Uptown, a few blocks from the waterfront, is Portland’s Arts District; with Congress Street as its spine, this once traditional shopping street has turned into a mecca of art galleries, antique shops, and artist studios, anchored by the Maine College of Art. Outside of the city, visitors will encounter nationally-recognized collections of American art in elegantly appointed galleries and museums.
Representing the wealth of Maine artisans is The United Maine Craftsmen, with over 500 members who exhibit their work in shows around the state. The Maine Craft Show Guild joins regional excellence in clay, fiber, wood, glass and paper. It’s easy to find their holiday shows and expos year round, and worth the visit – in addition to providing fine shopping opportunities, they are a chance to meet the craftspeople, view and experience their work, and purchase products directly. Many visitors end up commissioning works; others enjoy just savoring the occasion to view the work of these experts in their field.