On February 3 at 5pm, the college will officially dedicate the Karu Media Collective and to thank the Karu family for their generosity. Located on the third floor of the Porteous Building, the Karu Media Collective provides studio space for students majoring in Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography, and New Media. All are invited to attend the dedication, hear remarks from faculty, staff, and students and tour the spaces.
Portland INSIDE/OUT Exhibition and Screening
This fall, MECA partnered with TedxDirigo to respond to artist JR’s TED Prize wish “to turn the world inside-out using art." Students in the Public Art Studio Class interviewed Portland residents about what they want their community to be. The temporary public art project featured voices and portraits shared on the streets of Portland, on the web, and on the radio.
During the First Friday Art Walk on February 3, the college will host an exhibition, film screening, and celebration of the project from 5pm to 9pm on the second floor of the Porteous Building. Join us in celebrating our partnerships and project process, listen to our collective voices and pick up a copy of your photo at this multi-media installation. The documentary film, by No Umbrella Media, will be screened at 7 and 8pm.
Metalsmithing & Jewelry Faculty Jeffrey Clancy Exhibition and Book Launch in Brussels
Metalsmithing & Jewelry faculty member Jeffrey Clancy is exhibiting his work at Elsa Platteau & Cie Gallery in Brussels from February 2 through March 2. An opening reception is scheduled for February 1 which includes a book launch for Clancy's "Making a Bowl by Raising and Crimping." This limited edition book includes texts written by Annie Larmon and Lauren Fensterstock, the Academic Program Director of the Masters of Fine Arts program at MECA. Clancy was also selected by the Smithsonian American Art Museum for the upcoming exhibition "40 under 40: Craft Futures" opening this summer at the Renwick Gallery in Washington, DC.
Photography Faculty Collaborate for Exhibition
Maine College of Art Photography faculty member Peter Shellenberger and artist-in-residence Caleb Charland are collaborating on a body of work to be exhibited at the Addison Woolley Gallery in Portland. Both artists incorporate unconventional materials and processes in their imagery. The exhibition, curated by Bruce Brown, opens with a reception on February 2 and continues through February 26. Shellenberger and Charland will discuss their process at an artist lecture on February 12 at 2 pm.
Maine College of Art is the largest employer of visual artists in Maine. In addition to the 150 faculty members and instructors, many of the staff are also artists. "From the Inside" is the annual exhibition of work by MECA staff, on view in the June Fitzpatrick Gallery at MECA from January 24 through February 5 with an opening reception on January 26th from 5-8pm.
This year's show features the work of Megan Lloyd, Steven Emmons, Stacy Howe, Colleen Kinsella, Kelly McConnell, Jane Dalton, Diane Wren, Grace Hopkins-Lisle, Cat Bates, Sandy Macleod, Maggie Muth, Phil Stevens, Annie Wadleigh, and Dietlind Vander Schaaf, representing the following departments: Admissions, Printmaking, Art Education, the Joanne Waxman Library, Metalsmithing & Jewelry, the Business Office, Sculpture, Painting, and Advancement.
Image credit: Stacy Howe
MECA Painters: 10 Years Later
Each year, MECA invites alumni who graduated ten years ago with a degree in painting, to participate in an exhibition at the June Fitzpatrick Gallery. This is the 10th anniversary of this exhibition. This year's participants are 2002 graduates Gina Adams, Hannah Barnes, Tim Clorius, Morgan Maurer, Jason Prescott, Phillip Tuttrow, and Michelle Weinstein. The gallery hours are noon to 5pm, Tuesday through Saturday. An opening reception is scheduled for 5pm on January 6 and a closing reception will be held at 3pm on January 21.
Image credit: Gina Adams
MFA Priority Deadline: February 15
The priority deadline for applications to the Maine College of Art Master in Fine Arts program is February 15.
