News + Events
First year students at MECA engage community with mural project
This striking new mural recently appeared as a result of a community partnership and MECA's Public Engagement efforts at the corner of Preble Street and Cumberland Avenue, a block off of Monument Square.
Two of MECA’s FY-In sections have teamed up with Wright Ryan to create a temporary public installation on the exterior of the new Preble St Teen Center. Paul Gebhardt and Adam Manley’s classes collaborated to create a 48 foot Mural to be mounted on the side of the building at the corner of Preble and Cumberland Streets. Students worked together to come up with a mural spoke to both the residents of the center and the general population of Portland. After a group brainstorming session, the students were divided into groups of two, each of which was assigned a letter, as well as a language commonly spoken in Portland to act as a visual prompt for the painting of their letter. The mural is divided into 4’ x 4’ squares, each containing one letter, and the individual artworks that developed around each of these letters is based on the students’ extensive research into the visual language of the assigned cultures.
The building is being renovated to become the Preble Street Resource Center's new Joe Kreisler Teen Shelter. But the mural is actually a collaboration between Wright-Ryan Construction and this year's freshman class at the Maine College of Art.
Wright-Ryan superintendent Rob Barrett was a driving force behind the initiative. He said, "The building renovations required his crew to remove the first-floor facade and erect a temporary plywood shed. Instead of having a blank wall, it seemed like a perfect canvas for a community art project, so I contacted a couple of instructors at MECA. Members of the freshman class then teamed up in pairs to paint the mural's individual panels, each of which honors a different nationality from the diverse immigrant community at the nearby Portland High School."
"It was a way to get incoming freshmen introduced to Portland, and introduced to the Preble Street Resource Center, with a community-based arts project," explains Barrett.
Chair of MECA Illustration Department Releases New Book
SCOTT NASH RELEASES NEW BOOK:
Portland Based Author/Illustrator and Chair of MECA’s Illustration Department Tops 2012 Best Children’s Books List
Portland, Maine ~ Illustrator, author, designer, and nationally-known media mind Scott Nash’s latest release, The High Skies Adventure of Blue Jay the Pirate has already garnered recognition of note on ABA's (American Booksellers Association) Best Children's books of 2012 Listand at The Society of Illustration’s Original Art Show.
Elegant Enigmas: The Art of Edward Gorey comes to Portland
Portland, ME ~ The Bank of Maine proudly presents Elegant Enigmas: The Art of Edward Gorey opening on Friday, October 5, 2012, and continuing through December 29 on display at Portland Public Library’s Lewis Gallery. The exhibition is free of charge to the general public and features original illustrations, preparatory sketches, unpublished drawings and ephemera by the internationally celebrated artist and author Edward Gorey. This highly acclaimed exhibit is made possible by generous support from The Bank of Maine and a collaboration between Maine College of Art (MECA) and Portland Public Library.
Elegant Enigmas pays tribute to the work of Edward Gorey (1925 – 2000), best known for his brilliant drawings and witty, quirky stories. Described as “incredibly sophisticated…stylish and inventive” by the New York Observer, Gorey’s signature pen-and-ink illustrations and macabre wit has led him to be considered one of America’s most imaginative and eccentric artists of all-time. During his lifetime, Gorey published over 100 works, designed sets and costumes for countless theatre productions, created popular animations, and illustrated works for a wide array of artists ranging from Charles Dickens and John Updike to Virginia Woolf and H.G. Wells.
Elegant Enigmas includes approximately 180 original works, including selections from The Gashlycrumb Tinies, The Doubtful Guest, The Unstrung Harp, The Gilded Bat, and other well-known publications, drawn primarily from the extensive archives of The Edward Gorey Charitable Trust and significant private collections.
Chairman and CEO of The Bank of Maine, John Everets, one of many local Gorey enthusiasts said, “We are proud to sponsor this exhibit and delighted to help share the fascinating genius of Edward Gorey with the Greater Portland community. We hope that people take advantage of this tremendous opportunity to experience Elegant Enigmas for themselves.”
or to schedule an interview with Gorey expert and chair of MECA’s illustration department, Scott Nash, please contact Raffi Der Simonian at 207.699.5010 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This Exhibition has been organized by the Edwards Gorey Charitable Trust and the Brandywine River Museum, Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania.
