Archive for the ‘Maine’ Category
This perfect little nugget of a city called Rockport, sits like a fairy tale along the mid-state coast of Maine. Self-referred as the Jewel of Maine, it is like stepping into a Hopper. A lovely town which slopes off into the ocean with a dandy little harbor. I loved this as a setting for the Center for Maine Contemporary Art [CMCA].
It was not what I was expecting, Ieva said it was once a barn. A lot of structures seemed to have been barns. Even their barns are not quite what I would have expected.
Pieced: Gabriella D’Italia & George Mason
I am a sucker for quilts. My mother is a seamstress, and I have been around cloth my whole life. My grandmother was a quilter, sometimes from the scraps my mother gave her. These artworks take inspiration from the quilt. Of the two artists, I can appreciate D’Italia’s (above left) work more, as she uses traditional sewing techniques to bring about her work. Her work combines stitch as a drawing tool. Like many twentieth century artists her work involves the subtlety of surface. Mason’s robust work (above right) takes the aspect of pattern, texture and color.
D’Italia’s Noon (above left) and detail (above right) all surface with etched like line.
Mason’s piece 100 Meetings, 2011 (above, detail) and Nourishing the Old, 2011 (below) virtuosos in creating texture as he mixes plaster, gesso and paint.
Wired: Ellen Wieske
In school we just finished a unit on line, so there is no doubt this and the work of Calder would have been great to show.
I love these beautiful images, with the use of light, they take on a fine dimension and are really something else. I hope this artist continues along in this vein, it reminds me of the craft of wrought iron, which is always unappreciated.
Sferics & Aural Ecosystem: Zach Poff and N.B. Aldrich
As a guy, who has stuck his foot in his mouth more than once, I should never knock another artist. I am putting a comparison from Muybridge to Warhol.
The CMCA is a wonderful little museum which asks for a donation of five bucks. This nestled in a perfect little town. Go see it!
Bowdoin College is located in Brunswick, Maine. It is a midcoastal town of 21,500 people, 25 miles from Portland and about 120 miles from Boston. It has a great little Japanese Restaurant, called Little Tokyo. Someone in the parking lot said to me, as if I was a Mainer, we have come from California, is this the Bowdoin? Hopper has that effect on some people. Something more like the shots below.
The show is the traditional Hopper of Maine in a few works, but the real showstoppers are the 20 or so small oil sketches in the first room. With a palette more like in the photos here, this is Hopper as I had only hoped to see him. Not studied, but working out of a broader palette with loose, greasy brushwork done summers on Monhegan, the artist island colony. Wonderful.
The only drag was a no photo show thing. Since there were so many gems. The real drawback must have been the main painting which is shown in part here on the poster, Captain Upton’s House, 1927, which sits in a private collection. A wonderful work, typical Hopper Maine, those blues of the sky against coastal white structures.
The difference between the wonderful show in Rome two springs ago, was that you saw the finish and sketches together. Large charcoal and pencil drawings, hung with finished paintings the same size. Here, the sketches form a universe. Coast Guard House (shown here) from the Montclair Museum and a sketch next to it, were interesting to see.
There are drawings and etchings shown together, which give more insight into Hopper. The Bowdoin has done a wonderful job, along with the Whitney for allowing the show. The Portland Museum also lent work.
Oh, yes, it cost nothing.
Check out what luck I had in Rome last year with a Hopper show.
I am from a way. Or I am from away. But in either case, I am not a Mainer. I am very happy a friend of mine that I have known for about 100 years, lives in Maine. It was her dream to live in Maine, it was her dream from the 70s to be in Maine. Now she lives in Maine, and she lives like a Mainer. All that green and then all that white, with some splashes of vermillion, cadmium yellow and ochre imbetween. I live between greens and blues, as I have become a Floridian, with white light.
My friend, Ieva Tatarsky and several like-minded women artists, did what the Republicans always cheer about. They put their heads together in that true entrepreneurial spirit and put a gallery group together. They display excellent art. I don’t mean that poo pooh typical seascape stuff that people buy to match their drapes. They make some damn good art and they put together some damn good shows. They declared themselves the Downtown Washington Gallery of Maine. They are the Downtown Gallery and they made a downtown out of two roads that crossed, that you could spit and blink your eye and you never saw it. That, is the true spirit of America.
There are many beautiful pieces up for a song. All work shows exceptional craft as well as the aesthetic kick the work supplies. We were over in Bowdoin for the Hopper show and his 20 sketches done at Monehagen could pass for some of the small diverse works done by Suzanne Phillips (left) on the walls of the gallery. The one shown here, reminded me of an early Kandinsky.
A mezzotint by Mary Boothby (left), another $20 gem by Megan Cafferata (center) and a recent wire collage by Ieva Tatarsky.
The three pieces (directly above) show how different and alike the work can be that was produced in this show. I have seen several of this combinations of group works, and they always strike me as very sophisticated. This work could be shown anywhere, as it holds a diversity which spans modern to post-modern in some of its values.
While the group is not exclusively female, the old Guerilla Girl quote comes to mind, “Do women have to be naked to get into the Met. Museum? Less than 5% of artists in the Modern Art Sections are women, but 85% of the nudes are female.”
As they may be re-forming elsewhere, this blog is a little bittersweet. Some pieces are already sold and Washington will be a sadder place with its “Downtown” gone. But you can still log on and find out about these wonderful, energetic artists:
Having spent my whole life somewhere in proximity of the Atlantic, and in Florida, actually two coasts, one of the pleasures of going to Maine is the beautiful and varied seascape. I could not see anyone going to Maine and not spending some time exploring the beautiful beaches. These may not always be beach chair beaches, I think of Acadia and the beautiful granite and those enclaves. I think of the sand beach there. Some spots where you are mountain to water. These form an array of shots that in my head I refer to as postcards. Maine is an array of postcards, many unprovoked. Postcards are the things you see, which to locals are just everyday and ordinary. Yet for an outsider, extraordinary!
As the light is northern, the light is more filtered and the color more saturated, richer. The shots of Acadia and the lighthouse are from previous visits. The top shot and the one right, are from Marshall Point, where the little lighthouse sits among rocks.
This visit Nik and Ieva took me to Popham Beach (below), a sand beach where erosion of the shoreline has actually led to a postcard. They said during low tide you could walk to a nearby island, which appeared distant, by the time we got there about 2. People were horseback riding along the shore. How beautiful.
Certain cities have the look of a way of life that once was. While people still live and interact in them, the kind of life that was is still obvious. These were bustling places, usually centered on one big moneymaker, here lumber, and supporting industries. Today it is a city of about 35,000 in the city proper. It has an interest from its topography and the way streets and buildings fit into that. This is not unlike the more coastal towns. There is some beautiful brickwork including the building which will house The University of Maine Museum of Art at Bangor.
The museum has a curious policy. You may photograph, but you may not shoot one image alone. So the work presented here is in mass. The show of three different artists takes place between October 14 – December 30, 2011
Dominic Chavez: The Global Lens
There are two very good images, one of which is quite beautiful. I wish there had been more work shown of his. I felt it did not do him justice to shoot the one shot I really loved, that of women serving out food to children who had AIDS. The show is his recent photojournalist work and I wish there had been more of it.
Abe Ajay: Constructions
These are pristine constructions in wood mostly, but some in plexiglas done in the later part of the 20th century. These are extremely professional and very carefully crafted pieces, but to compare the work to Nevelson’s would be like comparing a bathing suit to a fur coat.
Carlo Pittore: Studio Life
This celebration of the artist’s life appears to be done with great sentiment. But great sentiment, does not always make great art. The hanging of the collection of work is done nicely and there are many portraits both oil and some nice drawings.
As this is a college museum there are behests which are also shown from the permanent collection. Two woodcuts shown here are Richard Diebenkorn’s Blue (left), and Helen Frankenthaler’s Essence Mulberry. (right).
The viewing of this work was for free, and a nice way to spend part of an afternoon. The hanging is very professional. The staff was extremely nice. For more about this collection and museum: http://umma.umaine.edu/