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On the first Friday evening of every month, the city’s artists, galleries, and arts venues open up their doors for Portland’s thriving First Friday Art Walk.

Upcoming First Friday Art Walk

Friday, November 1, 2019

Maine College of Art
On View: October 21 - November 15, 2019 Maine College of Art Porteous Building: Lower Level, Floors 1-3 MECA's annual fall student exhibition, the BFA Exhibition, is open to all MECA students. It offers an opportunity for students to show new work, gain practical professional experience, and get valuable feedback from faculty and peers. Exhibition participants will be installed in the hallways and common area gallery zones on the Lower Level and Floors 1-3.
Artist(s):
Medium:
Portland Museum of Art
Barbara Morgan (1900-1992) was a pioneering figure in American photography known for her dynamic images of modern dance, experiments in photomontage, and gestural light drawings. Throughout her career, Morgan worked to visualize the “inner meanings” of her subjects. Her photographs capture fundamental elements of both photography and life – light and motion. Raised in southern California, Morgan studied and taught painting and became interested in gesture and movement. She carried this fascination into her photography, determined to record what she called the world’s “rhythmic vitality.” Image: Barbara Morgan (United States, 1900-1992), Wild Bee Honeycomb Skyscraper (detail), 1973 photomontage, 19 7/8 x 15 7/8 inches Gift of Paul B. Ford 1984.340
Artist(s):
Barbara Morgan
Medium:
Photography
Maine Jewish Museum
267 Congress St
Faith Regained: Mark Baum Early Works - Spiegel Gallery Later Works - Fineberg Family Community Room Mark Baum (1903–1997) was a Polish-born American artist whose paintings and artistic direction are unique in the twentieth-century modernist canon. Baum was born into a conservative Jewish family in what is now Southeast Poland, near the Ukrainian border. Following World War I and a daring emigration through occupied Europe to New York City in 1919, he turned to art. Mostly self-taught, Baum became a respected painter of city- and landscapes in the late 1920s, having his first solo exhibition at the Whitney Galleries in 1929, with subsequent shows at Marie Harriman Gallery in 1931 and Perls Galleries in 1941, among others. His work was collected by a number of museums, including the Whitney and the Frick, as well as the private collection of Alfred Stieglitz. His representational period of work is notable for its unusual perspective, flattened patterning, and mix of the natural and industrial presented as a total vision. At the end of World War II, with the revelations of its devastation to his homeland and family, Baum fell into crisis—personally and artistically. The painter became disillusioned with the representational art that had become his trademark, though in looking at it anew he understood that it contained the seeds of something important for where he needed to go. Baum began to see his painting as part of—and the vehicle for—a larger spiritual quest. Initially this took the form of a richly experimental transitional period in the late 1940s and early 1950s, during which he maintained representational and symbolic imagery. Then in 1957 he moved decisively to non-objective painting, developing a unique, abstract form he called “the element.” This form was inspired by a revelation he had upon re-looking at his 1948 painting Aspirational Staircase; specifically, he sought to create a singular shape that, like the staircase, invoked a rhythmical, directional movement. He evolved the “element” over a decade arriving at its final form in the late 1960s. Baum would paint exclusively using this element until his death in 1997. The “element” was presciently algorithmic of our digital age in the sense that it was a code by which he could build worlds, but it also became a spiritual vocabulary and a creative, cosmic force unto itself. This glyph was for Baum a visual mantra through which he regained his faith and was able to once again access the awe of the universe. Baum’s change to non-representational art also corresponded with his move out of the New York art scene and to rural Maine (Cape Neddick), where he painted in a converted barn and nurtured an extensive garden. Working in virtual obscurity for almost three decades, Baum nonetheless had the faith of the visionary that he was: he felt sure that even though his work was unrecognized in the moment, it was accessing a larger spiritual channel and would someday be understood. Mark Baum’s painting is found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Whitney Museum, the Fogg Art Museum, the Berkeley Art Museum, and Bowdoin College Museum of Art, among others. Interpreting the Silence Jessyca M Broekman Third Floor Sanctuary Interpreting the Silence is an exhibition of Jessyca Broekman’s artist’s books and mixed media paintings examining her family’s history – a history shrouded in mystery. Her parents both survived the Holocaust, but were never willing to discuss those experiences. Using facsimiles of writing, photos, and other ephemera, Broekman has created a series of one-of-a-kind sculptural artist’s books that explore the intersection between past and present, and the ramifications of keeping secrets. Rather than being specifically illustrative, these books evoke the journeys we take from one moment to the next, asking questions about what we keep, carry forward, and transform throughout the course of our lives. Jessyca Broekman has lived and worked in Maine for more than 30 years. Her work has been widely exhibited and collected. She has been awarded an NEA Individual Artist Grant for Works-on-Paper and residences at Yaddo, VSC and The Heliker-LaHotan Foundation.
Artist(s):
Mark Baum
Medium:
Acrylic on Canvas
Maine College of Art
Make.Art.Think. at MECA 380 Cumberland Ave., Portland (corner of Cumberland and Casco) Opening Reception: Friday, November 1, 5-6:30PM Please join Maine College of Art's Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) candidates and LearningWorks Afterschool students, families, and staff in a celebration of artwork created during Make.Art.Think. Art Enrichment Classes. Come see artwork from 150 students across Portland and South Portland LearningWorks Sites, along with plenty of food, drink & gallery games! The exhibition will be open to the public during the First Friday Artwalk, 5 - 8 PM. View exhibit by arrangement November 2-6 - email Kelly McConnell, MAT Program Chair, at kmcconnell@meca.edu to inquire. This program is supported by Jeremy Moser and Laura Kittle through a gift from the Moser Family Foundation.
Artist(s):
Medium:
Portland Museum of Art
Countless people across the globe can close their eyes and conjure Wyeth’s work—his vibrant use of color, his striking figures, his storyteller’s sense of visual narrative. Many are aware of his onetime standing as the country’s foremost illustrator, his deep ties to the places he lived—particularly Brandywine River Valley in Pennsylvania, and midcoast Maine—and his stature as patriarch to three generations of acclaimed artists, including his son Andrew and grandson Jamie. Very few, however, can describe his life beyond these brief biographical touchstones. N. C. Wyeth: New Perspectives aims to broaden our understanding of Wyeth and American art. Image: N.C. Wyeth (United States, 1882 - 1945) Captain Nemo (detail), 1911, oil on canvas, 40 3/16 x 30 1/8 inches. The Andrew and Betsy Wyeth Collection.
Artist(s):
N. C. Wyeth
Medium:
paintings

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