Artist who designed Sprague oil tanks speaks at MECA
Jaime Gili, the artist who designed the art for Sprague Energy Corporation’s oil tanks that line Casco Bay between Portland and South Portland, will visit Maine this coming week, spoke at MECA's Osher Hall on Wednesday, September 12, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. The event was hosted by the Maine Center for Creativity, in partnership with Maine College of Art.
The Maine Center for Creativity, in ground-breaking collaboration with the Sprague Energy Corporation, sponsored the Art All Around® project. It is a bold initiative launched in 2008 to spearhead an international design competition. It’s goal: to transform 16 oil storage tanks on Portland harbor into an integrated ‘canvas’ of color and design at the gateway to the state’s largest city – and to all of Maine.
The first phase was an open design competition that received 560 submissions from 80 countries. Designs were evaluated by a select, international panel of judges. Five semifinalists, including two from Maine, each received a $10,000 prize award. Jaime Gili, a young Venezuela-born artist living in London, was selected as the final winner – and received the $20,000 grand prize.
To date, five tanks of the 16 tanks have been completed, and Gili is visiting Maine to talk about the project, his inspiration, and how it compares to his other artistic endeavors.
About Jaime Gili
Jaime Gili was born in Caracas in 1972 and lives in London. His work has been described as continuing a tradition of Latin American abstract art, especially the Venezuelan optical artists from the 20th Century. Critics have described his work as a mix of Pop, Minimalism, Vorticism, Futurism and graffiti Art. Gili received his MA in painting from the Royal College of Art in 1998, after studying in Caracas and Barcelona, and has exhibited since in the UK, the USA, Brazil, Switzerland, Spain, Argentina and Venezuela. Art All Around® jurors selected Gili’s work from among 560 submissions from more than 80 countries during the Maine Center for Creativity’s international competition to transform the Sprague industrial site into the world’s largest public art painting.
About the Maine Center for Creativity
Through its support of arts and industry collaborations, the Maine Center for Creativity (MCC) harnesses the power of talent and innovation to drive economic development and growth of the creative economy in Maine. By developing projects and educational programs that support the vibrancy of creative industries and the arts, such as Art All Around®, Pecha Kucha, and the inaugural Maine Creative Industries Award on September 13, 2012, MCC nurtures innovative companies, engaged communities, and creative people. For more information visit www.mainecenterforcreativity.org or call 207.730.0694.
Portland Maine Film Festival Hosted at MECA
MECA is a proud sponsor of The Portland Maine Film Festival. MECA's Osher Hall will be transformed into a host venue for the film festival from October 4 - 7, 2012.
The Portland Maine Film Festival is dedicated to presenting the work of talented, emerging artists who engage critical, contemporary dialogues through the medium of film. In doing so, we hope to foster the cultural and creative growth of Portland as a developing hub for independent film and innovation within the motion picture arts.
Coming this Fall! SNAAP Survey
MECA is participating in the 2012 Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP)--a one-of-a-kind survey that explores the lives of arts alumni nationwide. Alumni completing the survey this fall will have access to a site to see how their educational and career experiences compare with alumni from across the country. See where other arts graduates live, where they work, what they earn, and how their arts educations have influenced their lives.
Creative Capital Professional Development Retreat
The Maine Arts Commission recently presented a transformative two-day Creative Capital Professional Development Retreat in partnership with Maine College of Art. Creative Capital is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to providing integrated financial and advisory support to artists pursuing adventurous projects in five disciplines: Emerging Fields, Film/Video, Literature, Performing Arts and Visual Arts. Working in long-term partnership with artists, Creative Capital’s pioneering approach to support combines funding, counsel and career development services to enable a project’s success and foster sustainable practices for its grantees. The Professional Development Program has reached more than 4,200 artists in 70 communities across the country. The retreat was held at MECA on September 15 and 16.
The Professional Development Retreat delivered dynamic skill-building opportunities to artists for long-term change. Using strategic planning as the central tool, the retreat provided a comprehensive learning structure that helps artists identify short-term project goals and longer-term career goals. The aim of the retreat was to help artists build the skills and identify the resources needed to accomplish their goals. Creative Capital uses an integrated methodology to build skills in the core areas of marketing/public relations, financial planning and fundraising. Overall, the retreat helps artists break ineffective patterns of time and work management, and increase satisfaction in the business of their art.
If you are interested in learning more about this professional development program and other similar upcoming opportunities, please contact Jessica Tomlinson at email@example.com.