Ian Trask (he/him) |Mind Loops
For his exhibition Mind Loops, Ian Trask will premiere a new series of sculpture and installation works created with materials intercepted from the local waste stream. Emulating the critical role decomposers (like moss and fungi) play in reinvigorating natural ecosystems, Trask’s practice is a holistic system of recirculating man-made debris into remarkable artworks.
Influenced by his education and experience in the sciences, this exhibition will premiere a monumental, textile-based, wall-mounted installation with suspended sculptures. His multi-component artworks rely on suspension and interconnection, resulting in a complex interplay of logic and abstraction.
Ian Trask graduated from Bowdoin University in 2005 with a degree in biological sciences, in 2007 he made a drastic career change to focus on fine arts. During this time he worked cleaning a hospital where he interacted with man-made waste and detritus daily, this time provedformative to his development as an artist. Seeing the amount of waste produced by his fellow man, Trask was inspired to find ways to recycle that waste into his art. Man-made waste makes up a critical component and is often the center of all of Ian’s work as he finds ways to reimagine discarded waste in creative works of art.
Trask moved to New York City at the start of his art career, but returned to Maine in 2015. While in New York, Trask was a core member of the Invisible Dog Art Center community and exhibited widely throughout the area, including at the Spring Break Art Fair, the Figment Festival, the Affordable Art Fair, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Materials for the Arts, and the Wassaic Project. Since moving to mid-coast Maine, he’s had solo showsat Cove Street Arts, Waterville Creates, the Frank Brockman Gallery, and the Danforth Gallery at University of Maine, and exhibited in group shows at the CMCA, Maine Historical Society, the Harlow Gallery, and UNE. Trask has been an artist-in-residence Pioneer Works (Brooklyn, NY), Mass MOCA (North Adams, MA), Marble House Project (Dorset, VT), and most recently at the Ellis-Beauregard Foundation (Rockland, ME). In 2018 he self-published his first artist book Strange Histories: A Bizarre Collaboration, and has been featured in numerous publications, such as the New York Times, Hyperallergic, Portland Press Herald, Brooklyn Magazine, and Christian Century.
This exhibition is made possible in part by a grant from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.
Elijah Ober (he/him) | CALCIUM / Your Future Ex Squirrelfriend
CALCIUM is a pair of digitally animated videos about some snails’ hunt for a key shell-health supplement. After noticing a snail moving up my leg while I was in my studio one day, I became fascinated by snails. I did some research and began seeking them out, and started seeing them everywhere. I fell inlove with the freedom of their translucence and mutability, their hermaphroditic power, their alchemical shell building. They began to give me a sense of slow, secure, expansive potential to morph and grow. After finding an empty shell stuck to one of my plaster sculptures, more research taught me they will eat all sorts of gypsum construction materials to get enough calcium to grow their shells. Creating these videos has been a process of imagining a story around this practice.
“Your Future Ex Squirrelfriend” is a collection of carved styrofoam squirrels. Starting out observing the squirrels in my backyard, it was easy to see their curvaceous grace. Next I noticed they traveled the neighborhood as a group, appearing and disappearing like a hypervigilant superorganism. Spending lots of careful time sanding them, they came to represent my desire to be cute, playful, diligent and caring. They are brave and fierce! But soft and small. They know they’re cute. Sanding them is my little reverent act. Someone just told me “I hate rodents because they get into things you love and ruin them.” Which sort of makes sense. But these squirrels just love each other (and you, perhaps?) And I don’t see a reason to ruin that.
Elijah Ober was born in New Hampshire and grew up in Southern Maine, he studied art and anthropology at Bowdoin College, and has attended residencies at the Ellis Beauregard Foundation, Monson Arts, and Gardenship. He has also worked as John Bisbee’s assistant for the past four years. Ober is a sculptor and animator based in Maine whose work combines found materials with his own fabrications to create objects with basic functional aspirations and fugitive presence. His work looks for animistic personality in mundane objects, naively pursues craft, and seeks to be a nexus with a rich set of relationships. More recently he has been inspired by the small innocuous animals commonly called pests and their role in how we build a relationship with an ecosystem and understand anddevelop a sense of place. His work has recently been shown at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art and the Portland Museum of Art, as well as Cove Street Arts, Elizabeth Moss Galleries, and New System Exhibitions. Elijah is the recipient of a 2021 Maine Arts Commission Project Grant.
