Northampton Arts Council

The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as First Night Northampton and Transperformance.

Friday, April 9, 2021

Converging Liberations Residency

WHAT: Converging Liberations Residency
WHEN: Deadline to apply is April 12, 2021
WHERE: The Studios at MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA. 

"Converging Liberations Residency is an experimental, community informed project committed to the belief that artistic practice is key to imagining and practicing liberatory futures. This is a one-month, fully funded residency program for “Massachusetts”-based* artists of color and will take place at The Studios at MASS MoCA in the Massachusetts Berkshires from August 11–Sept 7, 2021."

Deadline to apply is April 12, 2021
Learn more:

In partnership between CreateWell and Assets for Artists, which is supported by the Barr Foundation. Please share within your network. Below is some information about the residency:

This residency is exclusively for artists, creatives, and community organizers who self-identify as Black, Indigenous, or a Person of Color. We extend special invitations to those who also identify as queer or trans, as a caretaker, and/or as differently abled/disabled (and so will use the term QT/BIPoC to encompass all of these individuals).

Applicants must also be “Massachusetts” based* at the time of application submission and during the residency period. We strongly encourage those who have never attended a residency to apply.

Selected artists-in-residence receive:

· 24-hour access to a private studio space on MASS MoCA’s campus

· A private room in shared housing across the street from the museum in newly renovated apartments

· Up to $1,000 unrestricted stipend for their participation in the program ($500 per 2 week period), as well as a stipend of up to $300 ($150 per 2 week period) for meals and incidentals, and up to $200 for travel support

· Temporary MASS MoCA membership

· Invitation to programming centered around building resiliency, sharing ideas and skills

· Daily group lunch

· Weekly group dinners

Participants may attend the residency for 1–4 week.

Applications close April 12, 2021. More information here.

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Northampton Arts Council's Second COVID-19 Artist Relief Fund


The Northampton Arts Council (NAC) is pleased to announce its second COVID-19 Artist Relief Grant. Last year, with support from our local community, NAC distributed $42,570 to 129 artists. We As need remains high in our community, NAC has decided to continue the COVID-19 Artist Relief Fund. In addition to funds allocated from NAC’s budget, the Council will subsidize the grant with community fundraising efforts.

This decision was made in response to the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s most recent COVID-19 impact survey of the arts sector in Massachusetts. Since March 2020 working creatives in Massachusetts which includes individual artists, teaching artists, and scientists/humanists cite $30,403,616 in lost personal income due to the pandemic. In Western Massachusetts alone 558 artists reported lost income of $4,901,683. NAC is grateful to the many artists who are using this time to create and support our local community online. The Board would like to award as much money in artist relief as possible; to that end, we invite members of the community to donate to our artist relief fund via MightyCause.

All artists and arts producers who have been financially impacted by COVID-19 and contribute to the artistic vibrancy of Northampton, Florence, and Leeds are eligible to apply online at The application is due May 15, 2021. The Northampton Arts Council usually administers the ArtsEZ grant round in the spring to support local arts projects that take place in Northampton, Florence, and Leeds. Since all public gatherings are on hold, and in light of the severe economic impact of COVID-19, the Board has voted to allocate $TBD to fund artist relief. 

“Artists and arts producers play a vital role in making Northampton a great place to live and work. We want to ensure that members of our artistic community have the support they need to make it through this crisis and create beauty on the other side of it,” said Brian Foote, Executive Director of the Northampton Arts Council. “I’m grateful to the Northampton Arts Council Board for making the decision to allocate this fund towards artist relief and to the community for an outpouring of support for local artists at this time.”

The Northampton Arts Council remains committed to supporting arts in the City of Northampton. Our monthly board meetings will continue via Zoom, under the leadership of executive director, Brian Foote. All are also invited to join the Northampton Arts Council Facebook Group, which aims to create an online community for artists and arts producers or check out our COVID-19 Resource page. The Board will continue to seek new ways to bring our community together, even remotely, through the arts. 

The Northampton Arts Council believes that art is for everyone. We strive to produce, support, and sustain arts and cultural initiatives that uphold all people—including but not limited to those who have been historically marginalized based on race/ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, neurodiversity, socioeconomic status, geography, citizenship status, or religion. We affirm the need to redress historical inequities in the arts and cultural sector and commit to supporting equitable and inclusive practices through all aspects of our work.

Learn more about our programs and initiatives at


Out Takes / In Sights: Work by Carl Caivano & Nancy Campbell

WHAT: Out Takes / In Sights: Work by Carl Caivano & Nancy Campbell
WHEN: May 5 -29, 2021
WHERE: A.P.E. 126 Main Street. Northampton, MA. 

Out Takes / In Sights
Work by Carl Caivano & Nancy Campbell

These two artists explore two and three dimensional space from different perspectives yet their work finds connection and meaning in wonderful ways.

