The Portland Museum of Art’s 2018 Biennial presents a collection of artists with connections to Maine
For its 2018 Biennial, the Portland Museum of Art has tapped 25 artists, all but one of whom have never exhibited at the museum, ranging from photographers and painters to mixed media artists and videographers, and even a canoe maker. Participating artists include established creators as well as up-and-coming talents. According to Nat May, the Biennial’s curator and the executive director and cofounder of Hewnoaks Artist Colony, the exhibition is not limited to Maine in scope, although each artist “has strong ties to our community.” May toured studios across the region and worked with a team including Mark Bessire of the Portland Museum of Art, Theresa Secord of the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance, and Sarah Workneh of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, to put together a showing of work by artists who best represent the diversity and breadth of contemporary art. On view are works from established artists such as Rosamond Purcell, Daniel Minter, and David Driskell, as well as from emerging artists, such as Anne Buckwalter. Over 60 artworks complement and yet contrast each other, contributing to a thoughtful, inclusive representation of some of the most current themes in the contemporary art world.
“There are some wonderful dialogues happening between works,” May says, “such as the relationship between factuality and truthfulness in storytelling, the representation of the figure in painting, systematic oppression, and creative approaches to conversations about feminism.”
Opening on January 26, the Portland Museum of Art’s 2018 Biennial runs until May 30. Read on for a preview of the exhibition.