Author Archives: Kim Smith

Mayor Romeo Thekan and Committee for the Arts Public Meeting with Arts Advisor Elizabeth Keithline

Last night, the first of three meetings to engage community members in determining a public art policy was held at City Hall. Consultant Elizabeth Keithline of Wheel Arts Administration has been hired to gather information and make recommendations. LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD – I urge everyone to attend these meetings at this critical crossroad in our changing public art policy! 

Keithline asked to hear from Gloucester residents about the following questions:

  • What is your vision for public art in Gloucester? What would you like to see happen here?
  • Do you have any recommendations on how that vision can become a reality?
  • Name and/or describe public art in Gloucester that you like or don’t like.
  • Do you have any recommendations on how Gloucester can improve its public art processes?
  • Do you have any specific recommendations on what a public art policy for Gloucester should contain?

Email your responses, or any information you care to share, to All comments are unattributed. Keithline will be conducting a public meeting at City Hall on Wednesday, September 30th at 7:00 pm. She will present a second meeting for City Council on October 13th. A third meeting will be held on November 10 to present a draft of the new policy.

Elizabeth Keithline ©Kim Smith 2015

About the Gloucester Committee for the Arts (CFTA)

Made up of citizen volunteers appointed by the Mayor and City Council, the Committee for the Arts (CFTA) was established by City ordinance in 2000 to promote and celebrate Gloucester’s cultural heritage and to foster an appreciation of arts and artists in the local community. The Committee works to preserve and increase awareness of Gloucester’s WPA-era murals and other city-owned art. Additionally, the Committee develops and promotes educational programs and establishes awards and honors to recognize local artists. The committee works with other city departments to shape and implement a city-wide public art policy. The Committee advises City officials on the value of a diverse, cultural life as well as encourages art programs within public schools.  (From the City of Gloucester website). 


“Gloucester Blue” Extended!


Robert Walsh (Latham) and Esme Allen (Lexi)


Israel Horovitz’s



Due to overwhelming demand Gloucester Stage has extended the New England Premiere of Israel Horovitz’s Gloucester Blue through Sunday, October 11. Originally scheduled to close on Sunday, October 3, the additional performances are: Sunday, October 4 at 2pm; Wednesday, October 7 through Saturday, October 10 at 7:30 pm and Saturday October 10 and Sunday October 11at 2pm at 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA.

Directed by Mr. Horovitz, Gloucester Blue takes place in the attic loft of an old industrial building in The Fort section of Gloucester owned by the upscale Bradford Ellis IV also known as Bummy and his wife Lexi. Working class housepainter Stumpy has been contracted to refurbish the building and he has hired Latham, friend-of-a-friend, to help him complete the job. As the play opens, Stumpy and Latham are hard at work, spackling damaged walls and applying fresh plaster and primer. Out of work for the last six months Latham is grateful for the job. When Lexi shows up with paint color samples, a story of intrigue, seduction, betrayal and money is set into motion in this dark comedy. According to author and director Horovitz, “If I look at Gloucester Blue as though someone else wrote it, I would describe it as a very dark, very funny play about class distinctions. In Gloucester-speak, it’s The Fort versus Eastern Point. In theatre-speak, I think Gloucester Blue is a really fun evening of theatre.”

Gloucester Stage Founding Artistic Director Horovitz. directs a cast featuring Lewis D. Wheeler and Esme Allen as the upscale couple Bummy and Lexi, and Francisco Solorzano and Gloucester Stage Artistic Director Robert Walsh as housepainters Stumpy and Latham. “One thing I so appreciate about Israel’s work is his intense desire to keep exploring new avenues of style, content, and conflict – all essential pieces of good playwriting,” Walsh, a frequent actor in and director of Horovitz’s work explains, “For as comfortable as he is with dark comedy,Gloucester Blue represents an even newer pursuit of the tools and nuances of that genre’s storytelling components.”

Gloucester Blue is the latest in Horovitz’s series of Gloucester-based plays that include North Shore Fish, Henry Lumper, Park Your Car in Harvard Yard,Fighting Over Beverley and Sins of the Mother, all of which were first produced at Gloucester Stage and went on to successful runs nationally and internationally. “Gloucester Blue has already found audiences in developmental productions in Seattle, Florida’s Delray Beach and New York City,” Horovitz says, “I’m delighted to finally bring this play home to Gloucester.”

