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Art (46)

Biennial of today: PMA showcases artistic process in Maine with new exhibition

“You Can’t Get There From Here” seems a doubly apt title for the Portland Museum of Art’s 2015 Biennial, the first to be selected by an individual instead of a jury. The work selected by Alison Ferris, curator, was deliberately picked to accentuate the artistic process at play in the contemporary art scene in Maine. Its origins are in a familiar saying that sums up so many appeals for traveling directions. The theme serves to…

Exploring new terrain: Cynthia Davis and Ronnie Wilson don’t rest

Some artists stick with their medium, style and subject, for a long time. Others repeatedly make about-turns into new directions. Still others keep pursuing specific lines of inquiry, going deeper and farther, continually exploring. Cynthia Davis belongs to the latter group of artists, Ronnie Wilson seemingly to the about-turns, but not quite. Both artists show recent work in “Of Breath and Bone” at Portland’s 3-Fish Gallery.

Ink, press, repeat: Intriguing monoprints at PhoPa Gallery

At PhoPa Gallery, its “Pa” side is currently being explored with monoprints by Karen Adrienne, Kris Sader and Barbra Whitten. Their works on paper share layering and repetition of process, as well as a degree of liquidity, which explains the show’s title, Ripple Effect.There’s a calm, almost soothing palette to the entire gallery, and all artists evidence a great sense of color. In its exclusive focus on monoprints (unique works on paper that are made…

From invention to the ordinary: Five decades of photography by Rose Marasco

Being given a retrospective, one year after retirement from a long teaching career, could be perceived as slightly morbid or as auspicious. Does it mark an end or a new beginning? I am convinced that “Rose Marasco: index” at the Portland Museum of Art does the latter.The exhibition’s title indicates one aspect of photography Marasco has grappled with for decades. The indexical nature of photography started to be questioned just when Marasco’s artistic values were…

It all adds up: Michel Droge’s ‘Tiny Catastrophes’ matter

In German we have a saying, “Kleinvieh macht auch Mist,” or, “Small animals also produce manure." What it basically means is that lots of little things do add up to something bigger. Admittedly, it’s not a very propitious comparison, but one could say the same about Michel Droge’s “Tiny Catastrophes” at the June Fitzpatrick Gallery.

Hofmann cartoons

About this week's cartoon spreadWe commissioned a three-page cartoon this week from Portland-based comedian and visual artist, Tim Hofmann, someone we discovered in our March cover art contest.
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Past and present perspectives: Contemporary photographers click with historical processes

What does it say about contemporary culture that a significant number of photographers look backward, using historical processes to create their work? These processes risk failure, require manual labor, and, not least, time and patience. Nostalgia alone cannot account for this resurgence; the urge to experiment is behind too many practitioners’ interest.
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