Dug Morton Abstract Paintings

April 2 - June 1, 2024


Reception and Talk by the Artist, Sunday, April 28
Reception 1:00 to 5:00 pm
Dug Morton speaks about his work and process at 2:30 pm.

Dug Morton, a native of Groton, brings a unique perspective to his art. His journey began with an Associate of Arts degree from Mount Wachusett Community College, followed by two years at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston) and a BFA from Franklin Pierce College. We are thrilled to showcase the evolution of his art and invite you to experience his compelling body of work.

Artist’s Statement – March 2024

There is nothing to explain in my work. There are no definite images or content or context or messages. The only thing I can do is explain my process. I look. Something I see compels me. I make a note of it. Through a series of reactions to that initial, visual kernel, I have a Painting.

I think of art as a language and a world unto itself. I am interested in the nature of what the paint can do on the surface, both physically and illusionary. I enjoy making allusions to aspects of the real world, but I am not interested in it as a conscious concern.

I am inspired by nature, but not interested in replicating nature. I am inspired by the natural world’s light, its shadows, its shapes, its bright colors and drab tones, its lines, its empty spaces and busy activity, its pain and joy, its messiness and clean simplicity. It is a world that is both clear and unclear. By trusting my reactions to visual stimuli, I find I receive a rich visual vocabulary.

I have often felt that my paintings are kindred to maps. The paintings come to life as layer upon layer is introduced. A civilization built upon another civilization. The spacing in my paintings often feel to me as rural areas versus urban areas.

The way I see it, both cities and wilderness are part of “nature.”

In my view, Painting is about making decisions. Have enough decisions been made. Have enough questions been asked. It is about looking and seeing a painting as it evolves, having a sense of where it should go. If decisions are not made, then the point is not clear. I cannot be too emotionally attached to a piece if I am going to understand it, commune with it, know how to react to it and know what it is asking for. I thoroughly believe that it is a language that is spiritual in nature, and runs through the cosmos into the soul.

Painting, at least for me, is much less about thinking than it is about intuition. Thinking involves too much control. Painting needs to be set free; a channel for the voice from within and from without.

I certainly don’t trust my mind or my imagination to have the visual breadth of information and complexity as I can see in the real world. But once I have these visual kernels to work from, is when it is crucial that I let my imagination (that is-my instinctual imagination) to intercede and transform the work. If my imagination is too thoughtful and deliberate, the work immediately becomes limited. If I’m going on my intuition, it seems to be closer in harmony to the real world, where there seems to be almost no limits to what might come about. It is that intersection of imagination and reality that is the crux of what I do.

All works are acrylic on wood panel.

Ken Hansen,

Generously supported by the Groton Public Library Endowment Trust.

Exhibition Photo Gallery

  • At Sea
  • Liberation XXIII
  • Fresh Air XVII
  • Keep Your Eyes on their Toes
  • Dry Your Tears

The Owen Smith Shuman Art Gallery exhibits several shows each year, featuring artists from Groton and area communities, in both solo and group shows.

  • Guidelines for Submitting Artwork / Exhibition Proposals

    The Owen Smith Shuman Gallery of the Groton Public Library accepts submissions for art exhibits on a rolling basis. The Curator is responsible for selecting art for exhibits. In general, preference is given to group shows over solo exhibits and to local artists in Groton and surrounding communities

    About the Venue
    The Owen Smith Shuman Gallery is a beautiful, well-lit gallery that is supported by the Groton Public Library Endowment Trust and is an integral part of the local art scene. The Endowment provides for receptions, publicity, and a curator. Artists should carry their own insurance as the gallery does not have insurance for exhibited works.


    • Submit 16-20 slides or digital images with the artist’s name and the title of the image on the slide. A CD or USB submission must have the artist name on it as well as a separate document listing the titles, media, and size of each piece.
    • A complete proposal should contain: your images, a current resumé, list of images (with titles, media, and size), and an artist’s statement.
    • Please submit an appropriately stamped envelope for return of your materials, if desired.
    • If you are submitting digital images, you may email all of the above.
    • Artists may include a link to their websites, but that does not replace a submission proposal.
    • Optional: a small stipend is available for an artist’s talk. If interested, submit a description of your talk and list public speaking experience on your resumé.
    • Work submitted must be appropriately framed with eye hooks and wire on the back. Any exceptions to this rule should be submitted to the curator for approval.

    Sales of Work

    The Gallery requests a 10% donation to the Groton Public Library Endowment Trust for all work sold.


    Ken Hansen, Gallery Curator, artcurator@gpl.org

    Groton Public Library 99 Main Street, Groton, MA 01450