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TLC #46: Greylock Together Against Hate; Purple Dragon, Farm to Fork Fondo

Greylock Together “Stand Against Hate” brings hundreds to Field Park
Hundreds answered the call of Greylock Together to Stand Against Hate at Field Park, Williamstown the day after three died and 19 were wounded at a demonstration of white nationalists in Charlottesvill, VA; photo by Jason Velázquez
Hundreds answered the call of Greylock Together to Stand Against Hate at Field Park, Williamstown the day after three died and 19 were wounded at a demonstration of white nationalists in Charlottesville, VA; photo by Jason Velázquez

In this episode, we heard from some of the hundreds of people who took part in the Stand Against Hate organized by Greylock Together after the Charlottesville, VA tragedy.

We toured the new Spring Street, Williamstown shop, Purple Dragon Games., founded by Nico White.

And we had a great conversation with Tyler Wren, founder of the Farm to Fork Fondo, bringing cyclists into a closer connection with local food.

And we get an exclusive first listen to “Close to the Edge,” by our good friends the Whiskey Treaty Roadshow.

This episode is sponsored by The Hancock Shaker Village, celebrating the 20th Anniversary of their beloved Country Fair. And by Headwater Cider, a local orchard and mill that believes hard cider is best when you grow what you press, and press you grow.

We also heard a snatch of “Descendants,” performed by the Rob Piltch Trio on the amazing 2016 Jazz release, Portraits in Jazz: A Tribute to Wes Montgomery, sent to us by someone connected to Ed Bickert, though we are not really clear who. We’ll be playing more from this release as we can.

Greylock Together Responds to Charlottesville, VA attack

 

People of all ages, including a good number of creative children, joined the Williamstown happening August 14, 2017; photo by Jason Velázquez
People of all ages, including a good number of creative children, joined the Williamstown happening August 13, 2017; photo by Jason Velázquez

Today is Thursday, August 24, 2017, and this is Episode number 46. In the immediate aftermath of the August 12th tragedy in Charlottesville, VA, local activist group Greylock Together summoned hundreds of local residents, as well as some visitors, to Field Park in Williamstown for an observance of death of longtime social justice advocate Heather Heyer and a show of solidarity against hatred and violence. Today we here some of the voices who were present that day, calling for change.

We also speak with well-known cyclist Tyler Wren, founder of the Farm to Fork Fondo, which connects athletics and local agriculture where the rubber really does meet the road.

And we profile new local Williamstown business owned by Nico White, Purple Dragon Games, a Spring Street shop that creates a social epicenter for a community of gamers who roll old-school.

First though a Greylock Glass exclusive. Americana and Bluegrass powerhouse the Whiskey Treaty Roadshow are letting us share a tune from their as-yet-unreleased EP due out in September.

The Whiskey Treaty Roadshow will be performing September 24 at the Hancock Shaker Village's 20th annual Country Fair; submitted photo.
The Whiskey Treaty Roadshow will be performing September 24 at the Hancock Shaker Village’s 20th annual Country Fair; submitted photo.

And I’m guessing they’ll be performing this deeply moving track, “Close to the Edge,” which they’ve asked me to share with you right here on the Top Left Corner.

We’ve got a link to the Whiskey Treaty Roadshow’s website in the shownotes, and I really want you to make contact with them there, and sign up for their occasional newsletter, so that you can be the first to find out as soon as that EP drops next month.

Let’s go now to Field Park in Williamstown, August 12th and hear some of what was on the minds and in the hearts of those who gathered to Stand Against Hate. We ran first into frequent guest of various GG shows, artist, musician, promoter and activist Karl Mullen.

Geraldine Shen, who directs Greylock Together, explained why there wasn’t a moment’s hesitation on the group’s part to call people to Stand Against Hate.

Wendy Penner has been with Greylock Together since its origin back in November, and talked about the need for local responses to events tied into national conflicts.

Purple Dragon Games Events:
Wednesday: Magic Standard Constructed, $5 entry, Round 1 begins 6:00 p.m.
Thursday: Open Board Games, free entry, begins 6:00 p.m.
Friday: Friday Night Magic Booster Draft, $15, begins 6:30 p.m.
Sunday: D&D, $2 entry, 2:00pm

Nico White is on a quest to outfit North County gamers with games and gear as he nurtures a growing tabletop community; photo by Jason Velázquez.
Nico White is on a quest to outfit North County gamers with games and gear as he nurtures a growing tabletop community; photo by Jason Velázquez.

Laura Savia, Associate Director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival was just hours away from debuting this year’s community theatre production of “Once Upon a Time in the Berkshires” when she decided to offer the cast and crew a chance to participate in the demonstration. The sold-out show was, in fact, heartbreakingly aligned with the clash in Charlottesville that led to three deaths and injuries to 19 others.

Writer, editor, retired English professor, and general member of the local literati, Tela Zasloff was thoughful in her estimation of the manner in which Trumpism can be countered and the role of journalists in a political landscape that has grown increasingly hostile to the press.

 

Purple Dragon Games is open on Spring Street in Williamstown; submitted image.
Purple Dragon Games is open on Spring Street in Williamstown; submitted image.

Nico White, a Williams alum who also grew up in town, returned to pursue a passion he indulged in between study sessions at school—tabletop gaming. And he’s taken it pro right on Spring Street with the launch of Purple Dragon Games.

For anyone who’s spent any touring around on a bicycle, the fresh air and pastoral views in farm country are among some of the most delicious experiences you can have on two wheels. Tyler Wren, founder of Farm to Fork Fondo takes pedalers out of the breakdown lane and into the barnyard to sample some of the scenery they could once only enjoy with their eyes.

The Maine Farm to Fork Fondo took place on Sunday august 27, 2017; photo courtesy Farm to Fork Fondo.
The Maine Farm to Fork Fondo took place on Sunday august 27, 2017; photo courtesy Farm to Fork Fondo.

 

More information about the Farm to Fork Fondo can be found at their website, and of course, you can find the links in the shownotes. Looks like it’s going to be a helluva weekend, now matter how you get involved.

