MARION — The Marion Art Center joins more than two dozen local cultural organizations to kick off a celebration of the arts in the SouthCoast area May 6-15.
SouthCoast Spring Arts is a 10-day festival celebrating the arts in our communities by connecting innovative, creative and affordable arts and culture events in communities across the region, from Fall River to Wareham. The MAC joins this effort with 12 new cultural events in the fields of theatre, live music, art history, film, movement and visual arts. All Printemps des arts at the MAC events are hands-on or interactive and are offered at low cost or free of charge.
The MAC will kick off its spring art events on Thursday, May 5 from 6-7 p.m. with a conversation with artist Paula Stebbins Becker (free attendance) whose work, along with painter Tracey J. Maroni, can be seen on the MAC’s live broadcast. Emergence course. Paula will share her inspiration and discuss her various processes of unraveling and weaving yarn, natural dyeing, and using yarn in her works printed on paper. During the event, guests can also view a slideshow of images in the MAC Theater featuring additional works by artist Tracey J. Maroni.
On Friday, May 6, from 7-8 p.m., enjoy a concert and hands-on learning experience with Latin percussionist Jesús Andujar at the MAC. Immerse yourself in the wonderful world of congas, timpani, guiros, cabasas, djembes, claves, bongos and shakers. Jesús will perform his own rhythmic improvisations and guests can learn some basic patterns and join in the fun. The cost is $10 for adults and $5 for children under 15.
The MAC is partnering with the Mattapoisett Wellness Center to host workshops to enhance your creativity with yoga and reiki ($18 per class) on Saturday, May 7 and Saturday, May 14, from 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. In these two one-hour workshops, led by Jennifer Risio, yoga teacher and long-time Reiki practitioner, you will learn first-hand the benefits of both practices: reducing stress, calming the mind, strengthening body. The Mattapoisett Wellness Center is located at 76 County Road, Mattapoisett.
Join a photo workshop and Learn to See walk on Saturday, May 6 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the MAC (cost $25). Master photographer Cathy Broderick will lead this workshop exploring different approaches to creating images that stand out. Participants will meet at the MAC and then take a walking tour of Marion’s village to implement different approaches to a scene to create valuable images. Suitable for all cameras and all skill levels.
Take part in a loom weaving workshop on Monday, May 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the MAC ($30 fee including materials). Weaver Lisa Elliott will teach you how to warp and weave squares, and you’ll go home with one or a few coasters or mug mats. The finished woven squares offer endless possibilities and can be sewn together to create scarves, blankets, toys and clothing.
The MAC is partnering with the Benjamin D. Cushing Community Center to offer dinner and improv on Wednesday, May 11 from 5 to 7 p.m. (cost is $15). Tabor’s teachers, John Heavey and Steffon Gales, will lead an exciting evening of improvisation (or improvisation), a spontaneous, entertaining and fun form of live theater in which the plot, characters and dialogue of a game, scene or story are invented in the moment. Public participation is encouraged but not required. A dinner including lasagna, salad, bread and dessert will be served at 5 p.m., followed by a one-hour improvement workshop/show. The community center is located at 465 Mill Street, Marion.
On Thursday, May 12, from 7-8 p.m., attend a screening of the short film “Kittacuck Speaks” at the MAC Theater, hosted by Friends of the Blackstone, an environmental non-profit organization. Instead of the dominant, industry-driven narrative of the Blackstone River, the Native American Named Kittacuck, the film features a story told by the river itself. Kittacuck Speaks was written and narrated by Bruce Curliss, a member of the Nipmuc tribe. Meet film makers Gian Mancini, Vincent Mancini and John Marsland and learn what it means to maintain a Blue Mind, a concept developed by Dr. Wallace J. Nichols, in which we become stewards of our planet and live in harmony with nature . world. Tickets, only $5, will benefit the Friends of Blackstone.
Don’t miss the MAC’s exhibition opening reception on Friday, May 13, from 5 to 7 p.m., featuring abstract works by artists Alyn Carlson, Pat Coomey Thornton and Pat Warwick (free admission). Discover how each artist approaches their individual creative process, creating stunning visual compositions often full of vibrant color and poetic rhythms. Through branding, layering of various media, and editing, these artists create works that ignite the senses and capture the essence of emotion. Guests will have the opportunity to meet the artists and ask questions.
Artist Barbara Healy returns to teach an outdoor Paint & Sip workshop on Saturday, May 14 from 1 to 3 p.m. at the MAC (cost $30, all materials provided). Participants will paint their own versions of a beautiful sunflower in this fun workshop using water-based acrylics on canvas. Barbara and her assistant will guide you through every step of the process as you connect with your inner artist and enjoy sipping wine along the way. You must be 21 or older to register. A rainy date is forecast for Sunday, May 15.
Jazz Jam @ the MAC returns to the MAC Theater on Saturday, May 14 from 7-9:30 p.m. (tickets $12, participating musicians attend free). Be part of the long tradition of the jazz jam session with the participation of musicians from the community. The house band will support improvisers as they perform many “jazz standards” in different style formats. Learn from trombonist Phil Sanborn as he leads a Q&A session and explains how the songs are structured and how the “roadmap” for each selection helps improvisers. Sign up to listen, or if you’re a musician, sign up to join the artists on stage!
The MAC is closing Spring Arts in conjunction with the Sippican Historical Society to present The Arts in Marion’s Gilded Age on Sunday, May 15 from 4-5 p.m. at Marion’s Music Hall, located at 164 Front St. ($5 tickets). In the late 1800s, Marion became a summer gathering place for artists, writers, actors, musicians, architects and intellectual luminaries. Four local experts, Wendy Bidstrup, Nancy Mitton, Judith Rosbe and Meg Steinberg, highlight some of the characters that made up this lively scene, including Cecil Clark Davis, Charles Dana Gibson, Henry James, Mark Twain, the editor of the Century Magazine Richard Watson Gilder and architects HH Richardson and Stanford White. Catherine Moran, a UMass Dartmouth professor and art historian, leads the way with insight into America’s Golden Age. A question and answer session will follow the presentations.
Art lovers of all ages are invited to ignite their creative spirit and celebrate SouthCoast Spring Arts. To register for Marion Art Center events, go to the MAC website at marionartcenter.org/scspringarts. To learn more, email [email protected] Check out events throughout the local region at southcoastspringarts.org (regional SCSA events will be added to the SCSA website through early April).