Artist Statement
Carl Caivano
Manipulating meaning through juxtaposing varied references intrigues me. A single element can look either magmatic or cellular depending on where it is positioned within the composition. My aim is to combine various macro- and micro-scaled elements that range from galaxies to subatomic particles into a single unified expression. I want the final result to function as a three-dimensional painting.

Artist Statement
Nancy Campbell
I strive to evoke an Eastern sense of balance between fragility and strength by using a system of highly structured intricate abstraction. Despite exacting and often tedious methods I work for a spontaneous result that inhabits an ambiguous realm between the visible and the invisible, the logical and the intuitive, the representational and the abstract.

Wednesday - Sunday, 12-5, Friday, 12-8,
Closed Monday & Tuesday

Guidelines for visitors to A.P.E. during COVID:
Masks and hand sanitizing required, physical distancing,
limit of 8 visitors at a time.
Contact: or

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

"Up Jumped Spring" Virtual Jazz Series - Tuesdays in April

In honor of April Jazz Appreciation Month and the Northampton Jazz Workshop, the Northampton Jazz Festival is presenting a virtual jazz series entitled “Up Jumped Spring” each Tuesday in April at 7:30 P.M.

Working collaboratively with Northampton Open Media and The Parlor Room, the Northampton Jazz Festival will produce four jazz performances of local and regional musicians that will stream over Facebook, YouTube, Channel 12 in Northampton and other online channels free each Tuesday in April at 7:30 PM. Ensembles will include the Eugene Uman Trio, led by Eugene Uman, director of the Vermont Jazz Center; the Jacob Smith Trio, a highly talented family ensemble led by drummer Jacob Smith; the Fumi Tomita Trio, led by bass player and professor of Music at UMass Amherst Fumi Tomito; and the Carolyn Dufraine Trio, which will play a mixture of traditional and Gypsy jazz with Carolyn Dufraine leading on sax.

Make Tuesdays in April YOUR jazz night. Just log onto your favorite channel at 7:30 p.m. EDT to hear some great, live jazz.

April 6 - Fumi Tomita Trio
April 13 - Carolyn Dufraine Trio
April 20 - Eugene Uman Trio
April 27 - Jacob Smith Trio

Performances were made possible by the Northampton Jazz Festival supported by our generous sponsors and patrons. ​This program is supported in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

Sevenars Music Festival announces its 53rd Anniversary Season

WHAT: Sevenars Music Festival announces its 53rd Anniversary Season
WHEN: Sundays at 4pm from July 11 through August 16
WHERE: The Sevenars Academy, 15 Ireland St, MA-112, South Worthington, MA

Phone: 413-238-5854

Sevenars is delighted to announce its 53rd anniversary season of music, classical and jazz, solo and chamber, in idyllic South Worthington, Massachusetts. For over a half century, this family-founded festival has presented performances by acclaimed artists with the warm atmosphere and perfect acoustics of the historic Academy in South Worthington. Admission remains by donation only (suggested $20 per person). There will also be virtual selections from concerts presented in the summer over the internet, and also some opportunities to meet the artists via Zoom. For more information, as dates for virtual plans and Covid guidelines for live concerts evolve, please visit the Sevenars website in April for updates on protocols for attendance. Meanwhile, the six live concerts are as follows:

On July 11, the traditional family concert opens the season, with members of the Schrade and James families, the nucleus of Sevenars, playing piano solo, piano duo, and cello music including works by Liszt, Rachmaninoff, Ravel, Debussy, Arvo Pärt, William Grant Still, and late festival founder Rolande Schrade, plus a newly transcribed duo work of Piazzolla in honor of his 100th anniversary.

On July 18, chamber music lovers will thrill to the sounds of the Elm Chamber Ensemble, a piano trio led by music faculty of Smith College. Violinist Joel Pitchon, cellist Volcy Pelletier, and pianist Yu-Mei Wei, will share a rich program of Beethoven, Brahms, and more.

On July 25, renowned pianist Jiayan Sun performs Beethoven's final three Sonatas, masterpieces for which this thoughtful pianist has been praised by critics. Though Beethoven's 250th anniversary was "quarantined" in 2020, we celebrate his entire year through December 16, 2021.

August 1 will mark a long-awaited return of chamber music from the Taconic Music Festival, led by the brilliant pair of Ariel Rudiakov and Joana Genova. The string quartets planned are by Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, and Stephen Dankner, plus the sensational "Strum" by Jessie Montgomery.

August 8th the beautiful and dynamic duo of violinist Alexis Walls and Sevenars pianist Lynelle James will bring a program of Franck, Brahms, and more, and the ever-popular Sparkman Trio will close the season on August 15th with inimitable jazz clarinet stylings by Bob Sparkman in a perfect meld with pianist/composer Jerry Noble and Kara Noble on bass guitar.

