Stephen Maine - Book 14-0103 in progress, 2016 - Image via studiocritical

Stephen Maine

United States 1958


Stephen Maine
Stephen Maine
United States
November 28, 2016
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A notable member of the American Abstract Artists, Stephen Maine is an abstract painter, writer, curator and teacher. Among all of his cultural activities, the way his paintings engage and extend contemporary ideas about color, composition, surface and process makes them the definite highlight of Maine’s creative career. Besides the aforementioned experimentations with the medium of painting, Stephen also investigates the potentials and limitations of both the surface of the piece and the process of making it.

Contact the Halftone gallery or use books to find our where any work is
Stephen Maine – P15-0712 (Left) / P16-0321 (Right)

A Unique Process

In order to achieve such an impressive control over abstract art that he possesses today, Stephen Maine attended numerous schools and faculties. He attended classes at Rhode Island School of Design, Hartford Art School, the University of Connecticut School of Fine Arts and the Yale Summer School of Music and Art. His BFA of Painting was achieved at Indiana University, Bloomington, in the year of 1982, whilst Stephen’s 2014 MFA is from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. During the course of all those years studying, Maine was developing his incredible visual vocabulary. His paintings are akin to relief printmaking as far as their making process goes. Stephen uses textured surfaces to apply fluid acrylic paint indirectly to a prepared long canvas. Besides the colors, his other common materials are plywood, extruded foam, plastic and glue. Maine has a practice of rolling and brushing wet paint over the plate before pressing it into the canvas using custom-built contraptions to ensure alignment of successive applications. What is integral to his creative process is the idea that the entire surface is treated with paint at the same moment. This sort of technique not only allows a strong visual result but it also prevents the author from interfering too much and compromising the artworks’ character. In most cases, however, multiple layers and more complex interactions of hues are called for in order to complete an image. Paint itself, both as color and material, is the primary subject of Stephen’s studio activity. He also finds motivation in the aleatoric elements of his process, which allows his materials and surfaces to collude in the artistic act rather than be scrutinized and dominated by him.

Stephen Maine has a characteristic process of making his paintings that demands that the entire surface of the canvas is treated with paint at the exact same moment

Stephen Maine spent all the years of 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016 at home, working
Stephen Maine – P14-1215 (Left) / P15-1031 (Right)

All of Stephen Maine’s Contributions

As it was said earlier, Stephen Maine dedicates a lot of his time to various cultural activities. Besides painting and writing, he is also a teacher, currently working at the Parsons School of Design and at the State University of New York at Purchase. It is incredible how Maine is capable of dedicating so much attention to various fields which all require commitment and are time-consuming. Yet, Maine is more than competent of not only balancing his cultural and creative activities but also to be a remarkable asset to all of his chosen professions.

This artist is represented by Ideel Art.

Stephen Maine lives and works in New York City, United States.

