Pittsfield’s First Fridays Artswalk Kicks Off with Dozen Exhibits 

Rosemary Starace, Vessel 1-16, monoprint and mixed media

(PITTSFIELD, Mass.) – First Fridays Artswalk kicks off with a dozen art shows featuring over twenty accomplished regional artists in downtown Pittsfield with opening receptions on Friday, February 3, from 5 to 8 pm. “10 Spot: Photography,” a collaborative exhibition with the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts and Sohn Fine Art Gallery in Lenox, will feature artists Bob Avakian, Zachary Burns, Ken Dreyfack, Susan Evans Grove, Roberto Falck, Ralph Mercer, Rebecca Moseman, Astrid Reischwitz, Carl Rubino, and Denise Tarantino.

The BOOM Room, 137 North Street, will present a collaborative, community-minded evening of music and art featuring “BOOM and Friends” during the February 3rd Artswalk, 5 to 8 pm. The BOOM Room has instituted a new Art Wall which will feature focused mini-shows of individual artists. BOOM member Rosemary Starace will be presenting a set of her Vessels monoprints, part of an ongoing series titled “The History of the Dining Room Table.” The BOOM Room will showcase musicians including Tom Conklin, Liv Cummins, Alan Monasch, John Bigelow, Sandy McNight, and other friends of BOOM, who will present their own original music, including brand new songs.

Shire City Sanctuary, 40 Melville Street, will display handmade posters, banners, and placards from the region’s Women’s Marches in the BINGO! Gallery for the month of February. “Viva La Resistance!” will open as part of Artswalk on February 3 from 5 to 8 pm in the lower level of Shire City Sanctuary. In addition, there will be a vegan community dinner from 6 to 8 pm. Reservations for the dinner are required and can be made on Eventbrite. Admission to “Viva La Resistance!” is free and the community dinner is $20.

New shows from local artists will also be displayed at the following locations as part of First Fridays Artswalk: The Funky Phoenix, RJ Stohr Diamonds & Fine Jewelry, Hotel on North, The Marketplace Café, Berkshire Paint and Sip, Berkshire Medical Center, and The Kinderhook Group Real Estate.

‘Prickly’ by Astrid Reischwitz

Photographer Astrid Reischwitz’ latest portfolios have transitioned to a personal and more conceptual perspective. Stories from the Kitchen Table explores her heritage and the meaning of home. In The Bedroom Project she creates intimate portraits, bringing personal spaces into public view. In The Gift of Regret she turns the camera inward in an exploration of her own history and values. An earlier portfolio, Street Art, reflected outward towards street art murals and the diversity of urban life.

Solo exhibitions of Street Art include: the Griffin Museum of Photography, Photographic Resource Center at Boston University (NEO), Firehouse Center for the Arts Newburyport, Munroe Center for the Arts Lexington, and Boston Public Library. The Bedroom Project was featured at Danforth Art Museum and Cambridge Art Association (CAA). Expectations, an earlier black and white series focusing on the shapes of pregnant women, was exhibited at Emerson Umbrella Center for the Arts, Concord MA. Stories from the Kitchen Table was featured at 555 Gallery, Boston MA.

Reischwitz’s photographs have appeared in juried group exhibitions at the Photographic Resource Center (PRC), Boston, Exposure 2016; The Danforth Museum of Art, Off the Wall and New England Photography Biennial; CAA National Prize Show, Red, Blue (Best in Show), and Platinum (Best in Show); Photo Place Gallery VT (Jurors’ Choice Award); Griffin Museum of Photography, Winchester MA; Gallery Seven, Maynard MA; Bedford (MA) Free Public Library; Brush Gallery Lowell MA; Concord Art Association (Prize for Best Photography), Frances N. Roddy Open Competition (Third Prize 2014, Second Prize 2016); Houston Center for Photography; Vermont Center for Photography; Catamount Arts, St. Johnsbury VT; The Curated Fridge, Boston MA; Umpqua Valley Arts Association, Roseburg OR (First Prize); Massachusetts Convention Center with Photographic Resource Center Boston; and DeCordova Museum School Gallery, Lincoln MA. She received a Silver Medal Award in the San Francisco International Photography Exhibition and was selected as one of Top 100 for Review Santa Fe Photo Festival. She is a Photolucida Critical Mass Finalist (2015, 2016) and winner of the 2016 International Portfolio Competition, Soho Photo Gallery, New York.

Her photographs have been published in the Boston Globe, the Lexington Minuteman, the Newburyport Current, the Bedford Minuteman, Armenian Weekly, and other publications. Her work was also published online on LensCulture and appeared on Lenscratch, What Will You Remember, and 3200K online blogs, as well as Cambridge Art Association blog and Echoes of Pop in the New Millennia blogspot. Her portfolio Stories from the Kitchen Table is featured on Syracuse University’s Family.Life. Project webpage.

A graduate of the Technical University Braunschweig, Germany, with a PhD in chemistry, Reischwitz began her study of photography at the International Center of Photography in New York soon after moving to the United States. After relocating to the Boston area she continued her studies at the New England School of Photography, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, DeCordova Museum School, and Photography Atelier at Lesley University and Griffin Museum of Photography, Winchester MA. She also holds a certificate in Arts Administration from New York University.

photo by Bob Avakian

Bob Avakian and his wife Gail visited Martha’s Vineyard for the summer in 1973 and it has been home ever since. As his photographic vision has evolved he has been drawn to the natural landscape and an exploration of night photography.

Recently Bob’s night photography was awarded First Place in the Neutral Density Photography Awards 2014. He was selected as a Photolucida Critical Mass 2013 Top 50 photographer. In the International Photo Awards Annual competition Bob won 2nd place in the Night Photography category. In Photo Nights Boston’s “Photorama” his photography won 1st place. His work was also chosen to exhibit in the Danforth Museum’s “Photography Bienniel” and at the Cape Cod Art Association’s “All New England”, where he was awarded Best of Show.

Bob has exhibited work from his series “Between Night and Day” at the Davis Orton Gallery in Hudson NY in a two person show with photographer Stephen DiRado. He was awarded a solo show of the series at the South Shore Art Center in Cohasset MA and in March 2013 he was the Featured Artist on the Photographic Resource Center, Boston’s website PRCNEO.

His photos have been featured in Aline Smithson’s, “Lenscratch”; in Wilson Cummer’s New Landscape Photography blog and on the popular photo site Peta Pixel. His work is in the collection of The Boston Athenaeum and the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital’s permanent art collection. He is a juried member of the Cape Cod Art Association and the South Shore Art Center in Cohasset, Mass.


First Fridays Artswalk is presented by Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. Most art exhibits are on display in participating venues throughout the month. Please check with venues for hours of operation.

For more information on First Fridays Artswalk and to view a listing and map of all participating artists and locations, visit First Fridays Artswalk or call 413-443-6501.






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.