Daniel Minter (he/him) & Eneida Sanches (she/her) |
The acclaimed Portland-based artist Daniel Minter will collaborate with the Brazilian artist Eneida Sanches to explore the lasting impact of slavery through the landscapes, vehicles, tools and narratives that are shared between the United States and Brazil. Minter and Sanches are both black and have identified ancestors who were enslaved.
Minter and Sanches are drawing heavily on their lived experiences in regions in their respective countries where slavery was deeply rooted, and the continuing cultural impact remains central to current social and cultural reckonings. Through their dialog and collaboration, the artists have identified key commonalities that will be reflected in their installation. These include forests, trains, slave quarters, and tools of repetitive labor, such as hammers and brooms.
The installation will orient visitors at the entry to CMCA’s 1,800-square foot Bruce Brown Gallery with a constructed wall that will direct foot traffic to the right, where they will encounter a forest constructed of trees made from green bottles. Further into the gallery, salvaged train tracks will be installed upon which will be mounted a small train car that visitors will be able to physically push. The train car will be adorned with Minter’s painted assemblage sculptures, depicting dimensional portraits of black men and women, along with a video mounted to the roof that will project footage from Brazil on the gallery ceiling.
The artists are also creating a seated area of the gallery where visitors can hold and examine three-dimensional carvings. One of these interactive elements will be as series of small houses (ca. 8 inches tall) that are carved with iconography related to slavery/enslavement, labor, and home. By pivoting the houses, visitors will be able to create sequential narratives, conveying the innumerable experiences and ongoing impact of enslavement in both countries, and within individual communities and even households.
The artists’ aims are to convey the ongoing impact of slavery through the myriad ways that centuries of enslavement is still impacting individuals, families, communities and culture. With the increasing cultural reckoning in the US, there is increasing understanding of the complexities of this ongoing impact and how our culture and systems perpetuate inequities rooted in centuries of enslavement.
Sanches will arrive in Maine in July to begin creating and finalizing all works for the exhibition with Minter in a shared studio in Portland.
For further context, Daniel Minter was born and raised in Ellaville, Georgia. Eneida Sanches lives and works in Bahia, Brazil, in the northeast section of the country. The United States trafficked 600,000 enslaved people from African from the 16th-19th century, or 5% of all enslaved people from Africa. Brazil trafficked 5.8 million people from Africa, accounting for 40% of all enslaved people of African descent in the Western Hemisphere. Slavery was abolished in the United States in 1865 and in Brazil in 1888.
Eneida Sanches has been studying art since the age of six. She studied architecture from 1980 to 1990 while concurrently taking courses in the Fine Arts at the Fine Arts of the Federal University of Bahia in Brazil. Additionally, she had done research on African and Afro-Brazilian aesthetic as well as study chalcography in the Museum of Modern Art workshops in Bahia from 1995 to 2000. Her work features liturgical use of the Yourba candomble with the overarching theme of expanding language of her prints into objects and installations. Furthermore, Eneida is the founder and producer of, Circuito das Artes Bahia and Circuito Triangulações, a large visual arts exhibition that highlights 120 artists from Bahia, that includes 300 work in 10 different galleries and museums. These works are meant to promote the visibility of annual art production and heighten visitor participation.
Jenny Brillhart (she/her) | Interiors
Jenny Brillhart’s paintings, installations, and photos are informed by her surroundings both found and created. She is interested in the structure and function of often overlooked material. Many ideas arise through a studio-based building and arranging routine using objects and photographs. The content often references art making, domesticity, and construction. By creating stilled moments through three-dimensional object placement, the commonly understood job of something may be altered. Use of time-lapse photography captures what could be missed and draws the day. Tools like rulers, cameras, brushes and prints often leave their mark. Physical space, light, time, and material are constant participants in the making and display. Process and flexibility allow for unexpected moments.
The paintings derived from built set-ups, further consider composition and cropping and their subjects’ relationship to paint. The paint is sculptural as well; it’s anatomy in plain view. This movement and manipulation of mediums reveal attempts to control and create content through form, light, and structure.
