The timing of the first Bucksport Downtown Art Walk was considered carefully by its founder.
“It’s the first Saturday afternoon that the Dairy Port is open,” photographer Jason Bishop said of the popular local ice cream stand.
Bishop was joking, in a way, as he is hoping local residents will travel into town for a look at work by area artists, in addition to sampling the ice cream stand for the first time this season.
Now that the weather has warmed up, several towns and cities will begin holding art walks, which bring artists and artisans into a downtown to showcase their wares, while attendees walk between buildings to check out the work.
Bangor’s first Art Walk of 2010 will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. tonight in several downtown locations, while Bucksport will be host to what is believed to be its first-ever Downtown Art Walk from 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday, April 3.
Both events are free and open to the public.
Bangor’s Art Walk, organized by the Downtown Bangor Arts Collaborative, includes the work of more than 40 artists in 16 venues. Art Walk maps listing the participating venues and featured artists can be found at the University of Maine Museum of Art, Metropolitan Soul, Bangor Wine and Cheese, the Bangor Public Library and One Lupine Fiber Arts.
The University of Maine Museum of Art at 40 Harlow St., and the by Design Gallery at 20 Harlow St., will remain open late with their current exhibitions on view.
There also will be an after-party at The Charles Inn, located in West Market Square, starting at 10 p.m. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance, are $12 each and entitle the purchaser to a glass of beer or wine and complimentary hors d’oeuvres. Tickets are limited and may be purchased at Metropolitan Soul or The Charles Inn. Call 992-2820 for more information.
Downloadable versions of the event map as well as additional information can be found at www.downtownartscollaborative.org. For more information, contact JoAnne Houlsen at 947-0937 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bucksport’s Art Walk will feature the work of 10 artists at seven host businesses in the downtown area along Main Street, also known as Route 15. There are, however, no art galleries in Bucksport.
“There are people who think Bucksport is nothing more than a mill town,” Bishop said. “I like the mill, but Bucksport has the makings of a great artist community except for the perception. That’s the only piece of the pie missing.”
Bishop hopes a monthly Art Walk will change that. He has seen the success of other Art Walks, such as those held in Bangor and the popular summer and fall Belfast gallery walks.
Bishop researched local artists through online sources such as Craigslist and maineartscene.com, and Chamber of Commerce listings, and then invited a group, of which about a dozen will participate. The second Art Walk, he said, will be much more inclusive.
“I’m hoping as it gets nicer outside we get enough of a crowd so that more artists will show up,” Bishop said.
For more information about the Bucksport Downtown Art Walk, e-mail Jmb@jmbishopphotography.com.