Press Gallery Announces New Exhibition and First Ever Call for Entries


NORTH ADAMS, MASS. - PRESS Gallery is preparing "The Politics of____," its third 2013 DownStreet Art summer exhibition and its first-ever Call for Entries.  Ten submissions were selected from a very competitive pool of entries from around the United States resulting in a show that will feature 11 different artists from as far as Washington State and as near as Church Street, North Adams.

The exhibit will open on Thursday, Aug. 29. An opening reception will be held at the gallery at 49 Main St. North Adams from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. 

"The Politics of ____" examines how art can ignite conversation between artist and viewer, viewer and viewer, and viewer and self. The works exhibited move beyond what is assumed when thinking about political art, according to Melanie Mowinski, PRESS founder and curator for "The Politics of ____."

 "The project was initially inspired by the Re-Flex song 'The Politics of Dancing.' How does the political enter artwork? Here political in art is defined here as work created with the intention to spark conversation. It can be about dancing, government, food, immigration, love, privacy, whatever! But it must incorporate the real and imagined ways of creating conversation," Mowinski said.

Each of the artists in this exhibit strive, in the words of exhibition artist John Vincent, "to leave the viewer with more questions than answers, hoping then that the viewer will begin asking those questions and seeking some much needed answers."

Staying true to PRESS' name and mission, the show features artists working with letterpress and relief printing processes. The art exhibited takes the form of two-dimensional prints as well as three-dimensional work, such as artist books and installation.

Artists included in the exhibit are Allison Milham, Tallahassee, Fla; CJ Shane, Tucson, Ariz.; Elsi Vasadel Ellis, Bellingham, Wash.; Erin Smith, Portland, Maine; Frank Brannon, Dillaboro, N.C.; John Vincent, Harborside, Maine; Julie Russell-Stewart, Reinbeck, Iowa; Margo Lemieux, Mansfield, Mass.; Nanette Wylde and Kent Manske, Redwood City, Calif.; and Sara Farrell Okamura, North Adams, Mass.

During the opening reception, Mowinski hopes the public will take the opportunity to create PRESS' traditional special edition postcard with one of the members of the PRESS team on the Vandercook Universal III Press to take home.

PRESS is part of DownStreet Art, a program of Massachusetts College of Liberal Art's (MCLA) Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC).

PRESS is supported in part by MCLA and the Massachusetts Cultural Council, as well as by a grant from the Martha Boschen Porter Fund, a Fund of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.

PRESS is at 49 Main St., in North Adams. The gallery is open from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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