Featured image: Stephen Maine – Book 14-0103 in progress – Image via
All images courtesy of Ideel Art.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group
2016Chromatic SpaceFiterman Art Center, BMCC, New YorkGroup
2016Visible HistoriesMorris-Warren Gallery, NYGroup
2016The Onward of Art1285 Avenue of the Americas Gallery (UBS Gallery), New YorkGroup
2015Stephen Maine: ResidueNational Arts Club, New YorkSolo
2015Stephen Maine: New PaintingsHionas Gallery, New YorkSolo
2015Endless, EntireFive Myles, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2015DiphthongFiterman Art Center, Borough of Manhattan Community College, NYGroup
2015Stack-FileKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn NYGroup
2014Stephen Maine: PaintingsMelville House, Brooklyn NYSolo
2014Stephen Maine: Halftone Paintings490 Atlantic Gallery, Brooklyn, NYSolo
2014Doppler ShiftVisual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit NJGroup
2014Sensory ImpactMorgan Stanley World Headquarters, Purchase NYGroup
2014Paperazzi 3Janet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2014For Leo: American Abstract Artists Tribute ExhibitionSideshow, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2013Physical PropertyBrian Morris Gallery, New York NYGroup
2013DopplerParallel Art Space, BushwickGroup
2013Dynamic Invention: American Abstract Artists at 75Brattleboro Museum and Art Center, Brattleboro VTGroup
2013Paperazzi 2Janet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2013CONstruct-conSTRUCT: The Organizing PrincipleSchiltkamp Gallery, Clark University, Worcester MAGroup
2013Paperazzi 2Janet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2012Uncovered: Prints. Selections for the Kentler FlatfilesKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2012Minus Space en OaxacaInstituto de Artes Graficas de Oaxaca, MexicoGroup
2012Beauty Debate: Detroiter’s First Annual InvitationalArt Effect Gallery, DetroitGroup
2012Mic: check (occupy)Sideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2012PaperazziJanet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2012American Abstract Artists InternationalParis ConcretGroup
2012TextilityVisual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit, NJGroup
2011Chain LetterSamson Projects, BostonGroup
2011Flag DayIslip Art Museum, Islip, New YorkGroup
2011Abstraction [to the power of infinity]Ice Box Project Space, Crane Arts, Philadelphia, PAGroup
2011American Abstract Artists InternationalDeutscher Künstlerbund Projektraum, BerlinGroup
2011American Abstract Artists 75th Anniversary ExhibitionOK Harris Works of Art, NYGroup
2011Paper A-ZSue Scott Gallery, NYGroup
2011Splendor of Dynamic Structure: Celebrating 75 Years of the American Abstract ArtistsHerbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, NYGroup
2011Paper 2011Janet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2011It’s All Good (apocalypse now)Sideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2011Social PhotographyCarriage Trade, NYGroup
2010Group ShowSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2009It’s a Wonderful 10thSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2009Paper Workanet Kurnatowski Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2009Urban-SuburbanKansas City Jewish Museum, Overland Park, KSGroup
2009Partners+LifeBrooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2009It’s a Wonderful LifeSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2008PeaceSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn NYGroup
2008Painting’s Edge 2008Idyllwild Art Center, Idyllwild, CAGroup
2008American Abstract Artists: Tribute to Esphyr SlobodkinaThe Painting Center, New York, NYGroup
2007Material MatterSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2007Lineage 7M3 Gallery, Piermont, NYGroup
2007RadiusMetaphor Contemporary Art, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2007Continuum: Small Works by AAA MembersSaint Peter’s College, Jersey City, NJGroup
2007100 Works on PaperKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2007War is Over (Again)Sideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2006Design-BuildMetaphor Contemporary Art, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2006100 Works on PaperKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2006War is OverSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2005100 Works on PaperKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004Gyrations: Selections From the Flat FilesKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004Merry-PeaceSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004Breathing SpaceMetaphor Contemporary Art, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004Balancing ActAbrons Art Center, Henry Street Settlement, New YorkGroup
2004100 Works on PaperKentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004Annual Exhibition and Auction for Women’s CancersSideshow Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2003The Big Abstract Show,The Painting Center, New YorkGroup
2002Stephen Maine: New Paintings354 Exhibition, Brooklyn, NYSolo
2002Print 2002: Contemporary American Printmaking354 Exhibitions, Brooklyn, NYGroup
200225th Anniversary Benefit ExhibitionThe Drawing Center, New YorkGroup
2001Group show354 Exhibitions, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2001Works on Paper354 Exhibitions, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2001Buying Time: Nourishing ExcellenceSotheby’s, New York (NYFA)Group
2001Benefit 2001Momenta Art, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2000The Brooklyn ProjectSemi-Public Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
1997#2: New Work and Invited GuestsToil Studio, Brooklyn, NYGroup
1993New Members Show Part TwoCity Without Walls Gallery, Newark, NJGroup
1993Abstraction and RealityMontgomery Space, Jersey City, NJGroup
1993For Art’s SakeJersey City Museum, Jersey City, NJGroup
1991Five PaintersMomenta Art, Philadelphia, PAGroup
1991Visions of HartfordOld State House, Hartford, CTGroup
1990New Jersey Painting TodayFairleigh Dickinson University, Madison, NJGroup
1990Four By FiveJersey City Museum, Jersey City, NJGroup
1988The Drawing ShowMassachusetts College of Art, Boston MAGroup
1987Dewitt Godfrey and Stephen MaineR C Erpf Gallery, New YorkGroup
1986Selections 33The Drawing Center, New YorkGroup