Premier coup

Edwin Dickinson in Provincetown, ‘The Exposure Project’ in Brookline, and architectural drawings at Montserrat
By RANDI HOPKINS  |  July 17, 2007
Edwin Dickinson, Still Life with Guitar (1914)

American modernist painter Edwin Dickinson (1891–1978) has never fit easily into art history’s categories. Known equally for large, mysterious paintings that capture a dark dream world (some of them took as many as seven years to complete) and small landscapes — called “premier coup” paintings — created in one session, Dickinson has long been admired by artists and scholars, but he’s gone under-recognized by many of the rest of us. The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) is aiming to fix that with “EDWIN DICKINSON: THE PROVINCETOWN YEARS, 1912-1937,” which opens this Friday.

Dickinson moved to Provincetown in 1912, and it remained his primary residence till 1939, when, after a 10-month sojourn in France, he moved with his family 20 miles “up Cape” to Wellfleet. Provincetown was a lively artistic center for modernism in the early years of the 20th century, and Dickinson was a friend and colleague to many of the experimental artists who were drawn to the area. He was a founding member of PAAM, and this exhibition, the first devoted to him there since his death in 1978, will mix little-seen works and rare prints of Provincetown locales with his better-known pieces.

Photographers Adam Marcinek, Anastasia Cazabon, Eric Watts, and Ben Alper — each an interesting artist in his or her own right — are taking an active role in uncovering and publicizing the talents of those whose work they admire. The four have collaborated on the Exposure Project, which aims to promote photographers with long-term projects and to create a forum for emerging photographers. In the fall of 2006, they self-published the first volume of the Exposure Project, a pocket-sized book featuring new work by themselves and others. Now, their second volume is about to hit the stands, and they’re hosting a book-release celebration and related exhibition, “THE EXPOSURE PROJECT — BOOK RELEASE PARTY,” at the Brookline Arts Center on July 26. The new book will be on sale, but the party is free; drop by to talk marketing and art.

From a Caribbean interpretation of Dutch architecture at the Sonesta Hotel in Curaçao to the renovation of a traditional, shingle-style boathouse at Groton, the Manchester-by-the-Sea-based architectural firm Olson Lewis Dioli & Doktor has put its hand to a diverse array of projects. On July 30, Montserrat College of Art opens “MOVING STRUCTURE: ARCHITECTURAL DRAWINGS BY OLSON LEWIS DIOLI AND DOCTOR,” with hand-sketched plans, computer-generated perspectives, and more.

“Edwin Dickinson” at Provincetown Art Association and Museum, 460 Commercial St, Provincetown | July 20–September 23 | 508.487.1750 | “The Exposure Project — Book Release Party” at Brookline Arts Center, 86 Monmouth St, Brookline | July 26: 6:30-8:30 pm | Free | 617.566.5715 | “Moving Structure” at Montserrat College of Art, 23 Essex St, Beverly | July 30–August 23 | 978.921.4242 x 1319

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