CSA: Community Supporting Arts project overview 2012

2012 Project summary

The goal of CSA: Community Supporting Arts in 2012-2013 was to promote both local art and local food by partnering 14 artists with 13 CSA farms in and around central Maine. The artists created art inspired by their farmers’ lives, work, landscapes, challenges and ideals since the beginning of the growing season in early spring 2012.

CSA: Community Supporting Arts is a project of the Harlow Gallery and the Kennebec Valley Art Association (KVAA)  in partnership with the Kennebec Local Food Initiative, an organization based in Gardiner, Maine that strives to strengthen community food security through access, education, information and advocacy.  The KVAA is a membership based 501(c) nonprofit that has owned and operated the Harlow Gallery in downtown Hallowell, Maine since 1963.

The Harlow Gallery and KLFI invite other arts and community groups to consider replicating CSA: Community Supporting Arts in their own community.  Click here for an informal “how to” manual.

We would very much appreciate hearing back from any organization or group that uses this guide as a launching point for its own version of CSA: Community Supporting Arts. Kindly send us an email or even snail mail. We’d love to see pictures, links, stories and news about how you adapted the project into your own community. Give Deb Fahy a call if you have specific questions at 207.622.3813.

Creative Commons License
CSA: Community Supporting Arts by The Harlow Gallery in Hallowell, Maine is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://harlowgallery.org/csa-community-supporting-arts/.

CSA: Community Supporting Arts has been made possible by grant funding from the Maine Community Foundation, the Maine Arts Commission, the Davis Family Foundation and by donors to our online Indiegogo fundraising campaign.  The fundraiser ended as of July 2nd, but you can check it out here:  www.indiegogo.com/CSA-Community-Supporting-Arts.

CSA: Community Supporting Arts SLIDE SHOW: Click on any image in the slide show to visit our online photo album in Picasa, where you can look through the images at your own pace, read captions and leave comments.  This slide show is an assortment of images from all the farms.  There are other albums available in Picasa where you can see pictures documenting each artist and farm in more depth.  Funding to hire Maine photographers to document the project was  available thanks to a grant from the Maine Arts Commission.

Participating Farms and Artists
Our partnering farmers are all operating CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farms in and around central Maine.  In joining a CSA, folks make a financial commitment to their farm by investing in a share of the produce at the beginning of the growing season. In return farmers are committed to producing the freshest, most flavorful, high quality food possible for their members (most CSA farms adhere to organic standards as much as possible).  Typically each CSA member gets a weekly delivery of produce from early summer through harvest. Community Supported Agriculture is a grassroots response to the growing social and environmental problems of our modern industrial food system, and this local foods movement is transforming relationships between people, food and farms.  According to the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association website, Maine’s CSA community includes over 160 farms with more than 6,500 families investing in their local food through the purchase of shares.

Here is the short version (about 4 minutes) entitled CSA: Community Supporting Arts 2012 on YouTube, by Art Mayers with music by Nat Hussey:  http://youtu.be/U-rr_JPU77M

Here is the full version (about 20 minutes), entitled CSA: Community Supporting Arts 2012 – Local art Local food on YouTube, by Art Mayers with music by Dave Mallet,  Nat Hussey, Narrow Gauge String Band, Bob Baldwin & Dave Pope: http://youtu.be/zge-s0xJuTg

CLICK HERE to view our CSA project blog from 2012.

CSA overview page CLICK HERE

CSA: Community Supporting Arts artist/farm partnerships are as follows. 

