(Courtesy photo)

WATERVILLE — Waterville Creates is excited to announce the Common Threads exhibition at Ticonic Gallery on view through Feb. 12.

Featuring a dynamic array of prints, written works, and portraits, Common Threads represents the individual and gathered stories shared through collaborative workshops and conversations led by artists Elizabeth Jabar and Colleen Kinsella during the summer of 2022. Using a screen-printed tent as a gathering place, Jabar and Kinsella brought community members of all ages together to explore the questions: What does it mean to be part of a community? How can we forge meaningful connections with each other and the place we call home? The exhibition is a visual presentation of shared hopes, dreams, and ideas for Waterville, and visitors to the exhibition are invited to contribute their own thoughts through interactive prompts.

“Waterville, Maine, like many other small towns, is experiencing this kind of rapid development, and if you’re going to engage a community about how it’s going to change and who it’s for, you have to ask everyone,” said Jabar and Kinsella. “The Common Threads project is an attempt to merge art and community outreach in an accessible and open-ended way by inviting the public in to engage with community questions and have their voices heard.”

“This exhibition is celebratory in nature — for artists, community members, and for Waterville. WC considers Common Threads the perfect inaugural exhibition to showcase the community dialogue that is at the heart of the exhibition. To have visitors see their work, aspirations, and ideas for Waterville on the gallery walls is very special,” says Marie Sugden, exhibitions coordinator for Waterville Creates.

The Paul J. Schupf Art Center serves as the new, consolidated home of Waterville Creates and its film, performing, and visual arts programs and a new contemporary gallery of the Colby College Museum of Art. The Paul J. Schupf Art Center is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, and Ticonic Gallery is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily except Tuesdays and federal holidays. Ticonic Gallery’s next exhibition will celebrate Youth Art Month with local school-aged children’s artwork (grades K-12), on view March 3–31, with an opening reception on Friday, March 3 from 4–6 p.m.

The Common Threads project is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Maine Arts Commission and realized in partnership with the Colby College Museum of Art and its Lunder Institute for American Art.

For more information on the Common Threads project, visit watervillecreates.org/shows/common-threads-exhibition/ or contact Marie Sugden, exhibitions coordinator, at msugden@watervillecreates.org.

The mission of Waterville Creates is arts experiences for all. Offering diverse programming for all ages, Waterville Creates is building a thriving, connected, and equitable community through shared experiences in the arts. For more information about Waterville Creates, visit watervillecreates.org.