Portsmouth Advocates Seeks Award Nominations 2019

2018 Portsmouth Advocates Award

2018 Portsmouth Advocates Award Recipients

Since 1989 Portsmouth Advocates has honored individuals and projects which enhance the city’s unique historic character and make Portsmouth a better place to live and work. On November 21, 2019, Advocates will continue this tradition by presenting awards to exceptional individuals and projects completed over the last year.

For the first time, Portsmouth Advocates is soliciting award nominations from members of the public. Do you know of a project, homeowner, organization, or developer, doing great things? Let us know!
Submissions must be received by October 11, 2019. [Read more…]

New Hampshire Film Festival Headquarters 2019

nhff_1The 2019 New Hampshire Film Festival comes to Portsmouth, NH October 17-20. The festival presents 100 of the best independent films from around the world in four downtown screening venues over the four days.

NHFF made its initial debut in 2001 in Derry, New Hampshire. In 2004, the festival moved to its permanent home in the charming seacoast town of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Offering a completely different experience from going to a movie at a movieplex, the screenings take place in downtown Portsmouth historic landmarks: The Music Hall, The Music Hall Loft, 3S Artspace, Moffatt-Ladd House & Garden and NHFF Headquarters, Discover Portsmouth

The NHFF program always maintains a level of quality on par with major festivals like Sundance, Tribeca, Cannes, and SXSW. Yet, NHFF maintains integrity with original premieres and underground indies that start their journey in NH and spiral on into the world. What results is an eclectic mix of features, docs, and shorts that provides all accepted films the prestige of being included in a world-class program.

For the second time, viewers can experience films using Virtual Reality (VR) technology at the New Hampshire Film Festival. During the four-day film festival there will be a Virtual Reality Lounge located at Discover Portsmouth .

Viewing a film in Virtual Reality gives a viewer an immersive experience and a lingering understanding of the problem the film presents. As filmmakers have been experimenting with this new technology, this is the perfect opportunity to get it in front of audience members.

Since 2006, the four day event has begun on the Thursday after Columbus Day each year with the New Hampshire Day and Night Program. New Hampshire has a vibrant filmmaking community, and the New Hampshire Day & Night program is dedicated to presenting films that are filmed on location in NH, or which have filmmakers, producers, or actors from the Granite State.

NHFF & Discover Portsmouth:

Festival Headquarters are located at Discover Portsmouth, a non-profit cultural center that combines a multi-level gallery, conference hall, museum shop, and community showcase on the corner of downtown’s main street.

The New Hampshire Film Festival is truly an event like no other. Festival passes are the best way to experience everything NHFF has to offer, but individual tickets are available for individual screenings as well.

VIP Pass ($225):

Premium and advanced seating at every screening at every venue throughout the weekend, (as long as patrons arrive 15 minutes before scheduled screening time) entrance to all ceremonies and parties including the VIP brunch at the 100 Club. Admission into all panels and workshops.

Weekend Pass ($100):

Entrance to every screening at every venue for all 4 days, entrance to all ceremonies and parties excluding the VIP Brunch at the One Hundred Club. Admission into all panels and workshops. Seating at screenings and entrance to ceremonies, parties, and panels are on a space available basis.

Day Thursday Pass ($25):

NH Day & Night! Entrance to every screening at every venue. Entrance to NH Night welcome and awards ceremony and Flatbread after party. Admission into all panels and workshops throughout the weekend. All entry is on a space available basis. Seating at screening and entrance to ceremonies, panels and party are on a space available basis.

Friday Pass ($40):

Entrance to every screening at every venue. Entrance to opening night ceremonies, and opening night party. Admission into all panels and workshops throughout the weekend. All on a space available basis. Seating at screenings and entrance to ceremonies, panels and party are on a space available basis.

Saturday Pass ($40):

Entrance to every screening at every venue. Entrance to all Saturday parties. Admission into all panels and workshops throughout the weekend. All on a space available basis. Seating at screenings and entrance to panels and parties are on a space available basis.

Sunday Pass ($40):

Entrance to every screening at every venue. Entrance to Closing Night Ceremonies. Admission into all panels and workshops throughout the weekend. All on a space available basis. Seating at screenings and entrance to ceremonies and panels are on a space available basis.

