Consumerist culture on exhibit at UMF Art Gallery

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FARMINGTON – The University of Maine at Farmington Art Gallery will present the exhibit “Here to There” from Feb. 5–Mar. 8. The gallery will host an opening reception for the artists from 5-7 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 5; and an artist’s talk at 5 p.m., Friday, Feb. 6.

The exhibit will feature two separate yet subtly interconnected displays by Philadelphia artists Dana Hanmer and Travis Hanmer. Both artists are masterful in creating intelligently crafted objects that invite the viewer to consider the contradictions underlying contemporary consumerist culture.

Dana Hanmer’s “Complex” is both formally intricate and metaphorically rich. It employs disposable materials in the construction of fairy tale landscapes that transcend the throw-away elements from which they are constructed. Bubble gum, artificial snow, fast food wrappers—all are transformed into metaphorical dwellings, embodying the ways in which consumption is poeticized in contemporary culture. The natural deterioration of these materials over time requires constant replacement and repair, suggesting a sense of history and transformation that mirror a society in flux.

Travis Hanmer’s iGEAR series is an ongoing multi-media project in which the artist explores the intriguing notion of isolation as a social event. Masquerading as an actual consumer product, Hanmer’s “iGEAR Personal Isolation Equipment” combines the contemporary consumer culture’s need for personal expression with the Modernist concept of isolation. The elements of fashion, graphic design and sport are used to explore the way the concept of social isolation has itself become commercialized.

Dana Hanmer has a BFA from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University and an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She works in sculpture and video and has taught at Moore College of Art and Design and the Fairmont Center in Philadelphia. Travis Hanmer has a BFA from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University. He has exhibited throughout the country, including at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport; the SPECTOR Gallery in Philadelphia, Penn.; and the Art Interactive Gallery in Cambridge, Mass.

Philadelphia artist Dana Hanmer’s work “Complex” is featured at University of Maine at Farmington Art Gallery exhibit Feb. 5–Mar. 8.

These UMF gallery events are free and open to the public. The UMF Art Gallery, located on campus at 246 Main St., Farmington, is open weekly from noon–4 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday.

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