Jenny Brillhart was born 1972 in Keene, New Hampshire. She received a BFA from Smith College in Northhampton, MA. She then went on to study at The Art Students League, NY and in 2003 she graduated from The New York Academy of Art with an MFA in painting. Jenny has shown widely in the U.S. and Europe. She lives and works in Blue Hill, Maine.
K. Min | Interiors
Beauty and loss
Time and memory
Emptiness and appreciation
Warmth and intimacy
Story and metaphor
Space and distance
Melancholy and loneliness
Silence and peace
Humor and comfort
Sincerity and originality
Subtlety and depth
Life and mystery
Hurt and wounds
Simplicity and poetic minimalism
Those are what I want to convey from my heart to my work. For this, I use food, furniture, light, space, buildings, trees, and bugs as subject matter. Or I could say I draw anything that comes to my attention visually, emotionally, and psychologically.
Corinna D’Schoto | Interiors
In my current practice I am exploring the object-hood of painting and the after-life of image. Im interested in the distortion that occurs when pulling these things apart; in the subsequent disorientation of switching the active[present] and passive[absent] roles of the body, of memories; of the object and the image.
Through my practice I explore ways to reinterpret and redefine spaces that can be both familiar and alien. Playing with representations of forms, shifting perspectives, and bending colours. Using these methods to explore representations of space and parallaxes creates opportunities to shift perspective, to experience the flexibility of these relationships
Abelardo Morell (he/him) | Interiors
I made my first picture using camera obscura techniques in my darkened living room in 1991. In setting up a room to make this kind of photograph, I cover all windows with black plastic in order to achieve total darkness. Then, I cut a small hole in the material I use to cover the windows. This opening allows an inverted image of the view outside to flood onto the back walls of the room. Typically then I focused my large-format camera on the incoming image on the wall then make a camera exposure on film. In the beginning, exposures took from five to ten hours.
Over time, this project has taken me from my living room to all sorts of interiors around the world. One of the satisfactions I get from making this imagery comes from my seeing the weird and yet natural marriage of the inside and outside.
Several years ago, in order to push the visual potential of this process, I began to use color film and positioned a lens over the hole in the window plastic in order to add to the overall sharpness and brightness of the incoming image. Now, I often use a prism to make the projection come in right side up. I have also been able to shorten my exposures considerably thanks to digital technology, which in turn makes it possible to capture more momentary light. I love the increased sense of reality that the outdoor has in these new works .The marriage of the outside and the inside is now made up of more equal partners.
Featuring domestic interiors in vibrant color with exaggerated nods to cubism and abstraction, Stern’s work triggers and questions memory. With his ‘Laundry Day’ series, he hopes to “document and speak to identity, both as it masks and reveals inner complexities.” He elaborates: “The man made rack serves as a reminder of the spinal and stark nature of life; something that never changes, something reliable. While the drying clothes nod to the ever-changing and fluid dance that identity plays as we move through our days.”
Stern explores the nostalgic quality of the moments that he paints by revealing specific physical attributes in these personal portraits from remembered spaces. “The paintings hold emotional narrative information, as the sculptures serve as simple documentation of physicality,” he explains. “Made from history; the work serves as both a reminder of and graceful wink toward the past.”
Matthew Brannon is best known for his letterpress and screen prints of incongruous combinations of images and text. These prints are rendered in a subtle, stripped-down aesthetic, evoking mass production and marketing design. For a 2006 series of blue and black silkscreen prints, Brannon paired representations of potted plants with grim subtitles such as Sick Whore and How It All Ends, in keeping with his thematic interest in pathology and personal struggle. Brannon’s sculptures exhibit a similar pictorial simplicity, often executed in few colors and with meticulous attention to symmetry and balance. Like a stage set for the performance of a play set on board a ship, the mixed-media installation Nevertheless (2009) features a minimalist turquoise and white model of a bedroom, adorned with curtains and decorative bottles carved from balsa wood—a space both beautiful and somehow bereft.
Alec Soth (he/him) | Interior
Alec Soth’s work is rooted in the American photographic tradition that Walker Evans famously termed “documentary Style.” Concerned with the mythologies and oddities that proliferate America’s disconnected communities, Soth has an instinct for the relationship between narrative and metaphor. His clarity of voice has drawn many comparisons to literature, but he believes photography to be more fragmented; “It’s more like poetry than writing a novel.”