NORTH ADAMS -- A summer of continuous DownStreet Art heats up this week with new artwork on display at exhibits in both established and "pop-up" galleries throughout downtown.
The DownStreet Art-led effort is scheduled to culminate Thursday with an arts and culture celebration from 6 to 9 p.m.
"What’s amazing is, it’s gone remarkably well," said Jonathan Secor, director of special programs at Massa chusetts College of Liberal Arts, of the process of the overall setup in an interview Tuesday:
"We have a nice group of folks putting each gallery together, everyone getting overworked and underpaid, and we look forward to sharing that love," Secor joked.
Thursday’s celebration will include downtown-wide gal lery openings, live music, the official introduction of muralist Maya Hayuk’s piece on Center Street, late hours for downtown businesses and other happenings.
The North Adams Tran script office at 85 Main St., will serve as one so-called "pop-up" gallery and will feature a selection of paintings by Digital News Specialist and Senior Reporter Jennifer Huberdeau.
The exhibit, "Interludes: Inspiration from bucolic places and literary page," comprises 12 paintings, curated by DownStreet Art, from a pool of work inspired by fairy tales and landscapes.
"I’ve always had a love for fairy tales," Huberdeau said. "One is of a castle I visited in Ireland and another is very obviously Hancock
The paintings range from Little Red Riding Hood to clock towers and open fields, with one acrylic depicting a flock of crows in flight, titled "As the Birds Fly."
Huberdeau’s work has been featured throughout the area, appearing in shows in the city, Adams, Pittsfield and Sheffield, as well as in a permanent commission on the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail in Lanesborough.
Huberdeau’s exhibition will take the place of work by Transcript photographer Gillian Jones currently hanging in the newsroom. In the next rotation for DownStreet Art, Transcript Reporter Meghan Foley will fill the space with her photography.
Secor said, "I can definitely say we’ve reached a nice point where we have a clue of what we’re doing and keep adding new facets like the murals. Everybody knows DownStreet Art now, so it’s less a matter of defining it. ... We can focus more on what we’re doing, and doing it well, as opposed to justifying it."
According to Secor, the overall focus of DownStreet Art is to bring people "off the overpasses" and into North Adams.
City artist Sean Riley, setting up his exhibit, "Meet Me in the Middle of the Air" at Gallery 51 on Tuesday, hoped to draw passers-by with an array of colored logs in the window.
"I’m happy with the way it turned out," Riley said. "The piece itself references a famous Dylan Thomas poem ‘Do not go gentle into that good night.’ The piece is in reaction to that poem."
Riley plans to add text to the logs today. His exhibit also features drawings, paintings, sculpture and fabric art.
MCLA student Anita Alvarez, to be a senior next school year, was assisting in the setup at Gallery 51, as part of MCLA’s Associate Gallery Manager Program.
"This is like a real job; it’s a professional environment and professional experience," Alvarez said. "If the gallery doesn’t go off as it should, then at the end of the day it comes down on you. ... [Secor] doesn’t baby us."
For his part, Secor’s enthused by the "great submissions" received so far this year.
"We have some exquisite art to see and at the core, that’s really what it’s really about: fantastic contemporary art," Secor said.
Exhibition openings as part of DownStreet Art on Thursday:
* ’If Not ThisŠ,’ Mark Mulherrin, Marshall Street Space, 24 Marshall St.
* ’Out of the Dust ... Back to the Earth: A Dialogue in Ceramics and Oils,’ Lori St. Pierre and Judith Kniffin, NAACO, 33 Main St.
* ’The TOY as ART,’ curated by Christina Scott, The Jarvis Rockwell Gallery, 49 Main St.
* ’Meet Me in the Middle of the Air,’ Sean Riley, MCLA Gallery 51, 51 Main St.
* ’The Phylogeny Projects,’ curated by Derek Parker and Anne Roecklein, Branch Gallery, 18 Holden St.
* ’Local Color Revisited,’ curated by Wendy James, Wendy James Studio, 22 Holden St.
* ’Interludes: Inspiration from bucolic places and literary page,’ Jennifer Huberdeau, Transcript Gallery, 85 Main St.
* ’Type High,’ Katie Baldwin and students at PRESS, 105 Main St.
* ’Don’t Want to Wake U Up but I Really Want to Show U Something,’ Kristin Parker, Adams Community Bank, 31 Eagle St.
* Ralph Brill and Louise LaFond displaying work from Brill’s gallery, 28 Eagle St.
* ’Black and White (more or less),’ Frank Curran, Bob Lafond and Karen Walter, studio21south, 44 Eagle St.
* Martha Flood displays her work at Martha Flood Design, 38 Eagle St.
* ’A Taste of Italy,’ reception at The Artery, 26 Holden St.
* Pop-up ceramic art walk, Paul McMullen, Gallery 107, 107 Main St.