Category Massachusetts history

Bottle Trees on Brattle Street Bring Histories to Light: “Forgotten Souls of Tory Row”

Several times this summer I have viewed and visited the bottle trees on the History Cambridge lawn. I hope to keep revisiting till they’re gone, April 2023. For now, I’ll share photos, quotes, and links that help me appreciate, understand, and reflect on an enlightening project, “Forgotten Souls of Tory Row: Remembering the Enslaved People of Brattle Street.”

Murals offer Many Ways to Celebrate a City: “Chelsea Resilient: Call and Response Through the Ages” and “City of Dreams”

In mid-May I visited two mighty murals barely two blocks apart: “Chelsea Resilient: Call and Response Through the Ages” by David Fichter and “City of Dreams” by Silvia López Chavez. With great enthusiasm, I now share photos, quotes, and links that should convey the rich history and possibilities of both murals.

Bronze Sculptures by Cyrus Dallin in Arlington Combine History and Humanity

New important plantings around Cyrus Dallin’s long-standing sculpture (since 1912) on the lawn of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston this summer made me realize how much I did not know about the sculptor. That led me to Arlington, where some of his significant works have braved all weather for over a century, and where the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum has developed valuable online resources about his works. A winter lull finally let me review my summer notes and photos for Dallin’s art in Arlington, where he lived in the first half of the twentieth century. Now I need to share some fascinating aspects of his art.

Artists Add New Life to Familiar Forms: “GO OUT DOORS – ARLINGTON  2021” November Notes and Quotes

Guided by the very helpful interactive map on the GO OUT DOORS NEIGHBORS!, Arts Arlington, I have visited most of the 2021 doors. I hope to see them all before November ends, when they’ll be kept safe from the threats of winter weather. Then I will watch for their return in spring 2022 and for newly created doors as well. If able, I will want to show and tell more about “Go Out Doors” beyond Arlington.* Meanwhile here are names, art titles, links ( click on artists’ names in red for their websites), and quotes for the doors I’ve seen so far.

“Arboreal Attire” and “Chairful Where You Sit” Extend History around Jason Russell House in Arlington

Sculpture by Leslie Wilcox, Poetry by Jessie Brown, Chairs Transformed by Many Artists: This post honors an inspiring event last Saturday (8/21/21) that reminded me, yet again, of how much public art keeps offering no matter how many challenges continue. Walking among at least thirty chairs and six tall trees with unique creative identities, I began to understand they all shared histories extended by artists’ careful appreciative attention. Also most chairs there were made with wood, so crafted originally from trees. Musical performances, poetry reading, artist talk, and many other happenings were free for anyone who visited the lawn of the historic Jason Russell House near Arlington Center.
That led me to this quick post ( with links, quotes, and key resources in red type) because the chairs are only up for bidding until September 5:

Murals by Sophy Tuttle, Solei, and Ann Lewis Highlight Pumphouses on the Charles River Esplanade

More than a year ago, three artists adorned all sides and surfaces of three different pumphouses on the Esplanade. I had meant to connect and celebrate these accomplishments at that time. Now at the start of a new year, I can do that with additional appreciation of their presence. Though pumphouses along the Charles River have always been essential in regulating water drainage, their cement block structures were neglected and defaced until funds from the Esplanade Association allowed artists to transform their appearances in 2019.

Respond to the Spirit of Art Ramble around Fairyland Pond in Concord

My goal now is to get the word out about a wonderful way to get away, though this temporary exhibit in Concord’s Hapgood Wright Town Forest won’t let you get away from the issues of climate change. I went once last week and hope to return as often as possible before the last day, November 8. I hope to post again with more photos and reflections on water, but here are quotes and links to lead you into the forest, around the pond, with art and poetry.

Colorful Characters Brighten Brine Tanks: Mural by Monique Aimee in Cambridge

Selected and funded by Percent-for-Art program in Cambridge, Monique Aimee proposed, planned, and painted her mural on all sides of the four tall brine tanks along the lot for Saint Peter’s Field. She began near the end of June and finished near the end of August. My photos here come from a few visits there throughout the summer. The links should take you to videos and exciting photos of the work in progress on Monique Aimee’s Instagram site: https://www.instagram.com/moniqueaimee/ The quotes here should give background that lets you visit in person or online.

Randal Thurston’s Birds and Butterflies Guide Our Ways through Yerxa Road Underpass in Cambridge

Maybe best to show some of what I have seen lately along this pertinent passageway without trying to explain why I didn’t post earlier. I hope the links and quotes will give you ways to appreciate the efforts and effects of this public art project completed in 2006.

Spiral Inspired Art for Quincy Square, a Collaboration of David Phillips and Halverson Design

In earlier posts about David Phillips’ art, I noted his collaboration with Halverson Design, but here I’ll let it shape my perspective with quotes from Cambridge Public Art resources about this park that opened in 1997 near Harvard Square.