The cold weather wasn’t giving in, so I eventually had to. This past weekend, I layered on some warm clothes, and ventured out to Pittsfield, where there were multiple art show receptions that I wanted to attend. There were also several writer’s workshops that I found my way to, so it was a busy cultural weekend for the girl who has been hibernating all winter.
Saturday night, I drove to The Whitney Center for the Arts, where they were hosting two separate receptions for shows in their galleries. This venue has become one of my favorites, as I love the old architecture of the building, with its rich, warm woodwork, and antiques interspersed with the artwork. The first reception was for a photography show, called ‘Photo Reel’. The show featured the works of several area photographers and was in Gallery W, which is the larger gallery in the Whit. There were so many fascinating pieces, many with different subjects, though I think the one running theme through all of them, was that there was a distinct lack of digital enhancement. In a world where every photo seems to be photo shopped or transformed by some photo app, it was refreshing to see these photos as they were meant to be, when the photographer shot them. The event was packed, and people seemed to really be enjoying themselves.
My favorites( though, there were many naked women photos, and we all know how I love a naked woman photo!) were two photos by Nicholas DeCandia, depicting sepia toned photos of a woman( or women?)whose figure is distorted and twisted by the camera.In the smaller gallery, was a hand thrown pottery show, by artist Michael Boroniec. I had a quick chance last year to check out his work, but appreciated the chance to linger over them this night, in the Colt Gallery, at the Whit. His pottery has an old world feel to me, with a slight modern twist. There are slight nuances in the pieces that leave the viewer scrutinizing each piece, to make sure that they aren’t missing another wonderful detail. I especially love his paintings, that went along with the pottery. They have a modern edge that complements the pottery, and I look forward to seeing more of his paintings someday.The next day, I met a colleague at The Marketplace, where I was able to enjoy a warm(yay! warm!)bowl of vegan squash soup, while perusing another art show that was hung in the space. I love that the area businesses get involved with the art scene, and give the artists great places to hang their work. This particular show appropriately featured food images, and I loved one of the pieces by artist, Leo Mazzeo, that was a sort of surreal vision of the perfect burger and French fry meal. From there, we made our way over to The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, which was hosting a reception for their ‘Forty Shades of Green’ art show. This reception was also packed, with little room to move around, and that is saying a lot, judging by the size of the large gallery. I chatted with the mayor for a bit, and I had a great time talking with many of the artists, Scott Taylor and Mike Carty(I have made a promise to myself that I will own art from both of them someday!)among them. The art pieces on the walls were varied and interesting, and I literally could have spent hours admiring them all. I especially loved a couple of photographs of Susan Geller’s. She is always one of my favorites, and I really loved the one of fresh produce, with its fresh, summer green reaching out to warm my winter beaten mind. There were even a few sculptures added in to the mix, and I love that it was an open submission event, so anyone who submitted a piece(as long as it had the ‘green’ theme), was accepted. This meant that even little kids could be in the show, and I saw several proud young people showing off their artwork.All in all, I’d say that I am really glad that I decided to brave the cold, and venture out into the world, especially the art world. I am continually amazed by the amount of talent that is found in the Berkshires. I know other places have great artists and musicians, etc., but it seems the Berkshires have an inordinate amount, and that pleases this berkshiregirl to no end! Do you have a favorite local artist? I am always looking for new suggestions, so feel free to share any that you think I should know about, and I will check them out. For now, I think I will return to my hibernation for a bit longer, as the weatherman just spouted something about a deep freeze moving in. Yay for winter! Not.
Tags: art, art shows, berkshiregirl, berkshires, galleries, Gallery W, leo mazzeo, Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Michael Boroniec, Mike Carty, Nicholas DeCandia, photography, pittsfield, pottery, receptions, Scott Taylor, Susan Geller, The Colt Gallery, The Marketplace cafe, whitney center for the arts, winter