Archive for Ellsworth

Courthouse Gallery presents ‘Master Effect: Jon Imber and Linda Packard’ with an artist talk

“Three Ducks,” by Jon Imber.

Ellsworth Courthouse Gallery Fine Art will present “Master Effect: Jon Imber and Linda Packard,” an exhibition highlighting the continuum between master painter Jon Imber and one of his students Linda Packard, on view Sept. 15 through Oct. 15 at the gallery and online at

In conjunction with the show, the gallery will host a Zoom talk from 5 to 6 p.m. Sept. 29. Jon Imber’s wife, Jill Hoy, will join Linda Packard and gallery director Karin Wilkes on Zoom to talk about the show and how Imber influenced Packard’s work. To register call 207-667-6611, or email

“Master Effect” highlights the influence Imber had on Linda Packard, one of the gallery’s long-standing artists. Gallery owners Karin and Michael Wilkes are pleased to announce they will be representing the Jon Imber estate, and they have been working with Jill Hoy, Imber’s wife and his son, Gabe Imber.

The profound works of the masters are part of a continuum that have inspired developing artists for centuries. Imber studied with Philip Guston at Boston University, and he often cited Willem de Kooning as a strong influence. For Packard, influences include Cezanne and Matisse, the New York abstract expressionists, and Jon Imber. Packard had the privilege of working with Imber in Stonington for five years before he died. During this time, Packard worked from life, as did Imber, mostly plein air.

“Imber taught me an entirely new way of looking at nature and the landscape,” Packard says. “Painting from life became about responding to the experience of being at a place rather than recording the subject.” This approach changed Packard’s work forever, and she cites Imber as her most important influence.

Others have noticed the connection between Imber and Packard. In a recent Portland Magazine article (February/March 2021) about artists and their influences and mentors, art critic and historian Daniel Kany paired the late Maine painter Jon Imber (1950–2014) with contemporary painter Linda Packard. The article, “Fuel of Influence,” firmly establishes Packard as one of Imber’s protégés. Although the Imber influence is evident in Packard’s work, the translucent effect she achieves with paint is clearly her own.

“I think our strongest common denomination is that’s it’s all about the paint,” Packard says. “The paint drives the expression. Through Jon, I learned the joy of working with juicy paint, scraping and rubbing out, and welcoming the happy accident that sometimes redirects the work.”

As a result, Packard has since transitioned to a totally process-driven studio practice with a focus on abstraction. “As my work has evolved, subjective or abstracted, it’s the paint and how it can be used that interests me the most,” Packard says. “That’s Imber’s influence.”

Jon Imber (1950-2014) was best known for his plein-air landscape paintings. Although Imber found early success with figurative paintings, he experimented with different influences, styles and subject matter all his life. He transitioned from figures, to portraits, to large studio landscapes, then figures in landscapes and plein air landscapes, and finally landscapes on the edge of abstraction. Throughout these changes Imber maintained a unique style of gestural brush strokes and an intimate sense of knowing his subject that goes beyond observation. The former director of the Danforth Museum called him one of the most important painters of his generation and placed him in the lineage of Boston Expressionists.

Imber’s work has been included in many publications including Paintings of Maine: A New Selection by Carl Little, Boston Modern, Figurative Expressionism As Alternative Modernism by Judith Bookbinder, and 100 Boston Painters by Chawkey Frenn. Imber split his time between Stonington, Maine, and Somerville, Massachusetts, where he taught at Harvard for many years.

“Remembrance,” by Linda Packard.

Linda Packard is an abstract painter interested in pushing the physical properties of paint. Although she began her career by painting plein air, Packard’s current work is process driven. She enjoys experimenting with mark-making and textural tools, and exploring the play of opposites: warm/cool, thick/thin, transparent/opaque. While the majority of Packard’s work is now abstract, she still considers herself a landscape painter and often draws on remembered experiences in nature.

Packard holds a BA in studio art from Smith College. Her early work focused on printmaking and extended into book arts. Packard has been awarded several residencies, including the Great Spruce Head Island Art Week (2009), a Heliker-LaHotan Foundation fellowship (2015), and a month-long residency at Weir Farm in Wilton in Connecticut (2017). Packard has lived in Maine for more than thirty-five years, and she currently maintains a studio in downtown Bangor.

Courthouse Gallery is at 6 Court St. in Ellsworth. For more information, call 667-6611, or visit

Courthouse Gallery presents three solo shows

Rosie Moore, “Domesticity.”

Ellsworth Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents three solo shows through Sept. 8: “Tom Curry: Edge of Light,” “Rosie Moore: Fragments” and “Lisa Tyson Ennis: Botanical Alchemy.”

