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artists 4 space Artists 4 Space Program Kicks off at The Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex.

To learn more about the Artists4Space Program at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Click Here.

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Check back regularly to find new Paintings by Don Gillespie.

The Cloning Neptune Project Kicks Off July 1st with an art reception at The CNY Arts Center!

Cloning Neptune Kindred Spirits

You are invited to join us July 1st from 6 to 8 pm at the CNY Arts Center’s gallery, 11 River Glen Drive on the CCC campus in Fulton, New York. This will be an opening reception for an artshow entitled "Kindred Spirits " by Don Gillespie. It is a display of paintings that was first shown in 2014 at the H. Lee White Maritime Museum in Oswego, New York, plus several other additional paintings. The show will will open June 30 and run through August 21. This is the first in a series of events this summer celebrating Central New York’s rich art heritage.

Honored to announce that Winsor & Newton are the sole art sponsor of the Cloning Neptune project.

Winsor & Newton Cloning Neptune Press Release
June 11, 2015 Press Release announcing Winsor & Newton sponsorship of Cloning Neptune
Adobe Acrobat document [26.7 KB]

Oswego County Community Development, Tourism and Planning Department June 1, 2015 Press Release

Join a Summer Celebration for Oswego Artists

Posted on June 1, 2015 by Contributor
OSWEGO – Watch the arts come to life at the H. Lee White Maritime Museum on West First Street Pier in Oswego this summer.
The project, “Cloning Neptune: Recreating a Masterpiece” with Don Gillespie, celebrates Oswego’s rich art heritage.
It kicks off in late June and runs all summer.
The project includes live painting demonstrations and multi-media presentations, and finishes with a community arts show featuring local artists of all ages.
One of the highlights of the project will be the re-creation of Charles H. Grant’s masterpiece, “At the Mercy of Neptune,” by aerospace and multi-media artist Don Gillespie.
The original 9-foot oil painting was rendered and unveiled here in the Port City in 1896.
Later, it was shown at the New York State Fair where it received rave reviews before settling in the home of a prominent local justice.
From there its fate is uncertain.
“Many who now live in Oswego are unaware of the talent that this area produced in the late 19th century,” said Gillespie. “Artists such as James Tyler, the namesake of SUNY Oswego’s Tyler Hall, and Charles Grant were recognized nationally for their work. Through this project, I would like to inspire others by recognizing and celebrating their talent.”
Gillespie’s family has a unique history that ties him to these artists.
In the late 1800s, his great-grandfather owned an art studio and gallery on West Bridge Street where many works by local artists, including Grant, were displayed.
“I have been fascinated by the works and lives of these great Oswego artists and have really enjoyed learning more about them. The issues surrounding their paintings are surprisingly similar to those of aerospace artists, as we each paint the most modern transportation vessels of our respective times,” Gillespie added.
A Fulton native, Gillespie participated in local art shows as a youth before moving to Florida where he has had a successful career as an artist.
His deep family roots and love for this area kept drawing him back and now Gillespie spends his summers in Central New York.
Upon completion of Grant’s masterpiece, Gillespie will donate the work to the maritime museum to ensure that Oswego will be its permanent home.
“This is a unique opportunity to promote local arts in our community,” said David Turner, director of the Oswego County Community Development, Tourism and Planning Department. “The arts not only improve our quality of life, but they also attract business and enhance tourism.”
He added, “I hope that the story behind this project helps to educate our residents and visitors about the contributions that Oswego’s artists have made. Thanks to Don’s commitment to arts education, I have no doubt that it will inspire a new generation of young artists to carry on that tradition.”
Winsor and Newton is graciously supplying the art materials for the project and Gillespie will work with local art organizations to coordinate the art show.
For details or to learn more about how you or your group can help, visit
The H. Lee White Maritime Museum is open daily from 1 to 5 p.m. with expanded hours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in July and August.
For more information, visit


Paintings by Don Gillespie Restless Spirit
Exposed Elements Art Show 2014 Clearwater, Florida 2014

Kindred Spirits Art Exhibit -

May 17th to August 31st 2014 at the H. Lee White Marine Museum in Oswego, New York.

This exhibit of paintings represent a homecoming for me. It celebrates Oswego, New York’s rich art heritage. I was born in Oswego County. My early years were filled with aviation and boating on the Oswego River, Salmon River, and Lake Ontario.

In 1975 I moved to Florida. I persued a career in art and was employed as an aerospace artist for 15 years. My artwork revolved around advanced weapon systems, space shuttle, space station, satellites, and aircraft. After leaving the defense industry, the next decades were spent building several successful multimedia companies specializing in digital interface design. I still enjoy producing these applications for web and mobile devices incorporating 3D modeling, video, and database integration but at my core I remain a painter.

