Maureen Ahern

Melody, 10" by 10", mixed media with interference paint on cradled board

Artist Statement

Maureen Ahern grew up and lived by the coast of Massachusetts for many years, and her fascination with the beauty and power of the ocean continues to influence her work. She now lives in the Monadnock region of New Hampshire. Her art, in addition to exploring the ever-changing aspects of water, also examines the variables of light, air, color and motion in nature, and the human spirit.

Her most recent work uses ‘interference paint.’ This paint only reflects about half of the light spectrum, meaning that blue paint looks blue, but also appears yellow—its opposite color on the light spectrum—when viewed from another angle. This property of the paint gives life to the work as the colors change depending on the light source and where the viewer stands. You can see this effect in her art in this video which shows light moving across the painting’s surface.

In addition to the video, this site also includes a slide show with other examples of the artist’s work. The paintings have been photographed from two different directions to illustrate the interference paint’s properties.

Quite a few of the paintings have bits of CD’s impregnated onto their surface. The reflective quality of this material amplifies the impact of the interference paint. Other media in these paintings include oil sticks, pencil, wax, nails and feathers, among other materials.

Ahern’s work has been exhibited in New York, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. In her non-artist professional life, Ahern was the cofounder and president of the New Hampshire Visual Arts Coalition. This statewide cultural organization promoted resource sharing among NH Visual Arts organizations, as well as encouraged the appreciation of NH arts throughout New England and beyond. During this time she organized statewide exhibits on New Art New Hampshire in printmaking and sculpture.

She also organized a series of various exhibits by NH artists, with an emphasis emerging artists, called “New Art New Hampshire.” Ahern also curated many exhibits as the former director of the Thorne Art Gallery at Keene State College in Keene NH., and she developed exhibitions and a art collection to raise awareness of the influence of the 19th Dublin NH art colony on American culture.

Ahern holds a B.F.A. and a M.A., and received a graduate teaching fellowship from SUNY Albany. She was Exhibits Curator at the Albany Institute of History and Art before becoming the Director of the Thorne Sagendorph Art Gallery. She is now retired and spending full time in her studio


Maureen Ahern was classically trained in painting and drawing then went on to receive a BFA in studio art from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a Masters in Painting from the University at Albany, Albany. New York. She taught classes in drawing and design at the University of Albany, Albany New York. Her work has been exhibited regionally as well as in Massachusetts and New York and  is in both private and public collections. She was curator at the Albany Institute of History and Art before moving to the Monadnock region. She recently retired from the Thorne Sagendorph Art Gallery at Keene State College where she was the director and now works in her studio full time.


The Eye of the Beholder, The Dublin Community Center, Dublin NH, November 5 - Nov 30, 2015

Visions and Reflections: Diverse Journeys, Millbrook Gallery and Sculpture Garden, Concord NH, October 28 - Dec 24, 2011

In Sight: Visions and Reflections, Jaffrey Civic Center, Jaffrey NH, September 2-30, 2011

Abstractions II: Juried exhibition, All Arts Gallery, Lowell Ma, March 29 - May 4, 2008

 Gallery Group Exhibition, the Mill Brook Gallery, Concord, NH, 2006 - 2008

32nd Art Exhibition, Jaffrey Civic Center, February 23 - March 24, 2007

Spring Awakening, Jaffrey Civic Center, March 30 - April 21, 2007

In Sight: Maureen Ahern and Barbara Danser, Jaffrey Civic Center, October 4 – November, 2006

Passionate Pursuits, the Thorne Art Gallery, Keene State College, Keene New Hampshire 2002

 Landscape 2001, the McCoy Gallery, Merrimack College, Andover Ma

The Library Arts Center Regional Juried Exhibition, The Library Art Center, Newport NH, 2001 - 2005.

M Ahern: Experiencing Landscape, one person exhibition, the Nada/Mason Gallery, Bolger Arts Center, Northfield Massachusetts, 2000

New England Views, Real and Imagined, the Currier Museum of Art, Manchester NH, 2000

Open Studio Tours sponsored by the Friends of the Dublin Art Colony most recently in October of 2004

Other Recent Achievements:

Marquis, Whose Who: 2008, 28th Edition, 2011 31st edition, 2012 32nd  Edition

Two Thousand Notable Women, American Biographical Institute, Inc., 2007

Juror, AVA gallery regional art competition, Lebanon NH ‘05

Juror, Library Art Center, Regional Art Competition, Newport NH, ‘06

Juror, Silver Art Center, P S U, Art Student Exhibition, Plymouth NH, ‘05

Juror, N.E. Sculpture Competition, Mill Brook Gallery and Sculpture Garden, Concord, NH, ‘04