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Portrait of the Artist as an Old Man

June 29, 2014

Photo by Susan Phillips/All Rights Reserved

Reflections on the plate glass my computer-manipulated photos of three beautiful women were taped to, put them in an entirely new light during the opening of the seventh season of the DownStreet Art festival in downtown North Adams Thursday evening.

The reflections gave the 50-inch wide photos fascinating new dimensions. Look how a tree from across Main Street fills in for the shadow around Megin's eye and her hair becomes a mirror for the church. And below it's almost as if Linda Baker-cimini's thoughts are of the sky.

Photo by Shannon Nichols/All Rights Reserved


Photo by Shannon Nicols/All Rights Reserved

And this shot by my daughter Shannon of my picture of her daughter Riley gives meaning to the title of my installation: Facing the Street. Maybe it should have been Streeting the Face.

Normally my blog app is setup to limit the size of my pictures to three-quarters of the size you see above. Somehow it allowed me to override the limit and I'm running these much bigger pictures. I hope they maintain that larger format when I publish. We'll see.

DownStreet Art's season opener, which will remain on view through late July, drew people downtown to look and linger. Gina Coleman and her band One Way Out drew a crowd one storefront down from me. She can belt out the blues with the best of them. It was great to have her next door. That's her below. I don't know how many of those attending knew she is the new principal for Herberg Middle School in Pittsfield. Making this section of the street something of a family affair was the booth of her husband Michael Mongue and son Diego Mongue. The father-son team produces the "Awesome Robot Science Fiction Action Comix in which Dennis the Robot rockets to "exciting adventures in Strange Worlds." I bought two for one of my grandchildren.


Photo by Susan Phillips/All Rights Reserved

I stuck close to my installation which was at the Berkshire Eagle office on Main Street. Having my art at The Eagle marked another chapter in 32-year association with the newspaper, where I was a reporter and then the associate editor for 32 years, retiring in 1997. Kevin Moran, the vice president of news, suggested me to Jennifer Huberdeau, the paper's online editor. An artist in her own right, she is operating the North Adams office's DownStreet  gallery.

Also I was in the neighborhood of the old Transcript office, the one torn down by urban renewal. I had been a reporter there for five years before joining The Eagle. One woman I talked with even remember my name from my Transcript days.


Photo by Susan Phillips/All Rights Reserved

Above is more of the Main Street scene on Thursday evening and below is Center Street where the Route 2 overpass provided space for a spectacular 60-foot mural Justice by Egyptian artist Alaa Awad

I'm going to have to drive up to North Adams soon to take a look at all the art in the galleries that I didn't get to see because I stuck pretty close to my installation. But my wife Babbie got around to see some of the work and gave me good reports. One of the things I'm anxious to see is the new Rudd Art Museum which is located at the former Methodist Church which Eric Rudd, an artist and developer, bought. Only two rooms were open Thursday but Rudd and Kevin Shaw, the museum's director, have big plans for the large church which will show both Rudd's work and that of other Berkshire artists.


Photo by Susan Phillips/All Rights Reserved

I forgot my camera Thursday night but my daughter Shannon Nichols and a former co-worker, Susan Phillips, bailed me out and I thank them.


June 23, 2014

Photos by Grier Horner/All Rights Reserved

This is one of three photos of mine being shown at DownStreet Art in North Adams from 6 to 9 on Thursday night. They will be mounted in the windows of the Berkshire Eagle office and the faces will face the street.

The one at the top is of Linda Baker-cimini who does not complain when i mess around with the color of her face. Here are the other two:

Megin is the subject of the shot above and Riley, my granddaughter, is the model for the one below. Her face is imposed on a painting by Pierre Soulages, a French painter over 90 years old, who I admire.


The prints, on plastic "canvas", were made for me by Massive Graphics of Pittsfield. Each is roughly 34" x 50" and has had grommets inserted for hanging. I'm issuing them as a series of 10 each. I'll sell them for $695. Hope to see you there. There are a number of good artists to check out. Click here for the program.


I haven't written a post for about three weeks because the software on which it is written, Adobe's Contribute, wouldn't launch on my computer. I spent several hours with Adobe on the phone but they were unable to solve the problem. I stumbled across a solution earlier today. I apologize to those of you who came to the site and found nothing new.








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