born 1925 -
In the 20 summers Reed Kay has painted on Cape Ann, he has become a familiar part of the local landscape. "I've painted from East Gloucester, the Fish Pier, Stage Fort Park, and Fort Square looking at the city built on the water's edge," he has observed. "It has rugged hills, the equipment of hard labor and industry, handsome architecture, and the moods and weather of the ocean. What more could a landscape painter ask?"
Reed Kay trained at the Boston Museum School in the 1940s under Karl Zerbe and for many years taught at Boston University in the School of Visual Arts and at the Skowhegan School of Painting in Maine. After his retirement in 1989, Kay along with his wife and children began visiting Cape Ann on a regular basis. Among the many friends they spent time with here were Ninon Lacey and her husband Bernard Chaet and Ralph Coburn, all of whom are also artists.
Kay is a plein-air painter and can be regularly seen at his easel here and there around Cape Ann. His paintings are carefully planned out and executed, sometimes requiring him to return to a specific site over and over. As one observer has written, Kay's paintings are "not simply painted, they are built...."