Well, that’s our show for this week. This has been Jason Velazquez, your host, writer, editor, web admin, and chief bottle washer here at the Greylock Glass. We’ve got a little time left over here at the end, so I think I’ll let Charlie Parr take us home with the title track of his 2015 release, Stumpjumper, since Tyler started off our conversation talking about mountain biking. Have a great week and check back again soon.

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TLC #45: Baker wants to “empower” the heat to play nice with ICE

Immigration Detainers

The bland phrase conjures up little emotion for people with no reason to believe that they, or loved ones, risk deportation due to immigration status. To countless families in the United States, however, the two words, “immigration detainers,” (also known as “ICE Holds”), plug in to a nightmare of vulnerability that tears at families and communities. We speak with Brooke Mead of the Berkshire Immigrant Center and Laura Rótolo of the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts about Governor Baker’s proposed legislation that would ratchet the mechanisms of deportation up a gear or two.

Nationwide, local law enforcement is pushing back against pressure to perform the work of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, often disregarding immigration detainers; photo by Department of Homeland Security; public domain; via Wikimedia Commons</span></a>
Nationwide, local law enforcement is pushing back against pressure to perform the work of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, often disregarding immigration detainers; photo by Department of Homeland Security; public domain; via Wikimedia Commons

Berkshire Immigrant Center

Brooke Meade, director of the Berkshire Immigrant Center; photo courtesy Avi Dresner/WellTalk Radio.
Brooke Meade, director of the Berkshire Immigrant Center; photo courtesy Avi Dresner/WellTalk Radio.

(from BIC website)

Director of the Berkshire Immigrant Center, Brooke Mead, was formerly a high school Spanish teacher and holds her Masters degree in Spanish from Middlebury College. She has lived in Venezuela and Mexico and, having been an immigrant herself, brings with her the cultural understanding and sensitivity necessary to work with the immigrant and refugee population.

The mission of the Berkshire Immigrant Center is to assist individuals and families in making the economic, psychological and cultural adjustment to a new land, not only by meeting basic needs, but also by helping them to become active participants in our community. The Center also aims to build bridges of understanding and cooperation across cultures, to fight racism and discrimination in all forms, and to advocate for the rights of immigrants from all backgrounds.

The Center offers comprehensive services for individuals from more than 80 countries to promote civic engagement, facilitate cultural integration, and assist in navigating the complex U.S. immigration system.

 

Additional resources:

Slate’s very good article on the subject.
Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition
UNIDOS

ACLU of Massachusetts

Laura Rotolo, Staff Council ACLU; photo courtesy ACLUM
Laura Rótolo, Staff Council ACLU; photo courtesy ACLUM

(from ACLUM website)

Laura Rótolo is staff counsel and community advocate at the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts where she focuses on issues relating to immigrants.

She joined the ACLU of Massachusetts in 2007, first as a human rights fellow studying immigration detention conditions. Currently, Laura works to create policies that safeguard fundamental rights, as well as challenge policies that do not. As a Latina and an immigrant from Argentina, she advocates within Latino immigrant communities in Massachusetts.

Laura is a graduate of Tufts University, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and American University’s Washington College of Law.

The ACLU of Massachusetts, this week, released the following statement concerning Governor Charlie Baker’s proposed legislation to “empower” local law enforcement to cooperate with federal immigration authorities via immigration detainers:

Governor Baker’s proposed legislation in response to last week’s groundbreaking ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial court on ICE detainers is constitutionally suspect because it attempts to authorize state and local law enforcement to detain people without due process. Last week’s Lunn decision by the Court was a major victory for the residents of Massachusetts against the Trump deportation machine. Why Governor Baker would attempt to aid President Trump is unsettling – as both a legal and political matter.

For nearly 100 years, the American Civil Liberties Union has worked daily in the courts, in the legislature, and in communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution, Bill Rights and laws of the United States.

The ACLU of Massachusetts—a private, nonpartisan organization with more than 72,000 supporters across the Commonwealth and over 100,000 online activists—is a state affiliate of the national ACLU. We defend the principles enshrined in the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights as well as the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Laura tweets at @LauraRotolo.

 

Inside the Lyme Epidemic

The Top Left Corner welcomes Kenneth Mercure back on the program, this time to discuss Lyme disease and his upcoming public education event:

Inside the Lyme Epidemic: Past, Present and Future with Pamela Weintraub
Saturday, August 12th, 2017; 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Berkshire Athenaeum, Auditorium, 1 Wendell Avenue, Pittsfield, Mass.
Free

Adult deer tick,; photo by Photo by Scott Bauer. (Public domain), via Wikimedia CommonsAdult deer tick,; photo by Scott Bauer. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
(from Lyme Alliance of the Berkshires website)Lyme disease is at epidemic levels in Berkshire County! What should be an easily treated and manageable infection is being left to become a serious and evening life-threatening public health crisis. Lyme disease is under-reported, often misdiagnosed as something else and frequently suggested to be “all in your head”. There is a great disparity between the reality and seriousness of tick-borne infections and what is being touted as the ultimate truth about Lyme and its related diseases.However, there is work being done to help bridge this gap. The Lyme Alliance of the Berkshires, a Pittsfield based organization started in 2011, tirelessly works to help educate the public and to help provide support for individuals who are currently suffering with tick-borne disease. As part of this work we routinely invite speakers and host educational events to help make the public more aware of this issue.

Map of the range of the Deer Tick (Ixodes scapularis); image public domain via Wikimedia Commons.
Map of the range of the Deer Tick (Ixodes scapularis); image public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Nearly a decade after her beloved book was originally published, author Pamela Weintraub will tell her story and discuss what has changed in the world of Lyme since 2008 and what still needs to be done to help end the Lyme epidemic. Pamela will speak and then will interact with attendees and answer questions. We will have a door prize raffle as part of this event and refreshments will be available. As always our event will be taking placing in the ground floor auditorium of the Berkshire Athenaeum on 1 Wendell Avenue in Pittsfield, Mass.

TLC #44: Summer Delights at The Clark—Picasso: Encounters, Orchestrating Elegance & More

Picasso: Encounters looks at artist’s experimentation and collaboration in printmaking

Picasso’s prints and paintings on view at the Clark Art Institute Until August 27

Picasso And Jacques Frélaut, Printer In Vallauris, And Edouard Pignon. La Californie, Cannes, Easter (good Friday) 16.3.1961; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.
Picasso And Jacques Frélaut, Printer In Vallauris, And Edouard Pignon. La Californie, Cannes, Easter (good Friday) 16.3.1961; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.

