Look Twice Evokes New Thoughts About History

Friday, October 9th, 2009, Bar Harbor, Maine The Abbe Museum is pleased to announce a new exhibit, titled Look Twice: The Waponahki in Image and Verse, by Maliseet artist/writer Mihku Paul Anderson. A wide variety of images depicting Maine's tribal history exist and are seldom seen except by researchers and scholars in the field. In addition, the general public is rarely given a broader cultural context in which to view them. Providing contemporary poetry, juxtaposed with historic imagery, Look Twice will simultaneously alter and reframe the context of those images. The effect mediates the historical gaze of a marginalized people. The prose that accompanies each image is one method of bringing history into the present moment, supporting another possible view of that history. The connection between past and present is then strengthened and new ways of understanding history result.

Exhibit designer and writer Anderson is a member of Kingsclear First Nation, N.B., Canada and a graduate student in the Stonecoast MFA program. Mikhu says "I created Look Twice with

the goal of redirecting the visitor's objective gaze at Waponahki life and history in this region. The river motif reflects the importance of these waterways to my people, and is symbolic of time-flow, history and memory as they function to both create and maintain identity." Mihku artfully combines her original writings, colorful graphics, and historic photography in a way that evokes new thoughts about the history of Waponahki people, the people of the Maliseet, Mik’maq, Passamaquoddy and Penobscot tribes.

This exhibit will hang in the Community Gallery of the Abbe Museum until April 2010. An artist’s opening reception will be on October 9th from 5:00 – 7:00pm, highlighted by a short poetry reading by Mihku.