MECA’s Visiting Artist and Guest Lecturer Series invites professional artists, educators, curators, thought leaders, and creative entrepreneurs to present on topics of interest and importance to the MECA community. All lectures in this series are open to the public at no charge. RSVPs to firstname.lastname@example.org are encouraged, as seating is limited. Call 207.699.5010 for more information.
10.25 Alexander Rose Creative Director at the Long Now Foundation
Art for the Next 10,000 Years 12:00pm - 2:00pm Osher Hall Sponsored by FY-In, Foundation and Public Engagement
As the director of Long Now, Alexander has facilitated projects such as the 10,000 Year Clock, The Rosetta Project, Long Bets, Seminars About Long Term Thinking, Long Server and countless others. Alexander shares several design patents on the 10,000 Year Clock with Danny Hillis, the first prototype of which is in the Science Museum of London. His experience also includes serving as an artist in residence at Silicon Graphics Inc., a project manager for Shamrock Communications, and a founding partner of Inertia Labs. Alexander has attended the Art Center College of Design and graduated with a bachelor of arts honors degree from Carnegie Mellon University in Industrial Design in 1995. longnow.org
10.30 Scott Berzofsky Artist
A Day With The Public Engagement Department In the ICA Sponsored by the Visiting Artist Committee and the Public Engagement Department
Scott Berzofsky is a recent SMACT graduate from the MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology. His work explores the relation between art, ecology and urban spatial politics. Before coming to MIT, Scott lived and worked in Baltimore, where he co-organized several artistic and activist initiatives including campbaltimore, Participation Park, The City from Below and STEW. His writing has appeared in Third Text, Critical Planning and The Journal of Aesthetics and Protest. Scott Berzofsky
11.01 Erin Sweeney Professional Artist and Curator
Printmaking, Book Arts, and Sculpture 12:30p, - 1:30pm Osher Hall Sponsored by the Printmaking Department
Erin Sweeney is an artist living and working in New Hampshire, having completed her MFA in Book Arts and Printmaking at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she was awarded the Elizabeth C. Roberts Prize for Graduate Book Arts. She holds a BFA in sculpture from the Maine College of Art in Portland, Maine. Her current work combines fibers, text, and the book form. She is interested in all forms of building, be it conceptual or physical. Her current work revolves around the concepts and processes of building community and storytelling. Making handmade objects, manipulating space, and utilizing printmaking processes in non-traditional ways are all a part of Sweeney’s vocabulary. erinsweeney.net
Leanna Morris MFA Candidate
Materials and Process 12:00p, - 2:00pm Osher Hall Sponsored by the MFA Department
Leeanna Morris is currently in her first year of the MECA MFA program. She earned a BFA in Studio Art concentrating in photography and a minor in Art History from Southern Methodist University (SMU). After graduating Leeanna was a Studio Resident in ceramics at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts. In her work, she is currently exploring ideas of installation and limitation through materials and process. She works in a variety of mediums, ranging from photography, ceramics, fibers, and drawing. leeannamorris.com
Scott Nash Illustration Department Chair
The Inspiration of Edward Gorey & The High Skies Adventure of Blue Jay the Pirate 6:00p, - 7:00pm Osher Hall Sponsored by the Illustration Department
Nationally-known Illustrator, author, designer, media-mind, and Edward Gorey enthusiast, 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 List and at The Society of Illustration’s Original Art Show. Scott will also discuss the works of Edward Gorey and his exhibit, Elegant Enigmas on view at the Portland Public Library through December 29.
Art Education Open House: January 29, 2013
The Art Education post-baccalaureate program will hold an open house and lecture on January 29 from 5-9pm for prospective students. The evening begins at 5pm with an information session about the 10-month program which prepares students for K-12 certification nationwide.
MECA Announces Lecture with Anthony Smyrski at the ICA
Anthony Smyrski is a founder of Smyrski Creative and co-founder of hte experimental media project MEGAWORDS. Anthony gave a talk about finding his passion, starting his own design firm and offered practical advice to students about starting a creative business or freelance practice.
Anthony Smyrski is a creative director, artist, and cultural producer. He works in both the cultural and commercial spheres with clients and artists around the world. As his practice develops, he engages projects of increasing complexity involving print, web, installation, video, sound and other components. He travels constantly, studying culture, urban environments, and global patterns of human interaction. Findings and insights from his travels are woven throughout his work.
MEGAWORDS Workshop with Anthony Smyrski
Maine Type Lab members participated in a Sunday workshop with MEGAWORDS’ co-creator Anthony Smyrski. Students learned how to create an assemble a zine using lo-fi, hands-on methods. Everyone contributed a spread and walked away with a copy of the zine. The zine is also on display at MECA ICA.
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.
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.