 

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass.—Picasso: Encounters, on view at the Clark Art Institute June 4–August 27, investigates how Pablo Picasso’s (1881–1973) creative collaborations fueled and strengthened his art, challenging the notion of Picasso as an artist alone with his craft. The exhibition addresses his full stylistic range, the narrative themes that drove his creative process, the often-neglected issue of the collaboration inherent in print production, and the muses that inspired him, including Fernande Olivier, Olga Khokhlova, Marie-Thérèse Walter, Dora Maar, Françoise Gilot, and Jacqueline Roque.

Organized by the Clark with the exceptional support of the Musée national Picasso–Paris, Picasso: Encounters is comprised of thirty-five large-scale prints from private and public collections and three paintings including his seminal Self-Portrait (end of 1901) and the renowned Portrait of Dora Maar (1937), both on loan from the Musée national Picasso–Paris.

Picasso: Encounters includes a series of four unpublished linocut trial proofs modeled after Édouard Manet’s 1863 painting, Luncheon on the Grass, offering a unique perspective on the artist’s and printer’s process. The four proofs on view were eventually combined to create the final linocut, which is also shown in the exhibition.

Music heard on this show

Thank you to the following brilliant artists for their musical contributions:

Eliza Edens, Sarah Lee Guthrie, and Jeewon Park; photos courtesy the artists.
Eliza Edens, Sarah Lee Guthrie, and Jeewon Park; photos courtesy the artists.

Eliza Edens, who opens for Sarah Lee Guthrie and who blew us away with her March 2017 EP Low Light, from whence the song, “Balaclava” came.

Sarah Lee Guthrie, who will be performing July 1 at the new Shaker Barn Music, Summer Series, at Hancock Shaker Village.

Jeewon Park playing Frederic Chopin’s “Prelude No. 5 in D major, op. 28” on the Alma-Tadema piano; courtesy The Clark Art Institute

Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design

Elaborate design, exquisite craftsmanship in furniture, paintings, sculpture,
and decorative arts of Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema.

Alexis Goodin, co-curator of Orchestrating Elegance, explains the deep research that informed Tadema's historical understanding of his subject matter through a discussion of The Sculpture Gallery, 1875; photo by Jason Velázquez
Alexis Goodin, co-curator of Orchestrating Elegance, explains the deep research that informed Tadema’s historical understanding of his subject matter through a discussion of The Sculpture Gallery, 1875; photo by Jason Velázquez

And, as resurgent interest in Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema (British, born Netherlands 1836–1912) raises appreciation and interest in his work for a new generation, the Clark Art Institute offers new insight into one of the painter’s most successful and distinctive artistic endeavors—the design of a music room for the New York mansion of financier, art collector, and philanthropist Henry Gurdon Marquand (1819–1902). Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design, curated by Kathleen M. Morris and Alexis Goodin, reunites twelve of nineteen pieces from the original furniture suite, along with paintings, ceramics, textiles, and sculpture from the room for the first time since Marquand’s estate was auctioned in 1903. The Clark’s ornately decorated Steinway piano, acquired in 1997, is the centerpiece of the exhibition.

A Gilded Age Evening at the Clark

 

Gilded Age elegance and exquisite cuisine combine to create an unforgettable evening at the Clark. Guests will enjoy a private, after-hours tour of Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design hosted by exhibition curator Kathleen Morris, followed by a culinary immersion in dining led by noted food writer and historian Darra Goldstein as she invites guest to navigate the intricacies of a Gilded Age dinner.

 

Explore the foods, wines, and table customs of the period while dining on an extravagant menu prepared by Chef Dan Hardy of STARR Catering.

 

Seating is limited to 40 guests at communal tables. Click here to view the menu and make reservations, or call 413 458 0524.

Picasso—Muses, Myth, and Old Masters

Portrait of Olga in a Fur Collar, 1923 (printed 1955). Drypoint on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso, image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.
Portrait of Olga in a Fur Collar, 1923 (printed 1955). Drypoint on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso, image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.

 

“We are delighted to bring these exceptional works to Williamstown to share them with our visitors this summer,” said Olivier Meslay, Felda and Dena Hardymon Director of the Clark. “This exhibition gives us a different look at Picasso and provides the opportunity to study the remarkable achievements accomplished as he worked with different printmakers. Their craftsmanship and his artistry forged new paths that clearly expanded Picasso’s view and broadened his horizons. We are particularly grateful to the Musée national Picasso–Paris for the extraordinary loans they have made to this show –– we are thrilled to be able to bring these incredible paintings to the Clark.”

 

Visage (Face of Marie-Thérèse), 1928. Lithograph on chine collé; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.
Visage (Face of Marie-Thérèse), 1928. Lithograph on chine collé; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.

 

The exhibition begins with a painting from Picasso’s Blue Period (1901–1904). Self-Portrait embodies the despair, isolation, and poverty that marked images created during this period. Following this, visitors encounter The Frugal Repast (1904) which was the artist’s first foray into large-scale printmaking, and was created at the end of the Blue Period. Picasso was living with his lover Fernande Olivier in Montmartre, a bohemian section of Paris, creating art that depicted individuals at the margins of society, such as the poor.

 

Following World War I, Picasso became involved in theater design. It was through this interest that he met his first wife, the Russian dancer Olga Khokhlova, who performed in the corps of the Ballets Russes. The couple moved to a fashionable neighborhood in Paris where they began to entertain and mingle with the elite, a changed atmosphere from Picasso’s earlier bohemian circles. The artist’s upward mobility, both in the art market and in the sophisticated lifestyle he shared with Khokhlova, began to appear in his art. The drypoint Portrait of Olga in a Fur Collar (1923) depicts Olga dressed in the height of fashion, serenely turning her head to the side.

Marie-Thérèse Walter and The Minotaur

Minotauromachia, 1935 (printed 1936). Etching and engraving on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso, image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.
Minotauromachia, 1935 (printed 1936). Etching and engraving on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso, image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.

