Northampton Arts Council

The Northampton Arts Council is an organization whose goal is to support and promote the arts in Northampton. Originally created as a Local Arts Lottery Council, it began its work by administering a grants program in which proceeds from a state lottery are distributed to local artists, arts groups, and public schools.

Monday, September 14, 2020

Current Barriers to Voting: online event presented by Forbes Library

WHAT: Current Barriers to Voting, third event in online series The Right To Vote: Past, Present, Future.
WHEN: September 21 7:00 PM on Zoom 
WHERE: Please preregister at

This year, Forbes Library is presenting a series of scholar-led public discussions about voting in America. Each event in The Right to Vote: Past, Present, Future starts with a presentation by a panel of speakers, followed by group discussion. Forbes Library received support for the series through “The Vote: A Statewide Conversation About Voting Rights,” a special initiative of Mass Humanities that includes organizations around the state.

The third event will focus on current barriers to voting, such as incarceration, accessibility, ID requirements, gerrymandering, COVID-19 and other present-day challenges.

Four speakers will present historical context and guide discussion. The presenters are:

David Daley, author of Unrigged: How Americans Are Battling Back to Save Democracy

Lois Ahrens, founder of the Real Cost of Prisons Project

Lindsay Sabadosa, Massachusetts Representative, 1st Hampshire District

Dr. Kathleen Banks Nutter, historian, independent scholar (Moderator)

Registration is required for this event.

The final event in the series,The Youth Vote, will take place in October (date TBA)

All events are free and open to the public. Details can be found at

This program is funded in part by Mass Humanities, which receives support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and is an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

About "The Vote" - Mass Humanities

“The Vote” commemorates the centennial of the 19th Amendment through grants to 17 Massachusetts organizations. Through public events, workshops for educators, museum exhibitions and new research, “The Vote” provides Massachusetts residents with free opportunities to consider issues including women’s suffrage, the Civil Rights movement, voter suppression, civics education, and teen voting.

The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution declared that the right to vote could not be denied on the basis of a person’s sex. Ratified in 1920, it marked a major victory in the women’s movement by extending the vote to women. But with racism and xenophobia on the rise in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, many women of color, like their menfolk, still could not vote. Poll taxes and literacy tests effectively barred many African Americans from voting, especially in the South, and Native Americans in 1920 could gain the right to vote only by severing their ties to their tribes. Many states had passed laws making it illegal for noncitizens to vote, and Chinese Americans were barred from citizenship. Clearly the ratification of the 19th Amendment represents a complicated moment in our nation’s history, one that warrants thoughtful reflection on how to commemorate it.

The year 2020 arrives at another pivotal period in our nation’s electoral history. Some states are considering extending the franchise to felons and younger teens, while others have increased the hurdles to voting. As voting rights, voter fraud, and electoral security are being debated across the country, the humanities offer essential resources for deepening our understanding of this moment.

POST PAUSE: online arts exhibition presented by Easthampton City Arts

POST PAUSE is an online arts exhibition of works created during this time of pandemic in recognition of our expanded community of artists working in Western Massachusetts. Only works created after Friday, March 13, 2020 will be considered. Artists working in any media in Western Massachusetts are encouraged to apply. Selected artworks will be on display in Easthampton City Arts’ Virtual Gallery during Fall 2020. There is no submission fee or commission on work sold through this show. Support for the artists, exposure and connection is our primary goal. See the submission form for guidelines.
***BIPOC artists are strongly encouraged to apply***

DEADLINE TO APPLY: September 22, 2020

Easthampton City Arts Page:

Direct link to the submission form/guidelines:

Questions welcomed!:

This exhibition is made possible by support from Easthampton City Arts' Artist Grant Initiative.

Additional Information:
The creative practice of many artists and performers has inevitably been impacted by changes in our local and global realities since the emergence of COVID-19. Works included will overtly or quietly respond to the complexities of this moment.

The goal of this online exhibition is to amplify this shared moment and make visible a representation of diverse artists in our region, using the Easthampton City Arts website as a hub. The hope is to promote connection and creative momentum in this time of potential isolation now and moving forward, and to include many voices in this visual conversation. Viewers will directly be linked with artists to encourage the sale of works or to support artists in other ways. Artists are also encouraged to reach out to one another to form new dialogues and links within our community.

