Press Release

Author Event: The Art of Francis Hamabe at Blue Hill library

BLUE HILL, Maine — Local author and art critic Carl Little will show slides and talk about his recent book, The Art of Francis Hamabe, at the Blue Hill Public Library on Thursday, August 15th. There will be a reception at 4:00 PM with iced tea and cookies followed by the presentation. The event is co-sponsored by the Blue Hill Library and the Courthouse Gallery in Ellsworth. Books will be available to purchase and and be signed by Mr. Little and Phyllis Hamabe. The event is free and open to the public.

Carl Little lives in Somesville and has edited ten art books, many of which focus on the landscapes of Maine. He has written many articles for Art in America magazine, Art New England, Maine Boats, Homes and Harbors, Ornament, Bangor Daily News and the Maine Times. Much of his freelance work focuses on his knowledge of Maine art, an interest he acquired from his uncle, the painter William Kienbusch.

The Art of Francis Hamabe covers the life and work of one of Maine’s most beloved artists, who was born in 1917 in Orange, New Jersey, to a Japanese father and Swedish mother. He served in World War II and subsequently attended the Rhode Island School of Design. Moving to Maine in 1947, Hamabe established himself as a sought-after painter, printmaker, ceramicist, and puppeteer. He was the first art instructor at the Farnsworth Art Museum and later taught at the University of Maine at Machias—he also served as art director for Down East and Maine Life magazines and for the state’s first public television station in Orono.

The book offers a selection of Hamabe’s work, from dynamic modernist oil paintings and lively Sumi ink abstractions to his well-known screen print posters. Writer Carl Little weaves an engaging narrative of the artist’s life and art illustrated with vintage photographs and examples of Hamabe’s witty and stylish graphic work. Paintings from the Colby and Bates College museums and the University of Maine Museum of Art are featured, along with numerous works from private collections, many of them reproduced for the first time. For more information contact the Library at 374-5515.