Enjoying the Journey, an exhibition of artwork by Melanie Douthit, June 2014 Featured Artist at the River Gallery
Melanie Fitzgerald Douthit, the June Featured Artist at the River Gallery, grew up in Union Parish. She loved drawing as a child and started painting at the age of 19 when she enrolled in an oil painting class taught by Ronnie Barnes. That class was the beginning of her never ending creative journey which has taken paths in watercolor, charcoal, pen and ink, acrylic, and mixed media.
Melanie says of her artistic process “Every painting is an adventure. I have a map of where I want to go, but at some point the painting drives itself, and I’m just there to enjoy the journey”
In 2000, Melanie started selling her work online. In 2002 she was contacted by a national chain restaurant, Mimi’s Café, to commission over 20 of her Mardi Gras Dachshund paintings for their new locations. She still receives commissions from people who see her work in various locations across the US. Melanie’s current creations include French Quarter scenes, whimsical “wordy birdz”, mixed media collage pieces, and florals.
Melanie started showing her work regularly at the Downtown Art Crawl in 2010, and in 2011 she rejoined the River Gallery where she is the Marketing Director. Melanie was recently elected secretary for the Downtown Art Alliance, helping continue the vision to promote the visual arts in Downtown Monroe and West Monroe. She currently resides in West Monroe with her husband and two artistically gifted children, and she regularly volunteers her creative talents painting murals for the Strauss Youth Academy for the Arts where her daughter is an actress.
Stop by the River Gallery during the June 5th Downtown Art Crawl from 5-9pm to meet Melanie and see her new work. Her show will hang at the gallery through the end of June.
The River Gallery, is located at 308 Trenton Street, West Monroe, and is open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The gallery is the oldest and largest co-op gallery in the state. Many of the artists accept commissions, so if you see a style of work that you like, don’t be afraid to inquire about having one of the artists create a custom piece. Admission is always free. Call 322-2380 for more information or visit www.ouachitariverartgallery.com and don’t forget to “like” us on Facebook for sneak peeks of new art.