Drawn by its rugged beauty and reputation for fierce individualism, artists have long favored Maine as a place of retreat. For centuries, Maine has hosted enclaves of innovation. Artists well-versed in current discourse, engaged in global politics, and committed to pushing the boundaries of aesthetics, ethics and individual practice repeatedly choose this place to gather and work. Won’t you join us?
Maine College of Art’s Master of Fine Arts in Studio Arts takes a structural cue from its setting. We understand the importance of place, but also recognize that notions of place are indexical, as they are constantly re-framed by the shifting boundaries of individual experience. With this in mind, we believe that our unique residency structure presents an ideal format for a 21st century arts education. Students benefit from an intensive Maine residency in summer with the freedom and independence of working from any home location in fall and spring. Our responsive curriculum emphasizes student-directed research geared to empower the voice of the individual, while our global network of faculty, advisors, visiting artists and alumni provides a strong community of support.
Low Residency Students can live anywhere while working towards their degree. Fall and spring semesters, experienced from any home location, support flexibility and independence. Summer and winter residencies in Maine provide the intensity of group interaction and feedback. This structure promotes the development of a sustainable lifelong practice.
Non-Resident Studio Advisors During fall and spring trimesters, each student is carefully paired with a studio advisor for their home location. Advisors meet one-on-one with students in their personal studios. With over a decade of experience, the program has established an extensive network of studio advisors from across North America and abroad and can support students living in any location. While the majority of our instructors are practicing studio artists, we are committed to exploring other disciplinary perspectives through faculty whose research areas lie outside the arts.
Visiting Artists An international roster of visiting artists, curators and critics join the program throughout the summer, each for a week at a time. Visiting artists deliver a public lecture, conduct one-on-one studio visits with every student, participate in group critiques and take part in an interview or classroom activity.
Faculty Member Elizabeth Jabar Exhibits in Waterville
Printmaking faculty member Elizabeth Jabar presents "Kindred" an exhibition of her work at Common Street Gallery in Waterville through December 28. In “Kindred” Jabar poignantly captures diverse narratives and interprets what it means to be in kinship with our cultural ancestors.
Jabar is a Waterville native and returns to her roots to mount an exhibition of prints, paper cuts, and artist books that reflect on the ideas of kinship, ancestry and cultural heritage. Working from a narrative framework, She uses a lexicon of abstracted and representational forms that come from a diversity of sources including, nature, folk art traditions, textiles, and the human figure. Her densely-layered, vividly-colored works are made using a combination of print techniques—woodcut, silkscreen, and lithography, as well as the use of dyes, wax, and thread. Her works also expand the conventions of the print medium, and utilize nontraditional formats including cut paper, book objects, and unframed wall compositions.
Jabar's unique approach to both form and format creates a multi-sensory experience for the viewer. She explains that her work conjures multi-layered narratives that lead us away from the ordinary into a contemplative space full of color, potent symbols, and a unique visual language that is not easily categorized. These formal and material strategies underscore what Jabar states is her goal of “reflecting upon the richness and complexities of cultural identity.” Her work is in various collections throughout the United States and Canada, and she has won several grants and awards and residencies.
Matt Hutton, program chair of the Woodworking & Furniture Design program at MECA, will give a lecture at 3pm on December 7 in the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art. Hutton's work is included in the current exhibition, "A Perpetual Present" on view through December 23.
Hutton earned his BFA in Woodworking and Furniture Design at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Indiana and an MFA from San Diego State University. Matt has also studied woodworking in England and Japan.
Recently, Matt has taught at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Anderson Ranch Arts Center and lectured at Rochester Institute of Technology, the Herron School of Art and Takumi Juku in Japan. Matt was also recently awarded the Artist Award from the Society of Arts & Crafts and the Searchlight Award from the American Craft Council.
Students in Ling Wen Tsai's class "Introduction to Drawing" will show their work at Bakery On the Hill Gallery through January 29, 2012. All works were inspired by and created in the bakery. Participating students include: Brian MacMillian, Brittany Jasmin, Caitlin Hathaway, Cecil Cates, Cecilia Vazquez, Dylan MacLeod, Emily Armstrong, Emma McCabe, Ezequiel Rodriguez, Franceska Nebel, Gianna Caranfa, Hailey Howard, Hayley Cummings, Johanna Stacey, Lucas Greco, Lyndsey McElreath, Richard Ehman, Sarah Oppelt, Shadell Segree, and Wesley Cunningham.
