Common Street Arts in Waterville will host a collection of prints by artists from Maine and Aomori, Japan beginning May 18th through July 18th in an online Virtual MAPS Exhibit!  The traveling exhibition is part of MAPS (Maine-Aomori Printmaking Society), a cultural exchange program sharing art and artists between Maine and Aomori. The MAPS initiative is celebrating five years of collaborative exhibitions and artist exchanges. MAPS will be on view online through the Common Street Arts social media accounts from April 13 to July 6. For more information, please see their website.

View the exhibit here:

Friends of  Aomori proud to announce that this exhibitions is made possible by the generous support of the Rines-Thompson fund of the Maine Community Foundation.

New Morning, Stephen Burt

Since 2015, Friends of Aomori and their partners in Japan, led by curators Jeff Badger and Jiro Ono, have coordinated the exchange of ten prints each year from artists in Maine and Aomori. The prints have been exhibited in Maine and Japan and the collection currently includes over a hundred works. The prints exchanged in 2019-2020 will be exhibited online through the Common Street Arts social media accounts from May 18th to July 18th. The same collection was shown at the Aomori Arts Pavilion in Japan during the Citizen Culture Days in October 2019, which was attended by an artist delegation from Maine that included five artists and curators included in the show. “We’re thrilled to be partnering with MAPS and look forward to showcasing this beautiful collection of prints. It’s a wonderful partnership and we are so pleased to be able to serve as a venue,” says Patricia King, Vice President of Waterville Creates.

錦石の浜  Nishiki-Ishi (Gemstone) Seashore
北村 収 Osamu Kitamura

The official relationship between Maine and Aomori has been in place for over 20 years, but the fascinating connection between the two states goes back to the wreck of a ship from Bath off the Japanese coast in 1889, resulting in a daring rescue of American sailors by Japanese villagers. In addition to MAPS, Friends of Aomori – the all-volunteer non profit that supports the partnership – also supports high-school exchange programs, educational workshops and events, and economic development opportunities.

“The MAPS print collection has grown into a beautiful representation of the diversity and
excellence in printmaking that can be found in both Maine and Aomori. Our goal is to exhibit this dynamic and growing collection all over the State of Maine. We are proud to partner with Common Street Arts to share this work with the people of Waterville and neighboring communities” says Badger.

The MAPS 2020 collection features work by: Lydia Badger, Stephen Burt, Susan Groce, David Harmon, Mary Hart, Emiko Kamada, Hitoshi Kikuchi, Osamu Kitamura, Michiko Kusakabe, Tadashi Saito, Hiroshi Takehana, Kiyohiro Toriyabe, Raegan Russell, Allison Derby Hildreth, Pilar Nadal, Noriyuki Ota, Lisa Pixley, Deloris A. White, David Wolfe, Tamiko Yamaya, and Tuya Yasuta.

MAPS is presented by Friends of Aomori and made possible by the generous support of the Rines-Thompson fund of the Maine Community Foundation and Ocean House Gallery and Frame.