The Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art & Design Presents

Curious Nature

2018 Alumni Triennial Exhibition Artists Selections

On view from August 3–September 15, 2018
Exhibition Opening Reception:Friday, August 3, 2018, 5:00–8:00pm

Portland, Maine - The Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art & Design (ICA at MECA&D) is pleased to announce the selected artists to be included in the Curious Nature 2018 Alumni Triennial Exhibition on view August 3–September 15, 2018.

Curious Nature brings together a diverse group of artists who draw inspiration from the natural world. Employing various mediums, from painting to sculpture, photography, and installation, their works are rooted in the act of looking closer.

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. - John Muir 

“These artists explore our relationship with the natural world through investigating the structure of reality, daily rhythms, beauty, texture, and emergent patterns. Focusing their attention on places and processes that are often overlooked, they illuminate the various forces affecting ecosystems and the environment that surrounds us. Their perspectives range from the micro and macro, revealing new views of familiar terrain. In an attempt to capture that which is in a state of constant transformation, they record their surroundings, yielding works that inspire our own sense of awe, inviting us to both celebrate nature and protect it.” Guest Curator, Shannon Rankin ’97.

Rankin’s selections include fifteen artists exhibiting diverse works that range from painting, printmaking and photography, to sculpture, ceramics, metalwork and installation. Artists include: Annika Earley MFA ’16 (Portland, ME), Kristin Fitzpatrick ’13 (West Kennebunk, ME), Danielle Gerber ’12 (Portland, ME), Alisha Gould MFA ’01 (Kennebunk, ME), Kayla Goulden ’13 (Portland, ME), Lenka Konopasek MFA ’01 (Salt Lake City, UT), Mark Marchesi ’99 (Portland, ME), Tessa Greene O'Brien MFA ’16 (South Portland, ME), Isabelle O'Donnell ’17 (Portland, ME), Catherine Quattrociocchi ’17 (Portland, ME), Sam Richardson ’15 (Portland, ME), Celeste Roberge ’79 (South Portland, ME), Bryan Stryeski MFA ’01 (Brooklyn, NY and Avon, CT), Sarah Camille Wilson ’07 (Burlington, VT) and Charley Young MFA ’14 (Halifax, NS).

“These selected artists exemplify the broad range of work that our alumni are doing in the field, from fine art and craft to multi-media installation and social practice.” Jessica Tomlinson, Director of Artists at Work

Guest Curator, Shannon Rankin ’97 was born in California (1971) and grew up in Vermont. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Maine College of Art & Design (1997). Her recent exhibitions include Water is Everything, Drive-by Projects, Watertown, MA (2017), Materiality: The Matter of Matter, Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockland, ME (2017), Go Where the Map Takes You: The Intersection of Cartography and Creativity, Osher Map Library & Smith Center for Cartographic Education, Portland, ME (2017), Deep Cuts: Contemporary Paper Cutting, Currier Museum of Art, Manchester, NH (2017), Overview, Roswell Museum and Art Center, Roswell, New Mexico (2016), Beyond Boundaries, Flinn Gallery, Greenwich, CT (2015) and Excavations, New Art Center, Newton, Massachusetts (2015). Recent awards include residencies at the Studios at MASS MoCA (2017), the Roswell Artist-in-Residence Program (2016) and the Individual Artist Grant awarded by the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation (2015).

Following a one year residency at the Roswell Artist-in-Residence Program in New Mexico, Rankin decided to extend her stay to explore geological features of the southwest and conduct research for future projects. Rankin currently divides her time between Maine and New Mexico.

For more information or to request an interview, please contact MECA&D’s Director of Exhibitions and Special Projects, Erin Hutton, at 207.699.525 or .



The Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art & Design features innovative exhibitions and public programs that showcase new perspectives and trends in contemporary art. Located in stunning galleries in our landmark Porteous Building, the ICA at MECA&D presents cutting edge work by local, national, and international artists.

A lively schedule of public programming includes lectures, workshops, and performances. The ICA at MECA&D provides a unique resource to the MECA&D community, offering insight into the practices of the professional field and first hand experiences with renowned visiting artists. Internships are also available, providing hands-on museum experiences ranging from the research and development of exhibitions to teaching to museum management.

Viewing hours are Wednesday–Sunday 11am–5pm, Thursday 11am–7pm, and First Fridays 11am–8pm.

Image Folder
Image Attribution

Header Image

Celeste Roberge, Desmarestia Aculeata, Cyanotype on Somerset paper, 22" x 30", 2014. Photography Credit: Robert Diamante. Printed at: University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, FL. Collection of the Artist