John Wissemann’s “The Working Waterfront and Other Fancies” will be featured at Gold/Smith Gallery, 41 Commercial St., beginning Thursday, Aug. 12. The public is invited to a reception for the artist, a summer resident of Cushing, Saturday, Aug. 14 from 4 to 7 p.m.

In his latest works on paper, Wissemann, master of colored pencil, has turned his attention from the orient and the East to Downeast and the working waterfront of coastal Maine. Wissemann is known his large scale improvisations and transformations of Japanese woodcut prints, which have been featured at the Farnsworth Art Museum and are in the museum’s permanent collection. He currently is working on a subject closer to home – actually just up the river and around the next marker.

Using elements he has drawn in sketching expeditions to Friendship and Rockland harbors as raw material, he creates images of these working waterfronts using lobster boats, docks, piers, shanties, islands, reflections and wind on the water in an ever-changing matrix of patterns and rhythms. The combinations seem to be endless, and Wissemann’s mastery of color and decorative pattern allows him to be profound and playful at the same time. He expresses an obvious joy in the linear angularity of pilings and piers, boats alone or as an anchored flotilla, the way the island spruce trees cut through the fog and more, the result of more than 50 years of painting on the coast of Maine.

“The Working Waterfront and Other Fancies” will continue through Sept. 8. Gold/Smith Gallery is open Mondays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. For more information, call 633-6252.

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to