Artisanal craft of Midcoast Maine

“There’s a quality of life in Maine which is singular and unique,” said Jamie Wyeth, a notable third-generation artist from Maine’s most famous artistic family. “It’s absolutely a world unto itself.”
Anyone who has delighted in the nature, townships, land- and seascapes, and even light of the US state of Maine knows this to be true. But there is arguably no place where this is more in evidence than its Midcoast region, the beguiling stretch of shoreline from Brunswick up the western edge of Penobscot Bay.

Artists and artisans could hardly ignore this, which was the genesis of what has become a full-fledged focus on arts and crafts in the area. “The cities of Midcoast Maine have a lot of art going on and the art economy is a very important part of who we are and why people are coming here,” notes Steve Ryan, Executive Director of the Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce.

Great galleries in Midcoast Maine
Given the long-growing attention to artistic and artisanal creation, the proliferation of galleries in Midcoast Maine has been truly remarkable. In many places, and not just the cities known for their art appeal, “I’ve seen growth from one or two galleries, if that, to vibrant art scenes,” remarks Anthony Andersen, publisher of the Maine Gallery + Studio Guide, the self-styled “ultimate guide to Maine art.”

Unfortunately, given the size and shape of Maine, many visitors never get past Portland, already a great center for art. However, those who do venture farther north along the coast are rewarded with very rich pickings. Here are just a few of them.