Berkshire Weekend Cultural Highlights Jan 9-13, 2012

SUPERSTAR ROOTS-MUSIC DUO BLENDS PUNK SPIRIT AND BLUEGRASS AT CLUB HELSINKI

Chris Thile and Michael Daves

(HUDSON, N.Y.) – Mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile, from the Punch Brothers, and Nickel Creek guitarist Michael Daves perform a concert of bluegrass standards played with punk-rock abandon at Club Helsinki Hudson on Wednesday, January 11, 2012, at 8 p.m. Last year, the vocal-instrumental duo released Sleep with One Eye Open, an impassioned collaboration and conversation in the tradition of old-fashioned brother duos in which the subject is bluegrass, specifically how this upstart duo can acknowledge history and tradition while exuberantly defying convention. The album was recorded in four feverish days of sessions at Jack White’s Third Man studio in Nashville, with the White Stripes/Racounteurs/Dead Weather frontman producing two tracks

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VINTAGE NEW WAVE COUPLE REGROUP FOR RARE GIG AT MASS MOCA

Jane and Jeff Hudson

(NORTH ADAMS, Mass.) – Many North Adams denizens know Jeff and Jane Hudson as the proprietors of Hudsons, a vintage shop originally on Main Street in North Adams and Spring Street in Williamstown but now located on the MASS MoCA campus. What local residents might not realize is that Jeff and Jane had a long history as musicians before settling down in North Adams. Influenced by the growing new wave scene that was permeating record stores and airwaves in the 1980s, they built their musical career on the new stream of technology entering music. Celebrating the re-release of their album Flesh, they perform at MASS MoCA in Club B-10 on Saturday, January 14, 2012, at 8 p.m.

Called “the synth wave couple of the U.S.,” Jeff and Jane Hudson jump across styles and sounds. Their album Flesh featured industrial echoes and absorbing vocals but also had electropop energy combining traditional sounds of post-punk alongside the gleaming new ideas of factory music.

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BRYAN NASH GILL’S THREE-DIMENSIONAL LANDSCAPES AT BERKSHIRE MUSEUM

Bryan Nash Gill, Ash, 2003, 58" x 56", wood engraving, image courtesy the artist.

(PITTSFIELD, Mass.) – Beyond the Landscape, an exhibition of work by Connecticut-based artist Bryan Nash Gill, will open on Saturday, January 14, 2012, at Berkshire Museum and be on view through May 28, 2012. There will be an artist’s reception, free and open to the public, on January 14 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Gill creates abstract sculptures, works on paper, and installations that are inextricably bound to the materials and inspiration he finds in nature, working and living in a rural New England setting. Massive sections of tree trunks are cut and carved; branches and leaves are re-interpreted in bronze; and the growth rings on cross-sections of trees are inked and transferred to hand-made paper.

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WCMA EXHIBITION EXPLORES BLACK ART DURING GREAT DEPRESSION

Robert Gwathmey (American, 1903–1988), Sun-Up, ca. 1948, oil on canvas, Williams College Museum of Art

(WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass.) – On view at the Williams College Museum of Art (WCMA) from January 14 to April 22, 2012, African Americans and the American Scene, 1929–1945 explores the role of African Americans in the visual and performing arts during the Great Depression. On Thursday, February 16, there will be a multidisciplinary gallery talk at 4:30 pm followed by a public reception from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. These events are free and open to the public.

African Americans and the American Scene focuses on the Depression era. Shaken by the economic collapse, the United States experienced a profound crisis of national identity during the Great Depression. Artists began to picture the “American Scene,” subjects culled from daily life such as farms, labor, picnics, and landscapes.

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