexpected visual storytelling,” said Jill. “She has never asked me a confused ‘why’ about my work. Her ‘why’ is always asked with supportive curiosity. She always was and continues to be a foundational muse in my work.”

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Courtesy of FOA

“6 Pies” by Anthony Salvo

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Courtesy of Anthony Salvo

Cover of the Salvo Family Cookbook

Anthony Salvo, a talented oil painter, pays homage to his mother’s culinary talents through his artwork. “My mom was my inspiration for becoming an artist. She was an amazing cook, made everything from scratch and could sew anything,” said Anthony. “As a tribute to her, I designed a cookbook in her honor, filled with all her vintage family photos and immigration documents.”

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Courtesy of Rowan Foley

Rowan Foley with her mother

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Courtesy of FOA

Artwork by Rowan Foley

Rowan Foley’s artistic path was influenced by her mother’s guidance and encouragement, underscoring the invaluable role she plays in her creative process. “My mom is a painter and ceramic artist. She introduced me to painting at an early age and is still the first person I show my ideas to,” said Rowan. “Her dialogue on my work is an invaluable part of my process.”

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Courtesy of FOA

Printmaking – Colleen Kennedy Premer

Colleen Kennedy Premer’s career is a tribute to her late mother’s artistic legacy. “My mom, the artist Elaine Kennedy, is my greatest source of creative inspiration. She was a prolific painter and printmaker and turned everything she touched into something beautiful and thoughtful and interesting,” shared Colleen. “When I was accepted into the Festival of Arts (for printmaking) last year, I felt like everything had come full circle.”

This Mother’s Day, we celebrate not only the mothers who nurture us, but also the artistic legacy they help create. These artists stand out as a powerful example of this legacy, their work a lasting tribute to the mothers who believed in their dreams and planted the seeds of creativity. This summer, continue your exploration of artistic inspiration at the Festival of Arts Fine Art Show to see the captivating works of these talented artists and many others from July 3 through August 30 (closed July 4). Stay updated on all things Pageant of the Masters and Festival of Arts by following them on social media at @FestivalPageant and visiting their website at www.foapom.com.


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