A New UMVA Chapter for the Midcoast: Based on positive responses to a recent survey of local artists, plans for reviving a Midcoast chapter are underway!

The main focus of this newly formed group is to secure exhibition venues in addition to other activities to be determined by members. The core group consists of Liv Kristin Robinson (Belfast), Sally Stanton (Northport), Ann Tracy (Rockport), and Deb Vendetti (Hope). Upcoming exhibition opportunities: an inaugural exhibition is scheduled for January 2023 at the Camden Public Library. Another is in the works at Waterfall Arts! To request details and submission guidelines, contact midcoast.umva@gmail.com with “submission CPL guidelines” in the subject line.

We invite your input for naming the first exhibition. One thought, “re·sur·gence: Midcoast UMVA”. noun: resurgence; plural noun: resurgences 1. an increase or revival after a period of little activity

Midcoast Meetings: The first meeting will be Wednesday, 5 October 2022, 4–5 p.m. via internet link only. If you would like to attend, contact UMVA Midcoast at midcoast.umva@gmail.com with “Oct. 5 meeting” in the subject line.

A link invitation will be sent the day before the meeting, with a reminder a few minutes before the meeting begins. Eventually, we hope to hold “in-person” meetings at the Camden Public Library, Picker Room and at the Belfast Public Library. All meetings will be available online as well.

We look forward to meeting with you! Thank you for your interest!

UPDATE: Midcoast UMVA Seeks Artists for Exhibition in January 2023

Midcoast artists who are members of the Union of Maine Visual Artists (UMVA) are  invited to respond to this call for art for the show “Resurgence: UMVA In the Midcoast” at the Camden Public Library, 55 Maine St., Camden,  from January 4th to January 29th, 2023.  The deadline to submit work is December 1, 2022 for this open themed show. To receive submission guidelines email Deb Vendetti at- msky231@tidewater.net with “Resurgence at CPL” in the subject line.  All artists must be members of UMVA as of Jan 2023 to participate.  Artist memberships range from $25 to $45 or a Household membership for 2 people is $40 annually.  More information can be found at https://www.theumva.org/joindonate.


 UMVA Portland Chapter Update
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Tom Bloom, Willis, Fisherman, photograph, for the Fall exhibition PORTLAND WORKS.

UMVA presents a Dual Exhibition
A Wicked Tiny History of Playing & Tarot Cards
by Amy Bellezza

The Union of Maine Visual Artists is presenting a Dual Exhibit opening at the gallery on 2 October and running through 29 October 2022. Opening Reception will be on Friday, 7 October from 5:00pm to 8:00pm, during First Friday Art Walk, at the UMVA Gallery, 516 Congress Street, located in the Portland Media Center.

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Tom Bloom, Terri, Firefighter, photograph, for the Fall exhibition PORTLAND WORKS.

Portland Works, by Tom Bloom, is an exhibit of portraits of residents of Portland, celebrating the nobility of hard work. All of the personalities in the show work at jobs which most of us pass by without noticing but which are essential to the special character of Portland. Each portrait is shot in Tom Bloom’s studio in Portland. Tom Bloom is a photographer and actor. His photography work over fifty years has specialized in theater and dance performance, theater portraits, and fine art documentation. His acting career has been on Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional, television and film.

Amy Bellezza exhibits her photograph exhibit titled, A Wicked Tiny History of Playing & Tarot Cards, that explores aspects of the history and design of playing and Tarot cards. Creating her own personal decks, she has come up with a series of still lifes that illustrate different times in their evolution. They interpret magical spells, literature, movies, and historical events, all the while explaining their relevance to their time in history. And some are just Art for Art’s sake.

Amy Bellezza is a photographer based in Portland. She is a graduate of the School of Visual Arts in New York. Her work has been shown in New York, Maine, Washington, and Italy. She has been primarily exhibiting with and is the Gallery Manager for UMVA.

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Amy Belleza, Shoes and Lenormand Cards (after Sasha Stone Untitled c. 1932), photograph, for the Fall exhibition A Wicked Tiny History of Playing & Tarot Cards.


