Community reception Jan. 24

Langlais works come to Thomaston library

Jan 13, 2014
Works by longtime Cushing artist Bernard Langlais were gifted to Thomaston Public Library late in 2013 and are going on permanent display there.

Thomaston — Thomaston Public Library, 60 Main St./Route 1, will host a reception Friday, Jan. 24, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. to celebrate the display of sculpted wood works of Maine artist Bernard Langlais, which were gifted to the library late in 2013 and will be on permanent display. The pieces are wood-relief wall hangings, two of them abstract and three figurative.

In 2010, Colby College received a large bequest of artworks by the late Bernard “Blackie” Langlais (born in Old Town) from the artist’s widow, Helen Langlais, along with the couple's 90-acre property in Cushing. Recognizing the site's importance, Colby contacted Kohler Foundation of Wisconsin about possible preservation of the collection and site.

Colby made a gift of nearly 3,000 Langlais artworks to Kohler Foundation, which preserved and gifted these works, which include wood reliefs, paintings, sculptures and works on paper, to nonprofit institutions throughout Maine and the United States. Thomaston Public Library is pleased to be one of those recipients.

Kohler Foundation also is conserving the outdoor sculptures on the Cushing property. A portion of the estate will be preserved as a sculpture park and will be named in honor of Bernard and Helen Langlais. The Rockland-based Georges River Land Trust will take ownership of the property and will collaborate with the Colby Museum on programming at the site.

The reception at the library will provide the first opportunity for the local community to see the Langlais pieces the library has acquired. The reception also will feature detailed information about Bernard Langlais' life and work.

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