The City of New Bedford’s annual Seaport Art Walk arrives with a theme written on the wind. For 2019, the outdoor collection of sculpture on the waterfront is part of the city-wide “Summer Winds” collaborative program series organized by DATMA (Design Art & Technology Massachusetts).
“DATMA is a unique approach to art exhibition, forgoing a traditional museum visit by engaging community partners to provide an unprecedented experience to showcase original and contemporary art innovation to its visitors,” said Lindsey Mis, Executive Director.
As part of the “Summer Winds” collaboration, Seaport Art Walk, located in New Bedford Seaport Cultural District, also adopted the theme of wind, with an exhibition entitled “Whirlwind of Art.” Students enrolled at either Bristol Community College or UMass Dartmouth were tasked with creating wind-inspired pieces, learning from their professors about how to create a piece of public art. Those students are: Laura Franco, Bianca Laslo, and Paige Smiley of BCC and David Cardenas, Aleisea Guzman, Melony Poirier, Libby Smiley of UMassD. Each selected project received $250 to create their piece.
The Seaport Art Walk will officially open on Thursday, June 13, on AHA! New Bedford, the monthly cultural celebration throughout the city’s downtown. A walking tour and reception with the artists takes place at Moby Dick Brewing Co. from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m.
On that evening, one of the six pieces will be selected to receive a grand prize, for which the artist will receive an additional cash prize provided by the City of New Bedford thanks to the grant program Wicked Cool Places. The jurors are Lindsay Mis and DATMA Board Chair and co-founder Roger Mandle.
Seaport Art Walk’s “Whirlwind of Art” will join DATMA’s “Silver Current” outdoor art exhibit all season long in the city. “Silver Current” is an 8,000-square foot kinetic net sculpture made out of ultra-lightweight metalized film that will float above Custom House Square Park in the Seaport Cultural District from July 1st to September 30.
Mandle said, “Today’s winds no longer push sails of whaling ships, but they will now drive wind turbines set sail for a new course by working with investors to create a wind energy industry that will reinvigorate the New Bedford area and produce masses of inexpensive, and environmentally pure, renewable energy for the region and beyond.”
The annual Seaport Art Walk was founded in 2013 by Jessica Bregoli. Each year, sculpture is strategically placed along the city’s working waterfront and Seaport Cultural District.
“I founded Seaport Art Walk because there was a need for local and regional artists to get paid to create and show their work. We are thrilled to partner with DATMA during this summer’s exciting ‘Summer Winds’ city-wide collaboration,” says Bregoli.
The project is made possible thanks to the many partners including: the City of New Bedford’s Department of Tourism & Marketing (Destination New Bedford), New Bedford Economic Development Council (NBEDC), New Bedford Harbor Development Commission, UMASS Dartmouth’s College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA), and Bristol Community College (BCC) and Design Art & Technology Massachusetts (DATMA).
“The arts and industry working together are a powerful statement for a city to make. Seaport Art Walk has always embraced the working waterfront and fishing industry as our inspiration to beautify the waterfront, and now as the offshore wind energy industry begins, it’s gratifying to see this important national milestone reflected in New Bedford’s arts and culture,” said Margo Saulnier, the City of New Bedford’s Creative Strategist.
The Seaport Cultural District in New Bedford is founded upon another era in the nation’s relationship with energy. During the 19th century, New Bedford was the foremost whaling port in the world. Indeed, whale oil from the city was said to light the world, and gave the city its motto: Lucem Diffundo, or, “I diffuse light.”
About the Seaport Cultural District
New Bedford’s Seaport Cultural District is the hub of the city’s vibrant arts and culture community along the old cobblestoned streets of downtown, offering charming boutiques, craft breweries, fine art galleries, burgeoning public art, rich cultural programs, and delicious dining from authentic New England seafood to an array of global cuisine. In all, the Seaport Cultural District contains over 50 cultural attractions, 30 creative economy businesses and is just one hour from Boston, and half an hour from Cape Cod, Plymouth, Providence & Newport, RI.
About Seaport Art Walk
New Bedford’s Seaport Art Walk is the first large format outdoor public art installation along the waterfront in the city. Each summer, sculptures are temporarily installed along MacArthur Blvd, City Pier, State Pier, and the Seaport Cultural District. This year’s theme – “Whirlwind of Art” – coincides with DATMA launching their first large-scale public art installation “Silver Current” alongside collaborations with local arts and cultural organizations for the program series “Summer Winds.”
Seaport Art Walk: Whirlwind of Art
Exhibition along State Pier: June 13 to October 1
Opening Reception: June 13, 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., part of AHA! New Bedford, Moby Dick Brewery, 16 S Water St, New Bedford, MA 02740
As part of DATMA’s Summer Winds program series, the Seaport Art Walk presents this year’s selection of sculptures created by students enrolled at either Bristol Community College or UMass Dartmouth. Inspired by wind, the following students were selected among dozens of proposals for this year’s exhibition; Laura Franco , Bianca Laslo, and Paige Smiley of BCC and David Cardenas, Aleisea Guzman, Melony Poirier, Libby Smiley of UMD. At the June AHA! opening, one of the six pieces will be selected to receive a grand prize, for which the artist(s) will receive a cash prize provided by City of New Bedford thanks to the Wicked Cool Places grant.
The project curator and founder of Seaport Art Walk is Jessica Bregoli. Jurors are Roger Mandle and Lindsay Mis of DATMA. This project was made possible thanks to the many partners including: the City of New Bedford’s Tourism Department, New Bedford Economic Development Council (NBEDC), New Bedford Harbor Development Commission, UMASS Dartmouth’s College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA), and Bristol Community College (BCC), and Design Art & Technology Massachusetts (DATMA).