October First Fridays Artswalk, Downtown Pittsfield, MA

The October 6th First Fridays Artswalk will encompass more than a dozen art shows featuring over three dozen accomplished regional artists in Pittsfield’s bustling Upstreet Cultural District. Venues will reach as far south as the Whitney Center for the Arts and as far North as Berkshire Medical Center. The October First Fridays Artswalk will kick –off with opening receptions and artists present throughout the “walk” from 5 to 8 pm on Friday, October 6th. There will be a free guided walking tour lead by Artswalk co-founder Mary McGinnis beginning at 5 pm on October 6th at the Intermodal Center at BRTA, 1 Columbus Ave.


The Berkshire Alzheimer’s Partnership will host “Memories in the Making” as part of First Fridays Artswalk for one night only, Friday, October 6th, 5 to 8 pm at Downtown Pittsfield, Inc., 33 Dunham Mall.


“Memories in the Making” is a program of the Alzheimer’s Association, which arms memory-impaired individuals with new tools for expression when words fail. “Through art therapy, individuals use canvas and brush to share their ideas, feelings and memories, ultimately bringing them a sense of accomplishment and renewed self-worth. Through the creative process of painting, these individuals speak to us, offering us the essence of themselves.” The Berkshire Alzheimer’s Partnership will showcase artworks created locally as a part of this program and will host a reception with wine, soft drinks, hors d’oeuvres and live music from 5 to 8 pm on October 6th.


Also in October, Moments House and the Whitney Center for the Arts are partnering for an art show entitled “Not Just Pink”. The show will open with a reception on Friday, October 6th, 5 to 8 pm at the Whitney Center for the Arts, 42 Wendell Avenue. The show will focus on cancer awareness in general and has been curated by Leo Mazzeo. Artists showing their work include:  Heather Austin, Angela Brett, Mario Caluori, Rick Casucci, Daniel Dougherty, Andrea Feldman, Virginia Goggins, Katherine Haig, Ghetta Hirsch, Grier Horner, Jennifer Huberdeau, Jane Hudson, Lisa Ketcham, Mark Mellinger, Lisa Merullo, Carol Moynihan, Ivor Parry, Anthony Ptak, David Ricci, Marney Schorr, Rosemary Starace, Sarah Sutro, Holly Whiting, and Terry Wise. There will be an After Party from 8 to 10 pm also at the Whitney Center for the Arts, with live musical entertainment by The Shadow Twisters and refreshments.


“Not Just Pink” is sponsored by Berkshire Medical Center’s Breast Health Team, Berkshire Health Systems, and the Whitney Center for the Arts. “Not Just Pink” will be on view until the end of the October and can be viewed 12 to 4 pm on Saturdays, during events @ the Whit, and by appointment.


The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, 28 Renne Avenue, will present “Through the Lens” for the month of October. Berkshire Children and Families, Berkshire Museum, and Miss Hall’s School have teamed up to curate the exhibit which is a story-based portrait series based on the “Dear World Project”. Students from Herberg and Reid Middle Schools were asked “What do you want your message to the world to be?” and then photographed with their message painted on their arms. The exhibit will open during First Fridays Artswalk on Friday, October 6th, 5 to 8 pm, and will close on Saturday, October 28th.


NUarts Studios & Gallery, on the second floor of 311 North Street, will also be open during the October 6th Artswalk from 5 to 8 pm. Visit the studios of a half dozen artists in a variety of media and view works from additional visiting artists who have previously been a part of their collective. Artists include: Kathy Gideon, Karen S. Jacobs, Sophia Lee Lane, Marney Schorr, Marguerite Bride, Susan Himmel, Millie Kelly, and Sherry Steiner.


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


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 www.FirstFridaysArtswalk.com.


Contact contributor Kimberly Cortes-Gritman at intern2@downtownpittsfield.com

Kimberly is a Downtown Coordinator and Lead Coordinator of First Fridays Artswalk.


Images: (left to right) Marney Schorr, Sally Tiska Rice, and Karen Carmean