Rita Walsh

Rita_Walsh_PortraitMy art expresses my love of nature, especially the ocean and the  seashore, and all of the treasures you can find there. 

I learned to swim when I was three years old in the Weir River in Hull. I remember pulling  periwinkles off the rocks and filling up big buckets of them to bring home. Our neighbor, Mrs.  Merlino, would cook up a batch of them with tomato, onion, spices and secret ingredients to create  what my father declared was “delissimo escargot.” I’d design necklaces or little wooden plaques with  the leftover shells. The Merlino’s front door was painted a beautiful aqua blue with a large pink rose  painted on it and their garden was breathtaking.

At the “big beach” after a storm, at low tide, my siblings and I would  accompany Dad with steel rakes and buckets to dig up sea clams that my  Mom would make into the best chowder you’ve ever tasted. Afterwards,  I would paint beach scenes with sailboats on the humongous leftover  shells. Walking the beach, collecting shells and sea glass was my favorite  pastime, that is of course, when I wasn’t in the water. After my First  Communion, which was in April that year, I ran down the ramp and  jumped into the icy Atlantic in my white Communion dress. Guess I must  be one of the original “Drowned Hogs.”

I studied art and education at Emmanuel College and dabble in drawing,  painting and photography. During last winter’s monumental snowstorms I  dug out my shells and sea glass and started making my “shell creations.”  One of them, “Shellabration”, was in the Hull Lifesaving Museum’s Sea & Sky  Art Show last year.  The shell creations are also on display at the Nantasket Beach Resort  Hotel. The designs take on a life of their own. I hope you enjoy them as much as I love creating them.

If interested in purchasing Rita’s mixed media creations please contact her directly  through her email address ritamakesart@gmail.com, and visit her website at ritamakesart.com.