Art (33)

'Being Human' with David Driskell's Renewal and Form

David Driskell explores a distinct creative freedom that Maine affords him, as stated in a quote displayed on one of the object labels of Renewal and Form, his new exhibition at Rockland's Center for Maine Contemporary Art. “I came to Maine not because I expected to have wide acceptance, but to work independently as I wanted to, to be left alone without having to answer all kinds of questions about my race. Maine has a…

The Old Masters at Work: Michael Wilson's Woodsmen at the Press Hotel

Before the advent of the lumbersexual, before the stereotype of the L.L.Bean boyfriend, Maine's first sawmill opened in South Berwick in 1634. By the end of the 17th century, the state added 50 more. Lumbering was one of the first ways Mainers were put to work, and the mystique of the Maine woodsman has endured just as long.  In an inspired new gallery setting in the lower level of the Old Port's Press Hotel, Maine…

Risk, Bravery, Desire: Derek Jackson's 'Ladyboy' at Border Patrol

Ladyboy is a solo exhibition featuring new works by Derek Jackson. It's the second exhibition at the new Border Patrol gallery, a studio of three modestly sized rooms in the State Theatre building, whose curator-proprietors (Elizabeth Spavento and Jared Haug) describe its mission as exploring the notions of government agency and the intersections of contemporary art and corporate aesthetics. Put another way, it's a converted office space on the third floor of an old and…

Resistance is Hands-On: An Interview with GET READY WEEKLY

One of the more visible and inspired collaborations to emerge after the election, the Portland-based art duo Erin Johnson and Marieke Van Der Steenhoven began collaborating as GET READY WEEKLY with the intention of using art and social practice for advancing racial, social environmental and economic justice for artists and non-artists alike, hosting workshops where participants made protest signs and keeping a public calendar of resistance efforts around city and state. As we approach Trump’s…

UNLOADED: The ICA Group Show Hits a Difficult Mark

In the U.S., there are 86 gun deaths a day. So visitors to the Maine College of Art's ICA are informed at the outset of UNLOADED, a traveling exhibition of works from national artists on the theme of guns in America. Guest-curated by Susanne Slavick, an artist, curator, and professor at Carnegie Mellon, the show consists of 26 artists (including a piece by a six-woman collective) across a spectrum of media and concepts illustrating America's complicated…

Scott Nash opens "Picture This," an illustration exhibit and workshop open to everyone

A new nonprofit in Portland wants to make learning the illustrative arts more affordable and available to a wider audience, so it’s setting up shop at the Portland Public Library. Scott Nash, director of the Illustration Institute, says “anyone can join in. That’s one of the reasons we want this in a public place, like a library as opposed to a typical art school or university.” He hopes the locale and sliding scale fees will…

†he Peruvian connection: Portland artist to join indigenous art exhibition

Portland artist Mei Selvage has been invited to participate in an Intercontinental Biennial of Indigenous and Millennial Arts exhibition in Piura, Peru. The Chinese native will travel there from Oct.10 to 20.   She met Jorge Ivan Cevallos, the founder and director of the exhibit, while attending a First Friday event at the Portland Public Library last year. Bruce Brown, curator emeritus at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, had encouraged her to attend the…

Midsummer guide: History bumps into current events at Pejepscot Historical Society

As Pejepscot Historical Society Executive Director Larissa Vigue Picard can attest, history is not static.The Mall in Brunswick once was a swamp "filled with beavers," the historical society notes.And the towering Gothic Revival First Parish Church next to Bowdoin College — a landmark for motorists on teeming Maine Street — traces its roots to a congregation of 1717 "when the Pejepscot Proprietors began settling the area," the historical society notes. Figures such as Eleanor Roosevelt…

Ogunquit Museum of American Art boasts hidden treasures by the sea

The original Indian settlers of what would become our state named a short stretch of the Atlantic Ocean’s coastline Ogunquit, which means “beautiful place by the sea.” The Ogunquit Museum of American Art, founded by Charles Strater in 1952, continues to be a repository of beautiful exhibits, housed at a stunning location in Narrow Cove.     The museum has been in the news lately for an impressive exhibit of Jamie Wyeth paintings from his…

Fort Gorges dips its toe in the artistic waters: 'A Long Wait' previews what a master plan could mean for Hog Island

Dancing among historic remnants of the mid-1800s; partying in full garb at a Halloween ball set in a piece of military architecture. Portland has seen its share of high-society fetes in distinctive and offbeat places. But on an island in Casco Bay that is accessible only by boat or kayak?That happened, according to Paul Drinan, executive director of the Friends of Fort Gorges. Hog Island and its defunct military fort, the crumbling but iconic Fort…
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