Stories behind the art at Mars Hall

Aug 05, 2017
“Open Doors” is part of Nancy Baker’s multimedia work inspired by 400 miles of rural trail walking in Portugal.

Martinsville — Mars Hall Gallery, 621 Port Clyde Road/Route 131, will open "The Bigger Picture," a show featuring “art with a story,” and the second phase of "14 Miles to the Horizon" with a 6 to 8 p.m. reception Friday, Aug. 11.

In "The Bigger Picture," two photographers, two painters and a friendship spanning two continents are the stories to be shared. Last fall, artist Nancy Baker began her almost 400 mile trek in Portugal; she hiked the Via Algarviana and Rota Vicentina trails to raise money for the Herring Gut Learning Center in Port Clyde. Along the way, she met many people, some now good friends, who generously opened their doors to her. The journal, sketches and prose done on her trek are the inspiration for her "Covered Ground" series and book.

A chance meeting in the Maine woods between two pinhole photographers would begin a visual dialogue spanning almost 2,000 miles and 13 months. In 2013, Amy Rocket-Todd of Oklahoma and Antonia Small of Port Clyde began documenting their visionary journey. The end result was a show at the Tulsa Artists' Coalition Gallery in Tulsa, Okla.; and a book titled "Baker's Dozen: A Pinhole Dialogue." The show and book are on display, as well as Gary Libby and Antonia Small's book "Caught."

"Visionary Messages" is the theme of Holly Smith's creations. Smith's paintings are a reflection of a dreamlike collective consciousness that uses meditation as a tool to discover incredible insights.

While vacationing in Venezuela, Dr. Al Wills and his wife Hannah Boulton of Boston and Hupper Island met artist Manuel Rincon. They would form a life long friendship and Rincon would become one of the “Hupper's 5ive” in 1996. Rincon's playful imagery of his early childhood subtly depicts the depth of human relationships. The story behind the late Rincon's paintings in this show will be shared, along with the story of a very special friendship.

The Main Gallery’s "14 Miles to the Horizon" is an ever-changing exhibit showcasing Maine art along with an expanded selection of fine antiques and collectibles. On display are paintings by Leo Brooks, Jeanette Steele Esposito, Linda Funk, Kris Johnson, Roger Kirby, Brian Kliewer, Sharon Larkin, Nat Lewis, Maurice Michel Lode, Greg Mort, Elaine Niemi, Cam Noel, C.W. Oakes, David Paffhausen, Elaine Reed, Jimmy Reed, Mimo Gordon Riley, Carl Sublett, William Thon, Ron Weaver and Eleanor Zuccola.

Also on exhibit is mixed media assemblage by Bill Cook, whimsical driftwood fish by Claire Perry and a variety of quality crafts including decoupage by Davene Fahy, handcarved decoys by Stephan Hill and mixed media stained glass, mosaics and pottery by Dona Bergen.

New to the gallery are paintings and wood and stone sculptures by Ian Baird. And metal sculptors Jay Hoagland and Brian Read have works on display throughout the gallery, as well as outside in the Sculpture Gardens.

Mars Hall Gallery is open Wednesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Labor Day; Fridays through Sundays and by appointment thereafter, through Columbus Day. The gallery is located 12.7 miles down the St. George peninsula. For more information, call 372-9996 or visit

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

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