Welcome to the summer issue we didn’t know we’d have.
As we began planning this issue in mid-May, most of us expected that it wouldn’t be till August, at the earliest, that the region would be reopened at full capacity. Then, as Memorial Day Weekend neared, states unexpectedly announced a return to “normalcy” and suddenly we found ourselves carefully returning to our favorite galleries, museums and restaurants.
With this issue, we hope we’ll give you a number of strong and safe ideas for art wanderlust roadtrips to take in the New England area.
As a follow-up to our last issue where I revisited a then-reawakening Newbury Street, I asked Elizabeth Michelman and Suzanne Volmer, who have regularly attended First Fridays and other events in Boston’s SoWa District, to return there the first week of June to prepare a report on how galleries were doing and more importantly, how the crowds compared to prior to the arrival of Covid-19 in our lives.
While I talked to Michelman about how we’d normally be featuring a series of art wanderlust trips to various New England communities in this issue, it was still too early for anyone to have had a chance to return to a “normal life” of where we’d not only check out a city or town’s art, but their eateries, drink options and places to stay. She was enroute to the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum to see the first installment of what will be an ongoing series of performances tied toJeffreyGibson’s“BecauseOnceYouEnterMyHouse, ItBecomesOurHouse”outsideinstallation.
Linda Chestney visited Kittery, Maine, not to stop at any of its legendary specialty and outlet stores, or great seafood restaurants, but at therecently opened Loomis Gallery, whose owner has strong ties to Boston’s Fountain Street Gallery. Fear not, however, Chestney does make a few suggestions to include on your journey.
Having temporarily relocated to Western Massachusetts,HannahCarrigansuggested“ATrip to the Berkshires” that included exploring the large grounds of the Clark Art Institute and its current “Ground/work”outsideinstallationcoveringmulti-acres of beautiful scenery, the Norman Rockwell Museum, which is complementing its current “Enchanted: A History of Fantasy Illustration” exhibition with a large outside “Land of Enchantment” that opens July 10, and The Foundry, a “multi-disciplinary arts space” in can’t be beat surroundings.
Carrigan also stopped into the Vault Gallery in Great Barrington to see the work of Marilyn Kalish; if you’ve never been, the gallery is located in an old bank building and surrounded by one of the loveliest quintessential New England towns you’ll ever visit. Kalish herself has currently relocated to the Boston area, and is searching for a new studio space.
Marta Pauer-Tursi got an early view of the Cold Hollow Sculpture Park’s 50th anniversary season through a tour by its founder, David Stromeyer. The northern Vermont attraction would make for a memorable roadtrip.
Kristin Nord received an early tour of “The Amazon Rainforest: Beauty • Destruction • Hope” exhibition that’s at the Bruce Museum through October 12, noting that it’s “a vivid introduction to the region’s treasures, and then builds a steady case for intensified efforts to save one of the world’s last great places before it’s too late.”
For his first article for Artscope, Evan Bieder, a recent Wesleyan University graduate and an abstract acrylic painter himself, reviewed the 13th Biennial Miniature Print International Exhibition at the Center for Contemporary Printmaking — where most of the works are uniquely only 2” x 2” in size. If you see a Mister Softee truck at one of the Connecticut’s Fairfield County beaches — it could be Evan.
Lee Roscoe immersed herself in Richard Neal’s “JonesHouse”constructionpiecesthatwillbeonviewat Miller White Fine Art throughout July, seeing the work (and interviewing him) in both his studio and at the Cape Cod gallery based in South Dennis.
For many, summer is long walks up and down, and down and up, Provincetown’s Commercial Street. Laura Shabott previews the Provincetown Artist Association and Museum’s “Preserving a Legacy” exhibition that’s built around Charles Hawthorne, Hans Hofmann and Edward Hopper, whose work continues to serve as inspiration today, while KT Browne talks to Ruben Natal-San Miguel about his “American Beauty” show that features photographic images of New York City and opens Independence Day Weekend at Gary Marotta Fine Art.
Browne also walked the Minuteman Bikeway in Arlington, Massachusetts, to see Michelle Lougee’s 38 sculptures that comprise her “Persistence” installation and visited the nearby 13FOREST Gallery just prior to the opening of its “Essence: In Celebration of Juneteenth” exhibition that was curated by Cedric “Vise1” Douglas, whose own public art projects were featured in our 2020 summer issue.
When presented properly, exhibitions spotlighting and explaining the stories behind the clothing that has immersed our popular and sports culture throughout our lifetimes can be a memorable and exhilarating experience. Don Wilkinson took in the wardrobes worn in life-changing movies, including “Do the Right Thing,” “Malcolm X” and “Selma,” that are being spotlighted through mid-November in New Bedford Art Museum/ ArtWorks!’s“UncommonThreads:TheWorksofRuthE. Carter” exhibition, while I walked over to the Worcester Art Museum to see “The Iconic Jersey: Baseball x Fashion” in which graphics and clothing designers are celebrated for their creation of uniforms that have been a major part of our lives and, in more recent times, have been adapted for mainstream use and adopted for unique one-of-a-kind items for movies, the runway and political causes.
I also surveyed the Emerging Artists Exhibition that will be on view in July at the Cambridge Art Association, taking the opportunity to exchange questions with the show’s curator, painter Erika b Hess, creator of the “I Like Your Work” podcast, whose responses give invaluable insight into the kind of art we might expect as we re-enter the sunlight.
Another large show, that gives us a strong opportunity to see the work being created by a large number of artists is the 27th Juried Exhibition, which opens July 15 at the Griffin Museum of Photography; the show, juried by Arnika Dawkins, owner of Arnika Dawkins Photographic Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta, is previewed by Taryn Plumb, whose latest book, “Shipwrecks and Other Maritime Disasters of the Maine Coast,” was published earlier this year by Down East Books.
As we have throughout the pandemic and our 15 and a halfyears,we’veputourheartandsoulintothisissuewith the hope we’ll contribute to the renewal of New England’s arts community. While we don’t feature a “Capsule Previews” section this issue, please check the “Artscope Online” section of artscopemagazine.com as we’ll be adding current reviews and previews throughout the summer to supplement our magazine coverage.