Passes are on sale now on the New Hampshire Film Festival Website: nhfilmfestival.com

Passes available at The Music Hall Box Office and NHFF Film Festival Headquarters at Discover Portsmouth during the weekend of the festival only.

For more information visit New Hampshire Film Festival

New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People

with Companion Exhibition, Contemporary NH Folk Art, by League of NH Craftsmen

NH Folk Art Exhibition 2019 Portsmouth NH

Friday, April 5 – Sunday, September 29, 2019
9:30am-5:00pm Open 7 days

at the Academy Gallery, Discover Portsmouth

Gerald W.R. Ward, Curator

This Exhibition is Free and Open to the Public
[Read more…]

20th Portsmouth Maritime Festival

a GRAND Finale!
Saturday and Sunday, Sept 28 & 29, 2019.
Visit pmffest.org for schedule info

We hope you will join us for what we trust will be a truly memorable farewell celebration of the Portsmouth Maritime Festival.
The festival was begun 20 years ago with a simple goal: to promote sea music and talented local and “away” performers, and foment a wider appreciation of maritime history in general and, particularly, that of our home port, Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

On Sunday from 10am to 2 pm, there will be festival performers outside on the lawn of the John Paul Jones House, 43 Middle St. (in case of rain, the performers will be at Discover Portsmouth, 10 Middle St.). There are indoor and outdoor performance venues all around Portsmouth, and performances during the day both days are free.

Joining the Maritime Festival to mark this year’s very special anniversary and farewell celebration will be many singers and instrumentalists who in the past have graced our performance stages with their remarkable talent and contributed so much to the success of the seaside festival. Also, we will proudly showcase several new acts, in keeping with our commitment to feature unique and exciting performers, who are the future of traditional music.

Please join us for our final voyage. Visit pmffest.org, for the September 28th and 29th schedule of events.

Hope to see you there!

6th Annual John Paul Jones Jubilee and Auction

Thursday, September 5, 2019

5:30-8:00pm
Discover Portsmouth
10 Middle Street, Portsmouth NH

$40 for Members / $50 for Non-Members

Tickets are Non-refundable
*Handling fees may apply to online purchases; you may also purchase tickets by calling 603.436.8433

Buy Tickets Here [Read more…]

Portsmouth Historic Houses Twilight Tour 2019


Tickets good for admission to all 8 houses on evening of tour or during balance of 2019 Season!

Friday, August 9th, 4:30 to 8pm

For just one evening every year, eight of the Portsmouth Historic Houses open their doors and gardens for the Twilight Tour. This year’s special hours are 4:30-8 pm on Friday, August 9. To make this evening memorable, the theme is “Fashion” as each site offers a special focus: brief talks on collections, storytelling, short plays and light refreshments.

Advance tickets: Adults $20, Children: $8
Day-of tickets: Adults $25; Children $10

Available online at Strawbery Banke and in person at the John Paul Jones House, corner of Middle and State Streets, and each of the member museums. To reach any historic site visit www.portsmouthhistoric.org, or visit the Facebook page.

Each ticket is good for one admission to each of the 8 participating houses on the night of the Twilight Tour and are also valid for the balance of the 2019 season for admission to any houses that visitors don’t get to on the night of the Tour. Proceeds of the tour benefit the member sites of the Portsmouth Historic House Associates. [Read more…]

2019 NH Folk Art Lecture Series

Portsmouth Historical Society announces the 2019 Lecture Series for our 2019 exhibitions:

New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People, and
League of NH Craftsmen Contemporary Folk Art.

The lectures are held at Discover Portsmouth, 10 Middle Street, Portsmouth NH on Thursdays at 5:30 pm.

Tickets to lectures are $5 (members) / $10 (non-members)

Thursday, September 12, 6:15-7:15 p.m.

“Wood-firing Ceramics Then and Now, featuring League of NH Craftsmen Artist Maureen Mills”

Maureen Mills, Associate Professor, Ceramics Institute of Art & Design at New England College.
Purchase Tickets

Maureen Mills, a member of the League of NH Craftsmen included in the Contemporary NH Folk Art exhibition will discuss her work and aspects of wood-firing both historical and contemporary. She will also touch on her training and background, artistic influences and sources and reference examples of her work included in the exhibition.
There will be time for a Q and A session afterwards. The event is an unusual opportunity to meet and learn directly from one of the most important artists and craftswomen working in New Hampshire today.

