New Exhibition at Maine Historical Society Explores Maine’s Relationship with Food
February 7, 2018
Food is the universal building block of life—if we don’t eat, we will die. All of us. But food has a power that goes far beyond just biology. Why are we so passionate about what we eat? The food we eat shapes our lives, our memories, and our identities. Maine Eats, a new exhibition at Maine Historical Society (MHS), opens on March 2, 2018 during Portland’s Restaurant Week and explores Maine’s unique relationship with food.
From Maine’s iconic lobsters, blueberries, potatoes, apples, and maple syrup, to local favorites like poutine, baked beans, red hot dogs, Italian sandwiches, and Whoopie Pies, Maine’s identity and economy are inextricably linked to food. Sourcing food, preparing food, and eating food are all part of the heartbeat of Maine’s culture and economy. Now, a food revolution is taking us back to our roots in Maine: to the traditional sources, preparation, and pleasures of eating food that have sustained Mainers for millennia.
Using historical and contemporary stories of individual people and communities Maine Eats tells the Maine food story. Throughout the exhibition, visitors are prompted to think deeply about the past, present and future of Maine’s relationship with food and to consider topics such as how Maine’s food is produced and consumed and how environmental and technological changes affect food.
Throughout Maine Eats, visitors will have the opportunity to discuss with each other and interact with Maine’s food story in creative and fun ways that engage the senses, from food scents to a social media recipe exchange to a life-size (yes, you read that right) soft-sculpture ham Italian sandwich you can lay down in (cue the #sandwichselfie)!
Maine Eats is a statewide initiative designed to bring the topics and issues surrounding food to the forefront and to provide context and educational resources to Maine audiences from students to tourists, business leaders and policy makers, to foodies and farmers and more. Alongside the year-long exhibition, MHS will offer a comprehensive suite of public programming and extensive educational activities.
Maine Eats is supported by Hannaford Supermarkets, Amato’s, BHA Foundation Fund, Margaret E. Burnham Charitable Trust, and Maine magazine.
What: Maine Eats: The Food Revolution Starts Here When: March 2, 2018 through February 9, 2019 Where: Maine Historical Society Gallery, 489 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101 On Social Media: #MaineEats
About Maine Historical Society: A growing museum, incomparable library and statewide educational resource, we are located in the heart of Portland’s downtown cultural district. Founded in 1822, Maine Historical Society is the third oldest state historical society in the United States. MHS strives to serve the entire state through its education and outreach programs and through the Maine Memory Network digital museum. MHS is comprised of the Wadsworth–Longfellow House and Longfellow Garden, the Maine Historical Society Museum and Store, the MHS Research Library, and Maine Memory Network.
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The Maine Historical Society promotes the understanding and enjoyment of Maine history.