Invitation to Contribute: Winter Issue 2019: Sketchbook

Sketchbook

There is a sense of privacy between the closed covers of a sketchbook. It can be a place of fresh discovery where something new is hatched or it can serve as an archive. There is a sense of time in a sketchbook. It is a stand in for a calendar with the whiff of the alchemical. This is a place where secrets are stored and revealed.

Is your sketchbook a place to jot things down, dash off a few lines or where you dig in and flesh something out? Is it a travelogue, an encyclopedia, visual treatise or memoir?

Share with us some pages from your current projects, your personal archives, or the mutterings, musings, and legacy from artists you know or have known.

Journal Submission guidelines for Members’ Showcase and featured artists:
We invite UMVA members to submit up to 4 JPEG or png images, (No TIFF files)
—Include an image list and statement or essay in Word doc. Format, not a PDF. No Dropbox.

Label each image file as follows:  your last name_Number of Image_Title_
(if you are submitting for a group put your own last name in first.)

Label your document file names: Last Name_Title

Image list format:  Artist’s Name, “Title of Work”, medium, size, date (optional), photo credit (if not included we assume it is courtesy of the artist).

Please wait until all of your material is compiled to submit.

Size of images: Images should be JPEG files, (approximately 1000 pixels on long side, resolution 72dpi) between 500KB to 1.2MB. 

Put “Sketchbook” in the subject line and submit by email to umvalistings@gmail.com by the December 1st deadline. MAJ will limit the “Members’ Showcase” section to UMVA members who have not been published in the past year.

We are no longer able to accommodate artists’ pre-formatted visual essays. Our editors will lay-out text and images submitted using the new guidelines above.

Maine artists and arts community members can become members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists by clicking HERE. Membership helps support the UMVA’s advocacy and helps make this Maine Arts Journal: UMVA Quarterly possible. Or you can provide direct support to the MAJ via the link under “Support MAJ!” For a free subscription to the MAJ, CLICK HERE or enter your email on the side link under “Subscribe”and a link to this Journal will be mailed to your inbox.

It is the MAJ’s policy to request and then publish image credits. We will not publish images the submitter does not have the right to publish. However, we leave the question of photo credit to the discretion of the submitter when there is no required photo credit (photo by self, image ownership freely given, copyright with contract, copyright expired, work for hire).  It is to be assumed that any uncredited or unlabeled images are the author’s/submitter’s own images. By submitting to the MAJ, you are acknowledging respect for these policies.

Thank you,

MAJ Editorial Board
Natasha Mayers, Dan Kany, Jessica Myer, Nora Tryon, Kathy Weinberg, and Betsy Sholl (poetry editor)

 

Studio Practice — Tom Flanagan 2018

The only thing I really understand about my process as an artist is that everything comes from my drawing practice. There’s something essential about drawing. It connects me to the world and to my sensibilities.

Lately I’ve been drawing directly onto the canvas using a colored pencil that can be erased with a wet rag to make adjustments. Sometimes this takes hours and sometimes this can take days. I try not to judge what I’m doing, at least in the beginning. Basically, I keep at it until I see something that interests me. Feeling my way through the work, rather than thinking my way, has become more and more important. This is the kind of feeling that has been informed by years of thinking about what my work is about, and then letting it all go.

Everything changes as soon as color is introduced into the work. I mostly use

Tom Flanagan’s Fort Andross studio. Photo by artist.

Golden Heavy Body acrylic paints because I find them to be of a consistently high quality. The other thing I’ve done since graduate school is to keep a powerful metal fan on high, three feet from the work at all times. The fan dries the acrylic paint so fast that I never have to stop working to wait for a layer of paint to dry. I need the painting process to be more like drawing in the sense that the painting medium doesn’t slow me down.

I work on one piece at a time. I’ve tried to work on more than one canvas, but the work becomes watered down and not as intense. Intensity is very important to me. If I’m going to put two colors side by side, they’d better have something to say. Every line and shape compete with one another and hopefully depend on one another in order for a disorder of my creation to exist.

Tom Flanagan’s Fort Andross studio. Photo by artist.

I don’t use brushes much. About 12 years ago I started using broad knives used by sheetrock contractors to apply color. There’s something freeing about putting two or three colors on a blade and pulling them across the surface. I have no control over what comes out of it and that feels right.

