Welcome to our 16th Anniversary Issue!
We have reached this milestone thanks to the longtime support of our readers and advertisers and the devotion of a writing staff dedicated to promoting the artists, art organizations, galleries and museums of New England and others who inspired them from throughout the world.
Since the pandemic caused a landslide of exhibition and venue closings in March 2020, we’ve remained committed to providing that support, adjusting as they’ve adjusted, each of us searching for the best way to stay in touch with our audience, adapting to the latest safety guidelines and judging from the phone calls, letters and conversations we’ve had, you feel that we’ve delivered fresh and timely issues filled with stories on a period we’ll not soon forget.
Traditionally, our March/April anniversary issue has spotlighted artists our writers had wanted to write about, but exhibition schedules hadn’t matched up (Since our first issue, in March 2006, we’ve always made it a point to feature stories on exhibitions that readers would have sufficient time to see, whether it be the work or a world-known artist or an artist whose work has called a reader’s attention to the point of them considering buying that artist’s work).
Instead, this year’s anniversary issue is a celebration of all the artists of New England, dedicated creative folks who’ve had their exhibitions postponed or cancelled or who’ve had annual shows and festivals they’ve counted on to sell their work moved online or simply put off till we all felt safe enough to meet again in public.
We’re doing that through a series of reviews of group shows taking place throughout the New England region. Elizabeth Michelman returns with an exploration of
Fountain Street Gallery’s “The Art of Language,” a survey of visual art engaged with language that brings together the work of both local and international artists. The conversation on who we are as a collective nation continues with “US | THEM | WE: RACE X ETHNICITY X IDENTITY” at the Worcester Art Museum, reviewed by Claudia Fiks.
With a large membership looking to show their work, the National Association of Women Artists, Massachusetts Chapter has been making up for lost time with several exhibitions on view at any one time. Rachel Flood Page stopped by the Gallery at Atlantic Wharf, Seaport in Boston to see its “Changing lives, Changing future” show.
Marta Pauer-Tursi not only reviews the “Catamount Arts 2021 Annual Juried Exhibition,” but interviews its curator, Katherine French, whose overseeing of the exhibition is her last before her “retirement” as its gallery director.
Suzanne Volmer worked extra hard to assure that she was able to interview Brett Abbott, the new director of the New Britain Museum ofAmerican Art, on only his second day on the job; her extended “Cornered” talk provides a strong cornerstone for our anniversary issue and serves as a helpful guideline for other institutions as they fully reopen to the public.
One of an educational institution’s best-selling points to future students and their parents is the success of its graduates. Linda Chestney reviews the work of 13 Phillips Exeter Academy alumnae that is on display in “Informing Memory: Process, Place and Notion” at the school’s Lamont Gallery.
Picking a handful of artists out of a large group show is a challenge, and Sawyer Smook-Pollitt did just that, with the goal of providing an overall feel for the Newport Biennial 2022 at the Newport Art Museum; he also traveled to Framingham, Massachusetts to visit Dianna Vosburg to talk and see her paintings that will be featured in Kingston Gallery’s “Arrival” exhibition this spring. Sawyer recently graduated from Boston University with an M.S. in journalism. He formerly worked at the New Bedford Art Museum for 11 years and is now a freelance writer for The New Bedford Light andSouth Coast Almanac.
Beth Neville also did double duty this issue, reviewing “Icons for Our Time: Orthodox Art from Around the World,” bringing a modern look to the exhibition at the Museum of Russian Icons, a venue that always leaves visitors feeling they’ve experienced something special; she also previewsabstract artist Michael Eder’s water-themed exhibition that will be at HallSpace in April.
Having grown up in a time before big box stores, I was euphoric at finally having the chance to interview Frank Armstrong about his “American Roadsides: Frank Armstrong’s Photographic Legacy” exhibition at the Fitchburg Art Museum – part of his legacy being his seven former students whose work is also on view. Two other great photography shows can be found at the Fairfield University Art Museum: Kamoinge Black Photographers’ Collective founding member Adger Cowans’ “Sense and Sensibility” and “13 Ways of Looking at Landscape: Larry Silver’s Connecticut Photographs,” both previewed in these pages.
Nancy Nesvet, who along with writing for Artscope, is a museum curator and artist whose 20 plus years of experience includes having taught and curated teaching at UMass Lowell, Brandeis University and Maine College of Art, assembling 12 major exhibitions in the process. I asked her to write a story that would help answer a question that we’ve been trying to answer since our first issue: How does an artist break into the larger gallery and art festival world, both nationally and internationally? Hopefully, her informative “A Call for Originality” will assist those of you looking to bring your artwork to a larger audience.
Before I end, I must thank the three people who help pull together the magazine you hold in your hands today. Vanessa Boucher, our senior media developer, strives to present artists’ work in the best way possible. J.M. Belmont, our publishing assistant, is responsible for gathering all the listings and events announcements you see in our “Exhibitions” section — and making sure everything ends up in its proper place. Isabel Barbi is not only our copy editor, but our Email Blast! coordinator, putting together our twice-monthly emails that help us share even more exhibition, gallery and museum information with you.
Artscope wouldn’t have made it through the past two years, let alone 16 years, without the guidance of our founder and publisher, Kaveh Mojtabai, who’s had to maneuver us not only through a pandemic, but a move to our new office in the QUBIC complex at 1495 Hancock Street, 4th Floor, in Quincy Center, where we’ll be working alongside blockchain labs, crypto, NFTs, art, culture and media incubators.
I hope you enjoy our 97th issue as much as we’ve enjoyed putting it together for you and that we’ll be crossing paths — safely — in the months to come.