Monday, March 6, 2017

Painting my Way Out of It

So while this terrible #CircusOfHate is being driven by #Scrotus, I've been trying to channel all the love I can muster and I've been doing more mixed media painting!  Yes, actual painting with acrylics.  Let me present you with "Creationism: Fake Science".

This will be available at the studio here for our May 6th Open Studios.  And I will also have a digital version available for folks who would like prints. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017


If you're even a little like me, you've been depressed since the election in November.  That depression seeped into the holiday season making it not quite as jolly as it could have been.  Was hoping for a miracle from the electors, but they apparently want to see this country slide into fascism and didn't have the brass ovaries to do anything about it.  Fine.  Time to roll up our sleeves and get to work.  Maybe it's the new vitamin I'm taking now, but I'm no longer feeling so very tired.  After all, this isn't my first rodeo.  At last night's MLK dinner (hosted by the Portland NAACP), it was the speech of Sherri Mitchell from the Land Peace Foundation that helped to fill me with hope...

And then something happened today which gave me even more hope - a project that I thought had gone south forever, was reborn!  "Some time ago you and I spoke about interest from the Ritz Carlton San Juan in licensing your piece Day at the Beach. While the client had decided that the work was not the proper fit for the lobby space, they are now interested in moving forward with the piece in the corridors."

The piece is one of digital alchemy using an iPod photo as a base, and was shot during a workshop with Elizabeth Opalenik a few years ago.  Thanks again Elizabeth!  And thanks to my beautiful models, Rachael Schwartz and Stephanie Acacia Lasher.  You ladies will be famous at the Ritz!

Day at the Beach (c) Ann Tracy

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Black Artists Matter

When I was in Chicago this past summer, I had the pleasure of going to the Kerry James Marshall retrospective at the Chicago Contemporary Museum.  It was a great show and I got an education about an artist I had not heard of before.  Back in November, the New Yorker had an article about the show of his work at the Met Breuer.

But apparently what I saw in Chicago was only the first part of the a retrospective of his work.  That's why I'm so glad that Seph Rodney wrote about it for Hyperallergic.  You'll find his article here.

Buy Black by Kerry James Marshall

Friday, November 25, 2016

Berlinische Galerie Museum of Modern Art

Finally finding the time to talk to you about a fascinating show I saw in Berlin at the aforementioned museum.  One of the exhibits there was called Dada Africa: Dialogue with the Other.  "Marking the centenary if the Dada Movement, this is the first exhibition about Dada's response to non-European cultures and their art."

I thought I was smart picking up an English guide to the work on display, but I didn't photograph all the numbers that correspond to the guide.  So other than a few Hannah Hochs, most are not IDed.  But here are some highlights.  

I believe this costume is African and boy does it remind me of the work of Nick Cave, the artist, not the musician.

Hannah Hoch
Hannah Hoch  

John Heartfield

Raoul Hausmann

This assemblage might also be by John Heartfield

I did record some video, BUT, don't have a decent video editing software on this laptop... so I'll edit it on the big studio computer and upload it to vimeo and then post a link.... 

more later...

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Lovely Louise

Louise Bourgeois has to be one of my favorite artists, not just "women artists".   She was remarkable in that she worked in many media including sculpture for which she is probably best known.  More info on her here.  I was going to a meeting of the UMVA - Union of Maine Visual Artists at the CTN, Community Television Network on Saturday.  I did get there about 5 min late, but the place was locked up tighter than a drum.  We'll see if they will answer me via FB.

But I wandered into the Institute for Contemporary Art which is part of MECA... the Maine College of Art.  On exhibit was Anguish: the Grave Misgivings of Remembrance, and that's where I saw this

An unusual drawing by Louise Bourgeois.  Considering the theme of the show was Anguish, I was puzzled by this choice.  But we all interpret things in a different way considering what we have learned in our lives and what we have experienced.  This is why I think the academic writing about art is a bit far fetched.  But you go see the show for yourself and make up your own mind.  It runs at the ICA space until Jan 14th.  More info here. 

AND a reminder to SAVE the Date - Dec 10th from 10 am to 4 pm
the Running with Scissors Holiday Pop-Up Shop and Open Studios.

I will have new inexpensive, small encaustic paintings and prints.  Also come hand crafted ornaments and some Cuban calendars! 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Modern Women

I finally got a chance to see the Women Modernists in New York show at the Portland Museum of Art (PMA),  thanks to my old HS buddy Jonathan and his SO Jennifer who came up from Boston to see the show.  While I have always thought that I had a pretty good handle on modern art history, I was not familiar with 3 of the 4 painters in this show.  I mean anyone who doesn't know who Georgia O'Keeffe is, probably doesn't give a fig about art or pop culture. 

Red Flower Georgia O'Keeffe

I wasn't aware of Stettheimer, Torr or Zorach.  Of the three, Stettheimer is my favorite.