Call (603) 436-8433 for more information.

Previous Lectures:

Thursday, May 16, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

“Trials and Tribulations: Researching Folk Artists Working in 19th-century New Hampshire.”

Deborah M. Child, art historian, lecturer, and independent curator.
In her illustrated lecture, Child, an independent scholar and resident of Seacoast New Hampshire, will present highlights from her research over the past fifteen years to identify the so-called Borden limner once thought to be Portsmouth-born John Samuel Blunt. She will also explore the careers of other artists passing through New Hampshire such as Rufus Porter and “Mr. Willson of NH” who supplemented his income by counterfeiting money. Her talk will allow for a closer look at some artists represented in the exhibition, such as Porter, and help place all the works in a wider context of nineteenth-century New Hampshire. Child is the author of many publications, including the Sketchbooks of John Samuel Blunt (Portsmouth Athenaeum, 2007), and a regular contributor to Antiques and Fine Art. Samples of her publications may be viewed on www.deborahmchild.com.

Thursday, June 20, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

“Folk Art and American Modernism”

Paul D’Ambrosio, President and C.E.O., Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmer’s Art Museum, Inc., Cooperstown, N.Y.
Paul D’Ambrosio, one of the leading scholars of American folk art and a widely published author, will discuss a crucial nexus between folk art and modern artists of the early twentieth century. Many painters and sculptors of the 1930s, such as Charles Sheeler, Elie Nadelman, Marguerite Zorach, and many others, were attracted to the formal abstract qualities and expressive nature of folk art. Their interest stimulated museums and private collectors to become interested in this material, and the enthusiasm for folk art remains string today. In particular, D’Ambrosio will examine the influence of Hamilton Easter Field and the Ogunquit School in the early collecting of American folk art.

Thursday, July 25, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

“The Micro-Drawings of Rufus E. Patten of Candia”

The New Hampshire Folk Art exhibition includes about a dozen “micro-drawings”—some less than an inch wide—of ships, buildings, landscapes, and other scenes, all done by Rufus E. Patten of Candia, New Hampshire, as a young man in the early nineteenth century. Ward will discuss new research into the life of the little-known Patten, who did not become an artist but enjoyed a career in the military and as a justice of the peace before his death in 1879. He will place his amazing youthful work, now in the noted collection of Craig and Alison Jewett, into the context of folk art, especially as it relates to calligraphy and fine penmanship, and to the concepts of artisanal virtuosity and youthful masterpieces dating back to the medieval period.

Portsmouth Historical Society 101st Annual Meeting

Discover Portsmouth

Tuesday May 7, 2019 5-7pm

at Discover Portsmouth
10 Middle St. Portsmouth NH

With galleries open from 5-6:30pm, Portsmouth Historical Society will hold a business meeting for members from 5-7pm and welcome all those who have been a part of the organization. The meeting will include a review of FY2018, voting on bylaws changes, welcoming new board members and officers, and hearing about plans for the future.

Sign up now as a member and join us on May 7 for refreshments and tour the galleries at Discover Portsmouth featuring New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People. Free and open to the public. For more information, please call 603-436-8433.

Become a Member

Contemporary NH Folk Art, featuring the work of League of NH Craftsmen

2019 Contemporary NH Folk Art Exhibition, League of NH Craftsmen

Friday, April 5 – Sunday, September 29, 2019
9:30am-5:00pm Open 7 days
upstairs at Discover Portsmouth

This exhibition is free and open to the public

Portsmouth Historical Society is proud to display in our balcony gallery works of art made by members of the League of NH Craftsmen.

Our historically-oriented exhibitions are accompanied by a complementary look at contemporary work in a related vein. Although these artists and craftsmen are trained academically in many instances, their work often reflects an emphasis on the “handmade.” The choice of traditional methods and materials, and preference for strong forms and bold colors, are attributes that they share in common with much folk art from earlier centuries. Together, our exhibitions provide an opportunity to see a snapshot of the trajectory of folk art, broadly conceived, over time.

