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MECA's Art Education Program Presents a Lecture with Amy Cousins

Posted: 2014-03-20

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Amy Cousins is coming to MECA on March 26 to present her Assessment Lecture, From Overwhelmed to in Control: Connecting the Dots of Assessment. Amy is connected to the Art Ed Program, MAEA, and Maine's Assessment Initiative. She is also a part of the initiative and a presenter on "Power Standards," a pared down way of assessing using the learning standard.

Amy's lecture starts at 4:10pm in Osher Hall.

MECA Alum Miles Spadone named "Emerging Artist" by Ceramics Monthly

Posted: 2014-03-19

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Congratulations to MECA alum Miles Spadone on recently being awarded "Emerging Artist" by the publication Ceramics Monthly. Spadone's work will be featured in the May issue. The publication recognizes ceramic artists both domestically and internationally who have been working with clay professionally for under ten years. Spadone was also recently accepted into a two year traveling show with the Society for Contemporary Craft in Pittsburgh.

For more on Spadone 

For more on Ceramics Monthly 

MECA Photography Alum Brett Walker Awarded Residency at Chalk Hill

Posted: 2014-03-18

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Congratulations to Brett Walker 06' on his recent Chalk Hill Artist Residency located in the San Francisco's wine country. One to two artists are chosen each year for the residency and spend 4-8 weeks on the Residency's ranch in a three-bedroom 1920's farmhouse. Although this post is being created after Walker already completed his residency, MECA would still like to wish him congratulations.


>>For more on Chalk Hill

>>For more on Brett Walker


**photo above from Walker's series on the Bay Area Vintage Baseball League

New Media Professor Gary Robinov and MECA Alum Dean Merrill’s Film Nominated at Lewiston Auburn Film Festival

Posted: 2014-03-06

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Adjunct professor and filmmaker Gary Robinov and MECA alum ’03 Dean Merrill’s film “Detour” has been nominated for four awards at the Lewiston Auburn Film Festival. Detour follows the struggles of a recovering addict and stars local talents Brian Chamberlain and Astrea Campbell-Cobb. The film is nominated for Best Short Film, Best Maine Film, Best of Festival and actor Brian Chamberlain in nominated for Best Actor.

Robinov is the co-founder of White Dog Arts Creative Studios and is the only filmmaker to have films nominated in the festival all four years that is has been running.

 

A Shifted Behavior: a collaborative exploration of our individual actions and the impacts on climate change

Posted: 2014-03-04

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A Shifted Behavior is an artistic project that seeks to generate dialog and increase education about climate change through curriculum, community partnerships, social media and exhibitions. Using a variety of print and digital media, the works in the exhibition reveal how our individual actions impact the natural environment, and prompt us to question and shift our habits. Students worked collaboratively on a diverse set of projects that call attention to a range of environmental issues including waste, consumption, food safety and education. The project utilizes the Citizen Circle model and seeks to build peer knowledge and skills, increase engagement and expand the public audience.

This hybrid project is part of a larger Public Engagement  initiative to embed issues of climate change and environmental stewardship into the curriculum and co-curricular programming. This initiative is generously supported by an Environmental Education Grant from the EPA.   Thank you to our project partners inside the college and our community partners at 350/Maine.

The exhibition will be held at Maine College of Art, Zand Head Gallery, 522 Congress Street, Portland, Maine, from February 28-March 8.  Participatory projects and closing reception on first Friday, March 7 from 5-8PM.

Artists in the exhibition: Chloe Beaven, Robert Bennett, Kristina Buckley, Zach Dallaire, Caitlin Ervin, Ashley Hall, Samantha Prada-Putzig, Megan Taitano, Anthony Zambrana

Follow this project and other Public Engagement initiatives: http://publicengagementmeca.tumblr.com/

MECA Public Engagement on Facebook

Women's History Month Events at MECA

Posted: 2014-03-04

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The Artist as Mother: Exploring the Balance

Maine College of Art Celebrates Women's History Month by exploring the, sometimes challenging, relationship between motherhood and active studio practice. During the month of March, join us as we screen two films Who Does She Think She Is and Lost In Living, and invite back a panel of MECA alumni to share their personal experience.


