Darkness and the Light
On view from July 12—September 20, 2019
Opening Reception: July 12, 5–8pm
Institute of Contemporary Art at MECA
Dark and light. The space between. The moment of change. The necessity of one to identify the other. Hope. Fading. The opportunities to explore the theme seemed so many and varied that the idea of a group exhibition was born. Invited artists have created work addressing the psychological and/or physical implications of light and/or dark. All are Maine artists with established careers and reputations for fine craftsmanship and artistic excellence. Because of the size of the Institute for Contemporary Art, participants were encouraged to undertake large-scale work, if they wished, in order to take advantage of the unusual opportunity to use this vast, beautiful space.
Exhibiting Artists include: Lynn Duryea, South Portland; Rebecca Goodale, Freeport; Tom Hall, Raymond; Joe Hemes, South Portland; Alison Hildreth, Portland; Lissa Hunter, Portland; Jamie Johnston, Portland; George Mason, Nobleboro; Julie Morringello, Stonington; Jan Owen, Belfast; Warren Seelig, Rockland; Carol Stein, Kittery Point; Todd Watts, Blanchard TWP; Susan Webster, Deer Isle
This exhibition is organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art, Interim Director of Exhibitions Nikki Rayburn, and Guest Curator Lissa Hunter.
When I was a child, my mother would say, “Be in before dark”, as I ran out the door to play in summer. We lived in that kind of neighborhood. It was the fifties, in the Midwest, on a short block with dozens of kids and no fences. “Before dark” became a particular designation of time, between outside in daytime and the inside at night. It held a kind of magical conversion, a sliver of time that signaled a shift in energy and focus.
When the sun fell below the horizon, colors flattened and lost definition. The sky looked lighter than the treetops below, which became a single mass of darkness. Houses were Monopoly pieces, with no definition of windows or porches, just outlines and dark interiors until the lights within were turned on, creating golden rectangles.
The air became cool. The earth smelled moist. And the fireflies became apparent, flashing lights against the gathering dark, adding to the sense of separation from the real world. It didn’t last long. Maybe ten or twenty minutes.
Warren Seelig, Shadowfield: Colored Light (detail), 2019
Photograph: Dowling Walsh Gallery
ICA Gallery hours: Wed–Sun, 11:00am–5:00pm, Thurs, 11:00am–7:00pm, Friday, 11:00am–5:00pm, (FFAW until 8:00pm)