Posted July 23, 2012, at 12:39 p.m.

Friday, August 3 to Wednesday, August 29, 2012; 5:01 p.m.

Location: Jonathan Frost Gallery, 21 Winter Street, Rockland, Maine 04841

Contact: Nan Mulford; 207-596-0800


July 20, 2012


CONTACT: Nan Mulford,, 508-942-0869


The Jonathan Frost Gallery, at 21 Winter Street in Rockland, presents an exhibit of new work by Tenants Harbor artist Phoebe Bly. The show will open on Friday, August 3rd, with a gala Artists’ Reception from 5 – 8, featuring live music by Steve Lindsay and Friends. The exhibit will run through August 29.

Phoebe Bly has shown annually in the Midcoast area for the past seven years, acquiring a devoted and enthusiastic following, and her exhibits are eagerly anticipated summer events. The 2012 show includes several of her signature nocturnal scenes; Night Swimming, a fanciful depiction of mermaids, for example, was inspired by swimming at night with friends. “After Hurricane Irene, there was so much phosphorescence in the water…it was amazing,” says the artist. “I have themes I keep going back to – night scenes, roads, winter – I keep painting them, but I just want to keep doing them better.” Several of the winter landscapes were painted in Vermont. “I love painting in winter…the snow picks up color, the purples in the evening are beautiful, the patterns of the weeds are like calligraphy.” A group of what can be called Maine still lifes offer portraits of single beer bottles, baked bean cans, and various homely glassware items.

Bly’s work is often likened to that of Charles Burchfield (1893 – 1967), American painter and visionary artist. When this was first mentioned to her, Bly had no idea who Burchfield was. “After awhile, I looked at his work, and I could see what they meant. He loved what he was painting. His subjects were all things that moved me too.”

The show presents twenty –nine oils on canvas, encompassing Bly’s favorite themes, as well as an engaging portrait of her son, scenes of deep woods, and an arresting large painting of cliffs rising from a furious foam-capped green sea. Swirling expressionistic shapes, photographic darks and diffused light define work that combines mystery with passion, and a touch of sly humor.

Throughout the season, the gallery presents work by two dozen artists in all media, including Siri Beckman, Barbara Beebe, Susan Beebe, Rachel Burgess, Carolyn Caldwell, Jonathan Frost, Kathryn Frund, Liz Gribin, Gints Grinbergs, Hugh Gumpel, Peter DeCamp Haines, Alison Hildreth, Constance Kiermaier, Richie Lasansky, Mary Lennox, Steve Lindsay, Ann Makuck, Holly Meade, Jessie Pollock, Mimo Gordon Riley, Gretchen Dow Simpson, Phil Schirmer, and Joseph Wheelwright.

Shows scheduled for later in the season: August 31 – October 3: Holly Meade, Life, Inside and Out; October 5 – November 28: Photography: Here and There..

Gallery hours are Monday – Saturday 9 – 5, Sunday 12 – 4. For more information, call or e-mail the gallery at 207-596-0800 or Website: Nan Mulford is Gallery Director.

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[Captions for images:]

Night Swimming, oil on canvas, 40” x 36”

13º Below, oil on canvas, 10” x 10”