Biennial Art Exhibit Puts Portland Museum in a Maine Frame

Written by | Art & Design, Travel

Portland Biennial Shaun Leonardo

Portland Biennial Shaun Leonardo (United States, born 1979), Laquan McDonald (drawing 1), 2016, charcoal on paper, 30 x 52 inches. Courtesy of the artist. © Shaun Leonardo

Maine’s 2018 Portland Museum of Art Biennial, running now through June 3, was designed to highlight intersectionality and inclusivity. It features more than 60 works by 25 artists, and although part of its goal is to highlight artists connected to Maine, guest curator Nat May observes, “This exhibition, though regional by nature, should not be defined by regionalism. Our border is permeable, and our world in Maine is intricately connected to the world beyond our state lines.” May is the former executive of SPACE Gallery in Portland and founding member of the Bakery Photo Collective and Common Field, a nationwide network of contemporary, experimental and noncommercial visual art spaces. There’s even diversity to be found among the curators working with May on this year’s Biennial — including Theresa Secord (founder of the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance), Sarah Workneh (Co-Director of the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture) and Mark Bessire (the Judy and Leonard Lauder Director of the Portland Museum of Art). The biennial includes photography, paintings, quilts, sculpture, installations, film screenings, and a live performance by Gina Adams, as well as talks with several of the curators and artists. For more great ways to explore art in Maine, see our feature starting on page 58 of this issue. portlandmuseum.org

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Last modified: March 16, 2018