March 12, 2013

Plan to preserve Langlais property, art takes shape

By Bob Keyes bkeyes@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

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Bernard “Blackie” Langlais moved in 1966 to his Cushing property, part of which will soon become a sculpture park.

Courtesy of Colby College Museum of Art

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In this November 2012 file photo, a lion by Bernard Langlais is being restored at Preservation Timber Framing. The work of the late Maine artist Bernard "Blackie" Langlais will be distributed for free and the place where he made it will be preserved, in an arrangement announced Monday by the Colby College Museum of Art.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Staff Photographer

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Some of those pieces will be removed, conserved and distributed to institutions. Others will be left to "go back to the earth from whence they came," Corwin said. "The expectation should be that we are creating a site in the name of Blackie and Helen that these sculptures will be a part of. But they do not have an infinite life. We are not saving these works for ever and ever. That would be an unrealistic expectation."

Some museums that own Langlais pieces are conserving them. For instance, the Ogunquit Museum of American Art has engaged in a project to conserve several large pieces.

The park will include an informational kiosk and a series of trails and paths to lead visitors from one sculpture to the next. It is too soon to say how many sculptures will remain when the park opens.

The house in which Langlais lived is not part of the project, Corwin said.

The Kohler Foundation has begun placing his art in museums, colleges and other public institutions. Because of the volume that remains, Kohler is interested in giving away as much of it as possible. The foundation is soliciting requests, said Kohler's Executive Director Terri Yoho.

"If there are entities in Maine or beyond that have an interest in taking on some of the pieces of art for their collections, we would entertain a phone call or email," she said.

Nonprofit organizations with an interest in the work and the ability to care for it should contact the Kohler Foundation through its website, kohlerfoundation.org.

 

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

bkeyes@pressherald.com

Twitter: pphbkeyes

 

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