Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Waponahki Student Art Show Alumna

Do you ever wonder if the artists featured in our Waponahki Student Art Show keep creating art once they leave the Maine Indian Education schools?

Christiana Becker, Penobscot, is a student at the University of Maine and has been using her art as a medium through which she displays and shares her culture. When she was in the eighth grade, she participated in the Abbe Museum's annual Waponahki Student Art Show with the following submission.


Hidden Warrior Spirit
Christiana R. Becker, Penobscot
Grade 8
Indian Island School
"I've always like to read fantasy books or books with swords. I like it when there is a woman who is a hero or warrior. So I drew a woman who wanted to be a warrior. She goes to one of her favorite spots to ask for guidance from her ancestors. She then sees a reflection of herself and finds she does have the spirit of a warrior. It's hidden inside her."
Fast forward to 2016 where several of Christiana’s original pieces were recently featured in the University of Maine's Senior Art Exhibit “Ghosts of Carnegie Hall." Christiana hopes observers take from her art the importance of “giving back to the Earth, being grateful, and making sure that your descendants and your people will also benefit from your actions.”

Read more about Christiana's success in a recent article posted by the Maine Journal.


Monday, June 13, 2016

Abbe Museum and Dawnland, LLC Announce 2016 Fellowship Winners

The 2016 Wabanaki Artist Fellows, Gabriel Frey, Theresa Secord, and Jason Brown, all gave artist demonstrations at the Abbe Museum's Annual Meeting on June 3, 2016. 

The Abbe Museum is honored to announce the 2016 Wabanaki Artist Fellows, recognizing three exceptionally creative individuals with a track record of achievement and significant contributions to the arts: Jason K. Brown, Penobscot, Gabriel Frey, Passamaquoddy, and Theresa Secord, Penobscot. These fellowships are made possible through support from Dawnland, LLC, the concessioner in Acadia National Park.

The fellowships are intended to provide support for travel, lodging, and other costs associated with exhibiting at Indian art markets in Maine and New Mexico. Brown and Secord will attend the 2016 Southwestern Association for Indian Arts Santa Fe Indian Market (SWAIA) in August, and Frey will attend one of the local markets.
“It is an honor to support talented Wabanaki artists and we look forward to hearing about their success and supporting them through fellowships, our Native American Festival and Basketmakers Market on July 9, 2016, and through our museum shop,” said Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko, president and CEO of the Abbe Museum. 
Brown, owner of Bangor-based jewelry studio Decontie & Brown, handcrafts jewelry and traditional beadwork made from various metals and semi-precious gemstones. “My work is motivated by my desire to bring to life the designs created by my imagination,” Brown said. “I find inspiration in nature, and in the designs of my Penobscot culture. Historically, the Wabanaki people hired local metalsmiths to create adornments for them. I feel that as a contemporary Wabanaki jeweler, I am breaking new ground as a metalsmith and jeweler.”

Frey, a Passamaquoddy brown ash basketmaker, specializes in utility baskets such as pack baskets, market baskets, and purses. “I weave each basket solely with brown ash and handcraft leather straps for each basket,” Frey said. “My artistic process includes locating and harvesting basket quality brown ash trees from the woods, processing brown ash logs, and weaving brown ash materials into basket forms. I carve the hoops, rims, handle, and wooden pins to fasten leather straps. The majority of my tools, such as basket molds, gauges, and my shave horse, are adaptations of traditional designs. Maintaining the traditional knowledge of Wabanaki basketmakers is an important aspect of my artistic process.”



Over the past ten years, Secord has won awards for her basketry, including several first places at Santa Fe Indian Market, the Heard Museum Guild Indian Fair and Market, and the Eiteljorg Indian Market. She is also the first U.S. citizen to receive the Prize for Creativity in Rural Life by the Women’s World Summit Foundation at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, for helping basket makers rise out of poverty. “My art journey is currently focused on the use of alternative, natural materials to supplement ash, due to the Emerald Ash Borer beetle,” Secord said. “I’ve been dedicated to the preservation/protection of the sacred ash trees for 23 years, and helped pioneer the use of cedar bark overlay on ash in Maine Indian basketry a few years ago.”


About Dawnland, LLC
Dawnland, LLC operates the Jordan Pond House restaurant, including the traditional tea and popovers on the lawn overlooking Jordan Pond and the Bubbles, and retail services at Jordan Pond House, Cadillac Mountain, and Thunder Hole. Dawnland's parent company, Ortega National Parks, LLC, has more than 45 years of hospitality experience and over 16 years' experience operating concessions in the National Park Service, including at Bandelier National Monument, White Sands, Muir Woods, Carlsbad Caverns, Death Valley and Gateway National Recreation Area.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Wabanaki Placenames Tour with George Neptune, Passamaquoddy



Join Museum Educator George Neptune on Friday, June 24th, from 10-11:30 am for a tour examining the history of Wabanaki People at Moneskatik. This walking tour of Bar Harbor will visit places that are significant to Wabanaki history and culture, and will include information on local Wabanaki placenames, traditional songs, and creation stories. Traditional knowledge and shared history combine to create a tour experience that is engaging for audiences of all ages.

