LEWISTON — Colleen Kinsella, Rebecca Goodale and Vivien Russe, popularly known as “The Ant Girls,” will be the presenters at the USM Lewiston-Auburn Senior College Food for Thought luncheon at 11:15 a.m. Friday, April 11, in the Function Room 170 at USM LAC.

Note the time change. The public is invited.

The cost, which includes lunch, is $7 with advance reservation or $8 at the door. Reservations must be made by noon on Thursday, April 10, by calling 753-6510. Any late callers will be considered “at the door.”

The women will speak of an idea for a project they had several years ago inspired by leaf cutter ants. Working closely together, the project became an exhibit, “Ant Farm: At the Nexus of Art and Science.” “Ant Farm” is a multi-media collaborative exhibit merging art and science that illustrates how the women worked collaboratively — like a small ant colony — to create a singular but multi-faceted project.

The exhibit opens later in the day. In a first for the Food for Thought program, attendees will see a private preview. The exhibit, installed by LAC curator Robyn Holman, is having a Gala Opening at 5 p.m. that day, at the USM LAC Atrium Art Gallery, 51 Westminster St.

The exhibit’s visual representation of leafcutter ants highlights their social structure and life cycle, including nuptial flights, egg laying, food gathering and fungus cultivating. The exhibit features printmaking, installations, drawing, collage and artists’ books.

Elliott Schwartz and Caleb Mulkerin composed and performed original music with Kinsella for the exhibition. For details on the Ant Girls progress, visit www.antgirlsmaine.blogspot.com.

The Ant Girls are mourning the loss of one of their own, Dorothy Schwartz, who passed away on March 3. The Ant Farm Project is a testament to her love of life as she continued working on it to its completion. “Deedee” was an accomplished artist, professor, past director of the Maine Humanities Council and a driving force behind Maine’s cultural scene for more than two decades.

Colleen Kinsella is a printmaker and musician living in Portland. She has been a studio technician and instructor in the Printmaking Department at Maine College of Art since 2000. She has had her work exhibited around the country and internationally.

As a musician, Kinsella’s involvement with bands Cerberus Shoal, Fire on Fire and currently Big Blood blur the boundaries between art and music. Her iconic images have been published on more than 45 album covers. Kinsella and her husband write and record music as “Big Blood.” They independently run the label Dontrustheruin Records.

Rebecca Goodale makes unique and limited edition books, many with sculptural components. Regarded as one of the foremost book artists in the region, her current project, Threatened and Endangered, is inspired by Maine’s rare plants and animals. Her work is in numerous collections. She is the faculty director of the University of Southern Maine’s Book Arts at Stone House program.

Vivien Russe was awarded the Bingham Prize to attend the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. She was a member and president of Peregrine Press, pursuing her earlier interest in printmaking. She has shown work throughout the state and the country. Her work is in many private collections, locally and overseas. She lives and works in Portland.


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