MMPA Graceful
“Graceful Opuntia” by Sandra Klein.

The Maine Museum of Photographic Arts presents “The Paula Tognarelli Collection” from April 5 to May 25, with an opening reception from 5 to 8 p.m. April 5 featuring music by Ry’s Trio.

Personal art collections are always a form of self portraiture, and this new exhibition is no exception. It’s prodigious; about wonder, wit, moments, connections to individual artists, and they all have a dreamy and whimsical perspective. The romanticism of the collector shines through. The images also speak about the process of making art and the breadth or modes of expression in contemporary photography. The viewer will notice that there is an optimism throughout the compilation that makes spending time with these photographs delightful. It speaks to Tognarelli’s heart and eye.

MMPA Sperm
“Sperm and Egg” by Holly Roberts.

Artist talks and events will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. April 19 and May 17.

This exhibition is the beginning of MMPA’s 2024 season.

“We’ve decided to start each new season with a collector’s collection,” states MMPA director Denise Froehlich. “We want to celebrate the individuals who keep us making, exhibiting and responding to our ideas. These connoisseurs think enough of our process and its outcome to want to take home our creative product. We as viewers get to peek at the piles of works that were stashed, hoarded, acquired intuitively or incredibly decisively- ultimately representing the journey and the intent of the collector. The money these things cost, and their value over time is of interest. How do they store their works and what will they do with all this accumulation? What makes a collector and why do institutions collect in a post digital age? We will have talks and a new program, Print Night  on the first Wednesday of every month to investigate these topics.”

MMPA Anonymous
“Anonymous, 1910/2019” by Edie Bresler.

The Maine Museum of Photographic Arts is at 15 Middle St., A3, Portland. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday and by appointment on Wednesdays. See for more information.