Archive for May 2nd, 2014


MAC Visual Arts Director

May 2, 2014

Meet Julie Horn

I am fortunate to work with Julie Horn at the Maine Arts Commission. Julie serves as the Visual Arts Director and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to her work. She moved to Maine in September 2013 with her husband and two wonderful children from Tennessee where she served as the director for visual arts at the Tennessee Arts Commission. Recently, I sat down with Julie and interviewed her for this blog post…. Introducing JULIE HORN…


Why Maine?

Julie is originally from Aroostook county, specifically Presque Isle and has moved to her home state with her husband to raise their children. She is happy to be at the Maine Arts Commission to assist in the development of new grants and initiatives for Maine’s Cultural Plan.

Julie’s History

Julie did her undergraduate work at the University of Tuscon, AZ in painting and illustration. For a short period she worked in a foundry at AZ State doing large 3D sculpture work. She went to graduate school at Cranbrook Academy in Bloomfield Hills, MI in print media. Her focus was on performance and video installation.

At that point she moved to Tennessee to teach at the university level. Foundational courses included curriculum, art appreciation, and studio classes in drawing, painting, 2 and 3D design, and color theory. She also developed a time-based media class and video production class.

She worked at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts in Nashville, TN, curating public programs and doing independent writing (art criticism) for a Nashville paper and state publication out of Memphis and the magazine Art Papers from Atlanta, GA. While there she also curated and juried shows.

During the last 7 years Julie worked at the Tennessee Arts Commission as the director of Visual Arts, Crafts, Media, and Design. She received certification in non-profit leadership and management from the Center for Non-Profit Management in Nashville. While at the commission she curated and ran the gallery in the office. She was responsible for the annual acquisition budget to purchase pieces for the state collection. That collection was at the state museum and at the arts commission. Julie worked on several public art projects with first lady’s of TN. She developed the master artist/apprentice program for contemporary artists. A large portion of her work was on grant development and management in Tennessee.

Maine Arts Commission Visual Arts Director work

Julie is as busy at the rest of us at the Maine Arts Commission, developing and managing many components of the MAC work. Her responsibilities include administrating the following programs

  • Curate Art in the Capital program
  • Several grant programs
  • Percent for Art program
  • Congressional Art Competition
  • Maine Youth Excellence in Art
  • Other programs that fall under Visual Arts

Julie’s favorite part of the work is having discussions with the field on what’s happening in visual art.

Julie’s Goals

Julie would like to see the agency develop better resources for the visual art constituency. For example, the MAC website should have resource material for specific needs of an artist. She has already and I am certain will continue to identify resources, and provide assistance and information. She also hope to develop regional sensitivity for the Maine Arts Commission. As she acquires an understanding of the stakeholders she is learning how they help to build the arts in Maine, i.e. individual artists, collectives, gallery’s, collectors, councils.

And from Julie…

“I am excited to be back in my home state to bring 30 years of experience on the national level to see how I can help my home state. I have a personal interest at stake. My favorite part of this type of work is facilitating discussions that educate the public on how art is incorporated into everyday lives including the visual language and interpretation of art. It is so embedded into our thinking that people are sometimes unaware of it, specifically the non-art people. I enjoy bringing information and knowledge to the non-believers, those who don’t understand art, so they realize they already know it. Asking the right questions in a leading format to help them realize that they really do know it. A series of questions can help in formulating their knowledge.”

My favorite question… What would you do if given $500,000 Julie?

“I would pay off my student loans and with the remaining thousand, no, no. I would retire, no, no! Practical side of me says to set up all the right accounts for my kids. I would buy a house on the water in the coastal part of Maine with a huge barn. Inside would be a music studio for my husband and a studio for me. I’d sit on my balcony drinking coffee and looking at the water.”

Julie can be reached at







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