Outside the mainstream at Hurricane

Jul 23, 2014
"Buddha" by Min Yan Naing is part of this summer’s exhibition at Waldoboro’s Hurricane Gallery.

Waldoboro — A new “hurricane of art” exhibition, "From the Bay of Bengal to the Gulf of Maine," will open with a 5 p.m. reception Saturday, July 26, at Hurricane Gallery, 175 Quarry Road.

Artist and gallery owner Robert Macdonald focuses on art outside the mainstream of the realism so ubiquitous in Maine galleries. He said he agrees with what Jamie Wyeth said in a July 16 interview with Jennifer Rooks on MPBN that “Maine has produced more bad art than any other state.”

Since Hurricane Gallery opened in 2011, Macdonald has sought to broaden the scope of art shown. The debut show featured his own Maine artist work, art painted and exhibited in Japan during a 20-year sojourn there of hulking Sumo wrestlers and the gods of Japanese mythology. In 2012, the gallery turned to works by Midcoast artists who do not repeat the themes and images made popular over the last hundred years. In 2013, new winds blew in from the Far East, as the gallery featured paintings by two Burmese artists who live in a village on the Bay of Bengal where Macdonald spends a part of each winter.

In this year's exhibition, there are new pictures from Burma of lovers, mermaids and Buddhas. In addition are works by local artists Pam Cabanas, John Lorence, Elaine Niemi, Lois Hill, Roz Welsh and Alan Hynd. A newcomer to Hurricane Gallery is Carol Wiley whose work, said Macdonald, has a compelling improvisatory feel. Macdonald's own paintings for this show are nothing if not disturbing, he said. In the largest of these, "Droned," measuring 4-by-8 feet, the President presides over a drone attack. In another, a nude Edward Snowden is shown draped in a python, holding thunder bolts aloft. Macdonald said he expects more than a few sparks will fly this summer at Hurricane Gallery.

Quarry Road is quite close to Route One, just off Depot Street. Hurricane Gallery is open daily, but call first at 832-4062 or 741-7477.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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