“Art is tactile, gives solace, reminds us to be grounded where we can have a dialogue and find ways to offer benefit and beauty.”
Kaveh Mojtabai, Artscope’s publisher, shared these words with me after we’d had a long conversation on how much all of us desperately needed to escape our long-enforced period of solitude and see and return to our long running conversations and friendships in our galleries and museums.
Mojtabai and I traveled to West Hartford for the opening of “The Evocative Mark Twain Inspires the Printmakers’ Network of Southern New England” at the Mark Twain House & Museum, where we met up with our Connecticut correspondent, Evan Bieder, who reviews the exhibition in this issue. It was a busy time for Evan, whose wife, Britney, gave birth to their first son, Zen, shortly afterwards.
After two plus years of careful solitude, there’s a lot of catching up to do, which is why we have a series of interviews in this issue. Suzanne Volmer visited the Fuller Craft Museum to meet, talk and tour the museum with Erin McGough, who became its executive director at the start of 2022.
With business anything but usual, it became harder for many people to stay where they’d been living because of skyrocketing rents and the cost of owning a home, while, with life slowed, if not shut down, others who’d been considering moving out of urban settings and into a quieter rural style of living moved faster with those long-term plans than they expected.
Marjorie Kaye, director of Boston’s Galatea Fine Art is one of those people. In this issue, she shares why she’s resettled in North Adams in Western Massachusetts and how, thankfully, she found others from the Boston area who’ve done the same. And while many of our you are well-familiar with MASS MoCA, Kaye gives us all a tour of the other galleries and studios in her new hometown that will help you plan a summer 2022 getaway out west.
I’ve been a huge fan of glassmaker Aaron Slater since meeting him during a craft show at the Worcester Center for Crafts. His recent move from Lowell, where he was a fixture at Western Avenue Artist Studios, to South Royalton, Vermont, seemed like the perfect opportunity to combine a story on his beautiful glass creations and what goes into taking the big step of relocating somewhere new with an eye towards how to best continue your artistry. Fellow Vermonter Elayne Clift visited Slater to talk about how he’s combining nature and art at his new home.
A lot of arts organizations, especially those that stretch beyond the visual arts, had to suspend in-person programming throughout most of the pandemic, leaving huge holes in their budgets and the hearts of the communities they serve.
Eric J. Taubert talked with Rebecca Proctor, owner of The Art Center in Dover, New Hampshire, about the Washington Street Mills venue’s start in2018, how participation there grew and enhanced the lives of its members and it managed to expand its reach through online programs during COVID times — and its jubilant return to hosting in-person exhibitions in its gallery.
Pao Arts Center in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood serves as a welcoming meeting place for the Asian American Pacific Islander community and a special welcoming place for all to experience their culture through its art, dance, theater and spoken word presentations. Artscope’s
James Foritano, and his wife, Madeleine, attended the first night of its “Convergence Wave: Boston” dance performance and we hope you’ll follow them there after you read about its upcoming fifth anniversary programs, exhibitions and Experience Chinatown Arts Festival.
The Art Complex Museum in Duxbury, Massachusetts is also celebrating a notable milestone. Its “ACM 50+1” exhibition not only calls attention to their recent anniversary, but renovations made during their two-year shutdown. Lee Roscoe talked to its contemporary curator, Craig Bloodgood, about the reinvigorated ACM as well as Jackie Reeves, whose “Big Plans” exhibition also goes on view when it reopens on May 18.
Another community centric venue presenting a multitude of offerings is the Mosesian Center for the Arts in Watertown, Massachusetts — which features performances by New Repertory Theatre, the Lilac Players and Armenian music in a children- themed concert by Taline & Friends on its upcoming calendar. Claudia Fiks previews its “Across Cultures: Invisible Ties and Journeys of Hope” exhibition taking place in May and June; participating artists were invited to “reconstruct their cultural identity away from their place of origin.”
Wendy Cretella Hodge may only live in Natick, Massachusetts, but in her “Ukraine: Heart and Brush,” paintings, on view through May 15 atGallery 55 in her hometown, she manages to convey the horror of war currently taking place in Ukraine; I was grateful for her invitation to hare her thoughts about how artists respond in times of need.
Equally powerful is Elizabeth Ashe’s report from Venice, Italy on “From Palestine with Art,” an official collateral exhibition at this year’s La Biennale d’ Arte that was curated by Nancy Nesvet, Artscope’s national correspondent in her role as curator for the Connecticut-based Palestine Museum U.S.
We focus on a series of solo shows: Marguerite Serkin reviews Margaret Lampe Kannenstine’s exhibition at the Vermont Institute of Natural Science; Elizabeth Michelman previews Kirstin Lamb’s “Floral Remix” at the Jennifer Terzian Gallery in Litchfield, Connecticut; and Sawyer Smook-Pollitt introduces you to Oscar Andrew Hammerstein, whose “Time And Space: Boundless Abstract Works” will be at Miller White Fine Arts in South Dennis in the heart of Cape Cod. He also shares his favorite works now on view at the RISD Museum in Providence.
We can’t wait for you to read about and see Linda Chestney’s feature story on the artwork of Arghavan Khosravi, a graduate of Brandeis University, the Rhode Island School of Design, Tehran Azad University and the University of Tehran, that is currently on view at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire — and on our front cover.
We’re extremely proud to be shipping this issue to Europe where it will be available from June 16 through 19 at the Art Basel Switzerland Collective Booth in the Magazines Sector, making the artwork of all the artists featured in these pages available to an international audience.
Indeed, we can’t thank the artists of our region enough; they’re our biggest supporters, requesting that the museums, galleries and organizations exhibiting their work support us through advertising their shows. We see it as thanks for our timely dedicated thoughtful coverage reflecting their work and their goals as artists — and people.
We hope you’ll enjoy reading about some of the great shows going on in New England at the start of this summer season — and gather a few of your friends for a much-needed return to art wanderlust adventure (you could start with the roadmap laid out in Taubert’s Guide to Coastal Maine) and in doing so, help increase attention on and activity at those museums and galleries featured in our pages.
Brian Goslow, managing editor