Jane Balshaw, Aggregate

Jane Balshaw, “Aggregate”

Contemporary NH Folk Art is the companion exhibition to the concurrent New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People exhibition opening in Discover Portsmouth’s Academy Gallery on April 5th.

The Contemporary NH Folk Art exhibition features the work of League of NH Craftsmen juried members including Art Anderson, Jane Balshaw, Misty Batchelder, David Bridgewater, Loring Cheney, Grace Collette, Jeffrey Cooper, Kathleen Dustin, Don Felix, Linda Jacque, Kate Kilgus, Fred Kretchman, Jim Lambert, Kristina Logan, Douglas Alan Masury, Adam Nudd-Homeyer, Diane Louise Paul, Stephen Proctor, Anne Sherman, Teresa Taylor, William Taylor, Michael Updike, Maureen Mills, and Steven Zoldak.

Medallion Jar, Steven Zoldak

Medallion Jar, Steven Zoldak

A wide variety of media will be on exhibition including ceramic, mixed media, leather, furniture, quilts, hooked rugs, glass, and weaving. Each master craftsman has interpreted the theme of Contemporary Folk Art in their own signature style.

Mission and History of the League

The League’s mission is to encourage, nurture and promote the creation, use and preservation of fine contemporary and traditional craft through the inspiration and education of artists and the broader community.

The League of New Hampshire Craftsmen is one of the oldest and most recognized craft organizations in the country. Throughout its more than 85 year history, the League has helped craftspeople sell their work, hone their skills, and generate income. More than 750 juried craftspeople produce exceptional contemporary and traditional craft in a wide range of media, including calligraphy, botanicals, baskets, clay, leather, printmaking, metal, wood, glass, non-metal jewelry, fiber, polymer clay, photography and mixed media.

The League’s story begins in the mid-1920s when Mrs. Mary Coolidge and A. Cooper Ballentine joined forces to promote craft in New Hampshire. By 1932, The League of New Hampshire Arts and Crafts had been established, and the first official League shop was opened in Wolfeboro. The following year, the first Craftsmen’s Fair was held, making it the oldest craft fair in the country. Rebranded as the League of NH Craftsmen in 1968, the League is recognized today as one of the country’s foremost fine arts organizations.

Don Felix, Copper Swallow Weathervane

Don Felix, “Copper Swallow Weathervane”


While thousands attend the Annual Craftsmen’s Fair each August, many more find the work of the craftsmen year-round through our network of Fine Craft Galleries located in North Conway, Littleton, Hanover, Meredith, Center Sandwich, Concord, Nashua and Hooksett. The Grodin Permanent Collection Museum, located at the League’s Headquarters in Concord, provides visitors with an incomparable journey through the history of fine craft in New Hampshire, from 1932 to the present. In addition, the Headquarters Exhibition Gallery provides a showcase for the current work of juried members in fine gallery setting.

Your donation is important to Portsmouth Historical Society!

If you enjoy exhibits like this one, we hope you’ll support our efforts with a donation. You can donate any amount anonymously at the door or use the button below to donate online. Your support is greatly appreciated!

Donate Now!

NH Folk Art Exhibition Members Only Opening Reception

NH Folk Art Exhibition 2019 Portsmouth NH

Thursday, April 4, 5:30–7:30pm.
Members: $35 per person

Join us for the opening reception of our newest exhibition, New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People, curated by Gerald W. R. Ward. Your attendance at this Member event – held prior to our public opening – will support free and reduced admission to the programs of Portsmouth Historical Society.
Music provided by Curt Bessette and Jenn Kurtz.
Delicious appetizers by River House and Atlantic Grill will be served, with refreshments courtesy of Liar’s Bench and South Street & Vine.
Cocktail attire encouraged.
Join Portsmouth Historical Society today and be a part of this incredible evening!
This reception has been generously sponsored by Skinner, Inc., with additional support by Atlantic Grill and River House.

Members Register Here

Not Yet a Member?

Click Here and Join Today!

For tickets and information, or to become a member, call 603-436-8433

New Hampshire Folk Art: By the People, For the People
with Companion Exhibition, Contemporary NH Folk Art, by League of NH Craftsmen

Friday, April 5 – Sunday, September 29, 2019
at the Academy Gallery, Discover Portsmouth
Gerald W.R. Ward, Curator

READ MORE ABOUT THE EXHIBITION