Part I of two-part summer exhibition

‘Living in these Bodies’ at Waterfall Arts

Jun 07, 2014
“Victorious Secret” (detail shown) is a nine-piece mosaic wall installation by Angela Lorenz.

Belfast — Waterfall Arts’ two-part summer exhibit “Living in these Bodies,” Part I and II, will open Friday, June 13, with a 5 to 8 p.m. reception. The exhibition highlights work by female artists from Maine and the Northeast that captures complex aspects of women's physical and social experiences.

The theme is the physical and cultural space women occupy, and the way these artists portray that. Their work includes innovative uses of their media — print, sculpture, photography, installation and drawing — to depict the interior and exterior, the current and historical experience, the bare and the adorned, of life in these female bodies.

Three artists are featured in Part I of “Living in these Bodies,” which will run through July 25. The nine-piece mosaic wall installation “Victorious Secret” by Angela Lorenz, who divides her time between Searsmont and Bologna, Italy, is a set of triptychs depicting elite Roman female athletes from ancient times. Based on a Sicilian mosaic from 300 A.D., Lorenz takes an entertaining approach to misinterpretations of the original images.

Working primarily in wood and mixed media, Boston-based Jessica Straus' Red Dress Series explores the poetry of unexpected juxtapositions between recognizable and invented forms — in this case, a tiny well-dressed female figure finds herself in a number of perplexing locations.

Twenty years ago, two Waldo County women, social worker Lisa Kushner and documentary photographer Peggy McKenna, paired up to shed light on the wide variations and depth of women's reproductive experiences. The result was the powerful Belly Project, a collection of black and white images — portraits really — of women's torsos, with each woman's reproductive history stated below.

McKenna recently died, but she was pleased to know that this body of work would be shown.  A short video of Kushner and McKenna talking together about the project, and an interactive component that will allow viewers to respond with their stories of living in their own bodies, will be part of the exhibit.

Dancers Shana Bloomstein, Helena Melone and her students will perform during the June 13 opening. A series of artist talks and panel discussions related to the exhibit will be held throughout the summer. The first, on Thursday, June 26, is titled Forum: Women Tell the Truth: Living in Our Bodies, and is a facilitated panel of women age 20 to 80 sharing stories of their current relationships to their bodies. Community and audience dialogue is encouraged; more information on related events can be found at waterfallarts.org.

A new show in the Corridor Gallery, “Summer Color,” also opens June 13. Featured artists are Tara Law, Marc Leavitt, Cathy Melio, Ingrid Ellison, Annadeene Fowler, Ieva Tatarsky, Daniel Anselmi, Dina Petrillo, MJ Viano-Crowe, Karen MacDonald, Abbie Read and Martha Miller.

“Living in these Bodies, Part II,” featuring work by Elizabeth Jabar, Colleen Kinsella, Lesia Sochor, Deborah Olin and Lorena Salcedo-Watson, will open Friday, Aug. 1. “The Future Mothers Tent,” Jabar and Kinsella’s collaborative piece, is an actual tent, printed all over with images of women — many from the Middle East — meant to invite visitors in for conversation and gathering.

The summer exhibits are sponsored by Revision Energy, Coyote Moon, City Drawers and Seahorse Stables. Waterfall Arts is located at 256 High St. and offers art classes and workshops for all ages, exhibitions, studio rentals and art-related events. Gallery hours are Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with special hours on Saturdays; check the website for details and complete schedule.

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

Images from Lisa Kushner and Peggy McKenna’s decades-old Belly Project will be exhibited at Waterfall Arts this summer. (Photo by: Peggy McKenna)
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