Crowd at Art in the Park drawn to beeswax paintings – Press Herald

SOUTH PORTLAND — People who attend the annual Art in the Park Show & Sale generally circle the displays like schools of fish in an aquarium, occasionally darting out from the lines of strollers to get a closer look at the artwork inside dozens of tents erected around Mill Creek Park.

The canvases and photographs tend to be heavy on seascapes, marshes, deserted barns and other Maine iconography. So when something different comes along, crowds tend to gather.

That may explain why Lori Austill’s tent was often filled Saturday by browsers wanting to know about her encaustic paintings, which she makes out of hot beeswax, pigment and tree sap, a technique developed by the ancient Greeks and Egyptians. Her brilliant pastels of nature, rich earth- and jewel-toned abstracts and leaping dancers caught the eye of many passers-by, including Laura Thomas of Medford, Massachusetts, who just…

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