Rockport arts organization receives $50,000 grant

Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport; sculpture “Operation Milkweed,” 2011 by J.T. Gibson of Morrill, Maine.
Photo courtesy of CMCA
Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport; sculpture “Operation Milkweed,” 2011 by J.T. Gibson of Morrill, Maine.
Posted Aug. 29, 2011, at 3:50 p.m.

ROCKPORT, Maine — The Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport is the recent recipient of a $50,000 general operating grant from the Quimby Family Foundation of Portland, Maine. This marks CMCA’s second year of funding from the foundation. Last year, the center received $35,000 in general operating support from the foundation.

“The support of the Quimby Family Foundation has been critical to CMCA’s rebuilding this past year,” Suzette McAvoy, director of CMCA, said in a recent press release. “The fact that the Foundation has fully funded our request for a second year is a huge vote of confidence in CMCA, its programs, and its mission of advancing contemporary art in Maine. We are extremely grateful to the Quimby family and the Foundation’s board of trustees for their belief in the value of CMCA to the statewide arts community.”

The Center for Maine Contemporary Art was founded in 1952 as Maine Coast Artists, a nonprofit exhibition space devoted to showing the work of contemporary artists in Maine. In its nearly 60-year history, CMCA has shown the work of hundreds of artists, including many who have reached national prominence, such as Lois Dodd, Alex Katz, John Walker, Neil Welliver, Yvonne Jacquette, and Alan Magee.

This year, CMCA will present 13 exhibitions in its four galleries and will show the work of 117 artists. In addition, this year CMCA has added a new hands-on studio classroom called ArtLab to its educational programming for children and has inaugurated an artists residency program for installation artists.

In a letter notifying CMCA of the award, Hannah Quimby wrote, “Our board members have spent the last few months reviewing applications and making some very difficult decisions. Every year this process becomes more challenging as the number of proposals we receive continues to increase. Additionally, the economic climate remains challenging and the majority of our applicants have a greater need than ever. The Center for Maine Contemporary Art was selected to receive funding because your goals and mission most closely align with our foundation’s funding goals. We are truly inspired by the work that you have been doing in the state of Maine.”

CMCA intends to use some of the funds from the award to redesign and update its website in order to offer more online services to member artists and the public. It will also use the grant money to hire part-time support staff and to expand the ArtLab education program.

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