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.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Jan Ruby-Crystal "Toys: Yesterday and Today"

Jan Ruby-Crystal 
Yesterday and Today

Jan Ruby Crystal, Iza and Lucy In the Bath, 2016. 
(Handmade paper, fabric and water soluble oil paint  26 x 20.5")
Yesterday and Today
Jan Ruby-Crystal
Jan Ruby-Crystal has engaged in her childhood memories and her experiences as a teacher, parent and grandparent for this artistic journey interweaving Historic Northampton's collection and her own joyful imagination.
Jan Ruby-Crystal responds to toys from the Historic Northampton's ollection through oils, watercolor, charcoal and handmade paper. She has observed and photographed children at play, stepping back in time to her own childhood. "The spirit of play is not necessarily tied to one material, toy or timeframe, but can be experienced in a multitude of ways throughout our lives," she says. "With that in mind, I decided I would make my artwork or this exhibition into an exemplar of play. I opened myself up to working in as many materials and styles as I chose, opening the doors of possibility, just as play does."
Jan Ruby-Crystal is a Faculty Emerita of The State System of Higher Education in Pennsylvania, where she was a professor of Art and Design at Shippensburg University. Since moving to the Pioneer Valley in 2013, she has been teaching art classes at the Smith Campus School, at her studio in Northampton, at Arcadia, as well as developing Arcadia's Art House and exhibiting her art throughout the Valley and New York City. She is the 2016 recipient of the Outer Cape Artists Residency in painting.

Architectural blocks, from the collection of
Historic Northampton

Opening Reception:  
Friday, June 10, 5-8:00 pm (Arts Night Out), with a performance by the A2Z Yo-Yo team

Panel Discussion on Creative Play:
Sunday, June 12, 2016, 2:00 pm 
Do today's toys develop lasting creative and social skills in our children? 


The Contemporary Art at Historic Northampton program is supported by a generous grant from the Art Angels Fund at the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts.
Opening Reception
Friday, June 10th
Arts Night Out
5 to 8 pm
Exhibition Dates
June 10 - July 2, 2016
Exhibition Hours
Wednesday - Saturday
   10 am to 4 pm
   12 noon to 5 pm

Infinite Possibilities, (inspired by a photograph by Dan LIttle), 2016.
(Water soluble oil paintArches paper, handmade paper legos,  30 x 23")
Jan Ruby-Crystal, 2016 (Photo by Ellen Augarten) 

Panel Discussion on Creative Play:
Do today's toys develop lasting creative and social skills in our children? 
Sunday, June 12, 2016, 2 pm

Free and open to the public  

Contemporary Art at 
Historic Northampton

A partnership of Historic Northampton, Northampton Center for the Arts and A.P.E. Gallery to exhibit the work of local artists who draw on Northampton history for theme or inspiration.

Historic Northampton
46 Bridge Street
Northampton, MA

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