Precourt exhibit ‘Things Fall Apart’ on display at UMA

IMAGE: “Things Fall Apart,” by Peter Precourt, Sumi-e ink and coffee on photo diffuser screen, 72×48 inches, 2020-21.

AUGUSTA – The works of University of Maine at Augusta professor Peter Precourt will be on exhibit at the Charles Danforth Gallery in Jewett Hall at UMA through Sept. 30.
There will be an opening reception from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 9. A lunchtime artist’s talk will be held from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 29.
The exhibition, “Things Fall Apart,” will include works created during Precourt’s 2020-21 trustee professorship and sabbatical. The title comes from the 1919 William Butler Yeats’ poem “The Second Coming,” and more lines serve as titles for works in the show, which includes drawings that render the emotional landscape of the COVID-19 era through the metaphor of Yeats’ poem.
Painted on suspended semi-transparent surfaces, Precourt’s black and white painted drawings of rollercoasters and orbiting swings emerge from the time and focus that his trustee professorship and sabbatical afforded him during the pandemic. While he’d intended to continue his “Katrina Chronicles,” he said, “I found that the instability and destabilization of normal life took its toll on me, and I could not continue the structure of the Katrina Chronicles.”
Working in his Winthrop studio on mulberry rice paper and a semi-transparent commercially produced photo diffuser film used in photography studios, Precourt transformed a visual language of the carnival attractions he has been exploring for 15 years.
The gallery is open, with mask required, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, visit