The University of Maine Museum of Art

Posted Wednesday, April 27, 2011 in Culture

The University of Maine Museum of Art

This sculpture is in a small courtyard at UMMA.

by Jeffrey Harmon

BANGOR -- The University of Maine Museum of Art (UMMA) is easy to miss if you aren’t looking for it. If you find yourself with a little time to kill in Bangor, the visit is well worth it.

Museum Entrance

The University of Maine Art Collection was originally established in 1946, and has been in its present location in the historic Norumbega Hall, located in downtown Bangor, since 2002. The current spring exhibits are showing from now until June 11, and admission is always free.

One of these exhibits, “Implements,” is recent sculptures by Maine artist J.T. Gibson. Gibson will be at the museum as part of the “Art at Noon Gallery Talks” series on Thursday, May 12, for an informal gallery presentation in which he will discuss his new works that were created specifically for exhibition at the UMMA gallery.


Implements, by JT Gibson

Also on display at UMMA is “Shadow Play,” a series of realist landscapes and cityscapes by Brian Shure. The subjects of Shure’s works are locations from all over the world, including Japan, Italy, the United States and China. The realism in these works, mostly ink on paper, is such that they almost appear to be black-and-white photographs at first glance. “Shadow Play” is being presented as part of the statewide collaboration “Where to Draw the Line: the Maine Drawing Project,” which celebrates drawing at museums and art venues in Maine throughout 2011.

United Kingdom artist Nancy Murphy Spicer is also currently featured at UMMA with “Hanging Drawings: 20 Successive Drawings, Unique and Unrehearsed.” This work, which the artist has created from stripped and plied electrical tape and 50 pins, will be altered at several different creative sessions. The Boston Globe calls her work “Spare, oblique and lacking in narrative. They don’t expect the viewer to make sense of them; rather they invite you to engage and discover what the art provokes within you.”  Museum visitors are invited to create their own works of art and document them with pencils and paper supplied by the gallery or through photography. The creative endeavors of many previous museum visitors are prominently displayed on the gallery walls, along with Murphy Spicer’s work. “Hanging Drawings” is also presented as part of “Where to Draw the Line: The Maine Drawing Project.”

Information on UMMA, including driving directions, upcoming events and exhibits and more is available at:

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