Lichtenstein Center for the Arts

28 Renne Avenue, Pittsfield, MA.


Karen Chase at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts in August!


Karen Chase


The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts will present abstract paintings by Karen Chase for the month of August.

Artist Statement: “I began to paint when I was four. My mother, herself an abstract painter, took me on the train to New York City every week for painting lessons in the basement of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. From then until now, making art has been woven into my life – painting has felt essential, like breathing. But in my mid-twenties, after being jolted by a trip to Iceland, writing became primary and art-making took second place. Then, a year and a half ago, I began painting again in earnest, switching back and forth between painting and writing.

The paintings on these walls all date from Christmas Day, 2015 to the present. I am loving the paint for itself, brushstrokes the brushes make, and the canvas for its surface. Motion is paramount.

Lack of motion caused by illness is central to my last 2 books. Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s attempt to cure his paralyzed legs is the subject of FDR on His Houseboat and my childhood polio is the subject of Polio Boulevard.

All the paintings are abstract. If a shape happens to suggest something literal on the canvas, I obliterate it. This grows from my wish to make the paintings as far from words as possible, far from writing. Seeing a literal anything, like a tree or a face or a mountain, would set me on a path. Severing ties with representation frees me to focus on the paint, the brushstrokes, and shapes. Colors would be a distraction.

One time, while playing with a friend when I was four years old, my eyes landed on a large piece of paper tacked to the wall. It was covered with crayoned dots in every imaginable color. Since that startling moment, looking at art, not just making it, has been a thrill.”


Illuminated Broadsides at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts in September!



The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts will present “Illuminated Broadsides: Word & Image”, curated by Julio Granda for the month of September.

There will be a soft opening during First Fridays Artswalk on Friday, September 1st  from 5 to 8 pm, with an opening reception on Friday, September 8th, 5 to 7 pm.

What is illuminated broadside?  Poetry. Imagery. Quality printing on beautiful paper.  A unique work that demands reading, not in a book, but on a wall.

In this exhibition, at least 25 poets and artists have collaborated to create these works of art incorporating a variety of printing methods – letter press/offset/silkscreen/inkjet – to achieve this unusual but beautiful marriage of word and image.

Many of the works included in this exhibition are on loan from the collections of a variety of art aficionados. We appreciate their contribution to the exhibition.

Some of the artists and poets included are:

Paul Metcalf; Herman Melville; Pablo Neruda; Julio Granda; Barry Sternlieb; Richard Wilbur; Gary Snyder; Jon Ahlen; Michelle Gillett; David Raffeld; Melanie Mowinski and Laurence Ferlinghetti.



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The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts is open Wednesday through Saturday, 11 am to 4 pm.