Marguerite Zorach exhibit
gives Modern Art pioneer
her due; hung until Jan. 7 
ROCKLAND — Marguerite Thompson Zorach reflects an epoch in art history and is no longer a forgotten treasure.
Sixty paintings and textiles by Zorach, created between 1910 and 1965, are on view at the Farnsworth Museum in Rockland through Jan. 7, 2018. Plan to see them many times because this is an exhibit to treasure. It is one of the best art exhibits in Maine this summer.
Zorach (1887-1968), mother of the late Dahlov Ipcar, well-known-and-loved Maine artist, created some breathtaking and monumental works, some of which are currently on view at the Farnsworth.
Married to the renowned sculptor William Zorach, Marguerite’s work has only in recent times received the recognition it deserves for pioneering the modern art movement in America.
Coming from a family of means enabled the young artist, in 1912, to travel on her own to Paris to study art. While there, she met William Zorach, and encouraged his creativity, and urged him join her in experimenting with breaking down traditional boundaries in art.
Marguerite specifically explored Fauvism, a style of painting where the suggestion of form was more important than the exact replication of form. 
A large oil painting titled “Nude,” on loan from the Worcester  Art Museum, shows Marguerite Zorach breaking away from traditional views of proportion and realistic rendering and moving towards the suggestion of form.
Other works on display which establish her reputation in Fauvism include: “Cafe in Arles,” oil on canvas (1911), “Man Among the Redwoods,” oil on canvas (1912), and “Park in Provence,” oil on canvas (1911). These paintings have the familiar flat-edge style of Fauvism; a style for which she is famous and which she explored early in her career.
Unusual in the exhibit are: “Snow and Trees,” oil on canvas (1919,) “Prohibition,” oil on canvas (1920) and “Adam and Eve,” watercolor over graphite pencil (1920) because they look as though she was exploring Surrealism at that time.
When Marguerite returned to the U.S., she moved to New York and married William Zorach on the same day —  Dec. 24, 1912. The couple collaborated artistically for awhile. William’s sculptures became more famous than Marguerite’s paintings —  though she was a beacon of strength for both of them. 
After Marguerite gave birth to their children, Tessim in 1915 and Dahlov two years later, she turned most of her efforts to creating embroidered quilts, hooked rugs and tapestries.
The tapestries in the Farnsworth exhibit show Marguerite’s outstanding ability to create intricate design and patterns in fabric. These monumental works take your breath away and establish her importance in the history of Modern Art in our nation with great dignity.
  One of the largest examples of tapestries in the exhibit is titled  “The Family of John D. Rockefeller Jr. at their Summer Home, Seal Harbor, Maine,” wool embroidered on linen, 51 x 64 inches, created (1929-1932). It covers one wall and includes images of all the family, hand sewn in thousands of intricate stitches. Two smaller tapestries of great interest include: “The Ipcar family in Robinhood Farm,” wool embroidered on linen (1944) and “Family of Tessim and Peggy Zorach at 15 Willow Place,” embroidered tapestry (1944). These works put into fabric design the everyday-life of the Ipcars and Zorachs with warmth, color, intricate designs and a dash of humor.
Three hooked rugs of interest include: “Cat and Birds,” wool  on linen 35 x 42 inches and “Snake and Bird,” wool on linen (1937) and a huge, powerful hooked rug titled “Nude with Flowers,” wool on linen (1922).
Paintings to look for include: “Tessim with Cello,” oil on canvas, 36 x 24 inches (1922), an image of Marguerite’s son, and  “Girl with a Cat (Dahlov and Tooky),” oil on canvas, (1930), an image of her daughter. Both children are turn up frequently as subjects of their parents’ artwork.
One of the largest works in the exhibit is a huge, mural-size painting titled “Land and Development of New England,” oil on canvas,  96 x 76 inches created in 1935, owned by the Farnsworth Museum. It is a powerful work with many overlapping images.
Jane Bianco, curator of the Zorach exhibit said, “The  work, ‘Land and Development of New England,’ may have been designed for a submission to a WPA project because it is so large and looks like a study for a mural, however, it was not documented as a submission to a WPA program.”
“I was inspired to do research on Marguerite  Zorach by Mildred Peladeau, the wife of the former director of the Farnsworth, who had created a hooked rug exhibit in 2010, and I saw the work of Marguerite. It took me two years to work on the initial concept of this exhibit. However, it took another four years with research to actually bring the exhibit about,” Bianco continued in an interview.
Three mural-size photographic images of the living room walls in the Zorach home, hand-painted by Marguerite, bring alive the creative lifestyle of the Zorach family. 
Another work of great interest is a portrait of Marguerite by her daughter. “Portrait of Marguerite Zorach at Robinhood Farm, Georgetown Maine,” was created by Dahlov, from memory in 1990. It is interesting that she painted her mother sewing —  possibly one of the fine bedspread coverlets on view in this exhibit. 
A magnificent tapestry on loan from the Smithsonian  —  “My Home In Fresno around the year 1900,” wool embroidered on linen, (created from her memory in 1949), —  shows the substantial and traditional background she came from, which enabled her to study art in Paris on her own in 1912. 
The catalogue of this exhibit is a collector’s item. It is an outstanding publication. Its scholarly appendices are extensive and will provide a lasting record of the historic impact Marguerite Thompson Zorach had on an age in American art.

“The Ipcar Family at Robinhood Farm Maine”
Marguerite Zorach, The Ipcar Family at Robinhood Farm Maine, embroidered tapestry (wool on linen) 17.5″ x 23.5 inches 1944

Marguerite Thompson Zorach, Nude, 1922, oil on canvas, 40¼” x 30″

Marguerite Thompson Zorach, Nude, 1922, oil on canvas, 40¼” x 30″

Public memorial for Dahlov Ipcar

TOPSHAM — On Aug. 26, from 1 to 4 p.m., at the Orion Performing Arts Center, Mt. Ararat campus, there will be a public memorial for Dahlov Ipcar who died on Feb. 10 at the age of 99. Artwork, images and photos of her life will be shown; songs will be heard and close friends and family will speak. It is free of charge and all are welcome.

Farnsworth Museum of Art
16 Museum St., Rockland
Summer Hours: 7 days a week, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Admission: Adults $15., seniors $13, students 17 with I.D. $10., 16-and-under are free. 

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