Since 1968, Nantucket Looms has been proud to represent our local craftspeople. We carry the works of over seventy different artisans, including painters, potters, basket weavers, jewelry makers and wood carvers. To honor those whose unique creations reflect the natural beauty and history of our beloved island, we will highlight an artist on our website every month. This month, meet Julija Mostykanova Feeney.
Historically, Nantucket Island has always fostered the arts. From carved whales and hand crafted sailors valentines during the whaling period, to basket weaving and more, the thriving art culture of Nantucket is one of the true foundations of the community. Julijia Mostykanova Feeney acknowledges Nantucket as the bridge that lead her to a career in art. Originally from Lithuania, Julija moved to Nantucket fifteen years ago. She had studied engineering in Lithuania but was always interested in exploring her creative side. After arriving on Nantucket, Julija had the opportunity to take a class at the Artists Association - a small seed planted which later grew into a successful full time career as an artist.
Julija first began selling her work at Nantucket Looms almost ten years ago, showcasing her decoupage paper weights. Since then, her work has evolved in the direction of oil painting - a variety of landscape, still life and more recently, abstract paintings. Tucked away in the peace and quiet of her Tom Nevers studio, Julija often works on a number of paintings at a time. "I could have forty paintings going at the same time - I go back and forth and see which one goes further". Drawing mostly from memory and sometimes photographs, she uses oil paints to create beautiful works inspired by the landscape and changing seasons of the island. "I'm inspired by the off season - I love the quiet time. It's so peaceful".
When she is not working on her oil paintings, Julija spends her time knitting, doing crochet and enjoying the natural landscape and environment of the island. Although she loves the solitude of her home and studio where she lives with her husband and their thirteen year old chihuahua, Julija also appreciates the social aspect of creating art on Nantucket. She speaks highly of the supportive Nantucket artist community and regularly attends gallery openings downtown with other local artists. "The art community is so friendly here - we all hang out and support each other".