Cost is $10 for members, $20 for non-members. Children under 10 are free. Not a member? Sign up here. Please contact the Abbe at 207-288-3519 to reserve your spot today!

Please note: this is a walking tour around Bar Harbor, so comfortable shoes and cool attire are recommended. There will be at least two opportunities along the way to sit and rest for a few moments.



Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Native American Culture is Thriving in Maine

“Are there really Native Americans living in Maine today?”

This is one of the most frequently asked questions from our visitors.

Of the more than five million Native people living in the U.S., approximately 10,000 call Maine home. Most are Wabanaki—a confederacy of Nations that today consists of the four federally recognized tribes in Maine: Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, Micmac, and Maliseet. The Wabanaki also includes several bands of the Abenaki tribe, located primarily in New Hampshire, Vermont, and Quebec.

Education changes everything. And at the Abbe Museum, in Bar Harbor, Maine, education is at the center of what we do—every single day. Our 30,000 guests experience a different kind of engagement that includes aesthetic, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual exploration and meaning-making. They leave the Museum knowing that Native American culture is thriving in Maine.  

Your support is the only way we can accomplish all that we do.

Your support this spring will help change lives by providing cultural experiences that inspire new learning about the Wabanaki Nations. For as little as $30, you can directly impact our ability to offer life-changing experiences!

From all of us at the Abbe Museum, thank you for believing in what we do!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

May is Member Appreciation Month at the Abbe!


This May, we celebrate your support as a member with month-long perks when you present your current membership card.

  • 15-25% discount on Museum Shop purchases May 9th - 13th (restrictions apply)
  • Receive a $10 discount on all gift membership purchases
  • Visit either of our locations (downtown Bar Harbor or Sieur de Monts in Acadia National Park) for an exciting opportunity to enter a members-only drawing for two tickets to the Abbe Backyard Bash on September 10, 2016
  • Use the hashtag #AbbeMember on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for a chance to win a Wabanaki made basket from our gift shop
  • Relax in the members-only lounge and enjoy free WiFi and light refreshments
  • Bring along friends and family to enjoy reduced Abbe admission tickets: $3 for adults and $2 for children (max of four tickets total for the entire month)
  • Enjoy a member appreciation Wabanaki Placenames Tour on Friday, May 20th at 2pm. This walking tour of Bar Harbor will visit places that are significant to Wabanaki history and culture, and will include information on local Wabanaki placenames, traditional songs, and creation stories.
Not a member? Sign up or renew online today!

Your generous support enables the Museum to present outstanding exhibitions, preserve our permanent collections, and provide enriching programs for our community – we love our members!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Education Changes Everything


Have you ever had a learning experience completely change your life? 

Education changes everything. And at the Abbe Museum, education is at the center of what we do, every single day. Your support has helped us change the way our guests visit the Museum. Take twelve-year-old Clara's experience, for example:
"I went home and told my parents about everything I learned during my school's field trip to the Museum. The cool part was that they didn't know a lot about the Wabanaki people, and in a way, I became the teacher. Kids my age really need to learn the truth about Native Americans. I know I will never forget that day at the Abbe."
Thanks to our supporters, the 3,000 students who visit the Museum experience a different kind of engagement that includes aesthetic, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual exploration and meaning-making. They leave the Abbe knowing that Native culture is thriving in Maine. In 2015, we delivered 105 programs at the Abbe and 82 programs outside the Museum, influencing 6,677 individuals. We collaborated with Acadia National Park and presented 13 programs that drew a total of 3,191 visitors.

Your support is the only way we can accomplish all that we do.

Your support this spring will help change lives by providing cultural experiences that inspire new learning about the Wabanaki Nations. For as little as $30, you can directly impact our ability to offer life-changing experiences to more people like Clara.

From all of us at the Abbe Museum, thank you for believing in what we do!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Campfire Storytelling with George Neptune, Passamaquoddy


Storytelling is an important part of Wabanaki culture, as stories are used to pass on the knowledge of Wabanaki traditions, history, and worldview to the next generation. Join us on Saturday, April 23rd from 7 - 8:30 pm for an evening around the campfire and listen to stories from across the Dawnland. With s’mores and hot beverages, this is a unique and intimate experience open to all ages. Please note that the terrain of the location is uneven and rocky in spots, so may not be suitable for some audience members. 


Cost: $10 for members and $20 for non-members. Children under 10 are free. To buy tickets, please contact the Abbe at 207-288-3519. Tickets will not be available for purchase the evening of the event. 

Location: Private residence at 156 Indian Point Road, Bar Harbor, Maine.