FARMINGTON — The University of Maine at Farmington’s Emery Community Arts Center launches its summer season with the exhibit, Places: Two Views — Paintings and Photography by Phil Poirier and Milton Christianson.

The show opens with a gala reception from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, June 15, and runs through Friday, Aug. 18. It is free and open to the public.

Born in Rumford, Poirier considers himself an observational naturalist where photography, the visual transcription, has now supplanted painting. “Working with digital imagery, I push the images, pulling out work that feels more painterly than anything I ever did with a brush,” he said.

He attended Rumford High School and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Southern Maine in 1976. He was awarded the Carina House Monhegan Artists Residency and spent five weeks on Monhegan Island painting and hiking the island’s natural wonders. He is also a singer/songwriter in the pop/folk tradition.

“Nature, art and song, have encoded my life,” Poirier said. “While I’ve focused my life around creative work, the battery powering this bus has been my connection to nature. Nature is a mystic thread that spans the whole catalog of my creative work.”

Christianson grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While attending Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, he made many friends from Maine and moved to Maine in 1970.

He owned Fiddlehead Graphics, a silkscreen printing business, for 20 years where he designed and printed posters and T-shirts. He has been painting professionally since 1985.

He exhibits his work at Art North Light in Millinocket and Jane Hamilton Fine Art in Tuscon, Arizona. He also exhibits at outdoor shows around Maine in the summer, predominantly around Greenville and Moosehead Lake.

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