Arthur L Nichols - Painter
CV
Arthur L. Nichols
PO Box 205
S Freeport ME 04078-0205
207-865-6103
ajnichols205@myfairpoint.net

Teaching Experience

Access Coordinator, Community Television Network, Portland, ME, 2007- present. Instructor in Final Cut Pro and Photoshop.
Portfolio Advisor, 2000, 2003
Watercolor Workshop Instructor, Maine Arts Festival, 1997
Substitute faculty in middle and upper school programs, Waynflete School, Portland, ME, 1990-94: Many subjects including Middle and Upper School Art
Instructor in Video Storytelling, Painting and Drawing, Summertime Arts program, Waynflete School, Portland, ME, 1992, 93
ESL instructor, Portland, ME, 1992
Workshop Instructor, designer, Signs and Symbols, Freeport Middle School, Freeport, ME, 1991: a Children’s Workshop on the work of Adolph Gottlieb
Private tutor in English, history, and math, 1990-2004
Instructor in drawing, paintings, collage, puppetry, Damariscotta Children’s Art Workshops, Damariscotta, ME, 1976
Undergraduate Painting Assistant, Gallery Assistant, Foundations Assistant, Antioch College, 1971,2,3


Professional

Visual artist represented in many private collections.
Member, Union of Maine Visual Artists.
Artist in Residence, Garden restoration project, Spannocchia Foundation, Castello di Spannocchia, Italy, 2003
Self employed builder, designer, 1976-99
Children’s Museum of Maine, Exhibit design and creation, 1993, 94
Professional Stagehand, member, IATSE, providing all manner of technical assistance to professional music, theater, dance, and other performing arts programs, 1977-94
Set design and Decoration: West Side Story, Portland Players, 1982; The Parachute, USM, Portland ME, 1979; Two by Two, PolyArts, Portland, ME, 1977
Technical Assistant, The Tower, Living Theater, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy, 1975
Technical Assistant, Circle Game, Ann Arbor Midwestern College Experimental Theater Festival, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1974


Education

Life Study; Me College of Art, Portland Drawing Group, and other groups, 1980-2015
Architectural Drawing and Design, S ME Tech Institute 1979; Me Charitable Mechanics Society, 1980
Graphic Design, School of the Museum of Fine Art, Boston, Massachusetts, 1978
Lithography Workshop with Jack Meunch, Westbrook College, Portland, Maine, 1977
Florence, Italy, 1975: Study of multi-media /performance art, Il Spectacolo, University of Florence, Italy. Drawing study at Atelier of Peter Hamilton; Study of Italian Renaissance
Antioch College, B.A., 1973, Art and Communication: Painting, Lithography, and Video. Painting Assistant, Gallery Assistant, Foundations Assistant
Phillips Exeter Academy, 1969: Senior Project in Painting; New England Prep School Art Show, juror’s award, honorable mention in painting

Exhibitions
Notebooks; Drawings and Watercolors from my Notebooks. Chalkboard Gallery, Portland, Maine, 2014
2X2X4: Two Generations, Two Families, Four Artists. Group Show, Chalkboard Gallery, Portland, Maine, 2014
Time Gallery, 516 Congress Street, Portland, ME., Recent Work, 2008
Union of Maine Visual Artists invitational, Maine Photographic Institute,
Rockport, Maine, February 10 through March 25, 2006
The Dream, the Dreamer, and the Dreamed, Solo Exhibition, 22 Exchange St, Portland, ME, December 2005, 35 years of painting
Flora and Fauna of Spannocchia, Freeport Community Library, Freeport, ME, 2004: drawings and paintings
Residents Show, Freeport Community Library, Freeport, ME, 2004: drawings and paintings
Spannocchia Garden Preservation Project exhibit, Freeport, ME, 2003: drawing and paintings
Coastal Cottage Furniture, Kennebunkport, ME, 2003: paintings,
Maine Cottage Furniture, Yarmouth, ME, 2002,3: paintings
More Flesh: Group show of Portland Drawing Group, Three Fish Gallery, 2000
Muralist, the Maine Festival, 1996
Waynflete School Parents and Friends Exhibition, Portland, ME, 1994,5,6; drawings and paintings
West Side restaurant, Portland, ME, 1993: drawings and paintings
Trove Gallery, Portland, ME, 1992: paintings
Maine Cottage Furniture, Yarmouth, ME, 1991: paintings
Formaggio Stores, Cambridge, MA, 1978; drawings and paintings
Portland Live!, Portland Public Library, 1977: paintings
Maine Art Gallery invitational, Wiscasset, ME, 1975: paintings
Sheepscot River Pottery, Wiscasset, ME, 1975. Pastels
Damariscotta Workshop and Gallery, Damariscotta, ME, 1975: Paintings, puppetry
Rainbow Galleries, Dayton, Ohio, 1973: One Man Show of Paintings

