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Worcester Art Gallery Celebrates its 10th Annual Opening

Monday, April 23, 2012


Senior support and living community, Goddard House, celebrated their tenth annual gallery opening which features 55 pieces from a diverse group of Worcester County artists. The classy event on Sunday was celebrated with champagne and homemade chocolates and welcomed residents and artists to express their appreciation for the arts.

This year’s exhibition focused on “Nature and the City,” a topic which received a wide range of interpretation from this year’s artists, making for an interesting and eclectic selection of work.

Peg Naylor, who is in charge of organizing the yearly event, was pleased to see the opening continue to grow over the years and enjoys the opportunity.

“We’re thrilled at how much it’s grown and the quality of the pieces and the variety and the reception we get,” she said. “We do a very professional job in hanging people’s work and respect the artists and their own enthusiasm for what they produce.”

The gallery seeks to combine up-and-coming student artists with other members of the Worcester art scene.

The reception at last year's gallery.

“We have quite a few students from Worcester State and Clark. In addition, part of the jury was professors from those two schools,” she said.

The Process

According to Naylor, choosing the show’s topic each year is a very difficult task and is done with the artists in mind.

“We list a number of topics and then choose based on what will be more important and inspiring for the artists and indeed it has been,” she said. “Topics in years past that have been successful have been for the same reasons.”

Photographer Sarah Bilotta, who has worked with Goddard House in the past and is displaying two pieces in this year’s show has seen first-hand the work that goes into putting on the exhibition as well as the impact that the topic has on the show.

“There’s a wide range of interpretation of the topic from urban to rural and juxtapositions of both. Like last year, artists have brought a wide range of interpretations to the topic,” she said. Last year’s topic of “Roots” brought in literal and figurative representations – from the organic to the more symbolic family tree.

“I decided to go with shots from [my home state of] New Hampshire because where I live, suburbia is an interesting melding of some themes of city and rural area. I ended up choosing one portrait and one still life,” Bilotta said. Her work showcases the show’s wide range of submissions.

Amanda. By Sarah Bilotta.

The show has also expanded its number of artists. Thanks to Bilotta’s work in motivating the college crowd last year, the show has seen an increase from the younger, ambitious group.

“This year is the first time it’s been this much of an equal representation. It’s a different crowd than it was last year,” Bilotta said. Her work at Goddard House last year is showing. “I wanted to get arts publicity experience, and despite the fact that it wasn’t a young crowd when I worked there, I was able to get the word out and more people are submitting. It’s been great to get to know the Worcester art scene and introduce them to up-and-coming people.”

For the Community

This broadening range of work and artists showcases the gallery’s mission to highlight the community in their exhibition.

“The annual gallery was first started to bring art into Webster Square and bring people into Goddard House. It’s also a way for us to share what we have with the community,” Naylor said. “We strive for this to be an important contribution to Webster Square and to the city.”

Other Involvement in the Arts

While Goddard House looks forward to their annual gallery, it’s not the only arts event they host.

“We also engage the poetry community. We host evenings with wine and cheese and read together. The pieces could be part of a theme or something the poets write or something they’ve found,” Naylor explained. The group’s next meeting will be Wednesday May 9th at 6:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

The gallery space at Goddard House is also open for the public to use. “We also open up our gallery for others who would like to show their work privately or as a group,” she said. “One year in addition to this we had some Polish artists from Nova Scotia and a Clark show as well.”

The exhibition will be open until May 20th. Visitors are welcome to tour the gallery Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Private visits and group tours are also available upon request.

The 2012 exhibiting artists include: Zia Ayub, Sarah Bilotta, Molly Burman, Laura Cahalane, Bettie Carlson, Doris Carter, Mary Dewey, Susan Fisher, Elisabeth Hyder, Meredith Juliana, John Laprade, Mary-Ellen Latino, Diane Mariani, Liz Mattarazzo, Kathy Murray, Kat O’Connor, Doris O’Keefe, Stacey Parker, Joanne Roach-Evans, Erin Ross, Michelle Sarkisian, Susan Sedgwick, Richard Segal, Amaryllis Siniossoglou, Dick Taylor, Catherine Walker, Cheryl Wareck, Cathy Weaver Taylor, Sampson Wilcox, Catherine Wilcox-Titus, Henry Wood.


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