September 19, 2010

In the Arts: Masters of darkness deliver shades of brilliance


(Continued from page 1)

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"The Fisherman" by Leo Brooks, at Mars Hall Gallery in Port Clyde

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"Clearcut Sunset 1" by Tom Hall, at June Fitzpatrick Gallery in Portland

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WHERE: June Fitzpatrick Gallery,

22 Congress St., Portland; 699-5083

HOURS: Noon to 5 p.m.

Tuesday to Saturday

CLOSES: Sept. 25


WHERE: The Firehouse, 5 Bristol Road, Damariscotta; 563-6330

HOURS: Noon to 4 p.m. Friday to Sunday

CLOSES: Sept. 25


WHERE: Mars Hall Gallery, 621 Port Clyde Road, Tenants Harbor; 372-9996

HOURS: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday to Sunday

CLOSES: Oct. 11

I think you should be able to imagine Sam Cady, Janice Kasper, Sam Gelber, Jim Kineally, Alex Katz, John Wissemann and Cynthia Hyde in chorus. And, of course, add the ubiquitous DuBack and, in this instance, Fiore. The latter's paintings "Lenape/Moki" and "Capriccio" are softly mysterious. They evoke faded hands from lost cultures and faded land to harbor them.

It is a paced show that's an easy feast for the eye, and Lois Dodd's "Rockland Ruin" is a wry masterpiece disguised by casualness. It belongs in a museum.


Maine has established groups that draw from the nude. Some are seasonal, some meet weekly and, although I have been told that the participants don't check out each other's work, they seem to draw strength from one another's presence.

One, the Drawing Group, has for years met regularly over the summer months, and selections from it make up the show at Mars Hall. It is a beautiful occasion. I use that term to suggest the casualness of such groups and, in many cases, the modest prices of the work that comes from it.

Here I mention Cady's soft, certain charcoal "Pose Twice," Dodd's pen-and-inks of figures disporting themselves in nature, Lynn Travis' serene watercolors of allusive ephemeral groups, Sheila White's androgynous (to me) figures and, of course, the ever-present DuBack.

This is an opportunity to see DuBack's study for "River Harmony," the large work he completed for Lehman Brothers in 1965. The study is small but speaks in consequential tones.

While at Mars Hall, look for work by Leo Brooks (1909-93). There is a compounding of Matisse, Hartley and Fitzgerald into a base and then a raucous finale to set the place on fire. I don't recall a large retrospective of this wonderful artist, but one would be felicitous. Look also for collages in firm modernist form by Marilyn Quint-Rose. They are notable, as is a sprinkling of collages by DuBack. 

Philip Isaacson of Lewiston has been writing about the arts for the Maine Sunday Telegram for 45 years. He can be contacted at:


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Additional Photos

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"FleurNoire" by Lissa Hunter at June Fitzpatrick Gallery in Portland

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"River Harmony" by Charles DuBack, at Mars Hall Gallery in Port Clyde

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"Capriccio" by Joseph Fiore, at The Firehouse in Damariscotta

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"Rockland Ruin" by Lois Dodd, at The Firehouse in Damariscotta


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