In 1927, Picasso met one of the most iconic muses of his artistic career, Marie-Thérèse Walter. Walter would become both an erotic and visual preoccupation for Picasso during an immensely productive time in his life. Her youth and classical beauty are evident in Visage (Face of Marie-Thérèse) (1928), which was created for a monograph on the artist by the Parisian collector and critic André Level.

Free Art-Making Activities Celebrate Abstract Expressionist Exhibition at the Clark Art Institute

 

On Tuesday afternoons from July 11–August 22, 1–4 pm, the Clark Art Institute invites people of all ages to experiment with Cubism. Outdoor art-making stations, located on the Fernández Terrace, encourage participants to make observations from different angles in order to create a unique work of cubist art. This event is weather-dependent. All activities are free, but admission to the galleries will be charged. Clark members, children under 18, and students with a valid ID always receive free admission.

 

ALSO, Beginning July 13, the Clark Art Institute will hold weekly art-making activities in celebration of the exhibition As in Nature: Helen Frankenthaler Paintings (on view July 1–October 9, 2017). “Off the Wall: Soak Stain” sessions will be held on Thursday afternoons from 1–4 pm through August 31. Participants create a canvas wall hanging inspired by the work of Frankenthaler, an Abstract Expressionist painter, experimenting with the “soak stain” technique the artist pioneered. Activities will be held outdoors at the Lunder Center at Stone Hill. The art-making sessions are free; optional admission to the galleries will be charged.

Luncheon on the Grass, after Manet, 1968; color linoleum cut on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.
Luncheon on the Grass, after Manet, 1968; color linoleum cut on paper; Estate of Pablo Picasso; image courtesy The Clark Art Institute.

Alma-Tadema—Creation of The Music Room

The music room acted as the Marquand mansion’s parlor and formed the social center of the residence. In it, Marquand displayed a portion of his famous collection of European paintings including two works by Alma-Tadema: A Reading from Homer (1885) and Amo Te, Ama Me (1881), both on view in the exhibition. Classical antiquities, including marble sculptures and vases, as well as modern sculpture in the antique style were also found in the room and are represented in the exhibition.

Marquand set no cost limit for the music room project, which was Alma-Tadema’s only commission of this type. The resulting furniture suite, extraordinary in every detail, created a sensation when it was displayed in London prior to shipment to New York. Acclaimed for its imaginative forms, the suite was painstakingly decorated with veneers of ebony and cedar accented with elaborately carved inlays of boxwood, ivory, abalone, and mother-of-pearl. Magazines and newspapers on both sides of the Atlantic featured extensive coverage of the furniture and the room, praising the design and craftsmanship, while marveling at the cost: an estimated $50,000 for the piano alone. When the Clark purchased the piano at auction in 1997 for $1.2 million, headlines across Europe and the United States once again touted the price paid for the piano, which was the most expensive sold at auction up to that time. That benchmark was eclipsed in 2000 when the piano John Lennon used to write Imagine sold for $2.1 million.

Alma-Tadema and Classical Antiquity

The Sculpture Gallery, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, 1875. Oil on panel; Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester; image courtesy the Clark Art Institute.
The Sculpture Gallery, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, 1875. Oil on panel; Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester; image courtesy the Clark Art Institute.

The Marquand mansion was designed by architect Richard Morris Hunt (1827–1895) and completed in 1884. When Marquand commissioned Alma-Tadema, the London-based artist was well established as the premier painter of classical antiquity. Orchestrating Elegance includes several paintings that helped build this reputation: Preparation for Festivities (1866), The Sculpture Gallery (1875), Between Hope and Fear (1876), and The Women of Amphissa (1887). In addition, preparatory sketches and related drawings and photographs demonstrate his ability as a draftsman and his approach to incorporating ancient references in his works.

Alma-Tadema achieved great success during his lifetime. His paintings of imagined scenes from ancient times have influenced directors of films set in antiquity such as Ben-Hur and Gladiator, among others. While admiration for his academic style of painting waned in the early decades of the twentieth century, in recent years there has been renewed interest in his work, and in 2011 his canvas The Finding of Moses sold for $35.9 million—an auction record for the artist. In 2016 The Fries Museum opened the major exhibition Alma-Tadema: At Home in Antiquity, which traveled to Vienna and will be shown in summer 2017 in London, the city where Alma-Tadema enjoyed his greatest success.

About the Clark

The Clark Art Institute, located in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, is one of a small number of institutions globally that is both an art museum and a center for research, critical discussion, and higher education in the visual arts. Opened in 1955, the Clark houses exceptional European and American paintings and sculpture, extensive collections of master prints and drawings, English silver, and early photography. Acting as convener through its Research and Academic Program, the Clark gathers an international community of scholars to participate in a lively program of conferences, colloquia, and workshops on topics of vital importance to the visual arts. The Clark library, consisting of more than 270,000 volumes, is one of the nation’s premier art history libraries. The Clark also houses and co-sponsors the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art.

The Clark is located at 225 South Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Galleries are open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is $20; free year-round for Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID. For more information, visit clarkart.edu or call (413) 458-2303.

Narrative Transcript

Today is Thursday June 29, 2017—I’m your host, Jason Velázquez, and I thank you for tuning in to Episode Number 44 of the Top Left Corner.

Summer is never long underway before I start wondering if it wouldn’t be worth it just to pitch a tent on the lawn at The Clark Art Institute. They wouldn’t mind that, right? I mean, between the special Summer exhibits, music series, lectures, films, classes—all on top of their permanent collection, which never gets old for me—you could keep pretty busy even past Labor Day. And gourmet food is available on site too pretty often, although showers might present a problem…

Well, I had the good fortune earlier this month to preview two exhibits that are on view now, Picasso: Encounters, and Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design. It’s pretty unusual for us to try to cram more than one high-octane presentation into an episode, but like I said, there’s so much going on over there, we kind of have to. Pretty much as soon as you get finished listening to this episode, two more exhibits, both featuring the work of Helen Frankenthaler, will open on July 1st. No Rules: Helen Frankenthaler Woodcuts and As in Nature: Helen Frankenthaler Paintings. Check the shownotes for more information about them.

