Sunday, July 10, 2011

CMCA Draw-In

Today we conducted a "Draw-In" at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport, Maine, during the Steve Mumford lecture. In attendance were myself (Kenny Cole), Julie Rose, Brian Reeves, Mark Roman and Natasha Mayers. Natasha and I began our action by standing outside and handing out Robert Shetterly's statement to anyone willing to read it. It ended up being a sold out event and I personally witnessed several people getting turned away because they had not reserved seating for the talk. We sat quietly and drew for the hour long presentation and were able to ask a few questions afterwards. Our cause was a difficult sell to this "support the troops" crowd, but we did our best. Mumford proved to be a smooth talker who could contradict himself without skipping a beat. His case, from my perspective, was as follows: he is essentially a realist painter who developed an interest in war, went to see it for himself, but only found lots of bored soldiers. When questioned about depicting the horrors/Iraqi victims of war he replied that you can't depict it if you don't see it, that to do so would be dishonest propaganda, just not what realist painters do. His only regret was that he did not see enough action...maybe next time? Let's hope that there are a lot more wars...eventually I'm sure he'll get around to finding those damned evasive horrors!

Image by Julie Rose


  1. My major problem with this show, and the words I heard spoken, was the unspoken for walking wounded that I know living right here in Maine (and of course, elsewhere). My light drawing speaks little to the way I felt at this event, which was boiling angry, enough to want to shout out. The polite speech (and Art) of Mumford and gallery visitors today did a disservice to those kids (yes, kids) I've known up here who thought they were serving their country, and/or joined the military for they had little opportunity. They have less opportunity now. Mumford views, but he does not see. Nor do the people in the environment of privilege, education, and wealth that we were a part of today. Mumford objectifies people, both "us and them," and does no one any service. I felt sickened, quite frankly. Objectivity is a lie; it is dissociation from reality.

  2. i wish i could have been there to support you guys. I love Julie's image here.

    I also really enjoy Julie's comments, as I also have felt that same rage at events like this. Keep up the good work.... every little bit helps