Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lubec Arts Alive 2009 A Huge Success!

The finished mural mounted at the Lubec Historical Society

It was a great week!
Check out our flicker site to see lots of photos from the event! Thanks to all the artists, volunteers, and sponsors for making our first Lubec Arts Alive a huge success!

Click here to visit our Flicker site with 200 photos!

Lubec Alive with Art
By Karen Burke 8/22/09

Alive with Art was the theme last week in Lubec. Billed as a Downeast Community Art Event, and envisioned by local Lubec art teacher Shanna Wheelock, with the help of Maine artist Natasha Mayers, a virtual explosion of creativity was unleashed in this small community. “Lubec Arts Alive 2009” came about as a result of collaboration between the two and the Lubec Historical Society, in particular Ron Pesha .

A mural, 8' x 12' feet consisting of three panels, was designed by artists with input from community members. The creative depiction of Lubec, includes historical images, past and current industries, wildlife, boats, plants, trees and even a blueberry pie. The colorful graphic depiction of lively Lubec was drawn and painted in five days by member of the Union of Maine Visual Arts (UMVA) and local community members. The mural project, situated in the Grange Hall, was open to the public. High School students, long time elderly residents, local artists and many others participated in painting the impressive mural which will be mounted on the Lubec Historical Society building.

The portrait project, which now includes over 30 portraits of those who have made a contribution to Lubec past or present was conducted by UMVA members including nationally known artist Robert Shetterly, Diane Dahlke, Alan Crichton, Rose Marasco and Richard Brown Lethem. Jill Lavetsky, artist-in- residence composed a stunning portrait of long time resident Barney Rier who recently passed away. It is hoped that the images will be maintained by various organizations in Lubec, who nominated many of the subjects and the collection brought out from time to time for public display.

Installations of doorway art on Water Street took place during the week. Whimsical and colorful sea creatures, creative sardine can displays and expressionist painting now decorate three buildings on Water Street, including Annabells, Lubec Landmarks and Diane’s Glass at the Peacock Factory.Thursday afternoon many folks gathered to generate sculptures at Hamilton Cove, made from natural found objects. Led by local artist Jean Bookman Fincke a labyrinth was built as well as fantastic birds and goddess like creatures.

The public was invited to participate in Iconic sign making at the Grange Hall each day. All ages participated in designing and painting signs, which range from the abstract to reproductions of sardine can labels. Many of the signs were on display and sold at Flatiron Corner on Friday. The proceeds will be used to cover expenses of Lubec Arts Alive.

Other UMVA artists participating in the week included Kenneth Cole, Karen Adrienne, Barbara Sullivan, Sienna Mayers and also Harlan Crichton Mary Bernstein from Amherst Massachusetts.
A team of five committee members, including Jean DeVeber, Jean Bookman Fincke, Claudia Mahlman , Karen Burke and Shanna Wheelock organized the event including the many volunteers who worked to cut and prime boards, provided space, tours,supplies and food, interviewed portrait subjects and donated funds. Volunteer photographers and film makers documented the week-long event. Local hosts provided housing for the artists who volunteered to come to Lubec and share their talents.

Shanna Wheelock, when asked what role the event had in the community stated, “Lubec Arts Alive documented and celebrated our community's rich history and people through the arts. It has been a true grass-roots effort with everyone pitching-in to make it a success, from the artists who volunteered their talents, to the businesses who provided food, and local individuals who donated time, lodging, and financial support. We had a dedicated committee here in Lubec and an all-star cast of artists from all over the state and beyond. This year’s event will no doubt provide a model for future community art projects for the UMVA as well as our own town. It has truly been a pleasure to work with everyone involved.”