News

NEA Chairman Jane Chu to Visit Maine August 10-12, 2015

Trip includes visits in Portland, Waterville, Lewiston, and Brunswick

Chu portrait1-Photo by Strauss Peyton Studios_cropped for web.jpg

Jane Chu

NEA Chairman Jane Chu. Photo by Strauss Peyton Studios

Washington, DC—NEA Chairman Jane Chu will visit Maine August 10–12, 2015 at the invitation of Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and the Maine Arts Commission. This will be her first visit to Maine as Chairman and will include site visits in Portland, Waterville, Lewiston, and Brunswick, and an event with the arts community in Portland. Follow @NEAJaneChu on Twitter for updates and photos on her trip to Maine.

Chairman Chu will begin her visit with Congresswoman Pingree in Portland at the writing center The Telling Room, where they will tour the center and meet with students in the Young Emerging Authors program and Young Writers & Leaders program, a free, afterschool literary arts program for international multilingual high school students, supported by the NEA. The students will read excerpts from their writings and share their experiences with the program.

Next, Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree will learn more about Art At Work’s project All The Way Home Veterans Story Exchange, which uses multidisciplinary arts to help military veterans support each other in battling PTSD and building healthy lives. Media are invited to join Chairman Chu, Congresswoman Pingree, and veteran participants in a discussion of the program from 3:00-3:15pm.

Later that afternoon, Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree will tour the Portland Museum of Art. Following this tour, Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree will be available for short one-on-one media interviews. Please contact Liz Auclair at auclaire@arts.gov to request an interview.

That evening, Congresswoman Pingree and the Maine Arts Commission will host a town hall titled “Engaging Americans in the Arts” with the local arts community at the Portland Museum of Art. At the event, Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree will both make short remarks and then take questions from the audience. Media who wish to attend this event should email Liz Auclair at auclaire@arts.gov. Please note that media must arrive by 5:45pm.

On August 11, Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree will travel to Waterville where they will meet with the Maine Film Center to learn more about the 2015 Maine International Film Festival, supported by the NEA, as well as plans for Waterville Creates!, a consortium of arts and culture groups working directly with community arts, creative, and cultural institutions to enhance and strengthen the vitality of Waterville and to promote the city as a major arts destination.

Next, Chairman Chu will visit Bates College in Lewiston to learn more about two NEA grantees: the Bates College Museum of Art and Bates Dance Festival. Chairman Chu will tour the museum and see a short demonstration of their Thousand Words Project which helps students build writing skills through digital exploration of the museum. Chairman Chu will then learn more about the arts at Bates, including the Bates Dance Festival, through a discussion with members of the faculty and staff.

Chairman Chu will also visit the Somali Bantu Community Association of Maine in Lewiston, where she’ll see demonstrations in basketweaving, sharrara (a triangular lyre instrument) playing, and embroidering by master artists taking part in Maine Arts Commission’s Traditional Arts Apprenticeship program, supported by the NEA.

On Wednesday, Chairman Chu will visit Brunswick. She will tour Spindleworks, an arts center for people with disabilities and 2015 grant recipient of the Maine Arts Commission. Media are invited to a discussion about the organization’s work in the community and disability arts programs. This will take place in a gallery featuring work by Spindleworks participants.

Next, Chairman Chu will visit Bowdoin International Music Festival, an NEA grantee, to learn more about the festival and its associated outreach programs.

Finally, Chairman Chu will tour Bowdoin College Museum of Art, including the NEA-supported exhibition A Mind of Winter: Photographs by Abelardo Morell.

The following events are open to media. Media must contact Liz Auclair at auclaire@arts.gov or 202-682-5744 if they would like to attend or request an interview with Chairman Chu.

Monday, August 10, 2015—Portland

11:30–12:30pm Site visit to The Telling Room

Location: 225 Commercial Street #201, Portland, ME 04101

Participants:       

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Heather Davis, executive director, The Telling Room

Molly McGrath, publications director, The Telling Room

Nick Schuller, program director, The Telling Room

Molly Haley, multimedia director, The Telling Room

Sonya Tomlinson, volunteer & program coordinator, The Telling Room

Young Emerging Authors students

Young Writers & Leaders students


3:00–3:15pm Discussion about Art At Work’s All the Way Home Veterans Story Exchange

Location: Veterans Resource Center Lounge, USM, Woodbury Campus Center, 35 Bedford Street, Portland ME 04103

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Marty Pottenger, director, Art At Work Project, Terra Moto Inc.

All The Way Home participants


4:00–5:00pm Tour of the Portland Museum of Art

Location:7 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Mark Bessire, director, Portland Museum of Art

Jessica May, chief curator, Portland Museum of Art


5:00–5:30pm Media Availability—media interested in requesting a short one-on-one interview with Chairman Chu and Congresswoman Pingree should contact Liz Auclair at auclaire@arts.gov or 202-682-5744.

Location: Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Street, Portland, ME


5:30–7:00pm Town hall: Engaging Americans in the Arts, hosted by Congresswoman Pingree and the Maine Arts Commission. Media who wish to attend should contact Liz Auclair at auclaire@arts.gov. Media must arrive by 5:45pm.

Location: Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Street, Portland, ME

Participants:  

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission


Tuesday, August 11, 2015—Waterville and Lewiston

9:30–10:30am Site visit with the Maine Film Center and Waterville Creates!

Location:Railroad Square Cinema, 17 Railroad Square, Waterville 04901

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Shannon Haines, executive director, Maine Film Center

Nate Rudy, executive director, Waterville Creates!

Dick Dyer, marketing director, Waterville Creates!

Waterville Creates! partners


1:30–2:30pm Tour of Bates College Museum of Art and discussion about the arts at Bates College

Location: 75 Russell St. Lewiston, Me 04240

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Dan Mills, director, Bates College Museum of Art

Laura Faure, director, Bates Dance Festival

Matt Auer, dean of Faculty, Bates College

Michael Reidy, senior lecturer and managing director of Theater and Dance, Bates College

Darby Ray, director, Harward Center for Community Partnerships


3:00–4:00pm Site visit to Somali Bantu Community Association

Location: 174 Lisbon Street, suite 506, Lewiston, ME 04240

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Muhidin Libah, director, Somali Bantu Community Association

Atiy Haji, basketmaker

Aden Hersi, musician

Hassan Barjin, embroiderer & tailor

Kathleen Mundell, traditional arts & creative aging specialist, Maine Arts Commission


Wednesday, August 12, 2015—Brunswick

10:00–10:30am  Site visit to Spindleworks 

Location: 7 Lincoln Street, Brunswick, ME 04011

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Elizabeth McGhee, program manager, Spindleworks

Brian Braley, program supervisor, Spindleworks


11:00am–12:00pm  Site visit with Bowdoin International Music Festival

Location:181 Park Row, Brunswick, ME 04011

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Peter Simmons, executive director, Bowdoin International Music Festival

Frank Huang, festival faculty/concertmaster, New York Philharmonic

Kippy Rudy, development director, Bowdoin International Music Festival

Patricia Brown, trustee, Bowdoin International Music Festival

Teal Vickery, student, Bowdoin International Music Festival


12:00–12:30pm Tour of Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Location: 9400 College St, Brunswick, ME 04011

Participants:      

Jane Chu, chairman, National Endowment for the Arts

Julie Richard, executive director, Maine Arts Commission

Anne Collins Goodyear, co-director, Bowdoin College Museum of Art

Frank Goodyear, co-director, Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Contact

Liz Auclair (NEA), auclaire@arts.gov, 202-682-5744

Andy Colvin (Congresswoman Pingree), andrew.colvin@mail.house.gov, 207-774-5019

Marc Spruiell (Maine Arts Commission), Marc.Spruiell@maine.gov, 207-287-2726