BENNINGTON -- Artist Renée Bouchard has been selected as the winner of Down East Magazine’s Maine College of Art (MECA) Emerging Artist Contest. Bouchard’s winning art will be featured one of the interior commemorative covers for Down East Magazine’s 60th Anniversary issue in August. In addition, Bouchard named MECA’s Scholarship Fund the beneficiary of a minimum of $10,000 raised by Down East Magazine at the Art of Giving Gala on Thursday, August 14 from 5:30-9 p.m. at the Portland Company, 58 Fore Street, Portland, Maine.

To help raise funds, the original work Bouchard created for the August issue of Down East will go home with a lucky guest the night of the Art of Giving. Proceeds from the tickets to the gala and additional raffle tickets for the art will help raise the $60,000 committed to six different charitable organizations, each selected by the six participating artists.

Tickets to Art of Giving are $100 per person. The participating artists are Angela Adams, Eric Hopkins, Alex Katz, Barbara Ernst Prey, William Wegman and MECA alumnus Renée Bouchard. Each ticket to the party provides the opportunity for the ticket holder to leave with one of these works of art.

"I was excited to learn that I would be able to have one of my paintings as a cover of Down East Magazine," said Bouchard. "The MECA Scholarship Fund is important to me, and I’m thrilled to be able to support them in this way," added Bouchard.


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"While I am inspired by work created by people with mental illness, "outsider" art, children’s art, folk art and other types of art created beyond the boundaries of the traditional "art world," I deeply value my education from MECA."

Kathleen Fleury, editor-in-chief of Down East, talked about the Art of Giving Gala, "We’re very lucky to have the opportunity to work with such incredible and generous artists to celebrate the magazine’s 60th anniversary. In every issue we try to share what a special place Maine is and this is a great example of how Mainers support each other to enrich the state that we all call home."