Isolation, anxiety and loneliness played a big part in the pandemic life we all recently endured. But so, too, did joy, hope and resilience. Artists explore the emotions, traumas and unexpected gifts of the past 15 months in “Postcards From the Edge” at Loading Dock Gallery at Lowell’s Western Avenue Studios.
The exhibit opened Wednesday and runs through Aug. 1.
Works are inspired by visions of imaginary or out-of-this-world travel. The distance between people and missing a special someone inspire other works. All are presented as messages — like postcards — and intended to resonate with the viewer.
Some works — small gems — are standard postcard-size. Others vary in size and are two- or three-dimensional. And there are also ceramics, jewelry, wearable art and more.
Artist John Dunkelberg’s oversized postcards encourage viewers to leave the real world behind and escape with the imagination.
“We all could use a getaway right now — from our homes, our jobs and perhaps our reality,” says Dunkelberg.
Linda Dunn shares her expressive ocean paintings, which evoke feelings of longing.
“This year, we learned to stay apart and stay home,” notes Dunn. “Maybe that longed-for trip to the beach with family will help restore our balance.”
Susan Hodge’s painting of an empty raft on a pond last summer reflects the emptiness so many felt over the past 15 months.
Thankfully, summer 2021 brings hope for better health, fun-filled gatherings and the promise of long-awaited reunions with friends and family.
The gallery is in the Western Avenue Studios and Lofts complex, 122 Western Ave., Lowell. Hours are Wednesday through Saturday, from noon to 5:30 p.m., and Sundays, from noon to 4 p.m. Call 978-415-9889, or visit www.theloadingdockgallery.com.
FIRST THURSDAY IN FITCHBURG: Spend a night out in Fitchburg on Thursday, July 1, courtesy of the Fitchburg Art Museum and other participants. Visit FAM with free admission from noon to 7 p.m. See young actors from Stratton Players present an encore performance of “Artists Together – Sybil Deane Fairbanks and Eleanor Norcross” at 6 p.m. Then trek into town for dinner and more music. Visit www.facebook.com/events/153418320077427/?event_time_id=161799429239316 for First Thursday fun in July and on Aug. 5 and Sept. 2.
ART MART: Head on over to Western Avenue Studios in Lowell on Saturday, July 3, for the First Saturday Art Market, from noon to 5 p.m. This marks the first indoor event in almost 18 months. Roam the halls, reconnect and visit with artists, purchase art, and check out the new exhibit in Loading Dock Gallery. Call 978-710-8605 or visit www.westernavenuestudios.com.
‘BOMB’ SHOW OPENS: After a pandemic-induced postponement, the exhibition “Atomic Alert!: Confronting ‘The Bomb’ in the New Atomic Age” opened this week at Museum of Russian Icons in Clinton and is on view through Aug. 8. The show explores the U.S. government’s 1950’s Cold War efforts to educate Americans about what to do before an atomic attack, how to react to a sudden blinding flash, and what actions to take in the aftermath. Included are educational films about atomic attack dangers, Atomic Age comics, 1950s exhibits about building bomb shelters and finding safety in schools, offices and elsewhere, civil-defense posters, and evacuation maps. Curator Michael Schelbach gives a virtual lecture on Saturday, July 10, from 1 to 2 p.m., and admission is free on Sunday, July 11. The museum is open Friday through Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Timed admission and reservations required by calling 978-598-5000. Closed Sunday, July 4. Visit www.museumofrussianicons.org.
‘NEW LIGHT’ AT MFA: Just in time for summer viewing, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston brings more than 60 works of art from across the collection, including 23 newly acquired contemporary pieces and thought-provoking dialogue in “New Light: Encounters and Connections.” On view July 3 through Feb. 6, the show is organized into 21 “conversations,” juxtaposing each contemporary work with one or two rarely seen objects acquired earlier at the MFA. Visit www.mfa.org for info and admission details.
Nancye Tuttle’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.