Arts Briefs: Forbes library staff exhibit their artwork, Heather Maloney performs three shows in Northampton, and more

The Workroom Theater at 33 Hawley in Northampton will host a series of short live performances — “Making Ground, Live!” — by various artists on Jan. 19-20 to recognize the opening of the finished space.

The Workroom Theater at 33 Hawley in Northampton will host a series of short live performances — “Making Ground, Live!” — by various artists on Jan. 19-20 to recognize the opening of the finished space. Image from A.P.E.@Hawley

Hosmer Gallery at Forbes Library is exhibiting a wide variety of artwork this month that’s been crafted by library staff.

Hosmer Gallery at Forbes Library is exhibiting a wide variety of artwork this month that’s been crafted by library staff. Image from Hosmer Gallery/

Singer-songwriter and Valley favorite Heather Maloney performs a three-night set of shows Jan. 25-27 at The Parlor Room in Northampton. 

Singer-songwriter and Valley favorite Heather Maloney performs a three-night set of shows Jan. 25-27 at The Parlor Room in Northampton.  Contributed photo/Gazette file image

“Mountain Road” is one of several new paintings by Hatfield artist Russell Steven Powell now on exhibit through February at Holyoke Heritage State Park.

“Mountain Road” is one of several new paintings by Hatfield artist Russell Steven Powell now on exhibit through February at Holyoke Heritage State Park. Image courtesy of Russell Steven Powell

“Conception,” a 1941 etching on zinc by Fred Becker, is on view this month at Hope & Feathers Gallery in Amherst.

“Conception,” a 1941 etching on zinc by Fred Becker, is on view this month at Hope & Feathers Gallery in Amherst. Image courtesy of Carla Becker

“Untitled from the portfolio Album,” 1988 etching and aquatint by Terry Winters. It’s part of the exhibit “Beneath the Visible” at the von Auersperg Gallery at Deerfield Academy.

“Untitled from the portfolio Album,” 1988 etching and aquatint by Terry Winters. It’s part of the exhibit “Beneath the Visible” at the von Auersperg Gallery at Deerfield Academy. Image courtesy of UMCA

Published: 01-18-2024 11:08 AM

Modified: 01-18-2024 4:05 PM


Making Ground, Live!

NORTHAMPTON — Late last winter, the Workroom Theater, the largest space in the city’s Community Arts Trust building (33 Hawley), was set to close down for months as new construction began to complete the 3,800-square-foot space.

Before that happened, though, some 180 community members spent 10 days on a project called “Making Ground,” during which they chalked drawings on the Workroom floor, reflecting extended discussions and thinking on issues such as land, space and stewardship.

Now, to celebrate the reopening of the Workroom and the rest of 33 Hawley, local artists — dancers, musicians, performance and theater artists, writers — have created a mix of short performances inspired by the floor drawings made in the space in late February/early March 2023.

“Making Ground, Live!” includes numerous acts of six minutes or less and takes place at the Workroom Jan. 19-20 at 7 p.m. The event will conclude with a screening of a six-minute, time-lapse video of the “Making Ground” project, which shares the creation of the drawings that remain, unseen, under the new floor of the space.

The performances are free; donations for additional upgrades to the Workroom’s technical systems are welcome.

 

What the library staff do off-hours

NORTHAMPTON — This month, Hosmer Gallery at Forbes Library is hosting its first-ever exhibit dedicated to artwork crafted by staff members.

The staff art show, which runs through Jan. 30, showcases work ranging from digital creations to sculpture, from textile art to watercolors, and much more.

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In a short statement, library officials say this “humble conspectus” is designed to “convey the play of logic and whimsy that brings a library to life. We hope that any delight these pieces bring to the viewer may serve to further the welcome that it is the Forbes Library’s honor to extend.”

A reception for the exhibit takes place Saturday, Jan. 20 from 3:30-5:30 p.m. 

 

Three nights of Heather Maloney

NORTHAMPTON — The Parlor Room is presenting three consecutive shows of singer-songwriter Heather Maloney on Jan. 25, 26, and 27, and if you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, do soon so, because a similar three-night run by her at The Parlor Room last April sold out pretty quickly.

