Beverly Main Streets announces new banners designed by Beverly artist Andrew Houle
Beverly Main Streets’ downtown light pole banners have a creative new design, thanks to Beverly artist Andrew Houle. Each year Beverly Main Streets works with a local artist to design the light pole banners, which brighten up the downtown and provide sponsorship opportunities for businesses. Andrew’s design is a striking portrait of actor Adam West, known for his role as Batman. The banners are currently being installed on more than 60 downtown light poles and include tags featuring the name of the sponsor. Now that construction is completed on Route 1A, the city will be installing half of the banners on Rantoul Street and half of the banners on Cabot Street.
Andrew Houle has lived in Beverly since graduating from Montserrat College of Art in the year 2000. While studying primarily illustration, a love for oil painting co-existed throughout his formative years, leading to a split body of professional work with a career in comic books and exhibiting in galleries. Houle shifted focus in early 2005 to what has been described as American Realism; capturing the surroundings north of Boston and beyond in an eclectic body of work highlighting blue-collar landmarks and iconic Cape Ann light. Recognizing influences from Edward Hopper and Norman Rockwell, Houle has worked towards creating a personal narrative through his paintings connecting the viewer to his or her community. His work can be found throughout the country in private collections and represented by galleries throughout New England.
When asked about the inspiration for the portrait, Andrew had a great story to share:
“In many ways Adam West’s role as Batman steered me towards an interest in comic books at a very early age...which later translated into a career path as an artist. Maybe I would have connected the dots on my own, but the colors, characters, and humor of the show formed that bridge and once I bought my first comic book I was instantly hooked.
Upon hearing of Adam West’s passing back in June, my mind raced back to the singular time I met him, roughly 10+ years ago. Before his reemergence in the 90's as a pop culture icon, Adam West made a living making appearances on the comic con circuit for years. I'm thankful to have briefly met him at a comic con in Framingham, Massachusetts, of all places, where I was given one of the greatest compliments of my life. I was having two photos personalized so I suppose I had a bit more time with him than I expected. Within these moments there are so many cool things I could have had prepared to say looking back, but all those ideas tend to escape you in real time. So admittedly I froze up until he started chatting.
Adam West: "Hey there! “Who can I make these out to?"
I answered: "Could you make them out To: Andrew?"
Adam West: (while signing) - "So Andrew, what is it you do for a living?"
Me: (awkward pause) - "I'm a painter."
Adam West: "A painter of houses or a painter of pictures?"
Me: "Pictures, yeah, as in umm, I'm an artist."
Adam West: (pauses signing my photos, leans back in his chair and looks back up at me) "Ahhh....A man with a REAL profession."
I'm sure that I drove there from the North Shore but there's also a good chance I just floated home after that. Over the years I had plenty of opportunities to meet him again but there was something so perfect and meaningful about his reaction to me being an artist, I never wanted to change my singular memory or add something other than that moment. You don't always get to meet your heroes. I’m thankful to Adam West for teaching me and I’m sure countless others not to take ourselves too seriously. While unbeknownst to him, he had given me a push in the right direction early in life.
This portrait of Adam West was completed years ago, before his passing, as a way for me in a sense to thank him. And now I’m fortunate enough to further honor him and have Adam West watch over the community I? call home.”
Andrew currently splits his time as Creative Director at Tryptic Press, painting in his studio space at Porter Mills, Co-Chairing the Beverly Cultural Council, and as lead promoter of Beverly Comic Con. He shares a home with his wife Melissa, daughter Elaina, Mila the overweight cat and his comic book collection. More of Andrew’s work can be seen at his artist profile at the Beverly Arts District website or at www.andrewhoule.com and www.trypticpress.com.
Beverly Main Streets would like to thank the City of Beverly for installing the banners and the many banner sponsors for making this program possible. Please contact Beverly Main Streets if you are interested in sponsoring a banner when the next banner program starts in Fall 2018.
Thank you to our banner sponsors
A + B Burgers
Aligned for Life Chiropractic
Beverly Athletic Club
Beverly High School
Bogie's Beer and Wine
Brookwood Financial Partners, LLC
Casual Catering / Super Sub
City of Beverly
Cummings Properties, LLC
Dunkin’ Donuts of Beverly
DWC - The 401(k) Experts
First Baptist Church
Glovsky & Glovsky, LLC
Greater Beverly Chamber of Commerce
Greater Beverly YMCA
Handly & Cox, PC
Institution for Savings
Kowalski Dental, PC
Landmark at Oceanview Senior Living
Meineke Car Care Center
Montserrat College of Art
Quadrant Health Strategies, Inc.
Retailers Association of MA
Single Source Marketing
Soul Movement Pilates
St. Peter's Episcopal Church
State Rep. Jerry Parisella
Station 101 Apartments
Sterling Insurance Agency
Taste Buds Kitchen
Temkin Financial Group
The Remodeling Company
The Saints Academy
Ulrich Bachand Landscape Architecture, LLC
Please note – this is the list of banner sponsor organizations, not the exact text which is on the sponsor tags. Some organizations sponsored more than one banner. Thanks!