Openings + Shows, First Fridays in October

Openings + Shows

Gabriella D’Italia, “Material Index, diptych” at Aarhus Gallery
Aarhus Gallery in Belfast presents Gabriella D’Italia: Elaborate Hegemonies from September 28 through October 24 with an opening reception Friday October 1 from 5 to 8 pm. Elaborate Hegemonies explores a Russian-doll-like epistemology: nested meanings, interpretation-yielding structures, and connectivity. FMI, visit Gabriella D’Italia online or Aarhus Gallery online.

Michael Welch, “The Break” at Maine Art Gallery
Below: Tony van Hasselt, “Dancing Trees”

Maine Art Gallery in Wiscasset introduces a new exhibit at the gallery, The Faces of Maine, opening September 30 and running until October 30. The Faces of Maine will have its official opening on Thursday September 30 from 5 to 7 pm and feature a book signing by American Watercolor Society signature artist Tony van Hasselt. The new exhibit explores the many “faces” that the state of Maine may present: it’s mountains, islands, boats, local “characters”, portraits of individuals both human and animal, maybe crustacean, that make up the fabric of all that is uniquely Maine. The interpretation is in the hands of over one hundred artists who live and work in the state.

Tony van Hasselt is a long time member of the Maine Art Gallery in Wiscasset and a gifted teacher who holds art workshops all over the world. His unique teaching methods have built upon his student’s visually oriented learning tendencies to make the most complex art techniques seem simple to them. He is a regular contributor to Watercolor Magic, The Artist’s Magazine and the Dutch art magazine Palet en Tekenstift. His work has been featured in magazines such as Southwest Art, American Artist, Australian Artist, as well as eight instruction books. FMI, contact or visit Maine Art Gallery online.

William Mortensen, “Fragment” at Portland Museum of Art

The Portland Museum of Art in the Portland Arts District will open Debating Modern Photography: The Triumph of Group f/64 on September 30. The exhibit will be on display through December 5.

In the 1930s, a small group of California photographers challenged the painterly, soft-focus Pictorialist style of the day. They argued that photography could only advance as an art if its practitioners exploited characteristics inherent to the camera’s mechanical nature. This small association of innovators created Group f/64, named after the camera aperture which produces great depth of field and sharp focus.

The exhibition revisits this debate and includes images by photographers in Group f/64 such as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Imogen Cunningham, Sonya Noskowiak, and Willard Van Dyke, as well as images by such Pictorialists such as Anne Brigman, William Dassonville, Johan Hagemeyer, William Mortensen, and Karl Struss. With approximately 90 works by 16 artists, Debating Modern Photography offers a feast for the eyes while illustrating both sides of a high-stakes debate. Outstanding examples of the clean edges and bold forms of Group f/64 stand in sharp contrast to the romantic, hand-crafted Pictorialist work that includes elegant portraits, tonalist landscapes, and allegorical studies.

Belfast Art Galleries will host First Friday Art Walks and receptions, October 1 in Belfast.

Jane Dahmen “Full Summer Sun,” at Gleason Fine Art
Below: Brad Betts, “Gliding (Egrets)”

Gleason Fine Art in Portland will host an opening reception for JANE DAHMEN: Through the Trees and PLEIN AIR MAINE: Paintings by Brad Betts, Mitch Billis, and Bjorn Runquist on First Friday October 1. The show is up now and will remain on display through October 30.

Jane Dahmen‘s tree series was inspired by her walks through the woods and along the river near her home in Newcastle, Maine. The works are large; the intent is to allow the viewer to experience the natural world as the artist herself does.

Brad Betts, Mitch Billis, and Bjorn Runquist all adhere to a tradition born of the 19th-century move toward artistic freedom that encouraged artists to leave their studios, take their easels and paints outside, painting nature as seen and experienced in person. These artists, Betts in East Boothbay, Billis in Boothbay Harbor, and Runquist on the St. George peninsula, find painting en plein air exhilarating and challenging. The hazards of being at nature’s mercy–gusts of wind, sand flecks, and sudden showers–all take on a minor role when held up against the clarity of Maine’s light. Runquist and Billis have had long careers with many awards; Betts, who balances his painting sessions with his duties as a house dad, has just begun his journey.

Boothbay Region Art Foundation
will host a First Friday Arts Tour on October 1. Self guided tours, day and evening.

Jean Kigel, “Vecspils.”

A collection of work by Jean Kigel entitled Scenes from Latvia can be seen at the Boothbay Harbor Library October 1 through October 31. Additionally, Kigel will be displaying a show entitled Autumn by the Sea at Archipelago Gallery in Rockland during this same time period. FMI, visit Kigel’s website or email

Landing Gallery in Rockland will host the Jane and John Exhibit, new paintings by Jane Ryan and John LeBlanc, October 1 through October 25 with an opening reception October 1 from 5 to 8. FMI, call (888) 348-2787 or email

Joy To The Wind Studio, Gallery & Custom Picture Framing will exhibit new work by Lynne and John M.T. Seitzer during First Friday Art Tour. Open House Reception Friday, Oct 1, 7 to 9 pm. FMI, visit Joy to the Wind online or call 207-633-7025.

