The beginning of September means the end of the summer season in Maine is nearly here. But art lovers rejoice because there’s still time to see the acclaimed exhibitions at Haynes Galleries in Thomaston. With three distinct exhibitions currently up, each covering its own theme or genre, there is plenty of top-tier Realist art to be seen at Haynes until the gallery closes its doors in Maine for the year on September 19.
On the main floor of Haynes Galleries is “Celebrating Art of Women by Women.” With paintings, drawings, and sculptures that reflect the myriad of subjects and themes contemporary women artists explore by using the female form, this exhibition shouldn’t be missed. Created by world-class artists from around the country and internationally, the artworks in “Celebrating Art of Women by Women” ponder the soft curves of a nude, confront issues of identity, and meditate on motherhood. There is no one voice amongst the artists, which include, among others, Alicia Ponzio, Teresa Oaxaca, and Sophie Ploeg, but rather a conversation about issues that matter to each of them as artists and as women. It’s a conversation only happening at Haynes.
The land, the sea, and light are the focus of Haynes’ second show. “Joseph McGurl, Karen Blackwood, T.J. Cunningham, Marc Dalessio & Friends” is a collection of landscapes by several of today’s top plein air painters. McGurl, Blackwood, Cunningham, & Dalessio each have their own style when working in the historic genre. Tight, exacting, and textured is one view of the setting sun off Monhegan while fluid, dynamic and spirited is another of crashing waves on an empty beach. With a clear commitment to their craft and an arsenal of time-honored techniques at their disposal, these artists are producing some of the highest caliber landscapes today.
Marc Dalessio’s friends and colleagues have joined the exhibition at special guests. Ben Fenske, Leo Mancini-Hresko, and Greg Horwitch joined Dalessio in Maine this summer to paint together and are sharing their fresh-from-the-easel work at Haynes, adding yet more expressive work this already diverse grouping.
The third show is part of the gallery’s Upstairs at Haynes series, taking place on the second floor. It introduces new works by John Baeder, Peter Poskas, Phil Schirmer and Donald Demers to Mainers, alongside a number of other widely celebrated contemporary realists. Though working in different media, Baeder, Poskas, Schirmer and Demers come together to highlight the breadth of talented artists currently carrying on the Realist tradition. From 1970s & 1980s photographs of America as seen from rural highways to the stoic simplicity in an egg tempera painting of stones worn smooth after centuries of sea waves, the works in Upstairs at Haynes are a wonderful addition to the extensive realist art on view at Haynes.
In addition to the exhibitions, there are several vignette groupings throughout the gallery. A still life ensemble elegantly flows up the staircase. The best portraiture of renowned painters Seth Haverkamp, Bert Silverman, and Katie O’Hagan will surprise with their variety and insight. Linden Frederick’s rural landscapes, many of Maine, elevate the ordinary and become scenes of intense beauty and contemplation.
With just a handful of days left in yet another stupendous summer on the Midcoast, Haynes Galleries in Thomaston should be on every art lovers schedule. With three distinct collections and many vignettes to view, Haynes Galleries’s last few days might be the best one’s of the whole year.
Haynes Galleries is located at 91 Main Street, Thomaston, Maine. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday or by appointment. For more information, visit www.haynesgalleries.com