Israel Horovitz’s Gloucester Blue is extended through Sunday, October 11 at Gloucester Stage. Performances are Wednesday throughSaturday at 7:30 pm and Saturday and Sunday at 2:00 pm. Ticket prices are $28 for all performances. Tickets are $1 for ages 25 years and under for all performances. The $1 tickets are cash only and available at the door on day of performance only. All performances are held at 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA. For more information and to purchase tickets, call the Gloucester Stage Box Office at 978-281-4433or visit

Bob_9_6347Foreground: Robert Walsh (Latham) and Francisco Solorzano (Stumpy)





Israel Horovitz Robert Walsh Gloucester Blue ©Kim Smith 2015jpgIsrael Horovitz and Robert Walsh opening night “Gloucester Blue”

Robert Walsh has been named artistic director of the Gloucester Stage Company making him only the third person to hold that title in the theater company’s 36-year history (he joins founding artistic director Israel Horovitz and Eric Engle).

See Boston Globe to read more.

Behind the Scenes at the seARTS Celebrate Wearable Art Show

2 group of modelsBehind the Scenes at the seARTS Celebrate Wearable Art Show
by Terry Weber

The talent and effort of a team of fashion & jewelry designers, models, hair stylists, makeup artists, and volunteers was on full display Sunday at the seARTS Celebrate Wearable Art show at Cruiseport. Guests enjoyed a runway show featuring over fifty designs from local artists, a Mediterranean buffet, raffles, and an auction of one-of-a-kind handmade vests.

Runway photography to come but here’s a look behind the scenes:

1 getting fitted

5 dress made from balloons3 Debra coull and martha sutyakSee More Photos Here Read more


For Immediate Release
September 24, 2015

Mayor Romeo Theken Announces Public Art Policy Meeting

Art consultant Elizabeth Keithline to present options for the presentation of contemporary public art of all types and discuss best practices.

(Gloucester, MA) –The City of Gloucester and the Gloucester Committee for the Arts will present the first of three meetings on public art policy on Wednesday, September 30th at 7:00 pm at City Hall, 9 Dale Avenue. The meetings will be led by public art consultant Elizabeth Keithline of Wheel Arts Administration. The public is encouraged to attend.In order to formulate how the City of Gloucester’s public art policy can best serve its residents, Keithline and her advisory committee have developed the following questions:

· What is your vision for public art in Gloucester? What would you like to see happen here?
· Do you have any recommendations on how that vision can become a reality?
· Name and/or describe public art in Gloucester that you like or don’t like.
· Do you have any recommendations on how Gloucester can improve its public art processes?
· Do you have any specific recommendations on what a public art policy for Gloucester should contain?

Over the past month, Keithline has interviewed many residents. At the meeting on September 30th, she will report on the results of those interviews, present options for the presentation of contemporary public art of all types and discuss best practices.

On Tuesday, October 30th at 7:00 pm at City Hall, Keithline will present to the Gloucester City Council on regional developments in public art policy and will seek the opinions on various issues such as Percent For Art programs, (for both private developers and municipal initiatives), gifts of art, deaccession, process of selection and decision-making.

Keithline will present her final recommendations at a third public meeting will take place on Tuesday, November 10th at 7:00 pm at City Hall.

For further information on public art:

Contact: Elizabeth Keithline
Wheel Arts Administration

NEW FILM: Luminescent Sea Salps

These salps were filmed in Gloucester’s inner harbor and had a luminous appearance in the blue lights of the fishing boat Hot Tuna, the largest boat in the Wicked Tuna fleet. I think the song “La Luna” by Lucy Schwartz adds to the magical movement of the salps and other creatures in the glowing blue. (So sorry to Captain Ott for startling him while hanging over the edge of the dock to film the salps at the rear of his boat, and Hey to Nicky Avelis!)

Sea salps are warm ocean water creatures, exploding in population during algae blooms. With beating heart, notochcord, and gills they are more closely evolutionarily linked to humans than to jellyfish. Sea salps are individual creatures that through asexual reproduction, can form linear chains up to fifteen feet long!

Salps are planktonic (free floating) members of the subphylum Tunicata. Tunicates get their name from the unique outer covering or “tunic,” which acts as an exoskeleton. The sea salp’s tunic is translucent and gelatinous; in some species it is tough and thick.

One-Day Art Installation at Historic White-Ellery House – Oct. 3

Insights On Site at the White-Ellery House

Life Observed – A one-day installation by Sarah Wonson

The Cape Ann Museum is pleased to present Life Observed, an installation by Sarah Wonson on Saturday, October 3 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This program will take place at the Cape Ann Museum’s historic White-Ellery House (1710) and is free and open to the public as part of Escapes North 17th Century Saturdays. The House is located at 245 Washington Street in Gloucester at the Route 128 Grant Circle Rotary; parking is available off Poplar Street in the field behind the house.

unnamed-4Sarah Wonson, White-Ellery, 2014, woodblock print.

