Arthur Cadieux bought a little house on Trecartin Street in Eastport Maine in 2004. He wasn’t really sure what he was going to do with it, but it didn’t cost much more than a nice car, and it brought him back to his Maine roots. Arthur was born in Belfast, Maine, in 1943, and though he left at an early age, and had only been back sporadically over the years, he felt drawn to the little coastal town. Cadieux had lost his wife to a long battle with cancer, and getting away for a while, from the house and the life they had shared in Raleigh, North Carolina, seemed like a good idea. He thought he might spend the spring and summer enjoying the cool downeast air, painting the beautiful coast,and then head back south where the mild winters and thriving cultural life suited him. He enjoyed Eastport, the emerging art scene was stimulating, and every where he looked, there was something to paint, but it was just a bit too isolated for him. Then, before he could leave, something bad happened. Arthur had a severe health crisis and spent weeks in a Bangor hospital. He had flirted with death, and was too weak to make the long trip to the Tarheel state, so when he got out of the hospital he hunkered down in Eastport and spent the winter and spring trying to regain his strength. When he could get about, he applied for membership in the Eastport Art Gallery. He decided to sell his house in Raleigh and become a year-round Mainer.
When looking at Arthur’s paintings from Raleigh, one could feel the heat and smell the steamy air; he could capture the southern essence and bring it to life on his canvases. Maine is different, and in his new surroundings, for a moment he was a bit confused. His bold and bright colors and his strong brush stokes, did not seem right at first, plus his poor health seemed to hamper him. Soon the energy and the power began to return, and now Arthur’s paintings reflect his feelings for his environment. “Some people portray Maine as idyllic, but I think it’s a rough, tough place. Especially along the coast…it’s beautiful, but it’s fierce.” Arthur has attracted quite a following and each year his paintings draw more and more attention.
These days Arthur is very busy. When the art programs were canceled at the local schools he quickly joined a group of fellow artists, and has returned to something he started doing almost forty years before, when he taught painting at South Dakota State after graduating from college. He teaches drawing and painting at Shead High School in Eastport. He does it for free because he says it is its’ own reward. He is excited about bringing art to teenagers, and it gives him a chance to use the BFA he earned at Massachusetts School of Art in Boston, and the MFA he received from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
While he is a member of the Eastport Gallery, some of his works are shown at the Breakwater Gallery and the Catbird’s Seat Gallery and the Nextdoor Gallery. Arthur bought an old house on Leighton Point in Pembroke three years ago, and he plans to live there and paint in Eastport. Arthur’s new Gallery will be another exciting part of the Eastport ArtWalk, and he is looking forward to entertaining visitors in his Studio.