MECA, Telling Room and Library Partner for Teen Exhibition
The 10-month post-baccaluareate program at MECA prepares students to become art teachers. In addition to the classes on campus and the student teaching in classrooms, the future teachers also participate in community collaborations. This fall, students in the Art of Teaching Art class with Paul Gebhardt partnered with the Portland Public Library and the nonprofit writing organization The Telling Room to conduct a series of workshops for teens. The work focused on the theme of The Telling Room's yearly anthology “Searching for Maine: Searching for Me.” First, students wrote their personal stories of identity. Then MECA students helped them create silhouettes and cut them out. To complete the project, they wrote their stories inside their silhouettes and exhibited them in the gallery at the library. “For a lot of these teens, they never understood the concept of a gallery opening,” said Telling Room creative director John Holdridge. “There was this great moment where there was a room full of high school students, Telling Room staff, MECA students and professors all in the space together, viewing the work, having conversations – classic art opening conversations about the work and some not about the work. It was good to provide a space where significant cross-sections of this Portland community can come together, high school students, higher education students and professionals; we wanted to provide a hub for all of these people to be able to come together.”
Faculty Lecture: Gan Xu
Art History faculty member Gan Xu will deliver a lecture, "Art Historian to Designer: My 390 Foot Buddha" on December 1 at 1pm in Osher Hall. Dr. Gan Xu was born in Shanghai, China. He studied art history at Xian Academy of Art, Xian, China, Vanderbilt University, and Ohio University. His research and publications focus on contemporary art in the West and in China. He has published two books and more than thirty articles in exhibition catalogs and magazines. He lectures nationally and internationally, and has taught as a visiting professor at Eastern China Normal University, Sichuan Academy of Art, China, and Langzhou University, China. He brings students overseas to study in China, Japan, Italy and France. Dr. Xu is also a painter and has been exhibiting his work since the 1970s. He teaches Chinese calligraphy and ink painting. His most recent title in China is the Art Director of an architecture firm, Linkhigh Interior Design, and has been involved in large scale architectural projects in China. His current project involves the design of a cultural park dedicated to Buddhism.
Visiting Artist: Sarah Pierce
Maine College of Art welcomes Visiting Artist Sarah Pierce back to her homestate of Maine for a lecture on Saturday, December 3 at 6pm in Osher Hall. Since 2003, Pierce has used an umbrella term, The Metropolitan Complex, to describe her practice which uses archives, exhibitions, and papers–often opening these structures up to the personal and the incidental. Central to her activity is a consideration of forms of gathering, both historical examples and those she initiates.
Pierce is currently working towards a PhD in Curatorial Knowledge at Goldsmiths College, University of London and is a regular Lecturer on the MA in Visual Arts Practices at IADT in Ireland. In 2005, she represented Ireland at the 51st Venice Biennale.
Students in MECA’s Second Year Lab, Power to the Print, will install a temporary exhibition and retail space inspired by the market phenomenon known as the pop-up shop. POW! Print Lab will create a distinct visual presence and offer a unique opportunity for viewer participation. Just in time for the holiday season, this exclusive two-day event will feature an eclectic collection of student-made printed works ranging from wood-cuts to silk screened posters, limited edition bags, t-shirts, buttons, stickers and even ornaments.
POW! Print Lab represents the conclusion of a semester's exploration of printed matter and its power as a tool of communication, dissent, and alternative culture from political protest to the entrepreneurial ethos of DIY culture and pop-up shops.
POW! Print Lab opens first Friday December 2, in the Free Street Gallery at Maine College of Art. Come early Friday evening for surprise special events! Sale continues on Saturday, December 3. All profits support the work of the student artists.