In 2007 I found a searchable online database of old newspapers from upstate New York which allowed me to research a family mystery. I began to investigate the disappearance of my great grandfather and found it fascinating. I knew he was a photographer in Oswego in the late 1800’s, but that was about it. These old newspapers brought to life a place and cast of characters including artists that were as intriguing as any mystery novel. What I discovered was an artist and gallery owner that was much like me. In a strange way this long lost relative introduced me to his life as well as artist friends, and instructors. As one may expect, my work began to reflect these Kindred Spirits and their artwork.

I would like to thank the H. Lee White Marine Museum for allowing me to show some of these paintings. I couldn’t have asked for a more appropriate location. I hope you enjoy these paintings and the mysteries that surround them.

Don Gillespie


At The Mercy of Neptune
In the early hours of September 30th 1896 a fire broke out in the William R. Shayes art gallery and photography Studio. The fire damaged many works of art including an oil, titled "At the Mercy of Neptune ", a painting by nationally acclaimed marine artist Charles Henry Grant . The painting was  repaired and was displayed at the 1897 New York State fair.  When The OSWEGO PALLADIUM-TIMES published Grant’s obituary on WEDNESDAY, APRIL 14, 1943 it mentions the 9 ft by 5 ft painting. It states that, "for many years it was owned by the Judge L. C. Rowe family of Oswego." In the judge’s last will and testament, he willed the painting to his wife, Mrs. Emma B. Rowe. I have not been able to locate the current whereabouts of the painting.
I was also able to find a black and white photograph of the painting (most likely taken by W.R. Shayes). Intrigued by the story and after much research I decided that it would be interesting to recreate the painting from the information I had discovered.  I found several written descriptions of the painting. The writing style of the day, vividly describes the work. After studying Grant’s work, one painting in particular seemed to capture the mood and palette described in the critiques
This repainting of “At the Mercy of Neptune” was a captivating experience. I found myself immersed in the 1800’s and the painting techniques of Grant’s as well as his instructor. Grant had attended the National Academy of Art in New York City and studied under the great Dutch marine painter M. F. H. De Haas. It was wonderful to research and find writings that allowed insight into these artists’ methods.  I have became a student of these great painters of the 19th century. I hope that repainting this work will help the original to resurface from the depths of time.


Another interesting feature of this exhibit, is the Celebration and bringing together of two famous marine painters that were born in Oswego in the late 19th century.
The two paintings above are original examples of their work. The painting on the left is an early work by J. G. Tyler and the right is a later work by C. H. Grant. These Artist were contemporaries, friends and Kindred Spirits.


James G. Tyler was born in Oswego in 1855 and began painting at age the age of 15. He later moved to New York City and studied to become one of the most notable marine artists of his time. Tyler Hall is the center for fine arts at SUNY Oswego, named after James G. Tyler.


Charles H. Grant, also from Oswego, was born in 1866. Grant painted his first seascape at age 8. He went on to study under the great M.F.H. De Haas at the National Academy in New York. He later moved to San Francisco, CA and gained international notoriety.


Raising Funds for Education


Here are 2 fine art canvas giclee prints of my paintings which will be auctioned at the 2014 Annual 1812 Lynx Fundraiser event on March 8th at the St. Petersbug Yacht Club, St. Pete, FL.

A BIG THANK YOU to Jerri and Scott Menaul of The Canvas Zoo for these excellent Fine Art Canvas Giclees .

The Lynx Educational Foundation is a non-profit, non-partisan, educational organization, dedicated to hands-on educational programs that teach the history of America's struggle to preserve its independence. The maritime challenges during the War of 1812 are taught aboard the American Privateer Schooner Lynx utilizing a comprehensive, interactive program designed to enrich personal achievement through teamwork and the discipline of sail training.

Glencoe painting on display

My latest oil painting is hanging in the Dunedin Historical Museum, Dunedin Fl until April 2014. It's hanging with an exhibit which is on loan from the Smith Museum, Sterling Scotland. Thank you to Greg Colvin for the wonderful background image and the Dunedin New World Celts for the costumes and modeling.

“Through Space and Time” Paintings by Don Gillespie, Current Art Show at Ruth Eckerd Hall September 13th to November 29th 2013

Clearwater, Florida – September 19,2013 –  Tampa Bay artist Don Gillespie’s art exhibit “Through Space and Time” will be on display at Ruth Eckerd Hall’s West Gallery from September 13th to November 29th 2013.