Kate Barnes of Oakland is partnered with Grassland Organic Farm in Skowhegan.
Susan Bickford of Newcastle and Kelsey Kobik of  Portland are partnered with Goranson Farm in Dresden, and Dig Deep Farm (in residence at Goranson Farm).
Aleana Chaplin of Gardiner is partnered with Winterberry Farm in Belgrade.
Kim Christensen of Albion and Jamie Ribisi-Braley of Manchester are partnered with Wholesome Holmstead in Winthrop.
Jamie Ribisi-Braley’s blog – Round up – Final CSA Work, see many earlier posts on the project!
Matt Demers of Gardiner is partnered with SNAFU Acres Farm in Monmouth.
Kerstin Engman of Liberty is partnered with Treble Ridge Farm in Whitefield.
Tyler Gulden of Walpole is partnered with Morning Dew Farm in Newcastle.
Christine Higgins of Readfield is partnered with Annabessacook Farm in Winthrop.
Scott Minzy of Pittston is partnered with Long Meadow Farm in West Gardiner.
Maina Handmaker of Brunswick is partnered with Milkweed Farm in Brunswick.
Petrea Noyes of Lincolnville is partnered with Crescent Run Farm in Bremen.
Emily Trenholm of Portland is partnered with Fresh Start Farms in Lisbon.CSA: Community Supporting



Community rallies for art, When a Hallowell gallery sounded the call for artists for its Community Supporting Arts (and agriculture) show, it turned into a veritable bucket brigade. By Bob Keyes. October 21, 2012, Portland Press Herald

New exhibitions to supplement series of art inspired by farmers, December 30, 2012 Portland Press Herald

Artists and farmers cultivate art together, January 1, 2013 Encore, Sun Journal

Arts, the Exhibition Series

Maine’s artist and farming communities are vibrant, idealistic groups, both key to our state’s unique sense of place. CSA: Community Supporting Arts organizers believe that artists can use the power of their artistic voices to effect social change.   Artwork by all the participating artists will be exhibited at the Harlow Gallery in October 2012.  Additional exhibitions focusing on select artist/farmer pairs will take place at partner venues between November 2012 and February 2013. The timing of the art exhibition series is meant in part to help spread awareness about local CSA farms as they begin recruiting new members for 2013.

Sheepscot General in Whitefield, on view November 9 – December 1, 2012. Opening Friday, November 9th from 5-8pm. FMI   http://www.sheepscotgeneral.com/
Savory Maine Dining & Provisions in Damariscotta, on view November 13, 2012 – February 5, 2013. Opening on Friday, November 16 from 3-5pm. FMI  http://www.savorymainedining.com/
Crosstrax Neighborhood Deli in Unity, on view December 7, 2012 – January 26, 2013.  Opening on Friday, December 7, 4-6pm.  FMI http://crosstraxdeli.com/
Maine Farmland Trust Gallery in Belfast, on view January 4 through February 2013. Opening on Friday, January 4th from 5-8pm.  FMI http://www.mainefarmlandtrustgallery.org/
The Hutchinson Center in Belfast, on view January 4 through February 2013. Opening on Friday, January 4th from 5-8pm.  FMI http://www.hutchinsoncenter.umaine.edu/
Art Gallery at Frontier in Brunswick, on view January 11 – February 24, 2013.  Opening Friday, January 11th from 5-8pm. FMI  http://www.explorefrontier.com/gallery/current-exhibitions
Common Ground Fair — CSA: Community Supporting Arts will have a booth in the exhibition hall at the Common Ground Fair!  Stop by and meet some of our artists and farmers. September 21, 22 & 23, 2012.  FMI www.mofga.org/TheFair/
Local Food | Local Art Celebration on Saturday, October 13, 2012 at the Vaughan Homestead in Hallowell.  Scheduled to coincide with the Fall Festival of Art and History in Historic Hallowell (visit http://hallowell.org/ for details).  Join CSA: Community Supporting Agriculture organizers, artists and farmers as we celebrate the 2012 harvest together.  We’ll provide a local food feast with a giant potluck and dishes to taste by celebrity chefs. Enjoy live music, a mini-farmers market and explore the grounds of the Vaughan Homestead, including the lovely Vaughan Woods trail system.  Then visit the CSA: Community Supporting Arts exhibition at the Harlow Gallery at 160 Water Street downtown.