Bio
I really started my work as an artist in grammar school. My art teacher in that State of Maine two-room schoolhouse was a family friend, and had also been to Paris as a young woman! I was not so much in love with her as enamored of her experience of the world. In high school at Phillips Exeter Academy, I used art as a means of expression and communication for what was likely typical teenage pain, sharpened by the death of my father 18 months before, and flavored by the turmoil of assassinations on the national stage. Works of the time included paintings of women waiting in the dark, and judges deliberating through their power, deserved or not. What delicious confusion and angst. My art studies continued at Antioch College, that hotbed of progressivism wallowing in the mire of the early 70’s social soup. The death of my closest brother threw me into despair alternating with arrogance born of fear. Experimentation was the order of the day, a positive and naive attempt at the alchemy of change and transcendence. Hubris of the twenty year old would brook no barriers. I painted on mirrored mylar and scraped the chrome off glass mirrors looking for secrets in physics and light. I made holograms, and painted with air. I worked on theater productions, doing set design and lighting. I gazed googoo-eyed at the first pictures of the green-blue planet, and fell in love with outer space.

Then I really fell in love. I became the husband to The Object of my Affection, and we went to Firenze to study Il Spectacolo! We tagged along with the Living Theatre during their inclusion in the Venice Biennale of 1974, dodging the carbinieri while fomenting revolution and stoned grooviness. I suppose that the spinning at the edge threw us right off the merry go round. The reality of parenthood brought us back to the center, and grounded us on and in the earth. We planted ourselves in the hinterlands to sow and husband and reap. I could not resist working with my hands and began to build houses and barns and businesses all over southern Maine. When it was too frigging cold to work outside, I worked professionally as a theatrical stagehand and witnessed a lot of rock and roll, and an occasional bit of good work on-stage. I built sets in local theatres and churches. I studied at the Museum School, the Maine College of Art, Westbrook College w/Jack Meunch, in the atelier of Richard Hamilton, in Florence, Italy, in Venice, and in Paris. My paintings and drawings were of personal and local subject matter, and I turned to watercolor as a fast and accessible medium.

Thirty-three years and three daughters, two granddaughters (and a grandson on the way!) later I struggle on, attempting to balance on the tightrope. I guess I want it all; to keep my family safe and to go astral traveling. After a heart attack, I started painting with gold, and I paint circles, illuminating the inside and the outside. I go through periods when it is all I can do to finish the financial aid applications for my girls, make sure the cars are roadworthy (or just as likely paying the consequences for not), but all the while the images are building up in my mind, and soon enough I suppose, they start pouring out. I have a little print and card business, and I exhibit in local libraries and restaurants under my nom de peinture, so as to support some cluttered and sloppy idea to keep some purity in my “real art” and make some moolah in a place where art is what you decorate with, a market driven by housefraus. I still struggle to put the different parts together into a cohesive and meaningful whole. I exhibit my New Millenium paintings sometimes when I can find a venue not represented by trees and lobster shacks. This is not to say that contemporary art is not alive and well here. I hear that other artists really like my stuff.

During a boring morning at the job of the time, I took up searching for things Etruscan on the Internet. This led to a broader exploration of Italy, and to the world of foodies. I wrangled an artist-in-residence role in a work project on an Italian farm dedicated to sustainability in agriculture, and art, and in life. My current paid job is at the largest Cable TV public access TV station here in Maine, and I currently am working toward exploiting the resources therein to explore the politics of food in a rather un-artistic manner, but we shall see.


I continue to work hard at painting, and want to complete (or end) an ongoing series that has been all about personal poetry, and a synthesis of religion, art, humanism, self-reflection, ennui or innuendo, speculation, and desire.

I am more and more aware of my personal seasonal cycle. My most productive time in the studio is in the first six months of the year, especially in the optimistic but cold days of winter as the Northern hemisphere tilts back toward the sun: it resonates deeply within me as a creature of the earth, and I use the expanding energy to create.