Gillespie’s paintings span a 35 year art career, ranging from his early days as an aerospace artist to recent works. The 27 paintings include Oils, Acrylics, and Watercolors. They are a diverse collection of artist concepts, introspective surrealism, fantasies that include local landmarks, and traditional period pieces. Gillespie’s artwork has been displayed around the world including New York, London, and Paris.

Running concurrently, in the East Gallery of Ruth Eckerd Hall is a display of paintings and photographs by fellow artists Joe Sanders and Jennifer Barbaro.

The galleries are not open during the week to the general public but are open during all Ruth Eckerd Hall events. A ticket to the scheduled event is required for entry.
Ruth Eckerd Hall is located at 1111 North McMullen Booth Road Clearwater, FL 33759

Ruth Eckerd Hall is a 501c3 not-for-profit organization that is committed to presenting the finest in performing arts and also providing performing arts education to all segments of our community.

Painting in the lobby of the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel

The Vinoy Renaissance Hotel in St.Pete Florida has been gracious in allowing me to paint and display my work in their lobby. The next showing will be Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013.

Vinoy Lobby Vinoy Show
Vinoy Hotel, Don Gillespie Paintings Painting in the Lobby of the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel, St Pete, FL December 2012
Painting By Don Gillespie You're Invited To An Art Reception

Ruth Eckerd Hall is hosting four local artists from Exposed Elements Pop Up Art Group for an art and cocktail party. Please join us Thursday November 8, 2012 at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM. Artists in attendance will include Don Gillespie, Agnes Black, Joe Sanders, & Jennifer Barbaro. Each artist will take a few minutes to talk about their pieces/inspiration and will be available throughout the evening to answer questions. Appetizers and wine will be provided by Ruth Eckerd & artists will be donating 20% of all sales from the evening to Ruth Eckerd Hall. Ruth Eckerd Hall student musicians will be performing music during this event. Please RSVP to this website if you plan on attending. Ruth Eckerd Hall is located at 1111 North McMullen Booth Road Clearwater, FL 33759.


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September 30th 1898 my great grandfather's art gallery burned. This and other events inspired me to paint "Hope". The story behind this painting is full of mystery.  If you want to learn more, please read the document below. You can download the PDF by clicking the link.

A story of Hope
This is a PDF that explains the story behind the "Hope" painting.
hope with a new ending.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [1.6 MB]


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Paintings On Display At Ruth Eckerd Hall

Ruth Eckerd Hall Art Show Ruth Eckerd Hall

My latest painting of John's Pass and others are currently on display in the West Gallery at Ruth Eckerd Hall. It is part of a group exhibit by select Artists of Exposed Elements. They will be on Display during October and November 2012. This show is not open to the general public but can be viewed during regular events at the facility. If you are attending a concert or event at Ruth Eckerd Hall be sure to visit the West Gallery. Ruth Eckerd Hall is located at 1111 North McMullen Booth Road  Clearwater, FL 33759

Airborne Rangers

I was fortunate to spend some time last fall with Rangers in training at Fort Benning, Ga. These young men are some of our finest!

All images at are covered by Don Gillespie copyrights. Reproduction of images by any means, without written permission, is strictly prohibited.

© 2012 Don Gillespie



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Cloning Neptune is honored to be sponsored by Winsor & Newton,

“ The World's Finest Art Materials”

Kindred Spirits Art Exhibit -

May 17th to August 31st 2014 at the H. Lee White Marine Museum Oswego, New York.

Supporting Education

Here are 2 fine art canvas giclee prints of my paintings which will be auctioned at the 2014 Annual 1812 Lynx Fundraiser event on March 8th at the St. Petersbug Yacht Club, St. Pete, FL.

A BIG THANK YOU to Jerri and Scott Menaul of The Canvas Zoo for these excellent Fine Art Canvas Giclees .

Vinoy Renaissance Hotel, Don Gillespie Painting Painting in the Lobby of the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel, St.Pete Fl.

September 30th 1898, My great grandfather's gallery burned. Learn more...

Detail from Don Gillespie Painting entitled HOPE Detail of Hope

Homeless Project

This series of transparent watercolors were created to help raise funds for the homeless in Tampa. Click here to view more

Airborne Rangers

Recently finished commission.

Welcome to the on-line gallery of Don Gillespie. This collection of paintings represents a life of art. They are unique visions created with traditional brush and paint. Art is a vehicle which helps us gain a better understanding of ourselves, our dreams and aspirations. It helps us to understand our world and to put it into perspective. The artist hopes that they inspire you to pick up a brush or whatever vehicle you prefer and travel beyond the surface.