The gallery is located at 44 Eagle, in the Flatiron Block.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A new art gallery in downtown North Adams is the result of the city's unique relationship with contemporary art as a lure to artists from other places.
Gravity Gallery co-owners Lynn Richardson and Paul McMullan first became acquainted with the city in 2012 when both artists displayed work in Downstreet Art.
Richardson's installation, "Arctic Garden," addressed climate change in context of Richardson's hometown, Winnipeg. McMullen's work was also featured in a pop-up gallery from Gallery 107, ceramic work that functioned as the "guardians of the gallery."
Richardson and McMullan are art professors at Keene State College in New Hampshire, where they run the Thorne Art Gallery. Though they originally figured they would open their own gallery in Keene, North Adams was calling to them, partly because of the reasonable pricing of the space that made it possible to take a chance on the their idea, and partly because the city's unique relationship with its contemporary art museum.
"Mass MoCA brings in so many people that already care about contemporary art," Richardson said.
"I like the arts community that North Adams has to offer," McMullan said. "I saw a 'for rent' sign on Eagle Street during a field trip with students to Mass MoCA. The price was right. Having Mass MoCA around the corner was a big factor in picking North Adams."
There's also a factor of art literacy, which Richardson says she has found a lot of in North Adams and truly makes a difference in its status as a home to contemporary arts. After years of the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art and various galleries and festivals appearing downtown, contemporary art is just in the air, part of the regular landscape.
"During that Downstreet Art experience, I met so many people who could quickly engage in a conversation about art," Richardson said."That's what drew us to the town. You don't have to go back in time and start explaining everything — why people build the way they build, or why they're not doing landscape paintings. "
The duo are hoping to populate the gallery with work that is similar to their own. They still run the gallery at Keene State and foresee a situation where there is a direct line between the two galleries, and an artistic link is forged between Keene and North Adams.
"For the first two shows we tapped into our friends," said Richardson, "but we're hoping that being in that location we'll actually meet people, make connections and bring in other artists. Also bring them back over to New Hampshire."
McMullen says they are planning on moving forward with a mix of hopefulness and caution, diving into the programming and looking ahead to the rest of the year, but also approaching it incrementally in order to not take on more than they can handle — in other words, to do their best to make it work.
"We have a year lease," he said. "We hope to sign on for another year cause we are already almost booked for this year. I hope to be a place where local, national and international contemporary artists get to exhibit without the pressure of sales."
During the next year, the gallery plans shows with painter Sara Fagan, who takes her inspiration from Japanese concepts to render portraits of unconstructed boxes, printmaker Jack McCaslin, ceramics artist Jason Green and painter Stephanie McMahon, as well as McMullen's ceramic work. Richardson says they are also working on possible group shows, including one around artistic interpretations of cake, sure to feature a few edible ones.
Opening the gallery has had an unexpected benefit — it's given Richardson and McMullen the opportunity to devote more contemplation the art they appreciate, to spend time with those works.
"What's happening is we really enjoy going into our little gallery now and looking at the work that's in there," Richardson said. "It's like slowing everything down for us, sitting around contemporary art and absorbing it."
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue; please keep comments focused on the issues and not on personalities. Profanity, obscenity, racist language and harassment are not allowed. iBerkshires reserves the right to ban commenters or remove commenting on any article at any time. Concerns may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue. Name-calling, personal attacks, libel, slander or foul language is not allowed. All comments are reviewed before posting and will be deleted or edited as necessary.
Comments are closed for this article. If you would like to contribute information on this article, e-mail us at info@iBerkshires.com
Breault Blast Highlights Met Life Win in Torchia League
By Stephen DravisiBerkshires.com Sports
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- Brittany Breault went 3-for-4 with a sacrifice fly and a grand slam Tuesday to lead Met Life to a 15-4 win over Big Daddy’s in the Pat Torchia Women’s Softball League playoffs.
With the win in the final winner’s bracket game, Met Life moves on to the finals of the double-elimination tournament. Big Daddy’s, the league’s regular season champion, is scheduled to play Thursday at 6 against the winner of Wednesday’s loser’s bracket contest.
On Tuesday, Met Life jumped on top early with a seven-run second inning.
The first seven players to come to the plate singled and ended up scoring.
Kevin Strahle traveled all the way from his home in New Jersey to compete in the Jack's Hot Dog Stand eating contest on Eagle Street on a sweltering Saturday.
But because of some late intestinal distress, he did not take the title home with him. click for more
This art installation, although originally intended for the Ashuwillticook Trail, was placed at the Natural Bridge State Park here in North Adams where it has remained for the past 15 years.
click for more
The Berkshire Business Interns, winnowed from more than 500 applications this past spring, worked in 20 different organizations, businesses and municipalities throughout the county this summer. About two-thirds hail from the Berkshires.
click for more