This past weekend, I spent an evening at a couple of the art galleries and restaurants, in Great Barrington, and had a splendid night. The main reason for my being in Great Barrington that night, was to attend an artist’s reception for local artist, Scott Taylor. His opening was at Sanford Smith Fine Art, on Railroad Street. I am a huge fan of Taylor’s works, so I love to get out and see them in person, whenever I can.
I made my way into the gallery, just as the raindrops started to fall. There were already several people milling about, sipping wine, and checking out the art. The gallery is a long, narrow space, lined with Taylor’s art work. The show was entitled, ‘Rev Your Engines’ ,and most of the pieces aptly depicted different automobiles. The colorful works stood out in contrast to the plain, white walls, letting the art have the viewer’s undivided attention. I chatted with a few people, and made my way through the gallery, admiring the show, and also the jewelry that the gallery sells. I don’t know how I have never noticed this gallery before, in all of the times that I have shopped on Railroad Street, but I will definitely be back, as I was intrigued by many of their jewelry pieces. After stopping and talking with Mr. Taylor for a bit, I made my way over to Mario’s Tuscany Grill and Bar, with a few colleagues for a drink.
Mario’s is a secluded, classy kind of place, and we were served as soon as we sat at the bar. Although we weren’t there for food, I gave the menu a quick glance, and it looks like they have a pretty decent selection, though not many vegetarian options for me. We spent a while discussing the arts scene in Pittsfield, and enjoying our drinks, and then made our way upstairs to a gallery that I had not known of before this night. Isha Nelson Gallery, is in it’s new space, having moved over the winter from Main Street. The new space is instantly captivating, and I was equally drawn to the building, the art, and the gallery owner, as well.
The gallery is housed in one of the architecturally pleasing, brick buildings at the back of Railroad Street. The interior had high ceilings with arched windows, and walls of exposed brick, giving the gallery a warm and relaxed ambience. The art was a mix of a few different artists, but all in the same theme as the gallery owner’s ‘ Elements‘ pieces. The stunning glass art of Isha Nelson, is visually stimulating, as each piece seems to be in motion as the light reflects in different ways upon it. The main gallery was where her pieces were hung, and there were also furniture pieces that incorporated the glass art. We were warmly greeted by the gallery owner, who offered us a glass of champagne(I found out later that it was a birthday celebration … Happy belated Birthday!). After admiring the art in that room, we meandered down an art filled hallway that opened into another room, this one filled with the art of two more artists. Kathleen Jacobs, uses canvas applied to trees, which are then rubbed to pick up the trees’ markings. She then stretches the canvases onto frames, making for wonderfully unique works of art. Dan Peterson, takes stunning photos of local fungi, and displays the mushrooms against pure black, and I found these to be endlessly pleasing.
From there, we made our way through the rain back to our vehicles, and headed to Xicohtencatl, on Stockbridge road. I have been here before in the summer, and was able to dine outside on their patio, but tonight was definitely not a night for dining al fresco. Making our way inside, we met up with a few others, and I warmed up with a tasty margarita. I ordered the vegetarian special of the night, which was grilled vegetable filled tacos. An order of house made guacamole was placed, and while more art talk ensued, the delicious guacamole disappeared within minutes.
All in all, it was a successful night in Great Barrington. Though, I should say ‘another’ successful night in GB, because I have never really had a bad night in this town. Have you visited either of these galleries, or enjoyed food at one of the restaurants? I am always interested to know if others think of places that I enjoy. Let me know, okay?
Tags: art, berkshires, great barrington, guacamole, Isha Nelson Gallery, local, Marios Tuscany Grill and Bar, Railroad Street, Sanford Smith Fine Art, Scott Taylor, vegan, Xicohtencatl