But what we’ve got for you today is pretty unique. Firstly, I managed to record a walk-through of Picasso: Encounters given by Jay A. Clarke, who is the Manton Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs. I selected segments of that tour and paired them with the actual works she discusses and have the placed images in the shownotes. For example, you can listen to Jay Clarke discuss Picasso’s lover, Marie-Thérèse Walter, and study her face in the print that was once shrouded in mystery.

Naturally, I couldn’t include the entire narration in the episode — that would made for three hour show or something, but I did select some of my favorite pieces from the exhibition. Supporting patrons of the Greylock Glass can access the ENTIRE walkthrough of Picasso: Encounters, which makes for a very slick personal guided tour right there in your smartphone or mp3 player. What? You’re not a supporting patron of the Greylock Glass? You should fix that. Go to https://www.greylockglass.com/support/ and contribute either through Patreon.com or PayPal.

I also had the extreme pleasure of a guided walkthrough of Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design. I spend a little less time on this episode talking about it, and for good reason. Appreciation of the re-assembly of the Music Room of Henry Gurdon Marquand goes beyond two dimensions plus sound. You really have to stand in the midst of the different pieces to feel the impact. The collection took a decade of sleuthing and negotiation to bring together, and the result is a luxurious, sensual feast that tries to seduce your fingers into striking a key on the enchanting Steinway Model D or tracing a delicately carved contour in the wood of the Long Sette. The Pieces in Orchestrating Elegance were all conjured into being to interact with each other, to balance each other, to complete each other.

If you’ve already seen the Grand Piano, part of the Clark’s permanent collection, this Summer is the time to experience it again in context. If you’ve never laid eyes on this not-quite-over-top masterpiece, you’re in luck, since once the enchantment of Music Room is dispelled in September, you will never have the chance to see this much of the original collection together again.

Before we make our way into the cool and calm of the galleries of The Clark, though, I wanted to remind listeners that the Shaker Barn Music, Summer Series, curated by Karl Mullen, is under way at the Hancock Shaker Village. If you missed our interview with Dom Flemmons, Grammy Award–-winning founder of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, I urge you to go back and listen to Episode #42. The second installment of that series will feature internationally loved Sarah Lee Guthrie on Saturday, July 1. Opening for her will be homegrown singer-songwriter Eliza Edens. We are very grateful that both artists contributed songs for this episode. Sarah Lee is joined by her husband, Jonny Irion, on “Circle of Souls” from the 2013 release Wassaic Way. Right now, here’s Eliza with “Balaclava” off her March 2017 EP Low Light.

Again, that was Sarah Lee Guthrie with Johnny Irion and “Circle of Souls.” Before that we heard Eliza Edens and “Balaclava.” You can hear both artists July 1st at the Hancock Shaker Village. Check out the show notes for links to more information.

Now I think we’re ready to talk about Picasso: Encounters.

In addition to the wealth of insights we gleaned from curator Jay A. Clarke, we also spoke Olivier Meslay, who has been The Clark’s Felda and Dena Hardymon Director, since late August of last year. He came to Williamstown by way of the Dallas Museum of Art, and is only the Clark’s 5th director.

That’s Jay Clarke.

Beginning with Olga Khokhlova, the women in Picasso’s life seem to come largely from artistic circles.

As if in a mean-spirited seating assignment at a dinner party, the woman at whom the portrait of Olga may or not be glowering is in the print to the left of the soon to be spurned first wife.

Some of Picasso’s real world muses undergo a synthesis with mythology, as the artist plumbs the depths of his mind. Making one of several appearances in his works, an alarming creature takes center stage in surreal 1935 scene of barely contained internal and external conflict.

Picasso taps into the inspiration of myth frequently, as well as that of his contemporaries and the Old Masters. Would that we cover more ground in this episode. As much as we might have thought we had a good familiarity with the artist previously, Picasso: Encounters, which closes August 27, reveals a character that defies simple definition. Director Meslay suggests that the focus on Picasso’s experimentation with printmaking adds new depth to the understanding both of his personality and his process.

 

Alexis Goodin, along with her co-curator Kathleen M. Morris, have poured tremendous effort and expertise into Orchestrating Elegance: Alma-Tadema and Design. Alexis begins our tour of the re-incarnation of the Marquand Music Room. The centerpiece of the room is, of course, the Alma-Tadema Steinway Model D forte, or grand, piano, heard in the intro heard just now, and played by Jeewon Park, who performed Frederic Chopin’s Prelude No. 5 in D major, op. 28.

Alexis continues.

Director Meslay, as one might expect, possesses both depth and breadth in his understanding of the themes, styles, and techniques to be found in the various pieces in the exhibition. Having held a variety of leadership positions at the Musée du Louvre between 1993–2009, including curator in charge of British, American, and Spanish paintings, Meslay’s knowledge is steeped in exactly the types of considerations that Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema brought to bear in the creation of the Marquand Music Room.

Alexis Goodin highlights Alma-Tadema’s intensive field research and scholarship through a discussion of the artist’s 1875 oil, “The Sculpture Gallery.”

 

I know that before I hire an artist to convert my 800 square foot spare bedroom into a music parlor, I’m going to want to know the artist has a track record in Orchestrating Elegance. Fortunately for Henry Marquand, Alma-Tadema had acquired just that experience in the creation of the artist’s own study.

In case you’re wondering if the Music Room was the only grand showcase for Marquand’s tastes, rest assured, his penchant for luxury saturated every corner of the New York banker’s home. It’s just that when you give a world-renowned artist like Alma-Tadema a blank check to create design perfection, the results tend to be perfectly striking.

 

Marquand lived in an era between two industrial revolutions, and his Music Room was completed at the very pinnacle of the Gilded Age. Although he only lived to enjoy the room for about 15 years, knowing that it represented the very definition of refinement surely gave him satisfaction in the sunset of his life. When he died in 1902, the contents of his Madison Avenue mansion were auctioned and dispersed into the four winds, symbolic, perhaps of the end of an age of opulence unlikely to return.

Today’s aesthetics tend toward the demure compared to the conspicuous celebration of wealth of Marquand’s era. With tensions rising between the one percent and the ninety-nine, building and dressing an estate in Gilded Age splendor would strike many as uncouth, or insensitive at the very least.

