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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Somerville’s Open Studios Showcase Local Talent

The artists of Somerville opened their doors to the public on May 3 and 4 for the 11th Annual Somerville Open Studios. Name a subject, a medium and a color and someone probably had it on display. The event showcased 121 studios throughout the city of Somerville, many of them home to multiple artists. Artists opened their studios as part of a citywide event to give people a reason to come visit the city and to support local artists. Most people don’t really think of Somerville as being an artsy town, but according the brochure provided, Somerville has more artists per square mile than New York City!

I spent most of the time at a gallery featuring puppets, comics, cut paper, prints, painting, masks and video. All the work was done by only five artists, and completely filled one apartment. Even the bathroom had art in it! Sadly, there were way too many galleries to get to in one weekend, let alone one day. To facilitate the event, free shuttles ran throughout Somerville to make visiting the artists’ homes easier. Anyone in Somerville could register his or her studio or other place of dwelling for the event. Art students who live in Somerville would have been foolish not to take advantage of this great opportunity to view fellow artists.

Why would you want to go visit people’s studios? For one, it’s cheaper than a museum. Also, you can most likely buy whatever is on display; if you see something you like, offer a pretty penny and it’s yours! You can also see where artists work and even watch the process of artistic genius unfold. Plus, some places have cookies and cheese trays. So if good art that you can purchase for yourself and free food do not appeal to you, then this event is not for you. As for the artists being showcased, this was a great opportunity for them to attract interest from people who would usually not see their work in a gallery, and to also network and perhaps even make a few sales. Everyone wins!

Somerville Open Studios has been an annual event for the past 11 years and will hopefully continue into the future. Somerville mayor Joseph Curtatone sponsored shuttle service this year, which was especially convenient given the nasty weather of the weekend. For more information on this year’s event, and on future Open Studios events, visit www.somervilleopenstudios.org.