Ideas you might consider: how has the subject matter, form or scale of your work been influenced? Are you making more or less work than you had been prior to the pandemic? Does your work reflect notions of isolation, infection, police brutality, human rights, political leadership, unemployment, family life and relationships, spirituality, etc.? Perhaps your work responds to an altered pace of daily life? If your works has remained unchanged, that is important to note as well. Artists are encouraged to consider how their practices have been impacted and are asked to include a short description to accompany their submission
(up to 500 characters).

Artist Maggie Nowinski will be highlighting and curating groupings of selected artists via a takeover of the Easthampton City Arts Instagram account. The exhibition will be promoted through Easthampton City Arts networks, social media and news outlets from Springfield to the Berkshires. Press releases will go out prior to the exhibition going public.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Forbes Library Presents: The Opioid Crisis in the Age of Pandemic

WHAT: The Opioid Crisis in the Age of Pandemic
WHEN: Tuesday, September 8, 2020 at 7 pm

Join us on Zoom for a panel discussion with local experts and practitioners.
How has quarantine, social distancing, and the coronavirus impacted those living with opioid use disorder and those who support and care for them? What's it like to have one public health crisis stacked on top of another public health crisis? What can the principals of harm reduction teach us about responding to health crises of all kinds?

Featuring Elizabeth Evans, UMass Professor in the School of Health currently conducting research on opioid treatment with incarcerated populations including the Franklin County Jail, Deb Flynn Gonzalez, Program Director of the Hope for Holyoke Peer Recovery Center, Jill Shanahan, Harm Reduction Training Coordinator, Tapestry Health, and Cherry Sullivan, Opioid Program Coordinator for the Northampton Department of Health.

This program is supported by funding from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.


Oxbow Gallery reopens with "Evolving in Chaos" exhibition

WHAT: "Evolving in Chaos" Exhibition 
WHERE: Oxbow Gallery 273 Pleasant St, Northampton, MA 01060
WHEN: Opening September 4th
              New Gallery Hours: Friday (4-7p), Saturday (3-6p), and Sunday, (2-5p) 

On Friday, Sept 4 the Oxbow Gallery reopened with the exhibition, Evolving in Chaos, a group show comprised of rotating members and their work. Every month different members will exhibit and during their time they may choose to swap out pieces. A visit at one time during the month may look very different at a later point. Additionally, individual front window shows will be ongoing through late November. Look for the #alwayssomethingnew@theOxbow

The Oxbow Gallery opened in 2004 and is a collective with over 40 members who work in a wide range of styles and media. Their work shares a drive towards clarity of purpose, exploration of color and light, and a desire for experimentation.

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

LISC Small Business Relief Grants - Application now open

The LISC Small Business Relief Grants Round 6 application period is now open. Click here to apply. Your application must be submitted by Monday, September 7th, 11:59 p.m. ET.

Before completing the application, please review our Grant Information and FAQ.

Please keep the following in mind:
- For business owners with multiple businesses, please answer this survey based on your largest business owned.
- Each awardee is limited to one grant.
- Grants will be made to qualified businesses and based on accurate and complete submission and verification of required documentation.
- This round of applications must be submitted by Monday, September 7th, 11:59 p.m. ET.

If you have questions not answered by the FAQ, please email We are monitoring this inbox and updating the FAQ accordingly.
Apply Now

Frequently Asked Questions

If I applied in a previous round, do I have to apply again or will my application roll-over?
Applications do not roll over to later rounds. You must submit a new application for each round of grants in order to be considered for funding that round.

Can I change my application after it’s been submitted?
LISC cannot accept changes to the application once it has been submitted, so please review it carefully.

How will I be contacted or know if I will receive a grant?
LISC will primarily utilize email to communicate with all applicants. Be sure to check email regularly, including spam folders.

Please review our full FAQ and Grant Information here.

