ARTober, Bangor’s month-long tradition, revels in city’s arts

It is ARTober in Bangor this month. The city of Bangor has dedicated October as a month in which arts and culture throughout the town can be accented and better appreciated by the community. This is done through the collaboration of local artists, musicians, writers, foodies, dancers and the local venues in town, who graciously set up presentations and displays at different points around the city.

The kickoff for this monthlong celebration took place on Sept. 30. During this party, artists were able to share their stories and experiences with art. Earlier in October, The Manhattan Transfer and Take 6 performed at Husson University, the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance held a presentation at the Bangor Public Library and The Penobscot Theater presented “The Grand Tour: A Celebration of the Music of George Jones.”

Have the opportunity to travel around Bangor? Check out some of the events that will be going on throughout the rest of this month.

Rick Tardiff’s photography is currently being displayed at the West Artisan Coffeehouse in West Market Square through Oct. 31. Here, Tardiff has a series of black and white photos, some of which feature famous Bangor landmarks, like the Hannibal Hamlin statue that stands by the gardens outside of the University of Maine Museum of Art. Along with that he presents relatable pieces: a person skateboarding against building reflections and someone meticulously rolling out dough. This opportunity for him to display his work serves as just a sneak peek, seeing as Tardiff is looking to release a photobook later in the year.

The University of Maine Museum of Art also has on display several student collections. These are “Contemporary Currents,” which is an exhibition featuring nine artists from New Brunswick, Canada and “Parallels” by Philip Frey. These paintings and sculptures span many different styles. When you first walk in you’re greeted by an iron with teeth, something you might see in a horror movie, but here it represents something like an iron jaw. Others include a series of portraits, including self-portraits, that are oil-based paintings. Different colors reflect different hues on skin giving them an uncanny familiarity and realness.

One display was created out of small, differently-sized, silver dishes. Each dish had a phrase inscribed in the middle of it, I will admit, not many of which were all that polite though several were quite humorous. Other exhibits included blanket material sewn designs, math-related subjects like ruler art and sketchings.

Other events that will be continuing through the end of the month include: Wild Horse Zendo: Japanese Meditation, Robinson Ballet’s “Thriller” dance lessons, Capoeira Uma Terra: Brazilian dance-fight art and the Bangor Historical Society’s Ghostly Bangor Tours. Especially during the Halloween season, the ghost tours serve as a great activity as you learn about the haunting stories about the city.

This month captures such a large series of art forms that may otherwise be unknown. It includes fiber art, cider pressing, pop-up orchestra concerts, publishing help sessions, ballet, contradance, plays and meditation.

This week the Penobscot Theater is presenting “Murder for Two,” a Halloween string quartet performance from the Bangor Symphony Orchestra and a “Heavy Halloween” gallery presentation featuring local rock bands and a costume parade on Oct. 29.

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