Sarah Loftus spent six weeks in the summer of 2017 as Historical Writing Resident at the Joseph A. Fiore Art Center, researching the history of Rolling Acres Farm and writing the “farm’s story.” Loftus holds an M.A. in Archaeology from the University College London, London, UK, and a Ph. D. in Anthropology from Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY.
Rolling Acres Farm is home to the Joseph A. Fiore Art Center, a program of Maine Farmland Trust that actively connects the creative worlds of farming and art making. The Center offers exhibitions and public educational events, supports research and development of ecologically sustainable farming practices, and hosts residencies for artists on a working farm.
The historical writing residency was funded in part by a Maine Arts Commission Arts and Humanities Grant.
Excerpt from the book, History of Rolling Acres, page 3:
“Rolling Acres Farm lies on the edge of Punk Point, an apex at the end of the sprawling farmlands and woodlands forming the western shores of Damariscotta Lake. It’s a place where the water bends and narrows in a patchwork of blue and green, about a mile north of the white Bunker Hill Church and the Ladies Aid Hall – two confident nineteenth-century wood frame structures that form the hub of Bunker Hill community in south Jefferson, Lincoln County, Maine. On Sundays, music still pumps through the 1888 organ housed inside the chapel, where Mark Johnston steers the petals, running deft fingers over the keys for the last fifty years. But long before the preaching and fundraising and local grange hall meetings, and long before all the weddings and funerals, these gently stretched hills – now shaped to fields and plowed to hay – lay silent under a mile of thick ice.”
“Having this space and encouragement brought me back in touch with ideas I’ve had for a while about incorporating art and archaeology and using material culture in a less sterile way to engage and challenge people’s perceptions of history. I plan on continuing to play with the presentation of objects/material culture as emotion and story, particularly in relation to American farming and the chores of daily life.” –Sarah Loftus 2017 Historical Writing Resident