Hoy paints the ‘Land Alive’

Apr 30, 2014
“Debbie Chapel’s Abundance” by Jill Hoy is an oil painting donated by a gallery patron to Maine Farmland Trust. All proceeds will benefit MFT’s farmland preservation programs.

Belfast — “Jill is like Maine, bright colors and powerful oceans. Maine is different, unlike any other place, and so is she.” So begins a vivid character essay about the artist Jill Hoy, widely known in New England for her large, vibrantly colorful landscapes that depict Maine’s barrens, coast and villages. One might also recognize her name as the wife of painter Jon Imber, who recently died after living with ALS for a year and a half.

A selection of Hoy's paintings will go on display Friday, May 2, in the Maine Farmland Trust Gallery as the centerpiece of its new show, "Painting the Land Alive." The show will run through June 9 at the gallery, 97 Main St.

Hoy has her own gallery in the center of Stonington and typically does not have other galleries represent her. She has made an exception for Maine Farmland Trust Gallery because she said the venture is important and touches her deeply.

“A lot of my work is about life, about energy, about sense of place … So much of the land is being developed. They’re turning over homes that have been in families for generations. It’s heartbreaking,” she said. “Maine is behind that curve compared to other places, but it’s still happening.”

Hoy earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from the University of California at Santa Cruz and also attended the New York Academy of Art in New York City. Her work has been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions around the country. The artist divides her time among residences in Stonington; Somerville, Mass.; and New York City. Because she has been a regular resident of the Deer Isle area since 1965, much of her work can be seen as a local document of place and time.

Concurrent with “The Land Alive,” there will be select works by Philip Frey (courtesy of Courthouse Fine Art Gallery) and Lou Schellenberg (courtesy of Harbor Square Gallery) on view on the second floor. The public is invited to an artists reception during the city’s inaugural Final Friday Art Walk of the season May 30 from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

The gallery is open on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, visit mainefarmlandtrustgallery.org.

Maine Farmland Trust is a statewide nonprofit organization working to keep Maine’s farms farming. MFT created its gallery to celebrate art in agriculture; and to inspire and inform the public about farming in Maine. For more information on MFT, visit mainefarmlandtrust.org.

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

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