This is an art installation about the politics of agriculture Boru O’Brien-O’Connell, an artist and owner of the new DUNES art gallery on Munjoy Hll, told this blogger in mid-April. O’Connell was preparing for an upcoming art installation scheduled for his grand opening on Friday, May 13, 2022. His new gallery is located at 251 Congress Street, formerly a yoga studio. The current show is titled: “Just Over the Horizon.”
“A lot of Miles’ work discusses agriculture and I thought that it would be an interesting tie in to the local politics of Maine as well,” O’Connell said last week as he was fresh from the successful grand opening on Friday, May 13 of DUNES. He was referring to artist Miles Huston, a friend of his from his recent days living in New York City. A Maine native, O’Connell said the subject of chemical manufacturing is so prevalent in the news these days. He was referring to “forever chemicals” that have been found on numerous farms in Maine in recent months.
Watering cans are vital to community gardens which are plentiful here in Maine. Huston has been collecting them from all over the world for almost ten years. Some are from Eastern Europe. There are between 75 and 100 in this art installation at DUNES.
“I like work that talks about the failures of Utopias. Or in other words, about the promises of the 60s and the resulting disappointments,” said O’Connell. “It’s about capitalism and how it erases the things it wants to erase, like farming.” It’s a conceptual show that urges the visitor to ask questions and look for answers. You may find them at the Dunes’ art installition on Congress Street or you may not.
Meanwhile, O’Connell, who is a photographer, is working on the next show to come shortly after June 24th; tentatively set for July 1, 2022. He’s not ready to make any announcements about participants, but does say it will probably be a mix of artists – all from the east coast. O’Connell does not intend to exhibit any of his own photographs. “I would not be comfortable doing that,” he said recently. However, he did acknowledge that he is working on a book of his own photography. Details to come later.
“This is a unique venue in Portland. I certainly hope so,” Boru O’Brien-O’Connell said recently. “There are a lot of good artists out there. I’d love to show them all. They are in New York, Los Angeles, Europe and Asia. But I can’t afford to show them all now.’
For more background information on DUNES, please visit post herein dated April 17 2022.