What's New

Focus on Photography

Saturday, April 30, 2016

The museum looks at the art of photography through special events and activities on Saturday, April 30. Maine photographer Kosti Ruohomaa and the exhibition The Passionate Photographer: Kosti Ruohomaa's Maine in Magazine Photojournalism will be a special focal point of the day's offerings which include a talk, book signing, and gallery activities. The museum will be open free of charge all day.


Headlining the day is retired Maine State Museum curator Deanna Bonner-Ganter (pictured at left), who will give a talk and sign copies of her new book, Kosti Ruohomaa: The Photographer Poet. Her talk begins at 1:00 p.m., followed by the book signing. Copies of Bonner-Ganter's book will be available for sale in the Museum Store.

Bonner-Ganter spent over thirty years researching Kosti Ruohomaa's life and work. Her book, published by Down East Books, is the only biography of Ruohomaa (1913-1961) and tells his story from his Finnish-American upbringing in Vermont and Maine to his travels as a frequent contributor to the great pictorial magazines of the mid-twentieth century, Life, National Geographic, and Look.

In spite of the worldy focus of much of his work, Ruohomaa's true passion was the photographic documentation of the lives of Maine people and a way of life that was rapidly fading. The Maine images will be a focus of Bonner-Ganter's talk, "Kosti Ruohomaa: The Photographer Poet, close to the Land, Close to the Sea."

During her tenure at the Maine State Museum, Bonner-Ganter served as the curator of the current exhibition, The Passionate Photographer: Kosti Ruohomaa's Maine in Magazine Photojournalism Featuring sixty images, as well as vintage magazines and personal scrapbooks that Ruohomaa kept to document his career, the exhibition is the first comprehensive look at the photographer's work.