I use thousands of feet of masking tape and rolls and rolls of paper towels in the course of completing each piece. After a week, the trash can next to my painting table looks like a tall masking tape plant with blobs of color mixed in. I have a large thick piece of glass that I use as a pallet and clean that glass after each color is mixed and used. That’s my obsessive intense side coming through.

Tom Flanagan’s Fort Andross studio. Photo by artist.

The studio I’m in right now is in Fort Andross in Brunswick, Maine. The Mill, as it’s known, has become a real center for contemporary art in Maine. Most of the spaces are big and bright with large windows. Being there allows me to work on large canvases and look at multiple pieces as a body of work at once. It has also connected me to other artists and creative types that I wouldn’t normally bump into, like painters Cassie Jones and Richard Keen and sculptors John Bisbee and William Zingaro.

All the technical stuff aside, what I’m really doing in the studio is looking. I start with something––whether it’s a line or a color––and then I react to it. I adjust it. I add to it. I cover it. I put something next to it. I turn it upside down. How I get there doesn’t matter. This is a creative act. There are no rules.

What matters most to me is that I end up with something that has an energy that stays with me.

Invitation for Fall Issue 2018: Dialogue

Dialogue

Dialogue is defined as a conversation between two or more people, and in literature, philosophy or art takes on many forms and formats. The purpose of dialogue is to explore topics rather than reach conclusions. It is different from a debate and more egalitarian than a monologue.

Artists can choose from many forms to explore their themes or topics. There is the interview format between two artists, or a less formal conversation format, or the lyrical, narrative format. And there is a visual dialogue, through images such as Jim Chute’s “Conversations” series, or Christine Sullivan seeking salon-style interaction.

There are questions extended to artists to explore with others and reflect on the process.

When making art are you seeking to explore dialogue between individuals or is your artwork part of a larger dialogue—a broader cultural perspective? Do curators and art reviewers guide or inhibit your conversations?  How do we foster/contribute to dialogue as artists in cultural institutions? How do schools, programs, organizations, UMVA, MAC, MECA, foster or engage their students and programming in dialogue? What is the role of the gallery? The artist?

Journal Submission guidelines for Members Showcase:

Deadline: September 1st  

A) We invite UMVA members to submit up to 4 JPEG or png images. Attach to an email, (see below.)

—Size of images:Images as JPEG files, (approximately 1000 pixels on long side, resolution 72dpi) with total file size: 500KB – 1.2MB (No TIFF files)

—Photo/image file name:  your last name_number of image_title  

Note:If you are submitting for a group put your own last name in first.

B) Include your statement, 150 words or less, and an image list in Word doc. format, not a PDF.

—Document/essay file names: your last Name_title of essay—Image list file name:  your last name_image list

Image list format:  Artist’s Name, “Title of Work”, medium, size, date (optional), photo credit (if not included we assume it is courtesy of the artist).

Please wait until all of your material is compiled to submit.

C) Submit by email to umvalistings@gmail.com  Put “Dialogue” in the subject line.

MAJ will limit the “Members’ Showcase” section to UMVA members who have not been published in the past year.

We are no longer able to accommodate artists’ pre-formatted visual essays. Our editors will lay-out text and images submitted using the new guidelines above.

Maine artists and arts community members can become members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists by clicking HERE <http://umvaonline.org/index.php?page=join> . Membership helps support the UMVA’s advocacy and helps make this Maine Arts Journal: UMVA Quarterly possible. Or you can provide direct support to the MAJ via the link under “Support MAJ!” For a free subscription to the MAJ, enter your email on the side link under“Subscribe”and a link to this Journal will be mailed to your inbox.

It is the MAJ’s policy to request and then publish image credits. We will not publish images the submitter does not have the right to publish. However, we leave the question of photo credit to the discretion of the submitter when there is no required photo credit (photo by self, image ownership freely given, copyright with contract, copyright expired, work for hire).  It is to be assumed that any uncredited or unlabeled images are the author’s/submitter’s own images. By submitting to the MAJ, you are acknowledging respect for these policies.

Thank you,

MAJ Editorial Board
Natasha Mayers, Dan Kany, Jessica Myer, Nora Tryon, Kathy Weinberg

Summer 2018 Issue: Theme and Invitation

Ethan Hayes-Chute, studio view, December 2017.

State of the Studio

One of the Founders of the former ArtFellows Gallery in Belfast (local photojournalist,  Richard Norton) always had the same question for the artists working around him, “What are you doing? What are you making?” 

