Arts and Culture

Arts and culture

Production Still /

The new film “Best and Most Beautiful Things” tells the story of Michelle Smith, a young woman who is legally blind and on the autism spectrum. It’s a story about the obstacles Michelle faces because of her disability, but it’s not a story about her disability. Instead, it’s a look at a woman searching for independence and finding it, to a great extent, online.

Dahlov Ipcar, Renowned Maine Artist, Dies at 99

Feb 14, 2017
Bangor Daily News/file

GEORGETOWN, Maine — Renowned Maine artist Dahlov Ipcar has died, her sons, Charles Ipcar of Richmond and Robert Ipcar of Brooklyn, New York, said in a statement Saturday afternoon on behalf of her family.

Ipcar was 99 years old when she died Friday, her sons said.

“Dahlov spent the morning as usual at her easel working on her latest painting; she fielded a few calls with her son, Bob, pertaining to a sit-down interview for a publication and worked with her son, Charlie, on a number of projects related to her upcoming exhibits,” they said.

AUGUSTA, Maine - A number of buildings in the downtown area of Maine's capital city have been added to the National Register of Historic Places.
The Kennebec Journal reports the designation opens up access to state and federal historic preservation tax credits that could pay for as much as 45 percent of renovation costs for eligible projects.
Developers renovating any one of the 51 buildings designated as "contributing'' will be eligible for tax credits.

Colby Mariam / Wikimedia Commons

The Colby College Museum of Art in Waterville is getting a very big gift — a donation from Peter and Paula Lunder worth more than $100 million.

Collections of Maine Historical Society/ Maine Today Media

"The world must be made safe for democracy."  With those words, President Woodrow Wilson committed Maine, and the rest of the country, to fight in World War I.  It was April 2, 1917.   To mark the coming centennial, the Maine Historical Society opens a new exhibit in Portland today.

David Sharp / Associated Press

BIDDEFORD, Maine - A neon marquee from the legendary Los Angeles rock club Whisky a Go Go is going, going, gone.
The 13-foot-long sign with bright pink letters sold at auction for $48,300 Wednesday night in Maine.
Saco River Auction Co. acquired the unusual piece of rock 'n' roll history from a storage unit where it was collecting dust. Auctioneer Troy Thibodeau says the buyer didn't want to be identified.

Benjamin Tice Smith

Family stories are complicated, as we all know. People don’t talk about things, and when they do, their perceptions of facts – actual facts – are wildly different.

Pulitzer-Prize winning novelist Michael Chabon is a part-time Blue Hill resident. In his latest novel, “Moonglow,” the author explores this idea as he tells a story about his grandfather — or the grandfather of a fictionalized version of himself. Talking with him on his deathbed, Chabon finds out a lot about his grandparents he hadn’t known, much of it both surprising and incredibly dark.

Fred Bever / Maine Public

Most of us take fonts for granted, as used for typefaces such as Times New Roman, Calibri Light or Arial Bold. But they can be pretty revolutionary: Hundreds of years ago the design of standardized fonts paved the way for the proliferation of printed material and, much more recently, eased the exchange of emails, text messages and the whole world of digital reading.

Bowdoin College Museum of Art / Via The Associated Press

BRUNSWICK, Maine - A Maine college is set to unveil a rare photograph of President Abraham Lincoln's inauguration from 1861.
The Bowdoin College Museum of Art in Brunswick acquired the photo at auction in October and will unveil it Thursday.
It's the first inauguration to be captured by photographers, and took place just six weeks before the start of the Civil War.

OGUNQUIT, Maine - An art museum in Ogunquit has chosen a curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum to serve as its new executive director.
The Portland Press Herald reports that 42-year-old Michael Mansfield will begin his new job at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art on Feb. 1.
Museum board president David Mallen announced the hiring on Monday.

Adrian Cook

Even if you’re not familiar with Jonathan Lethem’s work, you might know his name, because he was, in 2005, a recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” grant.

Lethem’s work tends to range from pure science fiction to social realism — his latest is somewhere in between.

In “A Gambler’s Anatomy”, he tells the story of Alexander Bruno, an international backgammon hustler who finds himself pulled back to his childhood home of Berkeley, California, when a horrifying health condition threatens his life.

It’s a dark, and sometimes gory, story of identity, intimacy and place.

Screenshot, 'The Northeast by Eastern'

Wiscasset-based filmmaker Sumner McKane’s latest film, "The Northeast by Eastern," explores the story of a Belfast company that, in the early 20th century, documented small-town life in the Northeast through the medium of photo postcards.

Erik Jorgensen / Wikipedia/Creative Commons

Pioneering classical composer Elliott Schwartz has died.

A professor of music at Bowdoin College in Brunswick for 43 years, Schwartz’s work has been performed by symphony orchestras and chamber groups around the country, and has been made part of the permanent collection of the Library of Congress.

ORONO, Maine — A transgender student whose battle over the right to use a girls’ bathroom led to a landmark court ruling in Maine is being featured in a new HBO documentary.

"The Trans List" premieres Monday evening and explores what it means to be a transgender American.

Nicole Maines is one of several individuals featured in the documentary.

Maines says her entire family got behind her after she was bullied over a bathroom while in secondary school. The state supreme court ultimately ruled that her rights were violated.

Bangor Daily News

By Kathleen Pierce, Bangor Daily News

PORTLAND, Maine — The Salt Institute for Documentary Studies, now part of Maine College of Art, will accept its first full-time students next fall for a new graduate certificate program.