The Farnsworth Art Museum began collecting works by Old Town, Maine artist Bernard (“Blackie”) Langlais (1921-1977) in 1980 with the acquisition of Elephant
, a charming painted plywood rendition of an elephant. Since then, the Farnsworth has acquired an additional six works, including two paintings, all but one representing animals. Known for his whimsical, lyrical animal sculptures and reliefs, Langlais’ output was prodigious and is represented in museum and private collections worldwide. After a fruitful career in New York City, Langlais returned to his home state and settled in Cushing, Maine in 1956, where he began experimenting with wood sculpture and other wood constructions, and lived out the rest of his life with his wife Helen and a menagerie of outdoor and indoor sculpture.