In the mid-1990s, local media in southeastern Massachusetts began referring to what was then called Greater New Bedford as “the South Coast.” This unabashed bit of public relations boosterism was an attempt to negate the perceived stigma of urban blight and high unemployment. It was a successful rebranding. The sometimes vaguely defined South Coast area has expanded to usually include 11 Massachusetts municipalities, and sometimes the Rhode Island border towns of Tiverton and Little Compton. However, New Bedford remains the hub of the region. In 2011, in a much- quoted article in The Atlantic Monthly, urbanist Richard Florida declared it the seventh-most creative city in the United States, based on self-described artists working per capita. The South Coast has a thriving art community with creative roots reaching back to the glory days of whaling, when New Bedford was … [Read more...] about THE SOUTH COAST: ARTS COMMUNITY WITH HISTORIC ROOTS
New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks!
An Unlikely Partnership Makes Sense by Don Wilkinson The New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park (NBWNHP) is a 16-acre urban park spread over thirteen city blocks, many of them cobblestoned, and is part of the National Park Service (NPS). In 2014, the NBWNHP approached the New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks! (NBAM/AW!) to invite it to participate in the centennial anniversary celebration of the NPS. It was decided that the museum would host an exhibition of works by the famed 19th century landscape painter of the American West, Albert Bierstadt. Born in Solingen, Rhine Province, Prussia in 1830, Bierstadt moved to New Bedford with his family the following year. But why a Bierstadt show to celebrate the NPS? There is a meandering, far-reaching connective thread. His paintings of the frontier, when exhibited and copied and published back East during the years in the … [Read more...] about Bierstadt in New Bedford