Tag Archives: Installation

Stephanie Benenson HARBOR VOICES light show #GloucesterMA | immigration, conversation & acts of generosity manifest as public art

Stephanie Benenson, artist studio, discussing 2017 Harbor Lights 20171122_091510

Stephanie Benenson, artist studio, discussing Harbor Lights, GIF 1122091429

from a studio visit with Stephanie Benenson Nov 2017

You can join in Stephanie Benenson’s fascinating big vision, Harbor Voices, a public art and cultural piece that’s made from light, sound and community participation. Part of the project is a  large-scale and temporary LIVE light & sound installation which will happen on ten minute loops from 4-8pm on Friday December 8th, and Saturday December 9th, one of many featured events for the 2017 Middle Street Walk. Harbor Voices will be held inside the Kyrouz Auditorium in City Hall , 9 Dale Avenue, Gloucester, MA.

Come experience a sweeping ocean of sound, stories and light, drawn by the voices and acts of generosity of neighbors and friends.

Benenson, a Rockport native and North Shore based fine artist, received a prestigious and competitive RISD grant to create Harbor Voices. Benenson collected over 100 stories in eight languages of recent and ancestral immigration to Cape Ann. For the past year she led (and continues to lead) practical and creative storytelling sessions and workshops at area schools like Veteran’s Memorial and Gloucester High School,  as well as community organizations and centers such as Sandy Bay Historical Society. Students talked with Benenson about “their ancestors* and families bringing cultural heritage to Cape Ann.” She said that kids mentioned “family members that started businesses here (like Jalapenos, Sclafanis, and other cultural destinations on Cape Ann)…and how meangingful that was to them…and people that they had deep respect and admiration for…” They discussed “family recipes, music, food and how immigration historically has made American art and culture come alive.”  Mayor Romeo Theken was the first story collected. Other Cape Ann storytellers outside of the schools and non profit partners include: Jean Testaverde (Portuguese fishing ancestry), Ingrid Swan (Swedith quarrying ancestry), Heather Lovett (descendent of Roger Babson), Sal Zerilli (Awesome Gloucester and Rockport), Jan Bell, Buddy Woods, Susannah Natti (Finnish and descendent of Folly Cove designer), Rich Francis (GHS teacher), and Celestino Basille (GHS teacher).

Depending upon age and preference, stories were written, recorded, or drawn. All were mixed into materials and audio that will choreograph connections directly into the light installation, and an enlarging community. At first, Benenson thought the light might guide any audio. Instead voices continue to guide the light.

Every story and act of generosity is linked to the installation and transformed into light.

Blurring the lines between public art and social sculpture, LIVE happening and virtual action, Harbor Voices emblematically presents stories, shared connections and actions. Participants of all ages are encouraged to interact with the project www.harborvoices.com and its installation– to bathe so to speak in a community of vibrancy and waves of interconnectedness and support.  Benenson adds that from 4-6PM during the two days of this installation iteration, “children will be offered a small flashlight to engage with this artwork, allowing them a tangible moment to consider their part in this interconnected network of community and local history by creating their own beam of light.” Also, before the installation opens to the public, one hundred Gloucester High School students –including some who have already added into the piece– will come to City Hall to experience Harbor Voices.

Benenson’s promotion for Harbor Voices launched in September. Leveraging attention for this remarkably ambitious project is an essential component as more involvement means more impact. Straight away it fostered community and brought opportunities. For example, Benenson spoke about the project and shared audio of the stories with Rose Baker seniors, Gloucester Rotary and the Cape Ann Museum’s Red Cottage Society. Someone from Beverly has already underwrittten  support for a class at Veteran’s Memorial Elementary School. She spoke about the project with Joey as part of GMG podcast #253

As a third generation Cape Ann artist, Benenson is especially excited to “create art and conversations around our cultural heritage and our contributions to the vibrant mix of people that live on Cape Ann.”

See more pictures and read more about the artist

Read more

Nicole Dahlmer installation is featured at Lesley University College of Art Design this month

Lesley University College of Art and Design group show features Gloucester artist Nicole Dahlmer’s installation Inheritance.  Pauline Bresnahan sent photos from the reception. Congratulations, Nicole!

Sincerely,

2016 Photography Thesis Exhibitions

  • Lesley University College of Art and Design
  • Lunder Arts Center, 1801 Mass Ave, Cambridge, MA
  • through May 31, 2016 

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Fire, Ice & Music: “Wharf Music” is Wharf-tastic!

