Leap year

Ready to celebrate the biggest ArtPM show yet

The ArtPM Challenge encourages everyone to make a piece of art during the month of February, and this year, participants put their heart into it.

“This year’s show is very passionate. There is a lot of emotion here,” said event organizer and local artist Jocelyn Toffic.

An opening reception for the show at Buoy Gallery is planned for Friday, March 18, from 6 to 10 p.m. It remains on view through May 13.

Toffic’s favorite piece is by Brian Chu, a University of New Hampshire professor. “He did a beautifully intimate still life of a garlic bulb,” she said. “Students will remember fondly his affection for this unassuming subject.”

But, she said, the challenge isn’t limited to trained and professional artists, although that demographic showed up in force this year. An open show like this one is an important way to reinforce the idea that anyone can make art.

“Open shows are such a great way to involve the whole community in the art-making and art-viewing process,” she said.

ArtPM is both a way to keep in practice and a push for improvement, and Toffic said she uses the opportunity to try new things and explore new mediums.

“I’m not sure if having an extra day made a difference, but this is definitely our biggest ArtPM in the eight years we’ve been doing it,” said Toffic. About 173 artists participated this leap year.

“I actually ran out of time this year. I am also a victim of the things ArtPM strives to overcome, which is art-driven or art-curious people being overruled by the mundane responsibilities of everyday life,” she said. “So at the last second I drew a penis in Sharpie on a cow skull.” It’s called “Primal Urges & Universal Truths.”

Buoy is at 2 Government St., Kittery, Maine. 


Detail of a painting by Anne Buckwalter.