I recently visited Northampton, MA, mainly without an agenda, but armed with my camera, and my little family in tout. Being only 40 minutes away from Brattleboro, it may be the most legitimate city within toddler distance from town, which simultaneously has the affect of transporting you very far away.
What I encountered on my journey was a veritable goldmine of “my kind of ART,” some of what I would call highly accessible street art, intermingled with institutionally-funded displays of public creativity, which combine to appeal to your ARTistic senses from every angle, with every bench / statue / graffiti / storefront / etc.
I have highlighted some of my favorite snapshots, and included a few galleries of images that I captured on my wander, which I have composed into three general categories for your enjoyment.
1: Street Art With Intention
2. Creative Grit That I Find Beautiful
3. Institutionally Funded ARTistic Additions
In all three of these galleries, I notice a few continuities which I find really uplifting:
- A high level of aesthetic and ARTistic aptitude,
- A desire to reach out to people walking through town,
- An awesome sense of humor,
- And a conversation between social services and public ART.
My absolute most favorite part of our wander through Northampton was that around each corner, and nestled into every crevice, were hidden gems of creative explosions of colorful spontaneity, in addition to well-planned and thought-out public ART.
In my humble opinion, this is a wonderful example of ART as a means for social conversation; a statement and a retort, sometimes overt and loud and angry and final, but sometimes nuanced and gentle and hidden and sly.
I’d be lying if I didn’t end this post by admitting that a few times during my walk, I thought to myself (and said out-loud), “Wow, Brattleboro could use this,” or “I wish Brattleboro had that.”
But the truth is, Brattleboro is its own place, different from Northampton, with a whole lot going for it, and certainly not at a loss for extremely talented and creative folks. That being said, I’d looove to see Brattleboro paint its crosswalks with rainbows. 😉
What would YOU like to see more of in terms of Brattleboro’s ARTs?