2015 Island Inn Show: Frank Bruckmann
We are delighted to announce the 2015 Annual Summer Exhibit at the Island Inn on Monhegan Island:
Local Color: the Paintings of Frank Bruckmann
Frank Bruckmann studied at the Ducret School of Art in New Jersey, the Art Students League in New York, and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. A resident of New Haven, CT, Frank has been painting on Monhegan for over 20 years, capturing the landscape and atmosphere of the island in all seasons and all its variations.
The season-long exhibit will run from Friday, May 22 to Sunday, October 11.
Please join us for a gala reception for the artist, at the Island Inn, on Tuesday afternoon, July 7, from 2-4.
Ralph Bush Show
We are pleased to present the 2014 summer solo exhibition at the Island Inn: Selected Oils and Watercolors by Ralph V. Bush.
A Copley Master and member of The New England Watercolor Society, Rockport Art Association and North Shore Arts Association, Ralph is a well-known figure on Monhegan, where he has painted the island vistas and harbor scenes annually for many years.
The paintings will fill the Inn’s large, light-filled dining room, and will be on view May 26—July 26 and August 11—October 13. The Island Inn will host a reception for the artist on Wednesday, June 25 at 2-4 pm; all are welcome.
A Visit to Maine Artist Blackie Langlais’ Place
Recently, I was invited to take a little field trip to Cushing, Maine to the property of amazing sculptor, the late Bernard (Blackie) Langlais. The Langlais estate had been left to Colby College, which quickly found itself overwhelmed with hundreds of sculptures in need of restoration and conservation, not to mention permanent homes. Enter the Kohler Foundation. This is a philanthropic organization with a mission: they bring in restorers, repair and conserve the artwork, find it homes, and– give it away. Wouldn’t you love a job like that?
Museums, colleges, libraries and other non-profits were invited to be the recipients of the artworks, and we were there to choose a piece of sculpture for the Monhegan Library. It was a trip to remember! If you’ve never visited the Langlais place, it’s a little hard to convey the uniqueness of the experience. There’s a definite sense that you’ve gone down the rabbit hole with Alice. Or Christina, as the case may be.
As we followed paths that wound through over 80 acres of overgrown fields and forests, we glimpsed giant animals, people and totems hidden in the underbrush or towering in the open. The monumental scale of the sculptures was fabulous, and created a wonderful sense of play and delight.
Was that an elephant in the distance?
I remembered, back when I first visited the Langlais place as a teenager, being able to climb up inside the elephant. It isn’t in good enough condition today to go up– but we did duck inside the bottom and, sure enough–the paintings were still there, of bananas and nuts and all the foods our elephant had been eating. (for scale, check out Bruce’s legs underneath the sculpture).
Off in the cattails, I thought I detected a familiar gesture. Could it be–yes, Richard Nixon himself, real frogs jumping around him and a tiny symbolic elephant keeping him company. While a good number of Blackie’s sculptures are topical/political, and I enjoy the satirical glee evident in his depictions of his human subjects–
(Gerald Ford in the bath, anyone?), the pieces that really stay with me are the animals. There are several barns and workshops on the property, and each one is a treasure trove of sculptures, from life-sized animal figures to whole tableaux of jungle or barnyard creatures in huge bas-relief panels.
We wandered in awe among them, taking in Langlais’s ability to convey the spirit of each animal, and feeling his joy in the tactile experience of shaping them from rough and reclaimed wood. We could imagine how great it would be to come home with the giant alligator, basking on his back with all four legs in the air…
or any of the whimsical canines hanging out together in an area I dubbed the “dog park.”
Most of the pieces were too large for our little island library, and all of the outdoor sculptures had already found homes.
But in the end, we found a perfect fit in this charming little stable scene in a box! And a bonus: this butterfly wall sculpture! This project is a partnership between Colby College Museum of Art, the Kohler Foundation and the Georges River Land Trust. Colby is planning a major Langlais show in 2014. The land trust will take ownership of the property, along with several of the large sculptures, and will maintain it as a sculpture park. Thus, the land will be protected for conservation, and the legacy of a great Maine artist be preserved and shared. We were so glad to have been able to visit all these works together in the place where they were made, before they were dispersed to museums, schools and other locations all over the country. And very glad to be able bring a small piece of that heritage to our small corner of Maine.
“Wind and Tide,” New Works by Susan Gilbert
We’re delighted to announce that the Island Inn will be featuring the paintings of Susan Gilbert this summer. In a tradition that began many years ago, the Inn has hosted an exhibition of the work of a different Monhegan artist each year. The invitational show fills the large, light-filled dining room and can be viewed for the entire 2013 season from May 24 to October 13.
Susan Gilbert is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and is also known for her work in fine porcelain ceramics. Susan has been a member of Monhegan’s year round community for many years. This show will feature oil paintings and watercolors, ranging from still life to landscapes painted on location and portraying the island in every season.
Join us for a reception for the artist Wednesday, June 26 from 2-4 pm, at the Island Inn.
Paul Niemiec 2012 Exhibit
We’re excited to present this summer’s solo exhibit at the Island Inn, by one of our favorite artists–Paul Niemiec. Paul has been painting on Monhegan for over 30 years now, and the lobby and dining room of the Inn are hung with a stunning collection of watercolors and oil paintings of the island in all its dramatic, varied, moody glory. You won’t want to miss this show!
Click on the link below to read the Courier-Gazette article on the exhibit:
Click on the link below to view the show poster: