Thursday, August 16 to Friday, September 21, 2012; 5:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: College of the Atlantic - Ethel H. Blum Gallery, 105 Eden Street, Bar Harbor, Maine
Contact: Donna Gold; 207-801-5623
Website: coa.edu, newsworthy.coa.edu/
BAR HARBOR, ME—Photographer Clare Stone travels the world with eyes open and a camera in hand. On Aug. 16, a small part of the images she has thus collected will be on view when College of the Atlantic opens the exhibit, “Turkish Delights, Buddhas, and Veils: Photographs from the Mid and Far East.” The opening will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., and the exhibit will be run from Aug. 17 through Sept. 21, Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Middle East images in this exhibit hail from Turkey, Yemen, and Syria, long before its current civil war. The Far East images come from Southeast Asia, including Vietnam and Laos.
Stone speaks of her travels through the Mideast in 1999, and Turkey in 2010, as an experience like traveling into the world of the Bible. In Syria, she was invited to join a Bedouin shepherd for spiced tea inside his tent. While visiting the cave-like dwellings found in part of Yemen, she was able to photograph women returning from the fields with their donkeys and piles of straw; atop the women’s heads were tall, conical straw hats. The images from Southeast Asia, visited in 2008, contrast the bustle of Hanoi with the peace visible in the faces of monks, or the quiet of a bay at sunset.
Stone’s photographs are marked by an impeccable sense of color, composition, and drama. A man reclines laconically on a sofa, his face partially obscured by the smoke that emerges from his hookah. What stands out is long snake-like pipe reaching from floor to mouth, and the man’s hooded, almost bedroom eyes. Eyes form the center of yet another image from Turkey, this of a vendor behind a cart piled with small pyramids of blackened chestnuts. There’s a lovely garden behind him, but the focal point is the penetrating green eyes of the seller above a quixotic smile. “You just fall in love with the place,” says Stone, talking about her process.
According to Maine art writer Carl Little, who previewed the show in the summer edition of Art New England, “Stone’s earlier work, which included series of portraits of mothers and daughters, was influenced by Diane Arbus. This time out, aesthetic kinships might include Eugène Atget and other artists of the urban thoroughfare.”
Stone, who lives in Seal Harbor and New York, has exhibited her work in several venues in Maine as well as at the Allan Stone Gallery in New York City, founded by her late husband, the renowned art dealer. Her work has been published in the European design journal Attitude, published in Portugal.
For more information on the Thursday, Aug. 16 reception from 5:30-7:30 p.m., or the exhibit, “Turkish Delights, Buddhas, and Veils: Photographs from the Mid and Far East” by local photographer Clare Stone, contact COA at 207-288-5015, or curator Rebecca Woods at email@example.com. The show is on view from Aug. 17 to Sept. 21. The Ethel H. Blum Gallery is open Monday through Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
College of the Atlantic was founded in 1969 on the premise that education should go beyond understanding the world as it is, to enabling students to actively shape its future. A leader in experiential education and environmental stewardship, COA has pioneered a distinctive interdisciplinary approach to learning—human ecology—that develops the kinds of creative thinkers and doers needed by all sectors of society in addressing the compelling and growing needs of our world. For more, visit www.coa.edu.
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, photo by Clare Stone
Open Air Chestnuts, photo by Clare Stone