Pittsfield First Fridays Artswalk on Aug. 5

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PITTSFIELD, Mass.  A dozen art shows and exhibits will be showcased during the First Fridays Artswalk on Aug. 5 from 5 to 8 p.m., with most art on display all month long.

Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. will present Indoors Out! Free Kids’ Paint & Sip on Friday, Aug. 5, 5 to 7:30 p.m., at the parklet and outdoor seating area at The Marketplace Cafe, 53 North Street. Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. will also present a Children’s Scavenger Hunt for art from 5 to 8 p.m. on Aug. 5. Children who complete the hunt will receive a coupon for a free ice cream or frozen yogurt. A copy of the hunt can be found at downtownpittsfield.com a few days before the event, or at the Paint & Sip location above.

The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, 28 Renne Avenue, will present Moby-Dick exhibition, Aug. 5 through Aug. 26, and there will be an opening reception during the First Fridays Artswalk on Aug. 5 from 5 to 8 p.m.

The Moby-Dick exhibition is a fascinating dialogue around Melville’s work, how it has inspired generations of artists, and how many of the themes are relevant in today’s world. Featured artists Jim Jasper and Christopher Volpe have created bodies of work exploring themes in Herman Melville’s 1851 novel, Moby-Dick. Jasper’s series, Moby Dick, consists of works on paper referencing each chapter of the novel. Rather than simply illustrating each chapter, the artist draws on the sources that inspired Melville in his writing. Volpe’s series, Loomings, which references the title of the first chapter of Moby-Dick, includes paintings which incorporate other materials beyond oil paint: primarily liquified coal tar. He uses this medium to explore the relationship between humanity and industrialization, and the resource-driven destruction of the natural world. 

The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts is open Wednesdays through Fridays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., or by appointment. This exhibition is presented by the Berkshire County Historical Society and sponsored by Berkshire Bank.

The Brothership Building Window at 141 North Street, curated by Berkshire Art Center (formerly known as IS183 Art School of the Berkshires), will feature Paintings by Wednesday Nelena Sorokin, Aug. 5 to 29.

Wednesday Nelena Sorokin (professionally Nelena Soro) is a professional painter and teacher. Spirituality, Feminism, and her enduring adventures with Jungian psychology are integral to her work.

Lee Bank, 75 North Street, will present paintings by Anita Plouffe for the month of August. This will be a window display on view throughout the month. Select paintings will be on view inside the bank during normal bank hours.

Anita Plouffe is a self-taught painter who has always had a love for art and creativity. A Pittsfield native, her art reflects the nature and wildlife living in the Berkshires using vivid colors with mediums of watercolor and oil paints.

For the month of August, TKG Real Estate, 137 North Street, is very excited to present cutting edge work from two award-winning international artists, multi-media artist Leslie Alfin and performance artist Karen Dolmanisth, in an exhibit entitled MOSAIC.

There will be a reception as part of First Fridays Artswalk on Friday, Aug. 5 from 5 to 8 p.m. This special evening is the culmination of creative give and take between two diverse talents. Together they have developed an in-depth way of experiencing their art, highlighted by the planned creation of a triple Mandela throughout the course of the evening. 

MOSAIC is an exhibit that ties together Alfin's chaotic, colorful, and noisy pieces with Dolmanisth's quiet, serene, and meditative work through each artist’s process of identifying, selecting, and combining bits and pieces of experiential material. Material harvested from the depths of the internet in Alfin's case and the depths of introspection in the case of Dolmanisth. In this way, the coming together of the work creates a powerful dialogue that is paradoxically both chaotic and serene.

Barrington Stage Company will present The Art of Humberto Fernandez: A recollection of Cuba inspired by Anna in the Tropics, July 15 to Aug. 15 at Barrington Stage Company's Wolfson Theatre Center, Rhoda and Morris Levitt Lobby, 122 North Street.

Cuban artist Humberto Fernandez came to America as a result of the Revolution. He grew up in the Bronx, and Elizabeth, NJ, and after studying Film & TV Production at NYU he embarked on a successful career as an Advertising Photographer and Filmmaker.