Maloney, a Valley favorite who’s released several albums on Signature Sounds of Northampton, has logged over 1,000 live shows in more than a decade of touring, winning praise for her poetic and sometimes introspective lyrics and for her vocals.

The three Parlor Room shows begin at 7:30 p.m.

 

A family art affair

AMHERST — Hope & Feathers Gallery this month is featuring “A Beckers’ Dozen,” a tribute to the late Amherst artists Jean Morrison and Fred Becker, who first met just after World War II at the groundbreaking Atelier 17 Printmaking studio in New York City.

The exhibit, which includes varied prints by the couple, has been curated by their daughter, Carla Becker, with an eye to showcasing the range of her parents’ work and careers.

Fred Becker, for instance, originally did printmaking for the Works Progress Administration in the 1930s and later taught at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, while Jean Morrison taught in the UMass Continuing Education Division, co-founded the Everywoman’s Center at the university, and served on Amherst’s Public Arts Commission.

The Hope & Feathers show runs through Jan. 29.

 

UMCA in Deerfield

DEERFIELD — A new exhibit at the von Auersperg Gallery at Deerfield Academy is showcasing selected works from the University Museum of Contemporary Art (UMCA) at UMass Amherst.

And the show, which runs through Feb. 27, has another UMass connection: It’s been curated by Loretta Yarlow, UMCA’s former director, who stepped down from the museum last summer after nearly two decades at its helm.

“Beneath the Visible: Artists Explore Inner and Outer Realities” features 22 works on loan from the UMCA collection, covering a range of mediums, including prints, drawings, and photographs, and in styles ranging from representational to abstract. The exhibit includes work from regional artists and nationally known figures.

Yarlow says the exhibit is designed to reward “sustained looking” by viewers taking the time to examine the varied pieces carefully because they “challenge the limits of perception.”

Doing that “forc[es] us to slow down, to contemplate, to have a visual experience of discovery,” she writes in exhibit notes. “This kind of slow, close looking is a reminder of how radical that experience can feel amid a culture of urgency and sensory overload.”

 

Calling all regional artists

HOLYOKE — Wistariahurst Museum is seeking artist submissions for its Second Annual Women’s History Month juried art showcase, which takes place in March.

The theme for 2024 is “Nature/Nurture,” a phrase that proposes that “humanness” — the quality of being human — is “formed through our genetics and/or our environments,” the museum says. “Both can impact our mental health, our physical health, and even personality traits.”

Artists are asked to submit works that showcase nature’s impact on them. Examples could focus on a person who nurtured you, explorations of the duality of nature/nurture in humanity, and examinations of how the science of genetics impacts individuals.

Submissions, in all mediums, are open to anyone who identifies as a woman, as well as non-binary artists, of any age.

Submissions should include three to four quality images with basic information (title, date, medium, and size); an artist statement (approximately 300 words about your art and its relationship to the theme); and an artist bio (approximately 150 words), all in a single PDF.

Any and all questions are welcome and encouraged at wistariahurst.org. Five artists will be selected and awarded a $100 stipend. Submissions are due February 5.

 

More art in the paper city

HOLYOKE — Holyoke Heritage State Park is featuring the work of Hatfield painter Russell Steven Powell, whose abstract realist works reflect his longstanding interest in issues surrounding landscape, the natural world, and the physical senses.

“Forest, Field, and Flower — Intimate Landscapes from the Connecticut River Valley to Cape Cod,” which can be viewed in the park’s Exhibition Hall through Feb. 27, includes a range of styles and media (acrylic, oil, and watercolor).

Powell says it’s his first solo exhibit since before the pandemic and includes paintings he’s worked on for the past year or so.

Powell is also a photographer, video producer, and author, and he’s the founder of Brook Hollow Press, which publishes a variety of work, from children’s books to poetry and art collections.

More of his paintings can be seen at russellpowell.net.

— Compiled by Steve Pfarrer