Galerie Dufour in Belfast presents Coastal Curves, a series which juxtaposes the gentle curves of the nude form with the Maine coast, opening October 1. FMI, call 207-338-6448 or

Jeff Bye, “Times Square I,” at Greenhut Galleries

Greenhut Galleries in the Old Port in Portland will host an opening reception for the work of Jeff Bye, Thursday October 7, 5 to 7 pm. The work will be on display from October 7 through October 30. An artist’s talk will be held Friday, October 8 at 4 pm. The Side Gallery Featured Artist will be Thomas Higgins.

Whether Maine or New York City, Jeff Bye chooses places to paint that have character and history, whatever their current evolutionary status; they’re all changing, and he wants to capture them now. Trained at the Maine College of Art and then Rhode Island School of Design, this artist is inspired equally by the ancient facades of Italy and the edgy graffiti of New York City. Aggressive angles and an agile perspective interact with brush, palette knife, and hand to create tactile, colorful surfaces through which the artist expresses his fascination with contemporary locations and subjects full of energy. FMI, visit Greenhut Galleries online or call 207-772-2693.

Abbie Williams, “Red House, Morning Moon” at Archipelago Fine Arts

The collective energy and spirit of six professional painters will be on display at Archipelago Fine Arts in Rockland as Monhegan Perspectives III opens with a reception on Friday, September 24th from 5 to 7 p.m.

Monhegan Perspectives III will feature the most recent work of Joyce Greenfield, Betty Heselton, Sally Loughridge, Marle Loznicka, Sigrid R-P Smith and Abbie Williams in a wide range of media, including oil, soft pastel, acrylic and watercolor. Four of the artists are year-round Midcoast residents, two are from the New Haven, Connecticut area, and all spend several weeks each summer on-island. FMI, visit Archipelago Fine Arts online, or call 207-596-0701.

At the invitation of Congressman Michaud, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) will be conducting grant workshops in Maine in an effort to raise awareness of federal funding that is available to arts and cultural institutions here in Maine. Two workshops have been scheduled, the first at the University of Maine Museum of Art in downtown Bangor on September 30, the other at the Franco-American Heritage Center in Lewiston on October 1.

Experienced workshop presenter Mike Griffin from the National Endowment for the Arts will deliver workshops that are packed full of specific information regarding NEA funding opportunities for arts organizations and other nonprofits. The event will highlight the NEA’s processes for grant applications and their subsequent review. Ample time will be devoted to addressing questions from attendees during the workshop. FMI, you can call Darrell Bulmer at 207-287-6746, or get full details or register online.

Barn Gallery in Ogunquit will continue to host their Fall Exhibitions through Columbus Day, October 11. ‘OAA Expressions,’ as always, features art in a wide variety of subject and medium. Back by popular demand, the ‘200 for $200’ exhibition offers an amazing selection of original works for $200 each. Photographer Conrad Marvin and Sculptor Lewis Woodaman will have the final Showcase exhibitions of the season in the North Gallery. The exhibition by Invited New England Sculptors will continue in the outdoor Sculpture Court. An every changing array of small works of art is available in the Collectors’ Gallery. Barn Gallery will close for the season on Columbus Day, Monday, October 11, 2010 at 5:00 pm. FMI, call 207-646-8400 or visit Barn Gallery online.

FOCUSMAINE.COM Gets Ready to Introduce You to Maine Fine Art Photographers

Heather Frederick, Director of VoxPhotographs, and Jim Nickelson of Nickelson Editions have announced the launching of a joint venture: FOCUSMAINE.COM.

“The name FOCUSMAINE comes from the obvious connection to the camera, but also as a vehicle to focus attention on Maine’s fine art photography community,” says Frederick. “There’s a need to develop a collector base from the ground up for fine art photographs as seasoned art collectors are mostly defining their collections with paintings, prints and sculpture. But fine art photographs are relatively new to the art market and we want to focus collectors’ attention on Maine’s large and hugely talented community.”

Starting October 1, those signed up at to receive its e-mail notifications will be introduced weekly to a Maine-based fine art photographer. One photograph by that artist will be for sale on FOCUSMAINE, beginning with a small $50 print in an edition of 50 and then increasing in size and price to match the artist’s current prices and sizes. Most artists will only be featured on FOCUSMAINE once every two or three years and those featured will run the gamut from nationally acclaimed to emerging.

Heather Frederick started the webgallery VoxPhotographs in 2007 and represents twelve of Maine’s fine art photographers. Jim Nickelson, a master digital printer, started Nickelson Editions in 2009 and is a photographer represented by VoxPhotographs.

You can sign up by clicking here.