June 17 – July 10, 2020
Philip Barter and Matt Barter
This exhibition highlights recent work by Philip Barter and Matt Barter, a father and son duo of self-taught artists who were both born and raised in Maine. Their motifs focus on narratives of Maine’s working waterfronts and the earthy beauty of her landscape.
Philip, who born and raised in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, has painted Maine for over five decades. In the early years, Philip has worked in all manner of traditional Maine jobs to support his family of seven. He dug clams and worms, was the sternman on a lobster boat, did carpentry, and dragged for mussels. By the 1990s, Philip was able to paint full-time after the Bates College Museum of Art acquired his work for their permanent collection and mounted a retrospective of his work in 1992. Philip’s work was subsequently highlighted in Downeast magazine and acquired by the Farnsworth Art Museum and the Portland Museum of Art.
Matt, who was raised in Franklin, Maine, learned to paint under the guidance of his father. He sold his first painting at age ten, and by his teens was learning the mechanics of oil painting and making his own wood reliefs. His carved fishermen and wood reliefs are fast becoming a signature motif. Made from reclaimed wood beam and oil paint, his rough-cut figures capture the brawn of these weathered men laden with lobster traps, hoes, buckets, and buoys.
This father and son pair has lived their lives immersed in art. They share an eye for composition, shape, and color, and a deep-rooted connection to Maine that makes their work authentic. Philip lives with his wife, Priscilla, in Franklin, Maine. Matt lives with his wife, Rebekah, and their two sons in Brunswick, Maine.