Film Screening: Who Does She Think She Is?

Tuesday, March 4, 12pm, Osher Hal

“In a half-changed world, women are often forced to choose: Mothering or working? Your children's wellbeing or your own own? Who Does She Think She Is?, a documentary by Academy Award winning filmmaker Pamela Tanner Boll, features five fierce women who refuse to choose. Through their lives, we explore some of the most problematic intersections of our time: mothering and creativity, partnering and independence, economics and art. Along the way, the film invites us to consider both ancient legacies of women worshipped as cultural muses and more modern times where most people can't even name a handful of female artists. In the end, the diverse women in the film demonstrate that our creativity and our caregiving are not mutually exclusive, but deeply connected. In fact, their co-existence might just be the key to finishing the job.” (Synopsis from www.whodoesshethinksheis.net)

Free & Open to the Public (RSVP required for general public)

RSVP to alums@meca.edu with names of attendees.

 

Film Screening: Lost in Living

Friday, March 21, 6:30pm, Osher Hall

“Behind the domestic curtain of motherhood, where the creative impulse can flourish or languish, are four women determined to make a go of it. Filmed over seven years, Lost In Living, confronts the contradictions inherent in personal ambition and self-sacrifice, female friendship and mental isolation, big projects and dirty dishes. The complex realities of family life unfold in this documentary film about the messy intersection of motherhood and artistic expression.

(synopsis from www.maandpafilms.com)

Free & Open to the Public (RSVP required for general public)

RSVP to alums@meca.edu with names of attendees.

 

The Artist as Mother: Exploring the Balance

Panel Discussion with MECA Mothers

Friday, March 28, 6:30pm Osher Hall

Join us for a discussion with three diverse women artists who have learned to balance their family life with their creative practice. They will share their strategies, insights, challenges, and revelations learned while navigating their lives as artists and mothers.

Free & Open to the Public (RSVP required for general public)

RSVP to alums@meca.edu with names of attendees.

MECAmorphosis Spring Gala Hosted on May 8, 2014

Posted: 2014-02-28

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MECAmorphosis Celebrates the 2014 BFA and MFA Thesis Exhibitions while Introducing 100 Emerging Artists.

Portland, Maine ~ MECA's Spring Gala, MECAmorphosis, celebrates the 2014 Thesis Exhibitions and introduces 100 emerging artists graduating from Maine College of Art in the BFA, MFA, and MAT programs, as well as raises critical scholarship funds to educate the next generation of artists. Tapas, cash bars, music, and interactive art throughout the College’s historic Porteous Building are highlights of this creatively festive Portland spring event.  The evening concludes with the Runway Fashion Show, which premiers the collections of our majors in Textile and Fashion Design.

May 8, 5:30 -10 P.M.Tickets $25-$150 at: mecamorphosis.brownpapertickets.com. 522 Congress St., Portland, or by calling 207.699.5012.

MECAmorphosis raises critical scholarship funds to educate the next generation of artists as public intellectuals and creative entrepreneurs. MECA’s contribution to the region is unique and not duplicated by any other institution or organization.  Forty percent of our students are from Maine and over 60% of our graduates remain in Maine to become important contributors to our communities. A strong scholarship program allows us to attract young, creative people to the state.  Below are the details of the event:

MECAmorphosis, Thursday, May 8, 2014

5:30PM-7:30PM  =  BFA & MFA Thesis Exhibitions and Gala, Floors One, Two and Three

7:30PM-8:30PM  =  Runway Fashion Show, The Cafe, Floor Two

8:30PM-10:00PM  =  Runway Fashion Show After Party, The Cafe, Floor Two

Please visit http://meca.edu/mecamorphosis or call the Development Office (207.699.5012) to purchase tickets or for more info.