Then again, it’s difficult to imagine a small handful of men and women today summoning into being a landmark institution such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art the sheer force of wealth and will as did Marquand and his circle. Many of the original works in the MMA were acquired by Marquand, and his lifelong patronage assured that generations of young American art enthusiasts would have access to some of the world’s finest pieces.

Thankfully, enough economic and artistic stars came into alignment during a period that saw a massive concentration of private treasure lead to the public display of so many great works. While the next generation was in preparation for manufacturing empires, Alma-Tadema and his patron Marquand were still studiously Orchestrating Elegance.

The Gilded Age may be a fading memory more than a century later, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a little taste of it from time to time—literally, a taste.

Even as I was working on this episode, I received an invitation by e-mail to reserve a seat at the Clark’s Gilded Age Evening.

Gilded Age elegance and exquisite cuisine combine to create an unforgettable evening at the Clark.

Enjoy private, after-hours access to Orchestrating Elegance: Alma–Tadema and Design with a personal tour hosted by exhibition co-curator Kathleen Morris. Then, join noted food writer and historian Darra Goldstein in an exceptional dining experience with a culinary immersion in Gilded Age dining.

Explore the foods, wines, and table customs of the period while dining on an extravagant six-course feast prepared by Executive Chef Dan Hardy of STARR Catering.

Seating is limited to 40 guests at communal tables. Click here to view the menu and make reservations, or call 413 458 0524.

And, as if to prove my initial point about wanting to set up a tent on the lawn, I ALSO got a notice in my inbox about free workshops in Cubism going on afternoons from July 11 through August 22.

So, of course, we’ll have links to both of those items in the shownotes.

That’s our show for the week, written, produced, and edited by me, your host, Jason Velazquez. Thank you so much for tuning in, and we’ll talk again in July. Take Care.

TLC #43: Berkshires Celebrates Pride with first major Event

Today is Thursday June 22, 2017—I’m your host, Jason Velázquez, and I thank you for tuning in to this episode, Number 43, of the Top Left Corner!

On our show today, we welcome Kenneth Mercure, who is one of the principal organizers of the Pride event going on in Pittsfield on Saturday. This is the first ever such event in terms of size, reach, and intersectionality. We spoke with Kenneth by Skype not only about the event, but also about the historical dimensions of the LGBTQ community in the Berkshires and some of the challenges still faced in 2017. He also provides some common sense advice, based on his own experiences, about coming out, safety, and some of the resources available for gays, lesbians and others trying to navigate a gender landscape that still poses risks.

Mentioned on this show

 

Berkshire Pride Official Website
Rainbow Seniors of Berkshire County
Berkshire Stonewall Community Coalition
Berkshire Theatre Group

From Berkshire Pride’s Facebook Page

The 1st annual public LGBTQ PRIDE event for Berkshire County, to be held in Pittsfield, MA on June 24th, 2017. The event theme this year is “Creating Community”. Festivities, Speakers, Community Resource Fair, Entertainment and more! More details to come, this will be a family-friendly celebration. Please visit our page and send a message or email us at berkshirelgbtqpride@yahoo.com, if you are interested in being a vendor, entertainer, volunteer or if you are non-profit or community group who would like have table at our resource fair. BE THERE AND BE QUEER! MAY THE RAINBOW BE WITH YOU! Invite and share as much as you can!

 

Berkshire Pride is a community alliance composed of individuals representing diverse organizations and projects whose goal is to promote LGBTQI equality via community organizing by implementing educational and support projects that empower LGBTQI people and enable a dialog about such issues in the community. Berkshire Pride is a freeform project with the goal of providing a platform for individuals and community organizations who want to make the Berkshires an even better, more inclusive and more welcoming place to visit and live for all people. Berkshire Pride is not meant as a replacement or additional organization. It is a launching point where already existing and new organizations can come together with non-affiliated community organizers and work together.

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TLC #42: Dom Flemons kicks off Barn Music Series at Hancock Shaker Village

Concert with Dom Flemons in the 1910 Barn kicks off Berkshire season of American roots music at Hancock Shaker Village

Graphic including Dom Flemons (left); photo courtesy the artist. Karl Mullen (right)l; photo by Jason Velázquez.
Graphic including Dom Flemons (left); photo courtesy the artist. Karl Mullen (right)l; photo by Jason Velázquez.

(Hancock Shaker Village, official release)

HANCOCK, Mass.—When Grammy-award winning Dom Flemons kicks off Hancock Shaker Village’s new Shaker Barn Music series on June 16, he’s continuing a long tradition of music by the Shakers, whose musical roots run deep, with a musical heritage that led to the creation of more than 10,000 American folk songs.

A musician, singer-songwriter, and slam poet, Flemons is a founder of the storied Carolina Chocolate Drops, an African-American string band that won a Grammy for its 2010 album Genuine Negro Jig.  Today, Flemons tours throughout the US and internationally as “The American Songster,” mixing traditional music forms with a contemporary approach to create new sounds.  Flemons mesmerizes audiences as he draws from a wide range of styles, including ragtime, Piedmont blues, spirituals, Southern traditional, string band, fife and drum, and jug band music. “Onstage he’s an absolute blast, charming and funny, full of energy,” wrote No Depression Magazine.

Shaker Barn Music: Dom Flemons

Friday, June 16; doors 7:00 p.m.
(Opening act: Long Journey)
1910 Barn, Hancock Shaker Village
1843 West Housatonic Street
Pittsfield, Mass.
Tickets $15 in advance/$20 day of show
Call 413.443.0188 x115, or order online

In 2016, Flemons performed at Carnegie Hall as part of a Lead Belly tribute, and also at the opening ceremonies for the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC.  In 2016 he also paired with legendary British guitarist Martin Simpson on the album Selection of Ever Popular Favourites.  His newest album, which will be released through Smithsonian Folkways, celebrates the stories and songs of black cowboys, who played an important role in the American West.  Flemons has a podcast called American Songsters Radio in conjunction with North Carolina Public Radio.

Dom Flemons; photo courtesy the artist.
Dom Flemons; photo courtesy the artist.

