DownStreet Art on Ice will return for a third consecutive year, extending this summer and fall’s art events into December with art openings, live music and more in downtown North Adams on Thursday, Dec. 1, beginning at 5 p.m., to be held in conjunction with the city-wide celebration, “Hometown Holidays.”
This year’s events – which are free and open to the public – will feature six exhibition openings, two performances, art deals, art on a stick wandering cart, as well as specials at downtown businesses.
Exhibition openings include those at MAYA IV by Jarvis Rockwell, 49 Main St.; “99¢ and up: Art Mall” at MCLA Gallery 51, 51 Main St.; Melanie Mowinski’s installation at PIP Gallery, 53 Main St.; “Patterns and Pressure” at PRESS, 105 Main St.; and an MCLA student show in the window of 109 Main St.
99 Cents show at MCLA Gallery 51 in 2010
MCLA Gallery 51 Manager Ven Voisey said the event offers a wide variety of artistic holiday gifts for purchase. “Whether you’re a conflicted idealist, a die-hard capitalist, something in-between, or none of the above, you’ve probably found yourself befuddled by shopping malls and big box stores, and people’s behavior within them, during holiday shopping season. This upcoming exhibit is simultaneously an examination of that phenomenon, and a great chance support the local economy by adding artwork from a selection of MCLA Gallery 51 and DownStreet Art. The gallery will be chock-full of affordable, ready-to-be-sold-off-the wall art of a wide variety of mediums priced between 99 cents and $99.”
MCLA Gallery 51 Merchandising 2010
MAYA IV, 49 Main St., will feature new and old works by North Adams artist Jarvis Rockwell. In addition to new works – including a new wall drawing – Rockwell has on exhibit his “MAYA IV sculpture and works he created in the 1960s and ’70s.
MAYA IV – detail
The PIP Gallery will feature an installation by Melanie Mowinski, MCLA art professor. It consists of a series of hanging silk panels entitled, “Tree of Souls,” that was originally created for and shown as part of the “Festival of Trees” at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield.
“PRESS: Letterpress as a Public Art ” will unveil the new exhibit, “Patterns and Pressure,” featuring MCLA student projects printed at PRESS during the fall semester by students in Mowinski’s “Intro to Design” and “Concrete Poetry” classes.
At 109 Main St.,“Coming up NEXT! MCLA’s Emerging Artists” is a preview of work created by some of the students who will graduate from MCLA this spring.
In addition, artist Mark Mulherrin and Kirsten Warming will return downtown with their “Artsicle” cart. Artists were asked to participate in the project creating their own “art on a stick,” which will be given away during DownStreet Art on Ice. The cart will be then parked at MCLA Gallery 51 as part of the “99¢ and up: Art Mall” show.
DownStreet Art on Ice also will see the culmination of the Window Decorating Contest. All businesses are invited to participate in this holiday window decorating contest. Judging will take place on Dec. 1. Judges will include: North Adams Mayor Richard Alcombright, local artist Jarvis Rockwell, Michael Foster of the North Adams Transcript and Sean Taylor from Freight Yard Pub.
Michael Chapman’s window installation, 2010
A City Councilor’s Choice award and a People’s Choice Award also will be awarded. The trolley will take judges and interested members of the public to all decorated sites throughout the city. For more information about the Window Decorating Contest, contact Veronica Bosley at firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-664-6180
Performances include those by the MCLA Allegrettos, the College’s a cappella group that has performed throughout the county, as well as on public television. The students will perform traditional songs of the season at different venues throughout downtown the night.
And, the MCLA Jazz Band, under the guidance of local musician and teacher Jamie Choquette, will perform from 6-7 p.m., at 107 Main St. Starting at 8:30 p.m., Patrick Gray will perform on the stage at PUBLIC Restaurant, 34 Holden St.
In addition, a Children’s Scavenger Hunt will be held throughout North Adams, Dec. 1-8, as part of the Hometown Holidays celebration. Clues will be available at Verizon Wireless, I Got Goodies and MCLA Gallery 51 starting Dec. 1, as part of the evening’s events.
DownStreet Art is a project of MCLA’s Berkshire Culture Resource Center, partnering with the City of North Adams, Develop North Adams, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The program is made possible through leading sponsorship support provided by Orbit Visual Graphic Design, Excelsior Printing, Scarafoni Reality and Berkshire Bank. Additional support is provided by: Adams Co-Operative Bank, Brewhaha Café, Edward Jones Investments, The Porches Inn at MASS MoCA, Moulton’s Spectacle Shop Inc., Persnickety Toys, Jarvis W. Rockwell and The Sushi House.
The initiative was designed to revitalize downtown North Adams by identifying the city as a cultural haven. The program serves not only to increase MCLA’s visibility, but also to showcase what other local arts organizations have to offer. For more information about DownStreet Art and MCLA’s Berkshire Cultural Resource Center, go to www.downstreetart.org and www.mcla.edu/bcrc .
For more information, call (413) 664-8718, or go to www.downstreetart.org .