Artist Saskia Reinholt of Phillips was a young girl when her parents encouraged her to create and grow her artistic talents. Saskia Reinholt photo

PHILLIPS — Saskia Reinholt’s parents encouraged her as a young child to create and to grow her artistic abilities.

Reinholt is a “colorist, multi-media artist, and teacher who loves to paint in oils and acrylics,” she said.

She grew up in Hanover, New Hampshire. She earned a bachelor’s degree in studio arts in college. She now lives in Phillips with her husband and two children. She offers barn quilt painting classes among other art work sessions. She was inspired to create the Maine Barn Quilt Trail because she knew she could teach the craft to schoolchildren. Reinholt has created over 70 barn quilts, which are patterns similar to those on quilt squares that are painted on wood or metal. Reinholt prefers plywood.

She is a founding director of the High Peaks Creative Council and Kingfield Artwalk, and founded High Peaks Artisan Guild in Kingfield. Her artwork has been exhibited in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, and Hawaii.

How did you become an artist and teacher? My parents encouraged me at an early age to create things. As toddlers, they let my twin sister and I make murals with crayons on our bedroom walls. I stayed interested in art throughout school and received a bachelor’s (degree) in studio arts with 30 extra art credits and got close to a minor in education. After college, I taught art classes at nonprofit art centers, after-school programs, community centers, libraries, and designed creative enrichment mural projects for public and private schools.

What do you teach? I teach painting classes primarily. Murals have been a long-time passion of so many of my classes instructing children and adults to paint large-scale community art. Lately, I have been offering barn quilt painting classes. This began with grant funds to create the Maine Barn Quilt Trail. With students, I created over 60 barn quilt murals over the past five years. K-12 children from five schools in north Franklin County painted the first 20 quilts. I then taught free barn quilt workshops to the public where students learned the craft by volunteering to paint public art. Now I am focusing on offering barn quilt classes where the students pay for the class and take their barn quilt home with them. I am offering one from noon to 4 p.m. in Skowhegan on Jan. 23, 2024, at the SPACE On The River. And another one from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 4, 2024, at the Farmington Community Center. People sign up for classes through my website or by calling me at 207-313-4878. I am also available to book private paint parties and events.


Are you naturally talented or did you have to take classes? I think both. I was inclined to draw and paint as a child and my parents recognized that creative strength and nurtured it. As I grew older, I chose to invest my time in art classes, so I was able to expand my knowledge, skill set, and expertise in the field.

What has been your part in The Barn Quilt Project? In 2012 I founded a nonprofit called High Peaks Creative Council with a mission to connect regional cultural organizations around creative public projects that increase the quality of life and support a resilient economy. As the director of this nonprofit, I saw the potential to support our mission by bringing meaningful public art to a vast rural region. I was especially inspired to create the Maine Barn Quilt Trail because I knew I could teach this craft to children in schools. Barn quilts fit well into our environment here in Maine by honoring two parts of American culture, farming, and quilting. Having community members volunteer to paint them helped build pride and ownership over the project. I raised grant funds to have a book of the project published called “Legacy: The Barn Quit Trail in Maine’s High Peaks.” I volunteered to write it and John and Cynthia Orcutt volunteered to photograph the barn quilts and lay out the book. All proceeds go to establishing an endowment for the nonprofit. Books are available at Devaney, Doak, and Garrett in Farmington, Kingfield and Rangeley Made in Maine stores, High Peaks Artisan Guild, Phillips Public Library, and online. I also raised the funds to have a free map guide printed of the trail found at our cultural kiosks. An online map and guide are at

Artist Saskia Reinholt of Phillips touches up an 8-foot compass star barn quilt. Saskia Reinholt photo

What type of art do you enjoy the most? Why? My love to paint surpasses the many other arts and crafts that I enjoy. I find inspiration in nature, sunsets, and landscapes that surround me. I feel grateful to live in such a beautiful part of Maine, it makes it easy to find subject matter. I also enjoy painting geometric mandalas. Barn quilts are like this but have more straight lines. In all styles of my painting, I think about color first. Color is why I love painting; the right combinations and amounts create joy. I often draw my color schemes directly from nature and always with consideration of color theory.

Do you sell your art and if so, where can people view it? Yes, I sell art online at my new website the website has a tool called Live Preview with Augmented Reality. It is an innovative technology that allows you to try my art on your walls before you buy it. Using your phone or tablet, you can visualize, in real time, exactly what a piece will look like on your wall. In your space, with your decor, in all sizes. I also have work at the Rangeley and Kingfield Made in Maine stores, High Peaks Artisan Guild in Kingfield, and at Vera’s Iron and Vine store in Wilton. Many of my clients contact me directly to commission barn quilt paintings for their houses and barns.

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