The shows are free and open to the public at the gallery and can also be viewed online at

Tom Curry, “The Crown.”

“Tom Curry: Edge of Light” takes the viewer on a journey of spectacle, spread out across nature’s stage. Curry rivets our attention in “Summer Storm,” with his daring use of bold chartreuse, jolting us into a keen awareness of the sun’s intensity. Islands sizzle under the blaze of a setting sun in “Evening Light on Camden Hills,” and in “Barren,” a midday sun reveals the shocking crimson of a Maine blueberry field in autumn. The drama continues with a majestic painting of Chatto, a small island just offshore from Curry’s home in Brooklin. Mirrored reflections of a deep, ominous cool grey sky contrast with just a hint of spark, shimmering across the treetops of Chatto, in solemn stillness. Again and again, Curry’s paintings entice away from modern distraction into another world that is vast and eternal, one where we can witness the Earth in all her glory.

“Rosie Moore: Fragments” highlights a new collection of mixed-media paintings by the Blue Hill artist. Intrigued by the complications of space, Moore has found that working with media offers her more freedom to experiment with abstraction through the integration of texture, shape and color. She uses a combination of ink, acrylic paint and collage, including fragments of earlier work on paper, handmade papers, magazine images or any other materials useful in the development of the final picture. Known for her loosely painted expressionistic seascapes, Moore finds the complex relationships of the objects and patterns in a still life or interior especially intriguing. Moore splits her time between Blue Hill and Washington, D.C.

Lisa Tyson Ennis, “Beckoning The Elements: Spring I, IV, and VI.”

“Lisa Tyson Ennis: Botanical Alchemy” features work by the Castine-based photographer, who uses historical processes, large- and medium-format cameras, black-and-white film, handmade toners and oil paints, and cyanotypes, a beautiful 19th-century photographic process whereby two benign iron salts become light sensitive when mixed together with water. Ennis combines these salts in her darkroom and gently brushes several coats onto heavy watercolor paper. She then lays plant material onto the wet paper and places it under glass, which is left outside to be exposed to the elements for many hours, sometimes days. Together, the sun, wind, humidity, type of plant etc. create the image, a true record of time and place, as the landscape literally imprints itself on the paper. Petals, seeds, or colorful extracts from the plants themselves often remain, embedded into the surface of the paper.

Courthouse Gallery is located at 6 Court Street in Ellsworth. For more information call 667- 6611, or visit

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art shows ‘New Beginnings’

Philip Frey, “Interlude.”

Ellsworth Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents “New Beginnings,” a mid-winter online show highlighting new work by 12 artists. The show is a precursor to the gallery’s upcoming summer exhibitions.

A range of media is highlighted, including collage on canvas, digital montage, oil on canvas, sculptures from stainless steel or reclaimed wood and found objects, and cyanotype—a historic 19th-century photographic process where watercolor canvas is coated with a light-sensitive emulsion (layered with plants in this case) and exposed to the sun for 12 hours or more.

Courthouse Gallery is at 6 Court St., Ellsworth. Winter hours are by chance or appointment. For more information, call 667-6611, or visit

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents three shows

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art is pleased to present two solos shows: Joseph Keiffer: I Still Believe in Beauty and Philip Frey: Moment[um]. Also showing new work is Judy Belasco. The shows are on view at the Gallery through September 4, or virtually on the Gallery website at The exhibitions are free and open to the public.

Courthouse Gallery is located at 6 Court Street in Ellsworth. Gallery hours are Monday – Saturday from 10am–6pm, and Sunday from 12 – 4pm. For more information, call 667-6611, or visit

Joseph Keiffer, Red Floor, oil on canvas,

Joseph Keiffer: I Still Believe in Beauty highlights recent work by Joseph Keiffer, who credits the artists of the Hudson River School for his inspiration. Keiffer looks for beauty wherever he goes, every day, and said the following in the exhibition catalog: “After a day sketching, I am often dismayed to find the most beautiful sight of the day happens during the last hours. My painting of Seal Harbor was one of those moments. Beauty is often an unexpected surprise.”

Keiffer has a personal affinity to Maine’s landscape and has spent the past twenty-plus years painting in and around the Acadia region. Last summer, he was given the opportunity to spend a marvelous week at a summerhouse on Great Spruce Head Island. The house is a brilliantly and gracefully designed cottage, and his show includes a number of paintings from inside and outside the house. He lives in New York City and splits his time between the City, Catskills, and Maine.

