Local Contemporary Artists’ Work On View at Historic Northampton Museum & Education Center

Local Contemporary Artists’ Work On View at
Historic Northampton Museum & Education Center
August 9 – August 30, 2013

Stop by Historic Northampton Museum & Education Center between 5-8pm on Friday, August 9, 2013 for the exhibition’s opening reception in conjunction with Northampton’s monthly Arts’ Night Out festivities!

The Northampton Center for the Arts, A.P.E. Gallery, and the Historic Northampton Museum & Education Center have teamed up for another exhibition of contemporary art by local western Massachusetts artists. This month’s featured works are by Taiga Ermansons and Kim Carlino. Each artist’s work draws on Northampton and its history for inspiration.

Weather by Taiga Ermansons: Ermansons’ delicate tissue creations – often made on the terrace of her Northampton home – record specific moments in time, either through the intervention of weather elements (such as rain) on the tissue or through the use of embroidery techniques much like the ones Northampton women would have used over one hundred years ago…

Exemplum by Kim Carlino: Carlino’s similarly interdisciplinary style of creation is also linked to the stitching samplers women used long ago. “What do 19th century samplers have in common with my contemporary art practice? The creation of language,” she says. Her work explores fundamental gestures like that of line, shape, and color, which, like language, convey meaning, and re-interpreting similar gestures that were once used to gauge the skill and precision of young girls’ needlework.

“Although today often critiqued for technique and design, samplers and silk embroideries are perhaps even more important as historical documents. Through study, they may reveal the ideas, beliefs, and attitudes of their time; refer to historical events; serve as a genealogical reference; or even record lost settlements or architecture. And finally also, signed schoolgirl art may provide the only proof of a young girl’s existence.”  (From the DAR Museum virtual exhibit, “Telling Their Stories” Nineteenth-Century Samplers and Silk Needlework.

Families will enjoy viewing Ermansons’ technique of leaving Kleenex tissues out in the weathr to create “fossils,” and Carlino’s bold use of shape and color. Visitors can draw their own comparisons between the stitching samplers of the 19th century and these contemporary iterations of documentation and demonstration – and should consider the ways in which we each carry out the work of documentation and demonstration in our own lives. What tools do you use if not tissue? Maybe color, collage, or needle and thread?

These two exhibits will be on view from Friday, August 9 through Friday, August 30, 2013. The Museum is open Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10am-5pm, and Sundays from noon-5pm. 413-584-6011. Historic Northampton Museum & Education Center, 46 Bridge Street. Northampton, MA. (Suggested donation $3 individuals, $6 families) For more information: www.historic-northampton.org

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