Tribute to Artist ‘Tomaso’ Schena with his Work Saturday at Plaistow Historical Society

Thomas “Tomaso” Schena. (Courtesy photograph.)

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A beloved local artist, who passed away this spring, will be remembered tomorrow with an exhibit at the Plaistow Historical Society.

Thomas Schena, better known as Tomaso, died following a brief illness in May at the age of 43. Many of his works of art, on loan from his fans, will be on display Saturday, Sept. 23, from noon to 5 the Historical Society, 127 Main St., Plaistow, N.H. Historical Society volunteer Samantha Subatch was a guest recently on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program, and said Schena met his subjects at local restaurants.

“It’s so special because you didn’t really ask for a drawing. I think he would observe, see a family enjoy themselves and want to capture that moment,” she said.

Subatch, who said the artist was also known for riding his bicycle everywhere, often had his own seat at the restaurants where he created his drawings. She said he customized his drawings.

“It’s really like individuality—whatever Tomaso and that person talked about—he would add that in there. It was kind of like a little bio. If you told him you liked something, or for me, I love to play guitar, most of my drawings have guitars in them. So, it’s a little add to personalize it, and maybe you would have the restaurant, or your favorite color, definitely your eye color. There’s a lot of details in those pictures,” she said.

Tomaso was a graduate of Timberlane High School, and traveled by bicycle to locations at the Seacoast and Maine, along with numerous restaurants in the Plaistow and Haverhill areas.

“There’s something to add that a lot of people have asked. Why the Historical Society? Well, people think history was a long time ago, a thousand years ago, but it was five minutes ago. This needs to be part of history, so people can come back and make sure they know who he was,” she explained.

Subatch said Schena used mostly Crayola markers, and a collection of markers will be taken up this Saturday, in his memory and distributed to young artists in the area.

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