The UMVA Gallery presents monthly member group, thematic and solo exhibitions and is open during regular operating hours of the Portland Media Center (www.ctn5.org). Monday through Thursday 10 a.m.–5 p.m. and Friday 5 p.m.–8 p.m. plus Saturday and Sunday 1 p.m.–4 p.m. Tom or Amy will be at the UMVA Gallery every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 1 p.m.–4.pm. during October.

The exhibition is free to the public and the Portland Media Center facility and Gallery is ADA accessible. Artworks in UMVA exhibitions are generally for sale through the artist(s) and a portion of each sale benefits the UMVA.

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UMVA artist Jane Page Conway and friend at UMVA Gallery opening.

The Union of Maine Visual Artists is an artist-run, non-profit organization, dedicated to upholding the dignity of artists and creating positive social change through the arts.The UMVA represents visual artists statewide in all fields of endeavor and welcomes those who support contemporary artists in Maine.

UMVA Freedom of Speech Statement/Notice:

To exhibit a work of art is not to endorse the work or the vision, ideas, and opinions of the artist. It is to uphold the right of all to experience diverse visions and views. Should controversies arise from the exhibition of a work of art, we welcome public discussion and debate with the belief that discussion is integral to the experience of art. Consistent with our fundamental commitment to freedom of speech, we will not censor exhibitions in response to political or ideological pressure.

Freedom of speech is the foundation of our communities and our nation. The works the UMVA exhibits may awe, illuminate, challenge, unsettle, confound, provoke, and, at times, offend. We defend the freedom to create content and exhibit work anywhere in the world, and we recognize the privilege of living in a country where creating, exhibiting, and experiencing such work is a constitutional right.

For more information, please visit: http://www.theumva.org

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PRESSTO ! opening at UMVA Gallery.

 PRESSTO ! Opened UMVA’s Fall Season of Exhibits in Portland

PRESTO !, an invitational exhibit of Maine members of The Monotype Guild of New England (MGNE) and the Union of Maine Visual Artists (UMVA) opened on 1 September at the UMVA Portland Gallery. The works exhibited were all one-of-a-kind unique prints in a variety of media.

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Adell Donghue, Artist Critic, on display at UMVA Gallery.

The impetus for this exhibit arose when COVID-19 closures canceled live shows and other education activities sponsored by the Monotype Guild of New England. As a small part of a newly organized and robust virtual presence beginning in spring 2020, MGNE instituted a series of Zoom meetings with regional members. The Maine meetings, organized by board member Kris Onuf of Portland and Winter Harbor, became a meeting place and forum for members who would ordinarily never meet. Artists in Eliot and South Berwick were chatting and collaborating with others in Gardiner, Otisfield, Rockland, or Falmouth. Not long into those meetups, members decided to embark on collaborative works in groups of three or four artists with the work mailed from one to another until completion. Bonds were formed and artistic challenges met. Some of those unique print works were seen in PRESSTO !

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Artwork exhibited at UMVA Gallery by Deborah Schmidt, Caroline Loose, and Kate Higley.

A unique print is a one-of-a-kind transfer of an inked or painted image on a surface/substrate to paper or another receiving surface, that cannot be exactly duplicated. Unique prints stand in contrast to editioned prints, in which each print in the edition is identical. Unique prints may be denoted by the words “monotype” or “monoprint” or by the symbol “1/1”.

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Printmakers from Monotype Guild of New England exhibit at UMVA Gallery.

The Monotype Guild is a national, nonprofit organization founded in 1985 with a mission to spread understanding and appreciation of one-of-a-kind printmaking. It has sponsored well over 100 open, juried and curated exhibitions in its thirty-seven year history. MGNE exhibits reveal the diverse range of traditional and innovative monoprinting techniques being used by printmakers. With membership open to all artists working in unique prints throughout the United States, the Guild currently has over 350 artist members representing all New England states and from seven states beyond. The website for MGNE and work of member artists can be viewed at MGNE.org


Sea Changes exhibit, UMVA Gallery, Summer 2022, featuring paintings by Joanne Tarlin.


Image at top: Amy Belleza, For Artistic and Creative Concerns Spell, photograph, for the Fall exhibition A Wicked Tiny History of Playing & Tarot Cards.