As we were going to press with this issue, a few days prior to Christmas, all of the exhibitions that are reviewed and previewed were scheduled to run as planned. If you plan on seeing any of these shows, as part of your preparations, please check with each venue’s website prior to leaving and consider contacting them on the day of your trip to confirm they’re open or if there are any specific arrangements you need to make (especially pre-ticketing). Keeping in mind that these artists, curators, gallery owners and museums have spent months, and in some cases, years planning these exhibitions, in a worst-case scenario of shows being postponed or cancelled, please check out their websites to learn more about their work and offerings.
I received a strong education in how intense the juror process can be last fall after Bromfield Gallery manager Gary Duehr invited me to jury its SOLO 2020 competition; after selecting five finalists from the initial 131 entries, I met each of them at the SoWa gallery to review the work they would be showing, should they be selected for one of the two solo shows. Afterwards, I told Duehr that the gallery would do well to exhibit any of the five.
However, I was charged with having to select two final artists, and did so with the belief that their work would call out and draw attention to anyone walking past the gallery. In advance of their showing this January, I preview both Anne Birutė Harris (“PEAK”) and Virginia Mahoney’s (“Shielded State”) exhibitions.
One benefit, from my standpoint, of judging these contests is that it’s an excellent opportunity to get a widespread idea of what artwork is being made. I always end up with a huge list of artists I’ll follow closely in the months and years to come with an eye towards potentially covering them in Artscope.
I was happy, a few days after not selecting her from that final group, to see that Kim Triedman had been invited to present her “While She Was Good” exhibition at the Concord Center for Visual Artand that we were able to continue our conversation about her collage work in advance of that show.
I’m really proud of the effort our writers put into this issue. Lee Roscoe’s in-depth feature on Indigenous art came out of several email exchanges and two long phone calls on how we might contribute and further the discussion on its proper place in museum collections and art history.
Those exchanges also followed the response of some of our Artscopefamily members to my “Happy Thanksgiving” wishes to alert me that they’d be spending the day as a “National Day of Mourning” to reflect on Native Americans place in our country, back in 1620 and today. I couldn’t be prouder of their encouragement, whether they’re aware of having done so or not.
During this period of widespread civil/uncivil disagreement in our county, we’ve tried to spotlight what we feel is the greatest thing about it — its multicultural mix, and the sharing and celebration of each of our unique traits.
In this issue, Claudia Fiks returns to preview the “Vernacular Glamour” exhibition at the Cambridge Art Association; the show’s curator Juan Omar Rodriguez, she writes, “is committed to making the art world more expansive by supporting artists of color, Latinx, and queer artists.”
We’re featuring two artists we haven’t covered in the past: Elayne Clift profiles Vermont’s Susan Wahlrab, whose “Garden in the Forest” can be found this January at the Creative Connections Gallery in Ashburnham, Massachusetts. Rachel Flood Page returns to our pages to talk with Allison Maria Rodriguez about her “Worlds Within” installation scheduled to start the new year at the Nesto Gallery at Milton Academy.
Suzanne Volmer found “405 artworks created by 195 artists” waiting for her when she went to the Attleboro Arts Museum to review its annual Members’ Show. Between her personal favorites and those selected for prizes by juror LaiSun Keane, you’ll be introduced to several new regional artists.
Volmer also reviews two shows on view at Boston Sculptors Gallerythat are putting new spins on the genre: “Nancy Selvage: Solstice” and “Kenson Truong: Bespoke.” More sculpture was showcased at Burlington City Arts, where Marta Pauer-Tursi took in Rachel Gross, Rob Hitzig and Kirsten Reynolds’ architecturally-themed “Unbound” exhibition that was complemented by Bradley Borthwick’s “Objects of Empire.”
More traditional but tremendously rewarding are the pairing of “Hiroshige and the Changing Japanese Landscape” with the Mokuhanga Sisters’ “The World Between the Block and the Paper” exhibitions that are starting the year on display at the Southern Vermont Arts Center. Marguerite Serkin’s feature may leave you wanting to explore and perhaps take a few woodblock printmaking classes.
James Foritano reminds us of how much of our pre-Covid lives had been spent bouncing from exhibition to exhibition in trying to experience all that Greater Boston’s artists had to offer by visiting the studios of Phillip Gerstein, Jo Ann Rothschild & Alexandra Rozenman to preview their upcoming exhibition at the Brickbottom Gallery in Somerville, Massachusetts.
After seeing the show at its pre-opening press viewing, Beth Neville insisted on covering the “Love Stories from the National Portrait Gallery, London” exhibition that’s at the Worcester Art Museumthrough March 13 calling it, “One of the most important exhibits in New England in years.”
It’s always been our goal to help artists and their galleries sell their art; that’s why we were thrilled, as a difficult year came to a close, to receive this message from Ruben Natal-San Miguel, whose summer exhibition at Gary Marotta Fine Art in Provincetown was previewed by KT Browne in our July/August 2021 issue, in mid-December: “ARTSCOPE Magazine was the very first feature about the exhibition! So extremely grateful for its coverage! We were completely nervous about sales, etc., etc. Well, (I’ve) got to tell you that just as yesterday, the gallery sold one more photo and the sales had been beyond our expectations! The work sold has been to major art collectors and institutions (including the Fitchburg Museum of Art, Provincetown Art Association and Museum and Museum of Fine Arts, Boston!) Looking back now, it was a great year regardless of all the challenges.”
Indeed, it was, and we thank Artscope’s devoted readers and advertisers, and the artist, galleries and museums who we have the privilege of working with, for your continued support. I know we’re all looking forward to the days we’re back together, in person, in the galleries and sculpture parks, again.