January 9, 2011

Year of the Drawing

Throughout 2011, museums and galleries celebrate this ephemeral art form with The Maine Drawing Project.

By Bob Keyes bkeyes@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

click image to enlarge

British artist Thomas Rowlandson’s “Norfolk Broads,” circa 1795, watercolor, graphite and ink, from the Portland Museum of Art’s “European Drawings,” opening in March.

Courtesy Portland Museum of Art

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Yvonne Jacquette’s 1971 graphite on paper, “Passagassawkeag,” at the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland (opens Jan. 22).

Courtesy Farnsworth Art Museum

Additional Photos Below


WHERE: Almost two dozen art institutions statewide

WHEN: Throughout 2011. The first opening is "Mind to Hand" on Jan. 22 at the Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland 


• Portland Museum of Art

•  Saco Museum of Art

•  Colby College Museum of Art

•  Bates College Museum of Art

•  Bowdoin College Museum of Art

•  Ogunquit Museum of American Art

•  Pace Galleries at Fryeburg Academy

•  University of New England

•  Heartwood College of Art, Kennebunk

•  Barn Gallery, Ogunquit

•  Unity College

•  University of Southern Maine

•  University of Maine-Presque Isle

•  University of Maine Museum of Art, Bangor

•  Lord Hall Galleries, UMaine-Orono

•  Waterfall Arts, Belfast

•  Maine College of Art, Portland

•  L.C. Bates Museum, Good Will-Hinckley

• George Marshall Store Gallery, York

•  Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockport 

DETAILS: tinyurl.com/mainedrawingproject

On the other end of the spectrum is a quick Waldo Pierce graphite sketch of three dancers on stage, completed in the early 1940s. Pierce presumably was in the audience during a musical production, and this sketch appears to have been completed from his seat. It's full of energy and emotion.

Similarly, Fairfield Porter's "Study for Beach Flowers #2" is little more than a flurry of quick marks and notes from the artist to himself for reference during the painting process. "Show color on green," he scribbled in the margin of the pen sketch.

Bianco is also showing an aerial sketch by Yvonne Jacquette of the river at Belfast. The artist used it later for a famous finished painting.

"Looking at this makes me feel giddy," Bianco said of the Jacquette sketch. "You can see her leaning out of the helicopter or whatever she was in up there. You can feel the movement. It's an outstanding example of a quick sketch under difficult circumstances."

In March, the Portland Museum of Art will open an exhibition that focuses on European drawing culled from the Joan Whitney Payson Collection. It will include about 30 drawings and highlight masterworks of exceptional draftsmen from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries.

The works will range from landscapes and portraits to architectural studies.

"A lot of these works have not been viewed since coming into the collection because of the fragile nature of the paper itself," said Margaret Burgess, associate curator of modern and European art.

One of Burgess' favorite pieces in the show is a drawing by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres of a young aristocrat. It is a formal portrait of a young man who exudes karma as a gentleman and scholar. His stature is obvious by the artist's execution of the portrait.

"Ingres captured in portrait this eager and upstanding gentleman," Burgess said. "It is lovely in that it is a finished work of art, but also has the immediacy of drawing." 

Staff Writer Bob Keyes can be contacted at 791-6457 or at:


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Additional Photos

click image to enlarge

Untitled by Edwin Brown, 1888, ink and graphite, at the Farnsworth.

Courtesy Farnsworth Art Museum

click image to enlarge

1815 graphite-on-paper portrait by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, at the Portland Museum of Art (opens March).

Courtesy Portland Museum of Art


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