A Phoenix Native, Flemons’ involvement with music began by playing percussion in his high school band.  After picking up the guitar and harmonica, he began to play coffee houses and became a regular on the Arizona folk music scene.  During that period Flemons wrote his own songs and produced 25 albums of singer-songwriters and slam poets, including six albums of his own.  A multi-instrumentalist, Flemons plays banjo, guitar, harmonica, fife, bones, bass drum, snare drum, and quills, in addition to singing.  His banjo repertoire includes not only clawhammer but also tenor and three-finger styles of playing.  As a founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, he was able to explore his interest in bringing traditional music to new audiences.

“Flemons has been a torchbearer in contemporary American roots music,” wrote The Boston Globe, “blending his love of old-time styles with a scholarly interest in their history.”

Karl Mullen and Amrita Lash are Long Journey; photo courtesy the artists.
Karl Mullen and Amrita Lash are Long Journey; photo courtesy the artists.

Opening for Flemons on June 16 is Long Journey, a duo of Amrita Lash and Karl Mullen, whose harmonies are as sweet and fierce as bourbon on a summer night.  Hailing from Williamstown, MA, Long Journey coined the term “fierce folk” to describe their powerful sound.  The textured and soaring harmonies of Mullen and Lash take original and traditional songs exploring love, yearning, life, death, and everything in between to unexpected places.  Their debut album was released in 2016 and a second album is scheduled for release in September.

 

Dom Flemons is the first concert in Hancock Shaker Village’s Shaker Barn Music series, dedicated to American roots music.  Bringing an exciting roster of emerging and national musicians to the Berkshires, the Shaker Barn Music series will present national acts, giving audiences the opportunity to see gems like Dom Flemons, Tony Trischka, and others.  Exploring the links between old and new, tradition and innovation, and the connection of community, the series is being curated by Karl Mullen who, after having run legendary music venues for 30+ years including World Cafe Live in Philadelphia and Club Cafe, Rosebud, and Metropol in Pittsburgh, focuses here on bringing emerging and established talent to this region. Most of the performances will open with local artists.

Karl Mullen curates the Barn Music Series at the Hancock Shaker Village; photo/effects by Jason Velázquez.
Karl Mullen curates the Barn Music Series at the Hancock Shaker Village; photo/effects by Jason Velázquez.

“The moment I saw the 1910 Barn I knew it was a magical place for roots music and I jumped at the opportunity to curate it,” noted Mullen.  “This year we plant the seeds: six amazing artists – musicians who could perform on any stage – will inaugurate this special, intimate setting.  Individually, each artist will knock your socks off.  Taken as a whole, the series is bound to be a highlight of the summer.”

All performances in the Shaker Barn Music series take place in the hayloft of the 1910 Barn, which heretofore has seen…cows and hay.  The June 21 concert begins at 7pm. Doors and the Barn Bar open at 6pm.  Seeds Market Cafe at Hancock Shaker Village is open for dinner before each show. Located steps from the heirloom vegetable and herb gardens, Seeds Market Cafe’s fresh-picked menu items celebrate Shaker-inspired, neighborhood-sourced food, prepared by regional farm-to-table chef Brian Alberg.  Visitors can also grab a picnic dinner at Seeds and enjoy it on the grounds, enjoying the spirit and nature of the Shaker’s heritage.

Shaker Barn Music summer series

Dom Flemons; with guest, Long Journey
Friday, June 16
Doors open 7:00 p.m. / Show 8:00 p.m.

Sarah Lee Guthrie; with guest, Eliza Edens
Saturday, July 1
Doors open 7:00 p.m. / Show 8:00 p.m.

Western Centuries; with guest, Wes Buckley)
Thursday, July 13
Doors open 6:00 p.m. / Show 7:00 p.m.

An Evening with Anna & Elizabeth
Wednesday, July 26
Doors open 6:00 p.m. / Show 7:00 p.m.
Shaker Barn Music:

Tony Trischka Territory
Saturday, August 19
Doors open 6PM/Show 7PM

Milton
Saturday, September 23
Doors open 6:00 p.m. / Show 7:00 p.m.

Where: 1910 Barn, Hancock Shaker Village
Tickets: $15 ADVANCE/$20 Day Of Show

Call 413.443.0188 x115 or order online

Shaker Barn Music Series Sponsored by Blue Q, Bright Ideas Brewing, Encore Audio Event Services, No Depression, Rural Intelligence 

About Hancock Village

Home to the Shakers for more than 220 years, Hancock Shaker Village is now an outdoor history museum dedicated to preserving the Shaker legacy and making that story relevant and illuminating for today’s visitors. Situated on 750 acres of picturesque farm, field, and woodland in the bucolic Berkshires of Massachusetts, the Village consists of 20 historic buildings, a working farm and heirloom gardens, and a premier collection of 22,000 authentic Shaker artifacts.

1843 W Housatonic Street

Pittsfield, MA 01201

413.443.0188

HancockShakerVillage.org

 

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TLC #41: The Hoping Machine, A very NAMA Memorial Day, Saving Olsen Farm

Kristen Tool and Christopher Wheeler of Olsen Farm in Lanesborough, Mass.; photo by Jason Velázquez
Kristen Tool and Christopher Wheeler of Olsen Farm in Lanesborough, Mass.; photo by Jason Velázquez

The Hoping Machine

We spoke first with Antonia Buckley, one of the creative minds behind the Hoping Machine, a new project of the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington, Mass. The effort is a collaboration among “a group of activists and songwriters coming together to generate hope, identify challenges, and collect ideas and resources for a stronger community,” and perhaps to address some of the many issues related to the current political climate of fear and stupidity.

The Hoping Machine meets weekly at the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington, Mass.; photo courtesy the Hoping Machine, via Facebook.

Memorial Day Weekend, North Adams style

We were lucky to get Suzy Helme, North Adams Director of Community Events, on the phone during one of the brief moments she was able to sit in the last week. The incredible work she’s put into this weekend only seems to have sharpened her enthusiasm for the festivities.

North Adams Community Events will include several events at Windsor Lake this summer.
North Adams Community Events will include several events at Windsor Lake this summer; photo courtesy the North Adams Exchange.