Philip Frey, Liquids and Solids

Philip Frey: Moment[um] highlights recent work by Philip Frey, who is best known for his paintings of Maine’s coastline, landscape, and working waterfronts. In the exhibition catalog Bangor writer Annaliese Jakimides said: “What surprises him most, so many paintings later, is still the mark making and color. Both are undeniably muscular and bold and Frey.” Frey studied at Columbus College of Art and Design and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Painting from Syracuse University in 1990. Frey lives in downeast Maine where he maintains a full-time studio.

Judy Belasco, Coastal Schoodic, oil on canvas,

Judy Belasco: New Work Judy Belasco, who is know for her paintings of coastal scenes and estuaries, has followed the path of many artists, including Marsden Hartley, Carl Springhorn, and Philip Barter, to northern Maine. Belasco has made several explorative camping trips to Baxter State Park to sketch and photograph the region. Her painting Katahdin is beautifully subtle, yet majestic. Belasco holds a BFA from the Philadelphia College of Art. She later studied landscape painting with noted Maine artist Linden Frederick and fine digital print making with John Paul Caponigro at the Maine Photographic Workshop in Rockport, Maine. Belasco maintains studios in Philadelphia and Stockton Springs, Maine, and divides her time between two locations.

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents two solo shows by Brooklin painters

“Schoodic Surf,” by William Irvine.

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents two solos shows — “William Irvine: New Explorations” and “Tom Curry: Gradients of Light” — on view at the gallery from July 13 through Aug. 7. Both artist happen to live in the same Maine village of Brooklin.

The shows are also available for online viewing at

“William Irvine: New Explorations” highlights new work by William Irvine, a Scottish/American painter. With his new work, Irvine explores the picture plane by shifting it into three parts like a triptych, except the three panels are contained within one canvas. Irvine has always been aware of composition when he paints for balance and strength, and for how it can be used to affect the emotions. This new three-dimensional effect enlivens his picture and gives the viewer a feeling of movement—be it waves or clouds—that elicits a more emotional response.

Irvine was born in the town of Troon on the Scottish coast. Here he was introduced to modern art through the collection of whiskey magnate Johnnie Walker. After graduating from the Glasgow School of Art and serving in the Scottish army, Irvine came of age in London where he was a part of a lively avant-garde art scene. In 1968, Irvine moved to downeast Maine and was immediately drawn to the fishing villages of Corea and Jonesport, whose tidy houses reminded him of the white farms dotting the green hills of Scotland. Here, harbors, islands and boats, and the sea and the sky, inspired bold work based on a life lived by the sea. Two driving forces fuel his pictorial concepts: abstraction and representation. Irvine brings these antithetical elements into balance with his poetic sensibility and the richness of his textural compositions.

“King Tide,” by Tom Curry.

“Tom Curry: Gradients of Light” highlights recent work by Tom Curry, a preeminent painter of place who paints near his home in Brooklin. The show includes several new portraits of Chatto, an island just offshore from Curry’s home that has become the subject of an ongoing series of more than 60 paintings.

In the essay for the exhibition catalog, art historian Carl Little explains how Curry’s work captures the mood of the country in these uncertain times: In two of them, the island almost disappears within what he calls “gradients of light” that resonate up and down the picture plane. This vision, he explains, is almost like obliteration, but the island does not disappear. Mirage-like, Chatto becomes a manifestation of one’s desire to find something enduring in the view — in what can sometimes be a dark world. We find solace and beauty in his profoundly blue skies, his tousled clouds, resilient rocks and ethereal islands.

A plein-air painter at heart, Curry is most at home working outdoors. “I still can’t believe how gorgeous it [Maine] is; it’s serene, but disheveled; it’s raw and not overly organized.” For Curry, the landscape is more than a passive backdrop of scenery. His work explores the passing of time and the relationship between stillness and flux. He wants the viewer to feel alive — to experience the wild, muscular and ultimately unknowable mysteries of natural forces that are breathing, ever changing and seamless. The enduring magnetism of Curry’s island paintings has been his ability to depict what he calls the paradox of place: “It is not fixed but always changing — the light shifts from moment to moment, water is never still, clouds come and go.”

Courthouse Gallery is located at 6 Court St. in Ellsworth. For more information on upcoming shows, call 207-667-6611, or visit

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art Presents Two New Exhibits

“Ocean Diptych,” by Sally Ladd Cole.

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents two new exhibitions — “Downeast Narratives: Philip Barter and Matt Barter” and “Clarity of Vision: Sally Ladd Cole and B Millner” — available for viewing online at and at the gallery through July 10.

“Downeast Narratives: Philip Barter and Matt Barter” highlights recent work by Philip Barter and Matt Barter, a father-and-son duo of self-taught artists who were both born and raised in Maine. Their motifs focus on narratives of Maine’s working waterfronts and the earthy beauty of her landscape.

