Jo M. Orise

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Jo M. Orise
Jo M. Orise
Late Arrival, 2017, oil, 12 x 16"
Mason Jar on Shore, 2014, oil, 7 x 7"
Grace Bailey at Curtis Light, 2016, 18 x 24"
Boy with Conch, 2016, wc, 14 x 11"

Born under Pisces on Maine’s seacoast may explain my attraction to the sea. At three, a rogue wave tumbled me about beneath its surface. An unanticipated adventure. I was fearless—Dad had said I was part fish.

Living on the Penobscot Bay Coastline, ocean visible from my studio window, I am again drawn to observe the sea, perhaps anticipating further adventure. Aware of its enormity, how do I express such a subject on canvas? French Impressionism and American Realism have influenced the shape and form of my art, depicting everyday life of the ordinary. When attracted to any subject, I must honor it with sketches, or words—to release, to reveal an idea. Transposing the desired composition onto my canvas, my intuition and imagination challenge me as paint follows the dance of hand and brush. Through all of it, I strive to make color vibrant, figures interesting, landscapes inviting.

The creative journey is immensely satisfying from beginning to end. My desire is to create and to share. My intention may or may not be obvious, but that does not matter. If someone says, “I like that,” I have succeeded.


At the age of five, Orise developed a fascination with her mother’s skill at drawing the human figure. Her mother died soon after but the memory of her mother’s artistic talent lingered. At six years, Orise picked up pencil and paint to explore the mysteries of art.

A graduate from University of Southern Maine, Orise earned a BS in Art Education. She later studied Children’s Book Publishing at Portland School of Art (now Maine College of Art). During her art career, she studied art under the guidance of several professional artists in Maine, New Hampshire and Florida.

In her travels, she often stops to capture a moment she may paint en plein air or go to her studio to compose a painting from various sources. Her work includes oil, watercolors and she has recently decided to return to woodcuts.

Orise, a former member of the Artist Guild of the Kennebunks, taught art at her Maine studio/gallery, Josoca Studios, in Kennebunk, Maine. Over the years, her work has been displayed in many guild and group shows as well as solo shows in Maine, New Hampshire and Florida.

Present membership: the Governor Wentworth Arts Council, Wolfeboro, NH, the Kittery Art Association, Kittery Point, ME, the River Arts Gallery, Damariscotta, ME, Citrus County Arts Center, Hernando, FL and the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockland, ME.

Mason Jar on Shore, 2014, oil, 7 x 7" 6 months ago
Grace Bailey at Curtis Light, 2016, 18 x 24" 6 months ago
Late Arrival, 2017, oil, 12 x 16" 6 months ago
Boy with Conch, 2016, wc, 14 x 11" 6 months ago
Jo M. Orise 6 months ago
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