Scott Nash has illustrated more than forty children’s books, and now, inspired by his childhood readings of such classics as TREASURE ISLAND and ROBINSON CRUSOE, his lifelong love of bird-watching, and an urge to take on a new challenge, he has created his most ambitious project to date, his first novel and his first foray into an entirely new and technically precise style of artwork.
Candlewick Press (Nash’s publishing house) describes Captain Blue Jay as a notorious and feared pirate of the skies with a fondness for collecting treasure, especially eggs. Unfortunately, sometimes his treasure hatches, and this time the hatchling is the strangest one the Grosbeak has ever seen. No sailor is certain whether the chick is a young god or just an oversized bird who needs too much food, but one thing is clear: the winds over Thrushland are shifting, and dramatic changes are in store for all. Whether outwitting a gang of thieving crows, outrunning murderous fishers and weasels, or rallying Briarloch’s beleaguered sparrows, this motley crew must do all they can to stay together and stay alive. And that’s just the tip of the bird’s feather! Offering a bounty of illustrations and a host of memorable characters -- from an endearing star-nosed mole to an unlikely little warrior with a vendetta -- here is a treasure for anyone who has ever wanted to take to the skies and see where fortune blows. Hoist the Jolly Robin! Fly with a swashbuckling crew as they soar through the air -- and evade danger on the ground -- in search of treasure and lofty adventure.
Scott Nash lives in Peaks Island, Maine and has been a student of kid culture for over twenty five years. As a founding partner of NASHBOX, BIG BLUE DOT, Corey McPherson Nash and BUG ISLAND Productions, Scott has developed an expertise in the branding and creative development of kids products and programming for the entertainment, consumer product and publishing worlds. In addition to designing identities for Nickelodeon, PBS, ABC, Comedy Central, FX and YTV, Scott’s design clients include American Girl (Pleasant Company), Disney, Mattel, Microsoft, Milton Bradley and the Boston Children’s Museum. He has vast experience developing and producing animated properties for Disney, Nickelodeon and MTV as well as animated and live-action promo spots for ABC, FX, and PBS. Scott has illustrated over forty children’s books, including Saturday Night at the Dinosaur Stomp and The Bugliest Bug by Carol Diggory Shields, Betsy Who Cried Wolf by Gail Carson Levine,, and Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown.
Scott Nash’s work as a designer and illustrator has been recognized by leading trade organizations and publications such as; The Academy for The Arts and Sciences (EMMY award), PROMAX, Broadcast Designers Association, American Institute of Graphic Arts, Society of Illustrators and HOW, Communications Arts, Print and Publishers Weekly Magazines. He has lectured widely and taught at Boston University, Northeastern University and The Art Institute of Boston. Additionally, he established the Illustration Department at Maine College of Art.
The High-Skies Adventures of Blue Jay the Pirate is available online and at your local bookstore on October 5, 2012. For more information, please contact Raffi Der Simonian at 207.756.0916 or email@example.com.
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.”
According to Donald Tuski, President of Maine College of Art, “The prolific works of Edward Gorey represent the caliber of creativity and artistic brilliance that we promote here at Maine College of Art. Given Gorey’s success as an author, the Portland Public Library is the perfect venue to host this exciting exhibit in its role as a cultural center.”
Elegant Enigmas: The Art of Edward Gorey is on view from October 5 – December 29. The Portland Public Library is located in the heart of Downtown Portland Maine at 5 Monument Square and is open daily from 10am – 7pm Monday – Thursday, Friday 10am – 6pm and Satuarday 10am – 5pm. For more information, visit portlandlibrary.com/gorey.
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.
Portland-based arts organizations launch professional development series for artists
Creative Portland has received a grant from the Quimby Family Foundation to launch a professional development series, in partnership with Maine College of Art and the Maine Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, designed specifically for professional artists.
The series will consist of 12 workshops held in MECA’s Osher Hall on the second Wednesday of every month from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Selected from a survey of artists this summer, topics will range from grant-writing and social media to contract law and business start-up basics.
December 12: Tax Essentials for Artists
With support from the Foundation and a sponsorship from MECA, the cost will be $10 per session for participants and free to all MECA students and alumni. Registration is required for all attendees on Creative Portland’s website—portlandarts.org.
“We have heard from many artists that a critical need in this community is affordable access to high-quality skill-building workshops that are focused around the specific needs of working artists,” said Jennifer Hutchins, executive director of Creative Portland. “By working with MECA and MEVLA, we will offer access to leading presenters in the field and bring the latest knowledge to artists in the Portland region.”
Creative Portland is a nonprofit organization founded in 2008 to grow and support the city’s creative economy. In July 2012, Creative Portland merged with the Portland Arts and Cultural Alliance to become the city’s official arts agency.
The mission of Maine College of Art (MECA) dates back to 1882 and is rooted in delivering a transformative learning experience that prepares students to thrive in the areas of artistic excellence, creative entrepreneurship, and civic engagement within an intimate and demanding educational environment.
Maine Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts offers pro bono and reduced fee services to professional artists in Maine.