This neighborly, over-the-fence question is a way of saying that what an artist does daily matters. The continuity of a steady studio practice is a place of invention and exploration, as—or more important than—putting on a show.

Are you staying on a course you have long ago established or have you recently started working in a new medium?  Are you suddenly working very large or getting small? Have figures emerged or has your work been consumed with geometry? Have you added color, or moved into monochromes? Does the outside world affect your studio life, or is your interior life reflected in your art? And was there a reason— or was it a whim— that brought you to your current direction?

Share your own State of the Studio with all of us at the Maine Arts Journal for our Summer 2018 Issue.

Journal Submission guidelines for Members Showcase and featured artists:

Journal Submission guidelines for Members Showcase and featured artists:

 Deadline: June 1st  

A) We invite UMVA members to submit up to 4 JPEG or png images, (featured artists 8-12 images). Attach to an email, (see below.)
—Size of images:Images as JPEG files, (approximately 1000 pixels on short side) with total file size: 500KB- 1.2MB (No TIFF files)
—Photo/image file name:  your last name_number of image_title 

Note:If you are submitting for a group put your own last name in first.

 B) Include your statement, or essay, and an image list in Word doc. format, not a PDF.
—Document/essay file names: your last Name_title of essay—Image list file name:  your last name_image list

Image list format:  Artist’s Name, “Title of Work”, medium, size, date (optional), photo credit (if not included we assume it is courtesy of the artist).

Please wait until all of your material is compiled to submit.

C) Submit by email to umvalistings@gmail.com put “State of the Studio” in the subject line.

MAJ will limit the “Members’ Showcase” section to UMVA members who have not been published in the past year.

We are no longer able to accommodate artists’ pre-formatted visual essays. Our editors will lay-out text and images submitted using the new guidelines above.

Maine artists and arts community members can become members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists by clicking HERE. Membership helps support the UMVA’s advocacy and helps make this Maine Arts Journal: UMVA Quarterly possible. Or you can provide direct support to the MAJ via the link under “Support MAJ!” For a free subscription to the MAJ, enter your email on the side link under “Subscribe” and a link to this Journal will be mailed to your inbox.

It is the MAJ’s policy to request and then publish image credits. We will not publish images the submitter does not have the right to publish. However, we leave the question of photo credit to the discretion of the submitter when there is no required photo credit (photo by self, image ownership freely given, copyright with contract, copyright expired, work for hire).  It is to be assumed that any uncredited or unlabeled images are the author’s/submitter’s own images. By submitting to the MAJ, you are acknowledging respect for these policies.

Thank you,

MAJ Editorial Board
Natasha Mayers, Dan Kany, Jessica McCarthy, Nora Tryon, Kathy Weinberg

Members’ Showcase Spring 2018 Theme and Invitation—Origin Stories

Titian’s The Flight into Egypt (1506-7) Photo: The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg

Our theme for the Spring 2018 Maine Arts Journal Issue is Origin Stories.

What are the stories you tell of yourself, your family, and heritage? How do they —or do they at all—figure in your artwork, thoughts and memories? How do they relate to your cultural perspective?

Does your familial country of origin influence your work?  Or are you from many points of origin—an American mutt? Were you, or your family, forced to leave what was home?  Are you from a place that never felt like home, and have you now found that place that is central to you?

We want to share your stories – the true ones, as well as the ones you had to make up. We want to hear: Who You Are, and How did you get Here?

In conjunction with this issue, and narrowing the lens of the topic more specifically to Immigration, Kifah Abdulla (Portland poet, artist and immigrant from Iraq), Titi De Baccarat (Portland artist and immigrant from Gabon) and John Ripton (writer, photographer and historian from Maine) will invite artists to participate in a show of the work by Portland area immigrants around the theme of “Migration Experience.”  

Note: The selection process for this show is not a part of the Maine Arts Journal submission for the Spring Issue.

Journal Submission guidelines
We invite UMVA members to submit up to 4 JPEG images. Include an image list and statement or essay in Word doc. Format, (not a PDF). Image credit list format:  Artist’s Name,  “Title of Work”, medium, size, date (optional), photo credit (if not included we assume it is courtesy of the artist).

Images should be JPEG files, approximately 1000 pixels on short side with total resolution between 500KB to 1.2MB. Image files names must include the artist’s name and the number corresponding to the image list. Put “Origin Stories” in the subject line and submit by email to umvalistings@gmail.com by March 1st deadline. MAJ will limit the “Members’ Showcase” section to UMVA members who have not been published in the past year.