 

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MECA Alum Addison deLisle Receives Training Fellowship in France

Posted: 2014-02-26

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MECA alum Addison deLisle (class of 2011) was recently awarded the prestigious training fellowship with the Fondation de Coubertin in France for metal smithing. The fellowships last 11 months (from September to July) and the participants attend workshop sessions, classes, lectures and other cultural activities in the Paris area.

For more info on the artist

For more info on the fellowship 

MECA Faculty Members Awarded Arts Visibility Grant

Posted: 2014-02-18

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For Immediate Release

Contact: Raffi Der Simonian

Director of Marketing

rdersimonian@meca.edu

207.699.5010



MECA Faculty Members Awarded Arts and Visibility Grant for Future Mothers Project

Portland, ME ~ The Maine College of Art proudly announces that two of its faculty members, Elizabeth Jabar and Colleen Kinsella, have been awarded the Arts Visibility Grant from the Maine Arts Commission for their project Future Mothers.

Future Mothers' primary work focuses on creating contemplative space and vehicles for reflection, challenging dialog and community engagement through use of a collective vision/structure /practice that takes the form of prints, installation, books, and interactive performance. Using printmaking as a platform Future Mothers work from a shared lexicon of imagery and construct densely layered objects, structures, and environments for communicating timeless narratives and responding to contemporary social-political events.

Elizabeth Jabar is a print-based artist and associate professor and Colleen Kinsella is an adjunct instructor and printmaking studio technician at MECA.

Chinese Delegation of Art Educators Visit MECA This Spring

Posted: 2014-02-10

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Chinese Delegation of Art Educators Visit MECA This Spring

March 31, Portland, ME—This spring, Maine College of Art will be welcoming an incoming delegation from the Xi’an Academy of Fine Arts (XAFA) in China. The delegation marks the developing relationships that MECA is forging with several leading art academies in Greater China.

The President’s Delegation from Xi’an Academy of Fine Arts will arrive in Portland on April 14th and includes Professor Guo Xianlu, President; Mr. Wu Shunong, Director of International Cooperation & Exchanges Office; Professor Shi Cun, Director of the Post-Graduate Office; and Ms. Chen Tianqui, International Relations and Contracts. They will stay until April 16th, and will spend the time touring the college, meeting students and faculty, and discussing the exchange program launched between the two colleges. President Guo Xianlu will also deliver a public lecture on April 15th titled, ‘Traditional Chinese Decorative Art & Design.’

This is one of three institutional relationships that MECA has formed with China in the past year. The relationship began in the spring of 2013 when MECA President Don Tuski traveled with Suzanne Fox, President of Fox Intercultural Consulting and Professor Gan Xu of MECA to Xi’an to visit the college’s campus and meet the faculty. Located in Western China, Xi’an is one of the most historically rich regions in China, famed for its Terracotta Warriors and its location on the edge of the Silk Road.

MECA has also formed partnerships with several other art academies in China this past year, including the Academy of Visual Arts (AVA) at Baptist University in Hong Kong. Professor Tricia Flanagan of the AVA traveled to MECA from Hong Kong in March 2014; she spent time with numerous departments, spoke to MECA students who are keen on traveling to Hong Kong—and offered a public lecture on her artistic practice and her running of the innovative Wearables Lab at the AVA in Hong Kong.


More Info on MECA’s Year in China:

In 2014, we are kicking off our long-term partnerships with Chinese art academies and cultural institutions with a calendar of events, talks, and East/West journeys.

China has become a major superpower. In the coming decades, we will start to see significant cultural influences emerging from the country. There are an astonishing number of museums being built in Greater China and the wider Asian region—and the art markets have firmly planted themselves in Beijing and Hong Kong. For MECA to connect with this rapidly growing cultural economy will bring long-term benefits in the future—from student recruitment to institutional connectivity, and a greater awareness among students in the globalized era.

International Partnerships

In the past year, MECA has set up partnerships with three leading art colleges in Greater China. These partnerships offer an excellent way to forge long-term connections with China, place MECA on the map globally, bring artists from China to Maine, and offer students and staff at MECA an opportunity to travel abroad and connect with global art and cultural shifts.

