July/August 2014 page 11
The River Inn at Seaside
Two Girls by Victoria Brooks
Caspian Terns By Neal Maine
Buoys by Paul Brent
PART HOTEL, PART gallery, the newly opened River Inn at Seaside gives patrons an art experience on every floor of its new building. The Inn features a myriad of art and artist, including a different feature artist on each of its three upper floors, with a rotating display in the lobby each month.
Denise Fairweather, owner of the fairweather house & gallery gallery (www.fairweatherhouseandgarden.com) selected the artwork and artists, all of whom have a special connection to Seaside.
The River Inn's collection begins in the lobby with a rotating original piece of artwork by one of the three featured artists: Neal Maine, Paul Brent and Victoria Brooks.
The artwork continues upstairs with the limited giclée prints from original oil paintings by Victoria Brooks on the second floor. Most of the works are set on the Oregon Coast and depict children playing at the beach.
"Kids at play on the beach represents a time of innocence and freedom," says Brooks. "It give me great joy to capture a moment in time that viewers can relate to in their own lives."
Brooks began her career as an art director for television and film, but later pursued her love of painting. She has won numerous awards and teaches Impressionists and plein air panting workshops in Oregon, California, and throughout Europe. She is a native Oregonian who returns to Rockaway Beach during the summer.
The third floor of the Inn features nine photographs showing habitats along the river and the sea by Seaside natives Neal Maine and Michael Wing. Neal taught biology at Seaside High School for thirty years and was a founding member of the North Coast Land Conservancy (NCLC). Maine, along with his grandson, Michael Wing, established PacificLight Images, a partnership that is dedicated to raising public awareness about the region's natural resources through photography. Some of Maine's inspirations comes from the Necanicum River, the same river that the Inn is situated adjacent to.
"When the Necanicum River meets the tidewaters of the Pacific Ocean in Seaside we get nothing but pure habitat gold," says Maine "The dynamic mix of freshwater and saltwater creates habitat for estuary plankton that fuels the diverse life cycles of the Necanicum Estuary."
Seaside summer resident Paul Brent's colorful giclées are featured on the Inn's fourth floor. Brent's artwork depicts idyllic representations of the coastal nature and lifestyles that he views near his home studios in Panama City, Florida, and Seaside. Brent has been profiled in many publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Coastal Living, and more.
A portion of the proceeds from the artwork displayed at the River Inn will be donated to the Necanicum Watershed Council and NCLC.
"The story to be told," says Denise Fairweather of the art theme throughout the River Inn, "is about the unique sense of place found right outside the beautiful hotel property."