Details will follow and be available at the website as updates are made.

Northampton Hosts Two Critical Meetings in April About Downtown’s Future

Mayor David J. Narkewicz announced that the month of April brings two important meetings inviting public comment about downtown Northampton. The city will host its 15th stakeholder outreach meeting about the Picture Main Street project on Wednesday, April 14, 2021, at 6:00 pm. On Wednesday, April 27, 2021, the city will host its “Helping Downtown Recover from COVID-19” meeting as part of a $90,000 grant the city received under the Commonwealth’s Rapid Recovery Plan program.

“I am truly excited to continue the public conversation about plans for downtown Northampton,” said Mayor Narkewicz, “There’s a lot on the agenda for both meetings. Please come and share your thoughts about downtown’s future, and help us spread the word about these two important meetings to everyone you know.”

The main topics of the April 14, 2021, Picture Main Street meeting will be built on prior community input to discuss possible options for a redesign of Main Street. Three prototype plans will be shared in advance of the meeting on the Picture Main Street storyboard website at: tinyurl/MainStoryMap. The project will use state and federal funding provided through the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). Currently, the Picture Main Street project is projected to receive $16.6M in 2025. When compared and scored against all other proposed projects, this project was identified as the highest priority project in the region. The project area extends from the intersection of Elm and West Streets on the west to the intersection of Market and Hawley Streets on the east.

The April 27, 2021 “Helping Downtown Recover from COVID-19” will share output from the Commonwealth's Rapid Recovery Plan Program. The project is designed to support our business community through actionable, project-based recovery recommendations unique to the individual economic challenges and COVID-related impacts in our downtown. These plans, facilitated by the Commonwealth and standardized across communities, will be developed in coordination with the City of Northampton. The goal is to share the results of our Rapid Recovery business survey and discuss with you what comes next during a community meeting.

Please save both dates starting at 6 pm: Wednesday, April 14, and Wednesday, April 27th. Both meetings will be held on the zoom remote meeting platform. Please stay tuned to for registration information closer to the meeting dates.

For more information, please contact the Mayor’s Office at 413-587-1249 or

Monday, April 5, 2021

Life Enhancement Through Drawing Painting with artist Robert Masla

WHAT: Life Enhancement Through Drawing Painting with artist Robert Masla 
WHEN: May-June 2021
WHERE: Online / Zoom 

“This program is supported in part by a grant from the Northampton Cultural council, a local agency which is supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.”

Join artist Robert Masla for a series of FREE workshops on drawing, sketchbook journaling and watercolor painting over a course of three days. 2 days will be conducted on zoom and the third day will be out doors, masked and socially distanced.

To register contact the artist at: or call (413) 625-8382

These workshops are limited to 20 participants on a first registered basis. They are appropriate for all levels of persons with an interest in exploration and expression in the visual arts and how it can enhance life, (ages 14+, those younger please contact the artist for clearance). Participants with little or no experience to those that are actively engaged in art and want to review basics and recharge their creativity with fresh input will find this workshop series beneficial.

In the 1st day Masla will lead you with 3 cameras through a large gamut of approaches to drawing extracting lessons from his over 50 years of experience making art. Through a series of exercises covering intention, composition, value, shape, line and edges you will discover the magic of mark making. You will gain an understanding of the effects of light and shadow on form, and the methods for creating a sense of atmosphere and 3 dimensional illusions on a 2 dimensional surface. You will also learn about simplification and abstraction and developing a personal “shorthand” to convey detail. Through exploring a variety of skills and techniques you will evolve your ability to SEE – building your confidence in your mark and enhancing your drawing and painting.

The second day will focus on Simple Ways to Success in Watercolor. There will be an introduction to the basics & the essentials of creating successful watercolors. Watercolor is no more difficult to master than any other painting medium. It is about gaining an understanding of it's unique attributes and characteristics and then applying principles related to them with patience, practice and persistance. We will start at the very beginning, understanding paper, brushes and pigments – and their relationship to water. Through a series of paint along demonstrations Masla will lead you in the dance of watercolor painting. You will be given the tools, exercises and principles to practice and continue gaining the understanding of the give and take between the artist, the paint, paper and the water that ultimately brings mastery to watercolor painting.

The Third day will be spent “En Plein Air”, sketching and painting on location in the Northampton area during the month of June, (exact location and date to be revealed to participants closer to the day / rain date created). Masla will do demonstrations to elaborate on lessons previously learned. Explaining sketchbook journaling, doing a graphite wash as well as a watercolor on paper. Participants will receive some materials to use awarded by sponsors Royal Talens North America and Fredrix Artist Canvas.

Connect & Follow

Artist News

    Council News

      Search This Blog

      Blog Archive