Xi’an Academy of Fine Arts, Xi’An (XAFA)

Following the delegation of Don Tuski, Suzanne Fox and Professor Gan Xu to Xi’An in March of 2013, we are building connections with this respected Chinese art academy. There will be an incoming delegation from XAFA to Maine in April 2014.

Academy of Visual Arts, Baptist University of Hong Kong (AVA)

Hong Kong is emerging as a major arts center in Asia. Don Tuski and Suzanne Fox visited the AVA in Hong Kong in March of 2013 and then welcomed a visit from John Aiken, Chair of the Academy (and former head of the Slade, in London) when he visited Portland in June and signed a student exchange agreement. In March of 2014, we welcomed Tricia Flanagan, who heads the international exchange program for AVA and is a respected artist and educator on fashion design and public art.

China Academy of Art, Hangzhou (CAA)

China Academy of Art is one of the most famous art colleges in China. Based by the serene lakes of Hangzhou, just 40 minutes by bullet train from Shanghai, it is a stunning campus that combines the ancient literati elements of classical Chinese art with cutting-edge innovation. Following Don Tuski and Suzanne Fox’s visit to CAA in 2013, we have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with CAA to open up possibilities for partnership and exchange.

 

Artist Talk with Kelly McConnell at Mayo Street Arts

Posted: 2014-02-04

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KELLY MCCONNELL: THE SPACE IN BETWEEN

 

This Saturday, February 8, Mayo Street Arts hosts an Artist Talk with Maine artist Kelly McConnell from 11am-12pm. The talk will discuss McConnell's latest show "The Space in Between", which opens for the First Friday Art Walk the night before from 5-8pm at Mayo Street Arts. 

McConnell is an Assistant Professor and Director of Outreach in MECA’s Art Education Program (MAT) as well as Art Essentialist for middle school students at Breakwater School. She is frequent collaborator with SPACE Gallery, where she was the Art Director of their longest running children’s educational series “Lunchbox,” and many many other outlets in the Portland artistic community. 

McConnell's talk will discuss her newest work and then will be followed by a Q&A with the artist. 

>>More on the show

>>More on the artist

Spring 2014 Lecture Series Announced

Posted: 2014-01-31

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UPCOMING LECTURES:

 

Graphic Designer Dan Michaelson

March 20, 2014, 12:30pm, Osher Hall

Linked by Air: "They sorta kinda fixed it!"

Linked by Air began as the partnership of Tamara Maletic and Dan Michaelson in 2005. The studio specializes in the production of public spaces and other networked structures, both online and in the world. Its approach is practical and hands on. Through in-house programming and an emphasis on collaboration and iteration, they approach design and technology as intertwined inventive processes. Significant recent projects include the websites for the Whitney Museum of American art and for the artists' book store Printed Matter.

Linked by Air is the recipient of the Charles Nypels grant for research on embedded digital sign systems, in residence at the Jan Van Eyck Academie, Maastricht. Some of their projects have been awarded AIGA 365 awards in the United States. They are the recipient of the Jury Prize at the Brno Graphic Design Biennial 2012.

Dan Michaelson teaches graphic design at Yale University, and Tamara Maletic at Parsons/The New School for Design. Each of Linked by Air's staff also teach semester-long graphic design and programming courses, as adjunct faculty at Parsons, Yale, and SVA, so that teaching and production are integrated aspects of the studio's work.

 

Past Spring '14 lectures

February 6, 2014, 12:00pm, Osher Hall  Multi-disciplinary artist Jenna Crowder '07 sponsored by Artists at Work

Visual artist and designer Jenna Crowder has attended a number of residencies and has lived and worked internationally.  Her work includes Public Space:  Cairo, a collaborative workshop-based project for engaging with art and design in public spaces, which took place in downtown Cairo, Egypt; design work for 826, a national youth literacy organization launched by Dave Eggers; and design work for clothing designer Jon Wye in Washington, D.C.  At this lecture she and writer Douglas W. Milliken will discuss the collaborative process and influences behind a series of recent performative installations.

