Last Chance to View Award Winning Exhibition!

In July 2011 the Abbe Museum opened Indians & Rusticators: Wabanakis and Summer Visitors on Mount Desert Island 1840s-1920s, and in July 2012 we were excited to announce that the exhibit had won a Leadership in History Award from the American Association for State and Local History.

Now, in December 2012, we are sad to share that you only have four more weeks to visit this award-winning exhibit before it is gone!  On December 31, 2012 Abbe staff will start the bittersweet process of deconstructing Indians & Rusticators, to make space for Wabanaki Guides, opening on February 6, 2013.

We have four new exhibits going up in 2013, so Indians & Rusticators is not the only one leaving us.  Transcending Traditions: The Next Generation and Maine Indian Basketry will also close on December 31, 2012.  Learn more about the exhibits that will close and the exhibits that will open below, and visit us on one of these dates to say your farewells:

Click to enlarge.

Indians & Rusticator: Wabanakis & Summer Visitors on Mt. Desert Island 1840s-1920s
On View Through December 29

Indians and Rusticators highlights the role that Mount Desert Island played in the cultural and economic survival of Wabanakis (the collective name for Maliseet, Micmac, Passamaquoddy and Penobscot Indians).  Offering a focused look at the seasonal interactions of Wabanakis and summer rusticators (summer residents from the large urban areas of the Northeast), it profiles various personalities, especially the iconic Penobscot Indian showman Frank “Big Thunder” Loring, whose unforgettable presence on Mount Desert Island spanned 60 years of the Rusticator Era.  The stories told and research presented is the work of Bunny McBride, MA and Dr. Harald Prins, highly regarded scholars and authors of Wabanaki history.  They served as guest curators for the project. 
Indians & Rusticators is the winner of a 2012 Leadership in History Award.  Learn more here.

Transcending Traditions: The Next Generation and Maine Indian Basketry
 On View Through December 29

Ganessa Bryant basket, photo courtesy of the Hudson Museum

Transcending Traditions features five contemporary Maine Indian basketmakers representing the next generation: Jeremy Frey, Ganessa Bryant, Sarah Sockbeson, George Neptune and Eric “Otter” Bacon.  This project explores the new directions that these innovative artists are taking the tradition in the face of environmental and economic challenges.  This exhibit was created as a collaboration between the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance and the Hudson Museum, supported by a grant from the National Museum of the American Indian’s Indigenous Contemporary Arts Program. 

And Coming Soon...

Up Next in the Schloss Exhibit Gallery...
...replacing Indians and Rusticators, and opening in early Spring 2013:

Wabanaki Guides

The next major exhibit at the Abbe Museum is entitled Wabanaki Guides. This exhibit will focus on the legacy of Wabanaki people serving as guides for European and American explorers, cartographers, tourists, and artists from the European contact era in the 1600s, to the present day. The exhibit will shine a spotlight on how Wabanaki knowledge of the land and waterways has influenced visitors and illustrates how this legacy is linked to economic sustainability for the tribes, tourism and environmental sustainability for the state of Maine.

The exhibit, set in the Schloss Exhibit Gallery, will be designed as a guided canoe trip along a Maine river, with portages along the way where one can pause on the river bank and learn about the various aspects a guide had to consider when planning and executing a trip and what to expect along the way. Themes throughout the exhibit will focus on mapping, tracking, tourism and economics. Stories and historic accounts will be shared from various viewpoints, including those from Wabanaki guides, Henry David Thoreau and Joseph Treat, to name a few. Throughout the exhibit, Wabanaki place-names for places are incorporated and translated into English to show us how their words so accurately capture the essence of a place, bodies of water or wildlife, and how their deep connection to this place remains. The exhibit will also include hands-on activities for children, a gallery hunt with maps to follow, riddles to decode and flip games with questions and answers.

Up Next in the Schloss Exhibit Gallery...
...replacing Transcending Traditions, and opening in late spring 2013:

The 2013 Waponahki Student Art Show

These images are yet to be created!  Good luck to the students as they start their new school year, we can't wait to see what beautiful artworks will result from your creativity this year!

Up Next in the Circle of the Four Directions...
...using this special space to display the traveling exhibition, coming to the Abbe from the 
National Museum of the American Indian in early summer 2013:


As quoted from the exhibition's website:

Within the fabric of American identity is woven a story that has long been invisible—the lives and experiences of people who share African American and Native American ancestry.
 African and Native peoples came together in the Americas.  Over centuries, African Americans and Native Americans created shared histories, communities, families, and ways of life.  Prejudice, laws, and twists of history have often divided them from others, yet African-Native American people were united in the struggle against slavery and sipossession, and then for self-determination and freedom.

For African-Native Americans, their double heritage is truly indivisible.

"The exhibition IndiVisible: African-Native American Lives in the Americas is a collaboration between the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the Smithsonian Institution Travelling Exhibition Service (SITES).
Photo Caption from the National Museum of the American Indian:   
Comanche family, early 1900s
Here is a family from the Comanche Nation located in southwestern Oklahoma. The elder man in Comanche traditional clothing is Ta-Ten-e-quer. His wife, Ta-Tat-ty, also wears Comanche clothing. Their niece (center) is Wife-per, also known as Frances E. Wright. Her father was a Buffalo Soldier (an African American cavalryman) who deserted and married into the Comanches. Henry (center left) and Lorenzano (center right) are the sons of Frances, who married an African American man.  Courtesy Sam DeVenney  Learn more from the Smithsonian's website to accompany the exhibit.

And over the course of the winter...
...Sieur de Monts will be undergoing renovation and a new exhibit will open in Summer 2013!  
(Don't worry, your old favorites will be there too.)

We hope you enjoy!