Saturday, July 15, 2017

Langlais Sculpture Preserve

The Langlais Sculpture Preserve is a remarkable nature and sculpture park honoring the life and accomplishments of artist Bernard Langlais. Through the generosity of Helen Langlais, who out lived her husband by 30 years, the Colby College received a large bequest of artworks and property upon her death in 2010. Two years later Colby College gifted nearly 3,000 pieces of artwork to the Kohler Foundation which intends to restore, preserve and ultimately gift pieces to non-profit foundations throughout Maine and the United States.
This phenomenal sculpture park located in Cushing, Maine opened to the public in the spring of 2016.
The Georges River Land Trust of Rockland is the owner and steward of this amazing park that celebrates Bernard Langlais’s legacy. Early in his career Langlais developed a modernist painting style that brought him fame and notoriety. Several years later while renovating his summer cottage in Cushing he became captivated by working with scraps of wood and creating wall mosaics.
He gave up painting entirely and threw himself into this new medium which he termed ‘painting with wood.’ In the last 11 years of his life he constructed more than 65 monumental wood structures on the 90 acres surrounding his home. When Langlais died in 1977 at the age of 56 from congestive heart failure no one knew how many pieces of art he left behind. 
Many years later an intern asked if she might be allowed to catalog the work in the home and on the property. She discovered nearly 3500 pieces. At the entrance to the Preserve with it's rambling trails and larger than life outdoor sculptures stands his first piece, a 13 foot tall horse.

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