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Friday, February 7, 2014, 7:00pm, ICA at MECA | Photographer Bryan Graf sponsored by the ICA at MECA

 

Bryan discusses work featured in Bryan Graf:  Across the Interior, an exhibit that runs January 22 through April 6, 2014 at the ICA at MECA.  His inventive and playful photography turns the prosaic New Jersey landscape into a canvas for darkroom experimentation and mystic revelation. Created in part by sandwiching B/W negatives with exposed, or partially fogged color film, the images channel the landscape’s hidden ghosts to hallucinatory effect.

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February 13, 2014, 12:00pm, Osher Hall 
|  Multi-disciplinary eco-artist  Tim Gaudreau MFA ‘02 sponsored by Public Engagement

Eco-artist Tim Gaudreau is passionate about the environment and the interconnections between people and nature. His work combines humor and irony with photography, video, new media, graphics, and sculpture to create collaborations that advocate for a greater awareness of eco-issues, initiating dialogue about social and environmental issues and serving as an entryway to improve our relationships with nature.  Numerous awards, fellowships, and commissions have given him the opportunity to create public art projects that stimulate collaboration and interaction while challenging conventional thinking.   He has participated in residencies ranging from California to India.

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February 20, 2014, 12:00pm, Osher Hall  |  Ceramic artist Susan Dewsnap sponsored by the Ceramics Department

Susan Dewsnap’s ceramic studies began at a community clay studio in Boulder, Colorado and matured through intensive summer workshops at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Maine and Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina.  She earned her MFA from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where she taught from 2008 through 2012, and is a Visiting Assistant Professor at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine.  She has exhibited her ceramic work internationally and has received awards from the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts Biennial, the World Ceramic Biennale Korea International Competition, and the Strictly Functional Pottery National Exhibition.

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March 6, 2014, 12:00pm , Osher Hall  |  Multi-disciplinary artist Reenie Charriere MFA ’09 sponsored by Artists at Work

Reenie Charriere’s  installations, drawings and photographs evolve from a practice triggered by expeditions along everyday paths.  Her current work includes photographic documentation followed by spotlighting the situation through fabricated sculptural installations created out of discarded packaging materials -- particularly plastic, fabric, paper, and cardboard. By sewing, cutting, fusing, reshaping, dangling, and weaving, she transforms the material into atmospheric and surprisingly organic-like structures. Her choice of materials reflects a collision of clumsiness and grace and questions how consumerism drives the world.  She was recently awarded a residency by SF MOMA in San Francisco and has been awarded full fellowships by La Napoule Foundation in France and Can Serrat in Spain. 

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March 6, 2014, 5:45pmOsher Hall  |  Tricia Flanagan

A former fashion and costume designer, Tricia Flanagan has been a practicing artist since 1996.  Since earning a Master of Arts in Public Art and New Artistic Strategies from Bauhaus University in WEimar, Germany, her practice has focused on working in the public sphere, including site-specific sculpture, social sculpture, sounds sculpture, sculptural installation, wearables, and performance installation.  Artwork is often created on location or developed in workshops.  She currently runs the Wearables Lab at the Academy of Visual Art HKBU and lives and works in Hong Kong.  For her project “Transit Textiles,” she engaged eight artists from various disciplines and backgrounds, mapped their movements throughout the city of Hong Kong, and created wearable textile maps, stiching their networks of movement into the cloth.

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So Percussion: 
"Where (we) Live"

Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 7:30 pm

Performing in conjunction with Bryan Graf’s exhibit, So Percussion has been praised by The New Yorker for their “exhilarating blend of precision and anarchy, rigor and bedlam,” redefining the modern percussion ensemble as a flexible, omnivorous entity, pushing its voice to the forefront of American musical culture. Part experimental music gig, part multimedia rock show, part happening, Where (we) Live is a freeform investigation of the places and spaces we call home.


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