Now retired and living in Pittsfield amidst the Berkshire mountains of Massachusetts, his artwork consists primarily of Encaustic Photography and Paintings. He employs a 5000-year-old process using rice paper and beeswax, with acrylic, oil, and wax paints, fused together at 185-degree heat, in collages mounted on wood or prepared encaustic board.

The public can stop by and view the show during the First Fridays Artswalk on Friday, Aug 5 from 5 to 8 p.m., and when the Wolfson Center is open.

The Artists at the historic Clock Tower would like to welcome the community to their second open studios in this newly founded arts location in Pittsfield! Established, visual artists will open their new studios to share their art and provide insight into their creative processes. 

The artists’ studios are located on the third floor of the Clock Tower at 75 South Church Street which offers free parking and an elevator.

The artists at the Clock Tower are Lori Bradley, Joanie Ciolfi, Mary Davidson, Marion Grant, Caroline Kelley, Mollie Kellogg, Mark Mellinger, Shany Porras, Ilene Richard, and Sally Tiska-Rice. 

Hotel on North, 297 North Street, will feature "What Keeps My Heart Awake", paintings by Marita O’Dea Glodt, for the August Artswalk. There will be an opening reception on Friday, Aug. 5 from 5 to 8 p.m., during the First Fridays Artswalk.

“My journey each season through the Berkshires takes me through farms and orchards, across forests and preserves, inside waterfalls, under trees, on lakes and nearby swamps and streams, past rainstorms, morning light, and sunset and to the edge of riverbanks,” says Marita. “It has lifted me through these difficult times and has helped me navigate through the creative process and find joy in the simplest and yet most exquisite things.”

Mission Gastropub, 438 North Street, will feature artwork by Dennis Fougere for the month of August. Dennis will offer some remarks at 5 pm on Friday, Aug. 5 and will be on site for an hour or so to chat about his work.

The Marketplace Cafe, 53 North Street, will present JD Logan Fine Art for the month of August. There will be a reception with the artist as part of First Fridays Artswalk from 5 to 7 p.m. on Aug. 5. JD Logan creates surreal landscapes with a focus on trees and moons, inspired by the surroundings of JD’s home in the Berkshire hills.

The Unitarian Universalist Church of Pittsfield, 175 Wendell Avenue, will present “No Rhyme Or Reason” by Amarie for the month of August. There will be an opening reception on Friday, Aug 5, 5 to 8 p.m., as part of First Fridays Artswalk, and the art will be on display through Aug. 25.

Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. will present Indoors Out! Free Kids’ Paint & Sip on Friday, Aug. 5, 5 to 7:30 p.m., at the parklet and outdoor seating area at The Marketplace Cafe, 53 North Street. This free event is best suited for ages 5 to 12, although older children are welcome. All materials, instruction, snacks, and juice will be provided. August’s painting theme will be watermelons, baseballs, and ice cream. Children must be accompanied by an adult and masks are recommended. The alternate rain location will be at Hot Harry’s covered outdoor seating area at 37 North Street.

Indoors Out! Free Kids’ Paint & Sip is presented by Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. and funding has been provided by the Commonwealth Places Program created by MassDevelopment. This event is presented in partnership with First Fridays Artswalk.

Other participating venues are ReDefine of 5 Melville Street, The Funky Phoenix of 441 North Street and Soma’s Aromas of 81 East Street.

For more information on First Fridays Artswalk, visit firstfridaysartswalk.com or call 413-443-6501.


Tags: Downtown Pittsfield,   Pittsfield Artswalk,   

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Pittsfield In-Person Tree Lighting Ceremony Returns After 2-Year Hiatus

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff

The Laviolette family donated the tree and turned on the lights on Friday.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Hundreds gathered at Park Square on Friday for the city's first in-person tree lighting ceremony in three years.

The 25-foot tall white spruce is adorned by 20,000 lights, illuminating the area and spreading holiday cheer.

"There are so many kids and families here this evening and I know everyone is anxious to see the beautiful tree that was donated by the Laviolette family," Mayor Linda Tyer said right before the switch was flipped.

"Thank you for your generosity. This tree will provide a whole month of beauty and festivity for all of us to enjoy and I love coming to the tree lighting because when you look all around Park Square, you can see just how beautiful our city is at this time of year."

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