Thanks for checking out this post on all things art in Portland, Maine. Galleries, museums, supplies, schools, shows, events and more will all be covered thoroughly right here.
Our goal is to make this a one stop shop that has all the information that you desire. We think it is best to start off by diving right into the best Portland Art Galleries and Museums where you can see some of the finest exhibitions and collections the city has to offer.
Up next we will let you know where to track down all of the supplies you need at some of the best art stores near you. Shows and events will be following that up.
Art walking tours can be a great way to see a variety of styles in a short amount of time, plus we will mention where you can see some of the coolest statues and sculptures in the city. Portland art classes and lessons will need to get its own section and there are plenty of classes for both kids and adults.
For those that want to skip the lessons and get right to it we will help with finding art studios for rent near you. And our final section will list the best shops for framing around town.
You can look through more of our posts on cities around the Northeast here.
Best Art Galleries & Museums In Portland
If you want to visit the best art galleries and museums in Portland you can go to:
- Portland Museum of Art at 7 Congress Sq
- Greenhut Galleries at 146 Middle St
- Portland Art Gallery at 154 Middle St
- Fore River Gallery at 87 Market St
- Mayo Street Arts at 10 Mayo St
- Institute of Contemporary Art at 522 Congress St
- Bridge Gallery at 568 Congress St
- Congress Square Gallery at 609A Congress St
- Anderson Gallery at 342 Fore St
- Maine Crafts Portland at 521 Congress St
- Casco Bay Artisans at 68 Commercial St
Many would consider the cultural heart of this city to be the The Portland Museum of Art. They have nearly twenty thousand unique items on display as well as a really cool sculpture park.
You may already know about the Youth Art Month they host each March that we will mention again in a future section. Back in 1977 the Greenhut Galleries were established and since then they have been called the best gallery in town by Down East Magazine, the Maine Sunday Telegram, and Portland Press Herald.
Every month they put up new exhibitions by regional and local artists to help them get some shine. Another great place that has helped many locals in various mediums like puppetry, painting, dance, music, and theater is Mayo Street Arts.
They put on some of the best performances at the National Night Out and have summer programs for students in the area. You will find a rotating mix of five different exhibitions each year at The Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art.
It is a great place to go to see a diverse series of public events, visiting artist talks, art history lectures, and panel discussions. Maine Craft Portland is a gallery and resource center located in Mechanics Hall.
On site they exhibit and sell the work of over a hundred Maine Craft Association members. You will find works from over seventy international artists at Casco Bay Artisans and they do private viewings if that is what you are after.
Materials & Supplies Near You
There are quite a few stores in this city to buy art supplies and materials like:
- The Art Mart at 517 Congress St
- Maine Portland Pottery Store at 220 Anderson St
- Artist & Craftsman Supply at 540 Deering Ave
- Joann at 1064 Brighton Ave
- Dollar Tree at 1100 Brighton Ave
Art Mart has been voted the best Arts & Crafts Store in Portland before. There is a very gracious 60 day return policy at Maine Portland Pottery Store.
Shows & Events
Our favorite shows and events on the local calendar are:
National Youth Art Month has been presented by The Portland Museum of Art and the Maine Art Education Association for almost three decades. Every March they present exhibitions by local Maine kids from around the state in grades K-12.
In August you can check out the National Night Out. The streets of East Bayside get over run by a parade with giant puppets and a variety of performers and live musicians. There are multiple Guild Fine Craft Show including in July at Camp Beech Cliff, in August at the United Farmers Market of Maine, in September at the Camp Ketcha, and in October at the Fort Andross Mill Complex.
Art Dealers & Appraisers
Whether you want to check a pieces value, have a consultation, find an auction or get some other assistance you can go to art dealers and appraisers near you like:
- Susan Maasch Fine Art at 225 Commercial St
- Edward T Pollack Fine Arts at 29 Feeney Way
- Barridoff Galleries at 312 Gannett Dr, South Portland
Susan Maasch Fine Art provides art consultations for businesses, homes, or to local artists who are trying to get a foot into the door. One of the best places to go for fine art auctions near you is the Barridoff Galleries.
They can do quick or more in depth appraisals, put on auctions for valuable works, or help with fine art storage. Other places we discuss on this page that also sell art are Maine Craft Portland, Casco Bay Artisans, Mainely Frames & Gallery, Art House Picture Frames, and Roux & Cyr International Fine Art Gallery.
The First Friday Art Walk which starts at 84 Free St will take you through this cities Arts District on the First Friday of each month from 5pm to 8pm. There are generally thousands of people in attendance and the event features live music, gallery tours, and local street artists showing off their latest pieces.
Sculptures & Statues
You can also find some really cool statues and sculptures around the area:
- Our Lady Of Victories Monument at 456 Congress St
- John Ford Statue at 4 Pleasant St
- Maine Lobsterman at Canal Plaza at Middle and Temple St
- Michael at One City Center Plaza
- Link at 1001 Westbrook St
- Fireman Statue at the Corner of Congress St & Pearl St
Monument Square is the home of the Our Lady Of Victories Monument which was created and produced by Franklin Simmons and Morris Hunt. Back in 1998 George Kelly dedicated the John Ford Statue in Gorham’s Corner.
The Maine Lobsterman was originally created to be a part of the New York World’s Fair in the late 1930’s. One City Center Plaza is home to The Sculpture Michael which was designed by John Raimondi in the 1970’s.
A unique sculptural experiment of modular interlocking forms is how one could describe Jesse Salisbury’s Link Series. The Fireman Statue was originally created before the turn of the 20th Century and was moved to the Central Fire Station in 1987.
Portland Art Classes
We are all at different levels and sometimes a lesson or two can give us the boost that we need. Some of the best Portland art schools and classes can be found at:
- Maine College Of Art at 522 Congress St
- Portland Pottery Studio at 118 Washington Ave
- Roux & Cyr International Fine Art Gallery at 48 Free St
- Muse Paintbar at 245 Commercial St
- Still Life Studio at 82 Elm St
There are classes for kids aged 6-16 and adults available at Portland Pottery Studio. Students can get studio access 7 days a week and they also can host corporate events.
If you want oil painting lessons, private courses, painting workshops or concierge services you will find them at Roux & Cyr International Fine Art Gallery. At the Still Life they like to focus on small group classes or giving private painting lessons for all ages.
Studios For Rent Near You
When you are ready to get your next project started consider renting an art studio in your area at:
- Grime Studios at 299 Presumpscot St
- Running With Scissors Artist Studios at 250 Anderson St
- The Open Bench Project at 971 Congress St
- Random Orbit at 795 Congress St
- SPACE Studios at 538 Congress St
- Indigo Arts Alliance at 60 Cove St
Maine Portland Pottery Store from our art supplies list and Still Life Studio from art schools list also have studio space for rent.
A frame can take a normal looking picture a long way, and some of the best places for art framing in Portland are:
- Mainely Frames & Gallery at 541 Congress St
- Grapheteria Inc at 143 Kennebec St
- Art House Picture Frames at 61 Pleasant St
- Casco Bay Frames & Gallery at 295 Forest Ave
- Sea Glass Frames at 12 Woodmere Rd
If you want custom framing with a wide selection frames and mats or handling art for shadowboxing head to Grapheteria. You will find ready-mades frames, shadowboxes, and frame restoration services available at Art Picture House Frames.
Casco Bay Frames & Gallery has been helping local Portland artists for nearly 40 years. Greenhut Galleries and Joann from our prior lists also do custom framing.
You might want to look through more of our posts on:
- Boston Art Galleries & Museums
- Montreal Art Galleries & Museums
- NYC Art Galleries & Museums
- Providence Art Galleries & Museums
Have Fun Enjoying The Portland Art Scene
We just listed the best galleries, museums, events, shows, supply stores, dealers, appraisers, walking tours, sculptures, classes, studios, and framers in the area. If you made it all the way to the end then you probably love art as much as we do.
You can let us know about any of your own tips and tricks in the comments at the end of the post, or please also let us know if we got anything wrong or if anything we posted is no longer accurate. Have fun going to the galleries, museums, buying supplies or doing anything that has to do with art in Portland!