Noted author and art critic Carl Little will present an illustrated talk on artist Francis Hamabe on Sunday, June 23, at 3:00 at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport. Hamabe was one of Maine’s most beloved artists and one of the founders of Maine Coast Artists, as CMCA was originally known. Little will show a selection of Hamabe’s work, from modernist oil paintings and lively Sumi ink abstractions to his well-known screen print posters of Maine villages, plus vintage photographs and work by some of Hamabe’s contemporaries. Admission is free.
The talk is based on Little’s new book, “The Art of Francis Hamabe,” which covers the life and work of the artist. Born in 1917 in Orange, New Jersey, to a Japanese father and Swedish mother, Hamabe served in World War II and subsequently attended the Rhode Island School of Design. Moving to Maine in 1947, he 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. Hamabe also served as art director for Down East and Maine Life magazines and for the state’s first public television station in Orono.
Carl Little is the author of several books, including “Edward Hopper’s New England,” “The Watercolors of John Singer Sargent,” “The Art of Maine,” “The Art of Dahlov Ipcar,” and “Eric Hopkins: Above and Beyond,” which won the first John N. Cole Prize from Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance. He is a regular contributor to Art New England, Ornament, and Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors. An ex-New Yorker, Little moved to Maine in 1989 and has written and lectured on Maine art ever since. “The Art of Francis Hamabe” was published by Marshall Wilkes Publishers of Ellsworth, Maine. Little will sign copies of the book after his talk.