The Maine Labor Mural Controversy is Oct. 24 Sidore Topic

October 5th, 2011 by Elizabeth

PSU Sidore Lecture Series Hosts Artist Judy Taylor

Plymouth, N.H. – The Saul O Sidore Lecture Series at Plymouth State University will present Maine artist Judy Taylor at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 24 at the Silver Center for the Arts.  Taylor will speak on the “Maine Labor Mural Controversy.”

Taylor will discuss the creation of the Maine Labor Mural, the history of the individual panels, and the recent controversy over the removal of the panels under Maine Governor Paul LePage’s orders.

A native of Nebraska, Taylor grew up in the Midwest and studied at the New York Academy of Figurative Art and the National Academy of Design. After studying art in Europe, she moved to Mount Desert Island in Maine and opened a studio and gallery in Seal Cove. Taylor, whose work is in many public and private collections, was awarded the commission to paint the history of Maine labor for the Department of Labor in Augusta in 2008.

painted mural

Labor Mural Panels 9,10 © J. Taylor

The 11-panel mural was erected in 2008 after Taylor won a competition sponsored by the Maine Arts Commission. It includes depictions of Rosie the Riveter at Bath Iron works, a 1937 shoe worker’s strike, and a 1986 paper mill strike. “There was never any intention to be pro-labor or anti-labor,” the mural’s artist, Judy Taylor, told the Sun-Journal. “It was a pure depiction of the facts.”

According to an AFL-CIO newsletter, Maine AFL-CIO and artist Judy Taylor arranged for a reproduction of the mural to be displayed at Rockville, Md.’s nonprofit arts center, VisArts, earlier this fall.

This year’s Sidore Lecture Series focuses on the growing gap between the world’s rich and poor. The speakers hope to inspire audiences to think about the various forms of poverty that plague societies around the world, while sharing concrete solutions.

The next speaker in the series will be Robert Kuttner, cofounder and coeditor of The American Prospect, speaking on “Income Inequality in the U.S.: What are the Facts, What Difference Does it Make, and What Can Be Done About it?” Kuttner will speak at 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 7.

The Saul O Sidore Lecture Series was established at PSU in 1979 to bring a variety of speakers to the University each year to address the critical political, social and cultural issues and events of our time.

Free tickets are available at the Silver Center Box Office, (603) 535-2787 or (800) 779-3869.

General information about events at PSU is available at ThisWeek@PSU, http://thisweek.blogs.plymouth.edu.

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