“Eastern Dragger,” by Philip Barter.

Philip, who was born and raised in Boothbay Harbor, has painted Maine for over five decades. In the early years, Philip worked in all manner of traditional Maine jobs to support his family of seven. He dug clams and worms, was the sternman on a lobster boat, did carpentry, and dragged for mussels. By the 1990s, Philip was able to paint full-time after the Bates College Museum of Art acquired his work for their permanent collection and mounted a retrospective of his work in 1992. Philip’s work was subsequently highlighted in Downeast magazine and acquired by the Farnsworth Art Museum and the Portland Museum of Art.

“Schoodic Driftwood Relief,” painted wood relief, by Matt Barter.

Matt, who was raised in Franklin, learned to paint under the guidance of his father. He sold his first painting at age 10 and by his teens was learning the mechanics of oil painting and making his own wood reliefs. His carved fishermen and wood reliefs are fast becoming a signature motif. Made from reclaimed wood beam and oil paint, his rough-cut figures capture the brawn of these weathered men laden with lobster traps, hoes, buckets and buoys.

Both Barters share an eye for composition, shape, and color and a deep-rooted connection to Maine that makes their work authentic.

“Clarity of Vision: Sally Ladd Cole and B Millner” highlights recent work by realist painters Sally Ladd Cole and B Millner, both of whom are new to Courthouse Gallery.

Cole is a realist marine and landscape painter who depicts the rural gems she encounters near her homes in Maine and New Hampshire. Many of Cole’s paintings highlight the Atlantic shoreline, where she finds an abundance of inspiration in the natural grace of the endangered vistas. Cole’s work has been included in numerous solo, juried, and groups exhibitions throughout New England and been highlighted in several publications and books.

“Harbor Fish,” by B Millner.

B Millner’s oil paintings approach photorealism and include interiors, landscapes, waterscapes and cityscapes, frequently nocturnal. Millner favors character over beauty and likes to convey a certain grittiness in his paintings.

A native of North Carolina, Millner participated in studio classes at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Studio School for more than 20 years and took foundry courses at Virginia Commonwealth University. His work, which has been exhibited in galleries from Maine to Louisiana and in Anguilla, can be found in numerous collections. Millner has been coming to Maine since 1995, and splits his time between Bailey Island and Virginia.

Courthouse Gallery is located at 6 Court St. in Ellsworth. For more information on upcoming shows, call 667-6611, or visit

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art Presents ‘The Seafaring Narratives of John Neville’

“Dark Haired Mermaid,” by John Neville.

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art presents recent work by Canadian artist John Neville. His engaging narratives of fishermen, with their dories chock full of pollock, sometimes with a mermaid on board, have charmed viewers for years.

The exhibition, which runs from June 8 through July 8, can be viewed at the gallery or online at

Neville was born in Halls Harbour, a small fishing village in Nova Scotia, where he grew up fishing with his father, building boats and listening to the tales of men and women in the local villages. There were stories about bootlegging, bad luck, record catches, rivalries and drunken husbands — all of which became the basis for his rich pictorial language. This popular maritime artist, who splits his time between Canada and Maine, has engaged collectors for decades, first with his hand-pulled intaglio etchings on copper plates, and then with the bold palette of his oil paintings.

Neville studied photography and printmaking at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, completing his BFA at the Centre Gravure de Contemporaine in Geneva, Switzerland. In the 1990s, he began painting exclusively with oils after an adverse reaction to printmaking chemicals. His narrative oil paintings are instantly recognizable by his vibrant use of color and abstract overtones, especially his overhead view of dories loaded with pollock.

Courthouse Gallery is at 6 Court St. in Ellsworth. For more information on upcoming shows, call 207-667-6611. For those planning to see exhibits in person, check the website before visiting to read about coronavirus procedures and spring hours.

Courthouse Gallery’s Annual Spring Show Features 22 Artists

“Ocean Dipthch,” by Sally Ladd Cole.

Courthouse Gallery Fine Art is open to the public and presents its annual Spring Show.

The exhibit runs through June 12 and highlights 22 artists, two of whom — B Millner and Sally Ladd Cole — are new to the gallery. Additional participating artists include Susan Amons, Janice Anthony, Matt Barter, Philip Barter, Jeffery Becton, Kevine Beers, Judy Belasco, Ragna Bruno, Tom Curry, Kate Emlen, Philip Frey, June Grey, William Irvine, Joseph Keiffer, Philip Koch, Ed Nadeau, John Neville, Linda Packard, Alison Rector, Christina Thwaites.

