Meet Celebrity Guide Ida Schmulowitz

Ida Schmulowitz received a BFA in painting from RISD and has been a professional artist for over 40 years. In that time she has had many jobs to support herself, including 11 years as the coordinator of Gallery Night Providence. She is happy to return to lead the Collectors Tour, as she loves the GN mission of providing an educational and enjoyable evening of art to the public. She has collected art since her student days, by trading work with other artists, and in recent years being able to purchase art. Her husband (John Riedel) and she have a collection of work that includes former RISD faculty, local artists and craftspeople, and outsider art.

Her main body of work has been a series of large landscapes painted outside in all seasons from the pedestrian bridge that goes from East Street across the highway to India Point park.

“Working on a large scale (6’x8’) in oil, outside, has posed interesting problems of transportation. My canvas can be rolled when walking to my spot. I lay the unstretched canvas flat on the ground to paint. On the way back, I keep the wet canvas flat and drag it back flat through the streets to my studio.  This contributes somewhat to an imperfect surface, that I like to work with, and feel it is part of the process. Rather than starting one painting and working on it until it is completed, I have many paintings in progress at the same time. I layer each painting over the course of months, bringing each out at different times of the day or season, until there is one particular day when the painting comes together as a whole. The final painting reflects a specific time and season, but the painting has a larger sense of time and space because of the layering process.”

Schmulowitz has exhibited her work locally and nationally including in galleries in Columbus, OH, Boston, MA, Boothbay Harbor, ME, Sag Harbor, NY, and Concord, NH. Solo shows in Rhode Island include, Newport Art Museum, URI Fine Arts Center Main Gallery, Hunt Cavanagh Gallery at PC, Bannister Gallery at RIC, CCRI Gallery, and invitational shows the RISD Museum, Newport Art Museum, URI Providence Gallery, Bristol Art Museum, and Dryden Gallery. Her work is included in collections at the RISD Museum, and the Newport Art Museum. Corporate collections include RI DEM, RI Hospital, Miriam Hospital, Bradley Hospital, and Meditech, Fall River.

Schmulowitz was featured in “Column: Studio Visit “ in the May/June 2018 issue of Art New England. Her website can be found at