The 15th annual Yarmouth Art Festival will be held next week at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church. File photo / Portland Press Herald

Yarmouth High School graduate Madeline “Maddy” Corson discovered art as a young teen, inspired by the artist father of her childhood best friend. At age 13, she began taking painting lessons and her skill and passion have grown ever since.

Maddie Corson’s “June Bloom,” oil on canvas, was selected for the Yarmouth Art Festival. Contributed / Yarmouth Art Festival


Last week, a painting by the 19-year-old Yale University was selected to be exhibited alongside 164 other pieces by Maine artists at the 15th annual Yarmouth Art Festival to be held Wednesday, Oct. 18, through Saturday, Oct. 21.

“This is my first art show,” Corson told The Forecaster. “It’s really exciting.”

Her “June Bloom” 20-by-10 oil on canvas will be featured at the show at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Yarmouth.

The juried Yarmouth Art Festival got its start in 2009 when a group of congregation members at St. Bartholomew’s recognized a need to fill a gap in the Maine art scene, festival co-chair Joe Michaud told The Forecaster.

“The desire was to have an exhibit of just Maine artists,” he said.


The group created a simple website for artists to submit their work, creating an opportunity for artists from all over the state to be showcased in Yarmouth. Word spread, and the art show grew each year. This year, 683 pieces were submitted by 186 artists all over Maine.

The show’s three-member jury takes several weeks to choose 165 pieces for the show. They look not only for quality artwork, but also a mix of media and styles.

“They’re curating the show so it has some variety to it,” Michaud said. “That’s why it changes every year.”

This year’s jurors are Peggy Greenhut, founder of Greenhut Gallery in Portland; Bob Keyes, former longtime arts reporter for the Maine Sunday Telegram; and Wes LaFountain, freelance curator.

The artwork will be available for sale. All net proceeds from entry fees, sales commissions and donations will go to St. Elizabeth’s Essentials Pantry, Friendship House, Greater Portland Family Promise, In Her Presence, and the Yarmouth, Falmouth, Cumberland and Freeport food pantries. Last year, the show distributed $15,000 to nonprofits.

If last year, when people were lining up at the doors before the festival opened, is any indicator, hundreds are expected to attend the event next week.

“It’s great to share art with the community,” Corson said. “This is a great opportunity for Maine artists to get connected with the community around us.”

The show will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. St. Bartholomew’s is located at 396 Gilman Road.

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