Also highlighted is an exhibition of monoprints and watercolors by printmaker Susan Amons. Amons created the work on Great Cranberry Island during a residency at the Heliker–LaHotan Foundation. Her work is included in numerous private and public collections, including the Portland Museum of Art, Farnsworth Museum of Art, the New York and Boston Public Library Collections of Prints, the University of New England and the museums at Bates, Colby and Bowdoin colleges, among others.

The exhibition can also be viewed online at

Courthouse Gallery is at 6 Court St. in Ellsworth. For more information on upcoming shows, call 207-667-6611. Visit the gallery website for coronavirus procedures at the gallery and its spring hours.

Art of Ellsworth: Maine Craft Weekend

The 3rd Annual Art of Ellsworth: Maine Craft Weekend (October 5-6, 2019) is being held in conjunction with Maine Crafts Association statewide celebration of craft and American Craft Week. Ellsworth will once again be at the forefront as a Featured City and will be promoted as a destination for cultural activities in Downeast Maine. 

Attendees will have the opportunity to visit three craft hubs at Atlantic Art Glass @ 25 Pine Street, SevenArts @ 192 Main Street and a new offering this year; a Community Craft Hub @ 142 Main Street. 

Atlantic Art Glass @ 25 Pine Street: Ken and Linda Perrin will demonstrate their glassblowing craft to the public, while creating a hub of fine arts activities. Along with the pottery, weaving, and jewelry demonstrations you can watch the Atlantic Art Glass team create blown glass pumpkins. The studio of Atlantic Art Glass will be turned into a “glass pumpkin patch” as the molten glass is pulled from the furnace, blown and hand formed on the end of a blowpipe. The glass pumpkin patch is for visitors of all ages.

SevenArts @ 192 Main Street: In addition to their vast selection of handmade work for sale, this local artisan gallery will offer workshops – Gold leafing with Wendilee Heath O’Brien is Sat. October 5 from 1-3pm and on Sun. October 6 from 10am-3pm Anna Pazereckas will teach adults and children how to sew their own headband. There is a $5 fee for materials.

Community Craft Hub @ 142 Main Street: New in 2019,this hub will offer demos in metal, clay, fiber and wood. Additionally, a craft show willoffer a marketplace to purchase handmade work, while an open makerspace will provide a place for community members to work on unfinished projects and learn new techniques from each other. This hub is made possible with a generous grant from the Belvedere Traditional Handcraft Fund via the Maine Community Foundation.

Heidi Stanton-Drew, of The Artful Aide and Chair of Heart of Ellsworth’s Cultural Committee says, “We are incredibly excited to add a Community Craft Hub to the event’s offerings this year. The hub will be a vibrant space on Main Street filled with opportunities to learn about processes, purchase handmade work and get hands-on experience from fellow community members.”  She continued, “These experiences are sure to forge new connections and spark interest in the value of handmade in our lives.”

In addition to the three craft hubs, Fogtown Brewing Company will also be a hub of activity offering live music with their 2019 Musicians in Residence, Shirt Tail Kin at 7pm Friday, October 4 and Saturday, October 5. Pottery demos, a brewery tour and a songwriter’s workshop are all on tap for Saturday, October 5.

 Art of Ellsworth: Maine Craft Weekend is an event celebrating the creative community in Ellsworth. Participants include galleries, artists, retail shops, eateries, breweries and non-profits in the urban core, offering studio tours, sales, artist demonstrations, live music, and a community craft show. 

Full event calendar is available at: For more information, please email:


(KōT) Contemporary Craft Guest Artist Appearance – Erica Moody & Kreg McCune

Cake knife and cake server brass and steel Moody


Two Maine craft artists team up for a duo guest artist appearance this month at (KōT) Contemporary Craft, 6 State Street in downtown Ellsworth, August 31st, 2019 11am – 6:00pm

This is the fifth event in a series of summertime trunk shows showcasing the work of American craft artists. Award-winning artists, Metalsmith Erica Moody, and potter Kreg McCune draw on the beauty of Maine and a Yankee sensibility creating practical pieces for the kitchen and home. Moody using traditional metal working techniques and an old analog industrial machine creates flatware and serving pieces that have been featured in publications such as Bon Appetité & Bake From Scratch magazines. Kreg McCune is a studio potter who works in stoneware and porcelain creates pieces connected to a timeless aesthetic drawing on the landscape of Maine. He strives to craft functional pots that are beautiful alone and in combination with one another. Both these artists work play off the idea of elevating everyday tasks through thoughtfully designed pottery and servings pieces creating a unique connection to food and heritage – a shared passion of both Moody and McCune. Phone: (207) 479 5011