When Float Harder opened in mid April of last year, we had already decided that we wanted to have a rotating gallery of art, we just didn't know where to begin! Someone suggested that we reach out to Maine College of Art as a starting point... of course! Some times it takes a gentle push to help you see the obvious. The recommendation came just in time because we had a Grand Opening scheduled and we still had bare walls. We did have float tanks, I suppose that's the important part when opening a float center, but it sure would be nice if we had a finished appearance as well.
The day before our Grand Opening, Jessica Tomlinson of Maine College of Art swooped in with three large beautiful prints. She had connected us with the perfect artist to kick off our art program here, Carter Shappy! Carter's art is inspired greatly by his time spent floating. Not only were we provided with three amazing prints to hang, Carter also wrote one of the most thoughtful descriptions concerning how floating can effect a person's creativity and sense of self that I have ever read. I'd like to share it with you.
"Floating & Creativity"
My Artistic process involves extended periods of concentrated thought. Ideas rarely seem to miraculously present themselves. They are instead unearthed by a process of reflection, contemplation and experimentation. Floating has provided me a direct route to the states of mind that are essential to such creative energy. It's about temporarily allowing respite from the sensory cacophony of routine life. This brief but powerful respite confronts one with a hyper aware understanding of self. With very little to compare this profound acknowledgement of self to, the brain intuitively searches for a sensory experience in a space with limited sensory stimuli--the result being a strangely meditative quest to recreate and re-conceptualize your life outside under total darkness and in the extremely relaxing and buoyant embrace of body warm salt water."
Carter's hope is that his work will "encourage a similarly meditative and contemplative experience as those provided by float chambers". He creates his art and manages the print department at Running With Scissors Art Studio right here in Portland!
Each month since then we've been lucky to have a continuous flow of amazing art to feature. Much like this life, our space is vibrant and ever changing because we are filling it with good people doing great things! If you're wanting to get in touch with any of the artists from our program then please feel free to contact me. Thank you so much to all of the artist who have participated in our art program! As we reflect on this year in art, we so look forward to the colorful months ahead!
If you're interested in hanging your art here and/or know someone who might be, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Send a few pictures of your work or a link to your website!
APRIL & MAY - Carter Shappy
JUNE - Maia Snow
JULY - Dietlind Vander Schaaf
AUGUST- Anna Weidner
SEPTEMBER - Nathan Marchand
OCTOBER - Stephanie Hanley
NOVEMBER - Rachel Michaud
DECEMBER - Amanda Hawkins