Skip to content

Subscribe  |  Login  |  Account

Art Without End

The Flow, pastel, 18” x 24” by Lorraine W. Trenholm

The Flow, pastel, 18” x 24” by Lorraine W. Trenholm

The inspiration for the painting, characterized by bold strokes that suggest a Japanese print, was actually the Arkansas River in Salida, Colorado. A Kansas collector purchased it last year at the juried International Association of Pastel Societies show. The painting’s Japanese aura, Trenholm says, comes from her intention to “make a meaningful brushstroke without editing.” The dynamic, vivid strokes of another painting, Moody Tails, exude the same rumbling energy. Her driving aim is to move gracefully with life’s forces, capturing light, color, or weather in one dynamic moment in time.

Trenholm’s studio is packed with easels, frames, supplies, and an enormous box of collage paper. She works in pastel or oil, painting on three easels at a time. Nearby is a table where she assembles collages and is starting to experiment with encaustic. Full of motion and change, the studio is a constant work in progress, perhaps, like Trenholm, a little restive.

Born in New York City, Trenholm was a painting major at Pratt Institute, but that wasn’t by any means her first dip into the visual arts. “I’ve been doing art probably my whole life,” she says. “I can remember being four or five years old, sitting on a fence, drawing a horse from life, and it looking like a piano.” At age 16, she was doing horse portraits on Long Island, where she rode. After college, she began painting in a horse stall, where people noticed her abstract works and occasionally asked to purchase one.

Trenholm loves Cape Cod and returns several times a year. She and Donovan, a master plumber, have a timeshare in Newport, Rhode Island, and she is always eager to return to the “21 in Truro” retreat in September. She was married previously to Winthrop Trenholm, a teacher at Sandwich High School, who died suddenly of a heart attack at age 56.

Art is her life’s constant. “I’m driven,” Trenholm says. “When you’re a painter, you paint because you have to. Paintings could be not selling, the world could be coming to an end, but I have to paint.”

Lorraine Trenholm’s work may be seen at the Rowley Gallery, 84 Route 6A, Orleans.

Mary Grauerholz is communications manager of the Cape Cod Foundation and a freelance writer.

You might also like: