PROJECT SPACE: ASHERAH CINNAMON

BIDDEFORD—On June 24, visitors to Biddeford’s downtown ArtWalk will be treated to a storefront window installation by award-winning Maine sculptor and Maine College of Art alum, Asherah Cinnamon. The exhibition is part of Engine’s ongoing series, Project Space.

Cinnamon will present “The Language of Trees Continued: One Woman’s Love Affair with Wood” in three vacant downtown storefronts on Main Street. The exhibit features several large pieces from her most recent installation project, “Friendship II,” which began in January 2010.

Biddeford’s ArtWalk is held from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on June 24. A reception for the artist will be held 116 Main Street from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The artist will also be present at the BiddeFair Arts & Crafts Festival held in Shevenell Park on June 25 from 2-3 p.m. Directions to the reception, storefronts, and festival can be found at www.biddefordartwalk.org .

“We are thrilled to have an artist of Asherah’s caliber participate in our Project Space,” says Engine Executive Director Tammy Ackerman. “Many communities are striving to call attention to their downtown’s potential through art installations. These storefront installations put the artist and their work in close proximity with the community on a daily basis and hopefully open a dialogue with a population that does not typically frequent shows in art galleries.”

For “Friendship II,” Cinnamon met with groups of adults and young people, discussed recycling and reusing plastic, and invited them to participate in creating sculptural pieces. They braided in groups and were encouraged to write about friendship. Some groups read to each other as they cut plastic bags into strips and braided them. Others collected colorful bags for the project.

In the end, the process resulted in about 300-feet of braid, reams of inspired writing and thinking about friendship, and a great deal of interaction and fun. Cinnamon completed the rest of the braiding herself and applied the braids to wooden branch forms she had constructed. Each sculptural form uses an average of 1,000-feet of braid. For more information and photos of Cinnamon’s work, visit www.asherahcinnamon.com. The work will remain on display until July 8.

Project Space is sponsored by Engine, in partnership with the City Theater, the University of New England,  and the Heart of Biddeford as partners in the Creative Communities=Economic Development Consortium, an intiative funded in part by a grant from the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information on the event, or to schedule an interview, please contact Tammy Ackerman at Engine: 207-229-3560, director@FeedtheEngine.org