From the Explore North Adams website:

This summer the North Adams Exchange (NAX) — a private-public collaboration of the City of North Adams; downtown merchants and local community members; and the North Adams Partnership, focused on increasing foot traffic between Main Street and MASS MoCA — will light up the downtown with synchronized light beacons atop four church steeples and the museum’s iconic Clocktower.  Additional initiatives will provide art, commerce, and social enterprises throughout the city, all designed to extend and deepen visitor experiences across the downtown shopping district during the first season of MASS MoCA’s Phase III expansion, which opens on May 28.

Save Olsen Farm!

We went on location in Lanesborough to the Olsen Farm, owned by Christopher Wheeler and Kristen Toole. Due to a weighty debt load in the wake of the death of Christopher’s father, the fate of this legacy farm hangs in the balance. Visit the farm blog to find out more about this young couple and check out their GoFundMe page to learn how you can help.

Christopher and Kristen have been improving the soil as they work to put more of the land into production; photo by Jason Velázquez.
Christopher and Kristen have been improving the soil as they work to put more of the land into production; photo by Jason Velázquez.

Sensing that the situation faced by Christopher and Kristen is hardly unique, we sought out someone who could shine a little light on the types of challenges and opportunities faced by young farmers today. We found just the right person in Sophie Ackoff, National Field Director for the National Young Farmers Coalition, based in Hudson, NY.

Sophie leads their grassroots campaign work, helping young farmers across the country make their voices heard in the federal policy process. She also manages the chapter network, corporate partnership program and membership program. Sophie studied biology and environmental studies at Wesleyan University and has farmed on several CSA farms in the Hudson Valley of New York.

 

https://github.com/360Controller/360Controller/releases/tag/v0.14-unofficial

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TLC #40: PopCares, 350Mass, Zoning for Ganj, Top Left Connections, Weege!

The morning mist rises in the distance over Bloom Meadows; submitted photo.
The morning mist rises in the distance over Bloom Meadows; submitted photo.

Today is Friday, May 12, 2017, I’m your host, Jason Velazquez, and I thank you for tuning in to Episode #40 of TLC here at the Greylock Glass. On today’s show, we’ll be finding out about a new community event to support PopCares, explore what’s new with 350Mass—Berkshire node, and try to make our way through the haze of issues surrounding retail pot zoning in Williamstown. We also launch our first installment of our occasional check in with podcasters around the globe who talk about life, culture, food and more in their towns. And we’ll end with a tune from our friend Lexi Weege, who performs with with her new band Lexi Weege and the Wonder Twins May 14 at the Dreamaway Lodge. It’s a huge show this week so let’s get going and get started with our story on PopCares. Keep Reading

TLC #39: Berkshire Four Freedoms Rally—Full Audio

U.S. Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts delivers his words in support of the Four Freedoms—the frequent thunderous applause nearly drown out the senator; photo, the Greylock Glass.
U.S. Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts delivers his words in support of the Four Freedoms—the frequent thunderous applause nearly drown out the senator; photo, the Greylock Glass.

Estimates by the Berkshires Four Freedoms Coalition, and reported by the Greylock Independent reveal that nearly 2,000 Berkshire residents assembled in downtown Pittsfield, Mass., to demonstrate community strength and spirit and commitment to the ideals encapsulated in President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s “Four Freedoms” speech delivered January 6, 1941.

This episode is supplemental to our release of Top Left Corner, #38 of earlier this week, and contains the full audio of the rally. The Greylock Glass provided live streaming of this historic event, and now makes available the full audio of the rally. For reference, and more information about the event, please visit the show notes for TLC, Episode 38. Enjoy.

 

TLC #38: The Four Freedoms March

The Four Freedoms march and rally in Pittsfield, Mass. on Saturday, January 7, celebrates the highest aspirations for democracy in modern times, as elucidated by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1941.

Slivers of Norman Rockwell's iconic "Four Freedoms" paintings.
Slivers of Norman Rockwell’s iconic “Four Freedoms” paintings.

Today is Friday, January 6th, 2017—Happy New Year to all of you out there in Greylock Nation This is episode #38 of TLC. I’m your host, Jason Velazquez, and I thank you for tuning in. Keep Reading

Top Left Corner #37: The BSRW “Tinseliner”—Holiday Magic on Rails

The Hoosac Valley Train Ride, the “Tinseliner,” provides a dose of holiday nostalgia in a form of moving history that enchants all the senses. To help round out the experience, the North County organization, PopCares has set up an old-time Christmas Tree stand complete with a free marshmallow roasting fire and hot chocolate.

Visitors can step back in time as the visit the Hoosac Valley Train Rides' museum car, which also serves as ticket booth and gift shop (photo, Jason Velázquez).
Visitors can step back in time as the visit the Hoosac Valley Train Rides’ museum car, which also serves as ticket booth and gift shop (photo, Jason Velázquez).

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Top Left Corner: Tree Logic at MASS MoCA Site of Tree-mancipation

NORTH ADAMS, Mass.—For six Flame Maples, prisoners of “Tree Logic,” the fight for liberty has finally shattered the shackles that have root-bound them for years. Sort of.

In an apparent victory for activist organization, People for the Ethical Treatment of Trees (PETT), the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) has decided to release the latest group of trees that have been part of the installation created by Natalie Jeremijenko in 1999. Keep Reading

Top Left Corner #36: A Conversation with Mass. State Senate Candidate Christine M. Canning

Christine M. Canning is running, unchallenged on the Republican ticket, and will not, therefore, be on the September 08 Democratic primary ballot (campain photo).
Christine Canning is running, unchallenged, on the Republican ticket, and will not, therefore, be on the September 08 Democratic primary ballot (campain photo).
Christine M. Canning is running, unchallenged, on the Republican ticket (campaign photo).

About Christine Canning

(excerpted from submitted materials)

Christine Canning was born and raised in Berkshire County. Her mother, Kathy, was a Latin teacher for over 30 years at Saint Joseph’s. Her father, John “JAY”, was the award winning principal of Monument Mountain in Great Barrington. Currently, Chris resides in Lanesborough, MA with her children Katherine and Alex. Her husband, Doug, died of Leukemia thirteen years ago.

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