In Life Observed, Wonson’s interests in making art converge with her reverence for Colonial-period architecture. Returning home to Gloucester in 2011 after living away for eight years, Wonson began to take notice of the wealth of beautiful colonial-era homes around Cape Ann; each one with its own character, friendly, foreboding, comical, etc. “I wanted to learn more about Colonial period buildings,” states Wonson, “so I began visual research in The White Pine Series of Architectural Monographs.” These pamphlets, filled with atmospheric, shadowy black and white photographs of historic houses, captivated Wonson, and she has been drawing and contemplating them since. “[While] the formal aspects of the structures interested me initially, over time my focus has shifted towards the relationship between where we dwell and the human imprint we leave behind. The home is not just a building, it is a place where we store our experience.”


Last year, for a woodblock printing project called BIG INK, Wonson photographed the newly renovated diamond-paned windows at the White-Ellery House. “The White-Ellery [H]ouse fascinated me; the dark sturdy exterior, the visible construction and layers of ornamentation left behind on the walls, paint and wallpaper still evident from long ago … carpenter marks on the attic beams, evidence of a human hand long gone. [The] House … is empty, yet it feels full of experience.”  Having finished the woodblocks, she decided to work toward putting a show together at the White-Ellery. The result is a series of three dimensional representations of household objects that comment on the contemporary relationship of the home and the world at large. “Over time, the link between home, object and their utilities has been degraded.… When everything is disposable, when there is always another, why should we care about what we have?”

The White-Ellery House has served as the backdrop for a series of one-day contemporary art installations (Insights On Site) for seven years running. It was built in 1710 and is one of just a handful of First Period houses in Eastern Massachusetts that survives to this day. Unlike other structures of this period, the largely unfurnished house has had very few interior alterations over the years. Stepping inside today, visitors enter much the same house they would have 300 years ago.

Cape Ann TV Debate Coverage

Lisa Smith submits:

I hope you can post this on GMG, since the preliminary election is on Tuesday, I know there are might be people who don’t know the candidates and might find watching the debates online helpful.

Cape Ann TV has covered all the Debates for the preliminary election, and most are now online on Cape Ann TV’s website on the video page: Select “Gloucester Election 2015” on the playlist, and then you can choose the debate you want to watch.

The Debates are: Arts & Culture Mayoral Debate at Rocky Neck; League of Women Voters Debate at the Sawyer Free Library; Lanesville Mayoral and Ward 4 City Council Debate; Cape Ann Chamber Mayoral Debate; and Mayoral & Ward 1 Debate sponsored by the Gloucester Daily Times. Also included in the playlist is the “Cape Ann TV’s Mayoral & Ward 1 City Council  Preliminary Election Candidate Forum”. Candidates recorded statements of up to four minutes at the television studio.
The Magnolia Debate goes online on Saturday 9/26 and the GOP Debate will be online on Monday 9/28.
CATV video page

Aeolus String Quartet Family Concert

unnamed-1Fill your morning with music at the Cape Ann Museum

The Cape Ann Museum is pleased to present, in collaboration with Rockport Music, the Aeolus String Quartet.Enjoy a morning filled with music on Saturday, October 10 at 10:30 a.m. This program is free and open to the public. It is presented as part of a residency through Rockport Music’s Education and Outreach program with programs in both Rockport and Gloucester Public Schools. For more information please email or call (978) 283-0455 x10.


Winners of multiple awards and the Graduate Resident String Quartet at the Juilliard School, theAeolus String Quartetpromises an engaging one-hour program with excerpts of Haydn, Dvorák, and Ervin Schulhoff appropriate for all ages. The Quartet will introduce their instruments, the different roles they play and the different tools used by composers to make their quartet repertoire distinctive—all presented in a program that will cultivate a greater love for music and a deeper understanding of how a team can become greater than the sum of its parts.


6th Annual Charles Olson Lecture: Michael McClure

Lecture and Readings by Michael McClure

The Cape Ann Museum is pleased to present, in collaboration with the Gloucester Writers Center and Charles Olson Society, author Michael McClure as this year’s Charles Olson Annual lecturer. The 6th annual lecture will be held Saturday, October 3 at 1:00p.m.This program is free and open to the public. A book singing will follow. McClure’s book can be purchased at The Bookstore of Gloucester. For more information please email or call (978) 283-0455 x10.


In 1954, poet Robert Duncan introduced Michael McClure to poet Charles Olson’s influential manifesto,Projective Verse. McClure’s lecture, entitledThe Greatness of Olson will include a discussion about his relationship to Olson, as well as readings from McClure’s most recent work.



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