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Posted: 2011-04-21

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For the second year in a row, the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art won the Portland Phoenix Best Art Gallery award, as determined by readers. From the Phoenix:  "The ICA had a big year. They brought in a new director (Daniel Fuller), staged impressive off-site video screenings on big screens at Portland Pirates games, and stuffed their gigantic gallery rooms with six heaping platters of conceptual art, from trippy motion-sensor mirrors, towering handblown glass statues, and one very provocative labyrinth. No gallery in Portland covers more ground, takes more chances, or appeals to a broader crowd. Best of all: it's right in the center of town."

FOREST at ICA at MECA

Posted: 2011-04-07

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FOREST will transform the Institute of Contemporary Art at MECA into a hive of activity from April 19 to 22. Visual and performing artists, students and friends will develop hands-on programs and activities to engage students and the public in unconventional and imaginative ways.

TUESDAY, APRIL 19

WORKSHOP: Fairy House Building

9am-Noon
Drop-in. All Ages.
Learn how to build small natural habitats from natural materials to attract fairies and their animal friends. Families will be provided with natural materials on site.

FILM SCREENINGS:
9am-8pm

Tree Falling in the Forest
Thomson’s Silent Film of a Tree Falling in the Forest, 2005–2006. For this work, the artist made six one-minute studies of spruce trees falling in a forest in Alberta, Canada, which he separated with lengths of blank leader film that complicate any implicit figure/ground structure. The falling-tree footage is lulling, but the tranquil space the piece creates is nevertheless unstable. It calms, then creates bristling anxieties, calms again, and then makes you anxious again.

I came here on my own
I came here on my own, their current video and performance work-in-progress. The project, which contains two discrete but related pieces, features a series of live duet performances and an accompanying multi-channel video work. Robbinschilds was formed by choreographers, Sonya Robbins and Layla Childs in 2003. The company creates performance and video works for diverse venues including the stage, gallery or "site". Focused on presenting highly visual time-based works, robbinschilds explores the juncture between architecture or place, and human interaction.

Dead River Rough Cut
3:30pm-5:30pm
Bob Wagg and Walter Lane live in a tarpaper shack, hunting, fishing, trapping and logging with oxen. They prefer the sounds of the birds to the roar of highway traffic, and scorn the money-chasing of city life. Covering a period of four seasons in the remote backwoods of Maine, Dead River Rough Cut presents a revealing look at an individual way of life. Wagg  and Lane earn a living and accept their isolation for the independence it allows them. But not everyone would want to draw water from a hole in the ice. They share their reflections about women, politics, taxes, the lone life and death. www.deadriverroughcut.com

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 20  

FILM SCREENING: Tree Falling in the Forest + I came here on my own
9am-8pm (All Day Screenings)

SCREEN PRINTING: Raising Forests
Noon-3pm
Drop-in. All Ages.
Raising Forests is an educational interactive piece in which the public is encouraged to screen print their own ‘tree’ that will be installed in the ICA at MECA, collaboratively creating a three-dimensional forest.

VISITING ARTIST LECTURE: Cole Caswell
4pm-5pm
An artist lecture by MECA MFA Alum Cole Caswell. Cole uses forms of interpretation to understand the forest as an ecological patch, habitat, and place of exploration.
www.colecaswell.com

WORKSHOP: Permaculture Class
6pm-8pm
Join us for a free permaculture class presented by Portland’s favorite fermentation center/garden laboratory and micro apiary -
Urban Farm Fermentory.

THURSDAY, APRIL 21

FILM SCREENING:Tree Falling in the Forest + I came here on my own
9am-8pm

WORKSHOP: Woodland Crown Workshop
9am-10:30am
Drop-in. All Ages.
"Many hundreds of years ago two children discovered the secret of what the Fairies wore at their parties to celebrate the passing of the Seasons...." Come create a beautiful crown from woodland materials and wildflowers.

WORKSHOP: A Circle’s Journey
3:30PM - 5:30PM
Musicians, artists and scientists, Emilia Dahlin and Aaron Frederick have traveled the world as part of a global journey they took with the organization “Beyond Boundaries” dedicated tto experiential education, cross-cultural community exchange, leadership development and a deep personal and collective inquiry into the pressing issues and needs of our times. Through holding a circle (think: round table discussion) Emelia and Aaron will provide a space to talk about the issues of FOREST in Maine.

LAUNCH + LECTURE: Public Engagement’s Launching and Lineage with guest Khenmo Drolma
6:00PM - 7:30PM
From 6-6:15pm we will be celebrating/announcing the launch of MECA’s new Public Engagement Minor. From 6:15-7pm, Khenmo Drolma, the first Buddhist Abbess in North America started a nunnery in Vermont. She started the Public Engagement work at MECA 22 years ago and we are honored to welcome her back to speak about art, public engagement, art in the world, education and how it all began for her.

FRIDAY, APRIL 22

FILM SCREENING:Tree Falling in the Forest + I came here on my own
9am-8pm

WORKSHOP: Earthday Grow-Your-Own
11am-2pm
Drop-in. All Ages.
Head to the FOREST in the ICA at MECA for a gardening workshop that will get you ready for the springtime growing season. Get your hands dirty while starting seedlings and learn about how to grow your own indoor garden.

SCREEN PRINTING: Raising Forests
4pm-11pm
Drop-in. All Ages.
Raising Forests is an educational interactive piece in which the public is encouraged to screen print their own ‘tree’ that will be installed in the ICA at MECA, collaboratively creating a three-dimensional forest.

FOREST DANCE PARTY
8pm-11pm
The ICA at MECA opens its doors for one of the largest dance parties of the year - FOREST. Pull out your flannel, fairy wings, lumberjack gear. It doesn't matter. Just be there. Dance in trees dj’ed by Ian Paige with prizes for best costume provided by Rogues Gallery. Featuring a photo booth, costume contest, forest inspired food and drink, art making, and lots of nuts and berries.

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