The Monhegan Museum
Tickets & Exhibition Catalogue Giveaway

July 1-September 30, 2023

John Hultberg (1922-2005), Apocalyptic Sleep, 1976-1983. Acrylic on panel
John Hultberg (1922-2005), Apocalyptic Sleep, 1976-1983, acrylic on panel, 22 x 30 in., Monhegan Museum of Art & History, Gift of Elaine R. Wechsler Living Trust.

Monhegan Museum of Art & History presents the exhibition Counterpoint: Monhegan’s Artist Couples, showcasing the interwoven artistic endeavors of four couples who formed the core of Monhegan Island’s art community in the mid to late 20th century. The exhibition will be on view July 1 through September 30, 2023.

Counterpoint: Monhegan’s Artist Couples will feature works by Reuben and Geraldine Tam, Marvin Oberman and Arline Simon, Jan and William McCartin, and John Hultberg and Lynne Drexler. This exhibition explores how these eight artists became interconnected as partners, collaborators, neighbors, and friends during the second half of the 20th century.

All these artists met and married in New York City and converged on Monhegan Island in the 1960s, where they found inspiration and were welcomed by the islanders. They structured their lives to allow for extended stays on the island, with some pushing the limits of the summer season by arriving as early as April or staying into October.

Living in shared spaces and in close proximity while working on the island, the artists’ art related in counterpoint, like simultaneous melodies interwoven in a musical composition. Their musical gatherings, where symphonic music, opera, and traditional instruments were played, strengthened the social fabric of the community at the time. The artists showed their work in solo exhibitions and during open studio hours on Monhegan. Still, many also exhibited together as couples and with other Monhegan artists in Maine and in New York City.

“Counterpoint offers a fascinating glimpse into the lives and artistic interplay of Monhegan’s most influential artist couples,” said Jennifer Pye, Director of the Monhegan Museum of Art & History. “Through their collaborations, friendships, and shared experiences on the island, they created a vibrant artistic community that continues to inspire and captivate us to this day.”

William McCartin (1905-2003)
Interstice III, n.d.
Acrylic on canvas, 40 x 32 in.
Monhegan Museum of Art & History, Gift of Sally Anne McCartin
Geraldine Tam (1920-2006), New England Aster, Aster novae-angliae, n.d.
Ink and watercolor on paper
Geraldine Tam (1920-2006)
New England Aster, Aster novae-angliae, n.d.
Ink and watercolor on paper


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Monhegan Museum of Art & History
1 Lighthouse Hill Monhegan, ME 04852

(207) 596-7003
[email protected]
$10 admission

About the Museum

The Monhegan Museum of Art & History is located in the historic Monhegan Island Light Station, 12 miles off the coast of Maine. The Monhegan Light Keeper’s House contains exhibits about the island’s history, art, and nature; and the Assistant Keeper’s House holds a gallery that features exhibitions from the museum’s art collection, which spans more than 160 years. Additionally, the Rockwell Kent/James Fitzgerald Historic Artists’ Home and Studio displays a collection of works by James Fitzgerald. The museum is open daily from June 24 through September 30, during which time the Kent/Fitzgerald Home and Studio are open Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday.