Saturday, October 23, 2010

Lobster Capital – Let’s EAT

eats farnsworth musmRockland is one of the biggest shipping centers of lobsters in the world and today calls itself the lobster capital of the world. The  city hosts an annual Lobster Festival in August and at in December erects a Christmas tree built of lobster traps decorated with evergreens and lobster trap buoys.

Rockland is a city in Knox County, Maine. Abenaki Indians called it Catawamteak, meaning “great landing place.” In 1767, John Lermond built a camp to produce pine lumber, and it was called Lermond's Cove and later Shore village. Renamed Rockland in 1850, it was chartered as a city in 1854. The new name came from the granite and limestone that has been quarried and shipped to major cities from Maine. Rockland’s principal businesses were shipbuilding and lime production. In 1854, the city built 11 ships, 3 barks, 6 brigs and 4 schooners.

Today, the city is the commercial center of the midcoast Maine region with historic inns, shops, restaurants, and art galleries, including the Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center.

street view (1) street view (3) street view (5)It’s also home to the 20x20 foot EAT sculpture – 5 six-foot diameter disks weighing 300-pound discs, each 6 feet in diameter – that is showcased 50 feet above ground level. It sits on special base built to withstand winds of up to 100 mph. The original light bulbs have been replaced with modern light-emitting diode bulbs.

NO, it’s not signaling a restaurant, but sits on top of the Farnsworth Art Museum. It is on a special base built to withstand winds of up to 100 mph.The original light bulbs have been replaced with modern light-emitting diode bulbs.

farnsworth museum

The electrified metal sculpture was designed by American pop artist Robert Indiana for the 1964 World’s Fair in Flushing, NY – and was an instant hit.

NOT because people appreciated the artwork sitting in front of the New York State Pavilion – instead long lines formed because people thought there was a restaurant inside the exhibition.robert-indiana-love The confusion led to fair administrators turning off the illuminated display shortly afterwards. When the World's Fair ended, the sign was kept in a storage shed behind Indiana's home in Maine. Think you never heard of Indiana? His best known piece worldwide is LOVE – two letters on 2 lines with the "O'' tilted sideways.

A few more pieces from the Farnsworth Museum sculpture garden.

art collage


Out on the prairie said...

I was ready to eat my heart out with fresh lobster.Like the artwork.

Anvilcloud said...

That sign would have confused the hungry hordes.

Anonymous said...

I have actually heard of this town before, but I´m not sure why. Perhaps because Gothenburg also is a lobster town and I know fishermen that sometimes talks about the fishing on Your side of the Atlantic ocean.

But I have never heard of the artist Indiana. I´ll have to look him up on the internet.

Have a great day now!

Country Mouse Studio said...

Great signs

Montanagirl said...

Interesting post (again) !

Lois Evensen said...

I believe I've seen the "LOVE" artwork on a US postage stamp. Have you seen that???

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Hello everyone, the EAT sign certainly is an attention grabber, especially when it lights up. It certainly looks like the type of sign to invite folks in for a bite. Reading the histoy behind the sign was fascination.

Out on the Prairie, we should have had some lobster after seeing the sign, but didn't have anything except ice cream in Rockland.

AC, when you see it lit, you would definitely think so!

Christer, you will find a lot online about the artist, he is very well known and lives in Vinalhaven, Maine.

Thanks for the visit and comments, County Mouse and Mona!

Lois, yes I knew that Indiana's art was featured on the Love stamp after reading about him.

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