Local Initiatives Support Corp.
28 Liberty Street, Floor 34
New York, NY 10005

Monday, August 31, 2020

"Coming to America" Library Project

Forbes Library is excited to be participating in the Yiddish Book Center’s “Coming to America” Reading Groups for Public Libraries. These four book discussion events are now virtual and rescheduled for the Fall. The series begins on September 18 with Motl the Cantor's Son by Sholem Aleichem.
Forbes is one of twenty-two public libraries from eighteen states that have been selected to be part of the program.

The “Coming to America” library project is part of the Yiddish Book Center’s Decade of Discovery, a major new initiative that the Center is launching in 2020 in conjunction with its 40th anniversary. “Coming to America” is a reading and discussion program to engage teens and adults in thinking about the experience of immigrants encountering America. The groups will introduce libraries and the public to Yiddish literature in translation within the context of the broader experience of immigrants adjusting to life in the United States—a topic as relevant today as it was a hundred years ago.

The program features Yiddish literature in translation that explores questions of identity, assimilation, language, cuisine, and generational change, presenting American identity as an ongoing conversation, a give and take between insiders and outsiders. Each library’s reading group will compare works written in Yiddish in the early 20th century to works by contemporary immigrant writers.

Our group will read three books of Yiddish literature in translation about the immigrant experience in America: Motl the Cantor’s Son, by Sholem Aleichem; Enemies, A Love Story, by Isaac Bashevis Singer; and A Jewish Refugee in New York, by Kadya Molodovsky. For our fourth title, we will be reading On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong. Ocean Vuong was born in Saigon, Vietnam, and immigrated to the United States at the age of two. He received an MFA from New York University. In addition to this novel, he is the author of poetry collections including Night Sky with Exit Wounds, which received the 2017 Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection from the Forward Arts Foundation and the T. S. Eliot Prize. Vuong has received numerous honors and awards, including a Lannan Literary Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize, a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship, and a Whiting Award. In 2019, he was named a recipient of the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. He teaches at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Copies of the books can be borrowed during self-service hours from the display area at the library, or reserved for curbside pickup.
Everyone is invited to join the discussion group on Zoom, the third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 PM. Preregistration is required.

September 16: Motl the Cantor's Son
October 21: A Jewish Refugee in New York
November 18: Enemies, A Love Story
December 16: On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous

For details, book descriptions and to preregister, see

The Yiddish Book Center’s “Coming to America” Reading Groups for Public Libraries is made possible by a gift from Sharon Karmazin.

A.P.E. @ Hawley & SCDT present: Practicing Presence

WHAT: A.P.E. @ Hawley & SCDT present: Practicing Presence
WHEN: September 24-27, 2020

The 5th annual PRACTICING PRESENCE FESTIVAL features four days of online classes, workshops, films, and performance events offering opportunities for clearing, calming, energizing, and focusing the body-mind. Hosted by SCDT and A.P.E.@ Hawley in Northampton, MA, the full festival is available globally through Zoom. This year, we honor inspirational dance artist Nancy Stark Smith, as well as activate/mobilize toward issues central to our time.

Join us for morning somatic practices in Qi Gong, Yoga, and Meditation, followed by

afternoon workshops and classes in improvisation, contemporary dance, deep listening, and composition. On Friday and Saturday evenings, there will be live-streamed performances and video screenings presenting the work of local and international artists.

Featured artists include: Chris Aiken, Mary Beth Brooker, Kathy Couch, Jennifer Green, Scotty Hardwig, Shaneeka Harrell, Angie Hauser, Julie Iarisoa, Jennifer Nugent, Andrea Olsen, Jennifer Polins, Jenna Riegel, Peter Schmitz, Batya Sobel, and Lisa Thompson.

ANNOUNCING BUILD A FLOOR Project honoring Nancy Stark Smith. This Zoom conversation between Andrea Olsen and Kathy Couch (Northampton Community Arts Trust President) on Saturday, September 26 from 12:30-1pm unveils the Build a Floor project, initiating fundraising for a sprung floor in the new 3,800 square foot Workroom/Theater at 33 Hawley.

See full schedule of events, sliding-scale rates, and registration details on SCDT’s website:

Lisa Thompson,; Jen Polins,

Photos: Julie Iarisoa; Chris Aiken and Angie Hauser by William Federking; Shaneeka Harrell and Jenna Riegel

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