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Bob Keyes

Bob Keyes has written about the arts in Maine since 2002. He’s never been much an artist himself, other than singing in junior high school chorus and acting in a few musicals. But he’s attended museums, theaters, clubs and concert halls all his life, and cites Bob Dylan as most influential artist of any kind since Picasso. He lives in Berwick.

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Posted: November 13, 2017

Reception for the late artist Tim Nihoff is set for Sunday

Written by: Bob Keyes
About 50 pieces of artwork by Nihoff will be for sale at Sunday's reception. Photos courtesy of Scott Nash

About 50 pieces of artwork by Nihoff will be for sale at Sunday’s reception.
Photos courtesy of Scott Nash

To help ensure that the creative spirit of their friend lives on, admirers of the late Portland artist Tim Nihoff will host a memorial art reception from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday at the Gem Gallery on Peaks Island. Nihoff lived on Peaks and died Sept. 25 at age 55.

Sunday’s celebration will include a silent auction of his artwork to help defray his debts. “Tim wasn’t a religious person, so it seemed like a memorial art reception was the thing to do,” said Scott Nash, a Peaks Island artist who is helping to organize Sunday’s gathering. “Tim was a wonderful, creative soul. He was both a gift giver and a trickster in the cultural sense.”

Nihoff made his living as an illustrator and designer. He worked on projects for Rand McNally, PBS and Nickelodeon and designed logos, toy packaging, games and children’s books. He was best known for his “The Dollar Bill Project,” which involved him painting on dollar bills and giving them out as tips. They hang in bars across Portland.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if he did a thousand or more of them,” Nash said. “They were elaborate paintings on the backside of dollar bills. It’s the most generous form of art-making you could imagine. It had nothing to do with selling. He was a pure artist in that sense. A lot of work that he created was gifted to people.”

At Sunday’s reception, visitors will be asked to share memories in a scrapbook, which will be given to Nihoff’s family and friends. There will be about 50 pieces of art for sale, and all proceeds will be used to help pay his bills, Nash said.

Memorial reception for artist Tim Nihoff

WHEN: 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday
WHERE: Gem Gallery, 62 Island Ave., Peaks Island;

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