Self Portrait Florine Stettheimer
I loved her colors and how the work really showed her problems with being an woman artist at the turn of the century. 

They also had an exhibit of art featuring animals, which sounds lame, but it was very good.  However there is nothing on the PMA website and I forgot to take a photo of the artist who made this... a glittering buck.

I think that Matt Blackwell must have spent some time in Maine to create the following painting,

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Hot Off the Presses!!

I thought I would make a little magazine out of the images from the Domestic Considerations series, two of which are to be exhibited at the Berlin Foto Biennial during the month of October.

Now the whole series can be yours, along with the image that was chosen for the 3rd International Biennial of Fine Art and Documentary Photography that was held in Malaga, Spain in 2014.  Plus there is another page containing four of my favorite digital collages and a Holga double exposure shot at a photo workshop lead by Elizabeth Opalenik, who I thank from my heart for teaching so much about photography - she is a goddess!

Domestic Considerations
12 pages, published 9/7/2016
Domestic Considerations is a series about women and how they live in the world today.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Waxing Warmly

 Went to a great Encaustic Art Workshop led by the ever talented Otty Merrill, who used to have a studio down here at Running With Scissors.  Learned a few new tricks and made these two that I liked and a third I won't show you.  I know, I'm so mean, but it's not there yet.
"Country Song" Ann Tracy 2016 (c)     
This is the one I like the best and hope to submit it to Harlow Gallery up in Hallowell.

"Hope" (c) Ann Tracy 2016

I will also have work at Edgecomb Potters on Commercial St. in Portland and at Pinecone + Chickadee on Free St in Portland.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Domestic Considerations

I'm almost finished with the Domestic Considerations series.  Here's the 5th in the series of 6: Domestic Considerations: Glass Ceilings

My model is the marvelous Meredith Coffin, who I hope to work together with again in the near future.  I'm going to do a book with these images in it along with the El Dorado Series shot this spring in El Dorado, Nevada. 

If you are interested in the book, I'll give you a special discount.  Just contact me and let me know!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

I Met a Watermelon Man

No, I'm not talking about that great Herbie Hancock tune from the 70's (click here to listen while reading the rest of the post)

I was leaving the SpringBoard Pilates studio this morning after a great workout and as I stepped out onto the sidewalk, this young man carrying a plate of watermelon chunks was walking down the sidwalk.  "Nice watermelon", I said.  He smiled and said. "Do you want a piece?"  "Yes". I said as he proffered the plate.

                                              Just another reason I love Portland, Maine!

Sunday, June 5, 2016


You'd think that trying to scam artists would be very low on the totem pole ... but nooooo  ... I got this email last week
Andrea Zak

invitation show


I saw your work in the American Art Collector. We would like to invite you to show as a visiting artist at our gallery in Scottsdale, Arizona. Gallery Andrea is located in old town scottsdale a premier location for the arts.
Gallery Andrea"
So I get right on the ball, firing off 5 emails to her this past week and then finally got a reply  asking me to sign off on the attached document and then we'd get down to details on the show they want to "give" me.  BUT within the document, I see this:
"Pricing:  The gallery will assist you in establishing art market prices for your art. The financial relationship for art sales: 50/50
Promotional Representation Fee: $900 for 3 months paid upon signing..  Renewal Representation is available."


May 28 (8 days ago)

to me

Yeah, right.  Here is what the website has to say about that:
"Most importantly, anytime you pay for exposure up front, you effectively reduce the incentive a gallery has to sell your art. It'll certainly be less than if you pay nothing and the only way they make their money is by selling your art-- like the large majority of galleries actually do. To repeat, in a traditional artist/gallery relationship, no money changes hands in advance of a show; the artist provides the art and the gallery provides the venue. That's how things work and don't let anybody tell you different. It's a partnership where each party takes on a comparable degree of investment and risk."
Shipping artwork is very expensive, which is why I've sworn off pursuing exhibits on the West Coast, unless I can just send a digital file.  

Here's a mixed media piece I'm currently working on


Friday, May 20, 2016

Boston Biennial - almost - Update

When I bitched about this on their facebook page, I got a message from the Boston Biennial folks explaining (once more) that they had already announced you had to check the website to see if  your work got it.... and the work was digitally displayed (so of course they didn't contact me for a print).  Can you help me wipe the egg off my face?  Mea Culpa ...

Did I tell you that I entered the Boston Biennial this year with pieces from the Domestic Considerations series?  It's always interesting to see what makes the cut in different competitions.  But I hadn't heard anything from them, so I checked their website on a whim.  You will have to scroll down the page to get to the Ts for Tracy...
Domestic Considerations: Drama
I was chosen as a finalist and no one notified me!?!  Guess they didn't show the work of the finalists in the physical location in Boston as no one emailed me to say that they needed a print of the work.  So while I'm proud that one of the images made the cut, am also dismayed that there was no communication.