We are no longer able to accommodate artists’ pre-formatted visual essays. Our editors will lay-out text and images submitted using the new guidelines above.

 Maine artists and arts community members can become members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists by clicking HERE. Membership helps support the UMVA’s advocacy and helps make this Maine Arts Journal: UMVA Quarterly possible. Or you can provide direct support to the MAJ via the link under “Support MAJ!” For a free subscription to the MAJ, enter your email on the side link under “Subscribe” and a link to this Journal will be mailed to your inbox.

It is the MAJ’s policy to request and then publish image credits. We will not publish images the submitter does not have the right to publish. However, we leave the question of photo credit to the discretion of the submitter when there is no required photo credit (photo by self, image ownership freely given, copyright with contract, copyright expired, work for hire).  It is to be assumed that any uncredited or unlabeled images are the author’s/submitter’s own images. By submitting to the MAJ, you are acknowledging respect for these policies.

Thank you,

MAJ Editorial Board
Natasha Mayers, Dan Kany, Jessica McCarthy, Nora Tryon, Kathy Weinberg

THEME FOR WINTER 2018 MAINE ARTS JOURNAL: InnerVisions

InnerVisions

William Blake – John Bunyan – The Man Sweeping the Interpreter’s Parlor, engraving Date: 1794 (refurbished c. 1822, 1824)

The romantic trope of the melancholic, or even crazy, artist distorts the very real tensions the artist experiences when engaging in content at the intersection of the cultural and personal, that zone where the artist lives and thrives. While making art, an artist may be dealing with anxiety, disappointments, insecurity, fear and/or desire, and sometimes a touch of joy and ecstasy. Artists possess the tools to explore what is below the shallow surface of normalcy and this may appear disturbing to those who shy away from having their sensitive nerves pressed.

Art is too often seen as a retreat from the complexities of the world, but it not just a relief from our troubles, or from the global problems, but more a way of taking them on. Art can engage with the darker side of our psyches and the darkness in our culture. We use the word “play” in the context of art but play in this context is very serious, like Hamlet, where everybody is dead at the end. 

Hieronymus Bosch, Death and the Miser (detail) 1485-1490

We choose subject matter we are drawn to for reasons we don’t always understand, and such choices are critical to our exploration of who we are. For the winter issue, we invite artists to participate in an exploration of art as psychic content made visible; an expression of both individual psyche but also the psyche, or soul, of the culture. Does art exorcise our demons or does it just exercise them and take them out for a walk in the sunlight?

We invite UMVA members to submit up to 4 images. Also Include an image list and statement or essay in Word doc. format. Image credit list format:  Artist’s Name,  “Title of Work”, medium, size, date (optional), photo credit (if not included we assume it is courtesy of the artist).*

Images should be approximately 1000 pixels on short side with total resolution between 500KB to 1.2MB. Image file names must include the artist’s name and the number corresponding to the image list. Put “InnerVisions” in the subject line and submit to umvalistings@gmail.com <mailto:umvalistings@gmail.com> by December 1st deadline. MAJ will limit the “Members Submit” section to UMVA members who have not been published in the past year.

We are no longer able to accommodate artists’ formatted visual essays, we will lay out text and images submitted using the new guidelines above.

Maine artists and arts community members can become members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists by clicking here <http://umvaonline.org/index.php?page=join> . Membership helps support the UMVA’s advocacy and helps make this Maine Arts Journal: UMVA Quarterly possible. For a free subscription to the MAJ click here <http://umvaonline.org/index.php?page=journal> .This means that a link to this Journal will be mailed to your inbox.

*It is the MAJ’s policy to request and then publish image credits. We will not publish images the submitter does not have the right to publish. However, we leave the question of photo credit to the discretion of the submitter when there is no required photo credit (photo by self, image ownership freely given, copyright with contract, copyright expired, work for hire, etc). This is particular to our article genre we have dubbed “visual essays”  In light of our policy and requests, it is to be assumed that any uncredited or unlabeled images are the author’s/submitter’s own images. By submitting to the MAJ, you are acknowledging respect for these policies.

Thank you,
MAJ Editorial Board

Jeffrey Ackerman, Daniel Kany, Natasha Mayers, Jessica McCarthy, Nora Tryon, Kathy Weinberg