One week later and I still psyched about my experience of last weekend’s “Wharf Music” installation on Bradley Wharf in Rockport (where Motif No.1 is). The installation involves lobster traps, LED lights, fire pits, and music drifting from across the harbor from several different, distant points. It is very cool for several reasons: mostly, for the thing itself. It is just really a cool experience to sit by the fire outside, in the brisk winter air and hear beautiful, almost ethereal-sounding music drifting toward you from a point you can’t exactly identify. And it is also cool because Rockport (Rockport!) has the opportunity to enjoy a public art installation on one of the town’s treasures, our old wharves, made from chunks of granite and a reminder of our industrial past.

Many, many thanks to Rob Trumbour and Rick Erhstin for conceiving this and putting it together, to Andy Tierstien for his beautiful original composition, and to Karen Berger of the Rockport Cultural District for her support. I’m looking forward to heading back to Bradley Wharf this weekend for more public art. And fire!

When it Runs:

Friday & Saturday, Feb. 21st & 22nd from 6:30 to 8pm. You can park off Bearskin Neck and walk down toward Bradley Wharf to experience the “listening rooms” made from lobster traps, or you can drive down to T Wharf and just sit there in your car and roll down the windows to hear the music. This last idea is a great one if you have a screaming 18-month-old in the car, for example. Or an uncooperative spouse. But if at all possible, get out of the car and head to Bradley Wharf itself to experience the music by the fire.

Hope to see you there!

wharf music poster

Say What? Fire, Ice & Music in Downtown Rockport!

People assume that the off-season in Rockport means that the town is entirely shut down when, in reality, winter in Rockport provides great opportunities to enjoy downtown when it is at its most beautiful with snow cover and ice — all of it reflecting the thin winter light. Plus you can easily find parking, which is never a bad thing.

Local residents and artists Rick Ehrstin and Rob Trumbour have collaborated with composer Andy Tierstien to create Wharf Music: a public art installation bringing together light and music. The installation will take place in the heart of Rockport on Bradley Wharf over four evenings: February 14th, 15th, 21st and 22nd from 6:30 to 8:00pm.

Come get warm by the fire, listen to the music as it washes across the water, check out the installation on the wharf and feel a moment of gratitude that you live in a place where cool stuff like this happens.

wharf music poster

Wharf Music

“The night, the warmth of a fire, the company of others, a distant musical conversation.”

C.B. Fisk Time Lapse Installation

Dear Joey,
Fans of C. B. Fisk might be interested in the time lapse photography of our
recent installation at Indiana University in Bloomington. It is an
instrument we built in the 1980’s in California in a concert hall that the
client built onto the back of his house. He died a couple of years ago and
we were asked to find a new home for the organ. Last year we disassembled it
and moved it to Indiana where it’s been in storage waiting for preparations
to Alumni Hall to be completed. I went out in March with a crew of five and
we worked 60+ hours a week for more than five weeks to put it all back
together. It’s 30 feet tall, weighs more than 30,000 pounds, and is the
third Fisk instrument at the Jacobs School of Music, which boasts the
largest organ department in the country. It has been a particularly
interesting project for me personally because the original 1987 project was
one of the first times I served as project manager. How fortunate I am to be
able to revisit some of my early work and see what has changed and what has
remained the same. I have a great job.
Here’s what it looked like in California, below, and what it looks like now
in Indiana. This the link to the YouTube time lapse video

shot by an IU student.  Note the incomparable walnut carvings by Gloucester’s own Morgan Faulds Pike.
Regards, Greg Bover

Karen Ristuben "Beneath the Blue" Installation/Presentation September 3 At The White Ellery House

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Hello all,
Wanted to let you know that I’m doing an installation and presentation at Cape Ann Museum’s White Ellery House on Sat. Sept. 3, from 11-3 pm.  I’ll be presenting my 45-minute performance/lecture at 11:30 and 1:30 called "Just, one word…"
The project deals generally with our use, over-use, and disposal of plastics, and their toxicity and effect on our public health.  The presentation specifically highlights the issue of marine plastic pollution and its impact on ocean ecosystems including the marine food chain.  The project is based on a whole lot of research I’ve done in the past year or so, including my voyage last month across the North Pacific with leading marine scientists who study the issue of marine plastic pollution.
Addressing this issue as an artist, I’m offering a different kind of communication of the hard scientific data that is currently on the minds of many marine scientists, toxicologists, epidemiologists, and policy-makers.  I hope you will join me at the White Ellery House on September 3! 
Yours,
Karen
www.karenristuben.com