Boston Artists and the Big Dig at the Boston University Art Gallery

in Arts, News Releases
May 21st, 1999

Contact: Joan Schwartz, | joans@bu.edu

(Boston, Mass.) — Boston Artists and the Big Dig, an exhibition of work by 12 artists who have been inspired by Boston’s largest construction project, will be shown at the Boston University Art Gallery beginning Friday, June 4 and continue through Sunday, June 27. The exhibition features paintings, photographs, prints, and drawings in a variety of styles representing diverse responses to the Central Artery Project.

The exhibition includes work by photographers Peter Harris, Michael Hintlian, Phillip Jones, Peter Vanderwarker, and John Woolf; printmakers Sidney Hurwitz and Jeff Konigsberg; painters Laura Davidson, Rebecca Leviss Dwyer, Jan Mazur, and Carolina Agravante Reyes; and draftsman T. Kelly Wilson.

“When we began to think about the show we assumed that all of the artists would be people whose lives were affected by living or working near the construction site,” said Karen Haas, gallery curator. “In fact, some of the artists, Laura Davidson and Rebecca Dwyer in particular, do live and work in close proximity to the Big Dig. For the most part, however, the artists come from all over Greater Boston. They are drawn to the project for many different reasons, but primarily by the power of the images that such an enormous construction project offers – of people as well as of design and architectural features.”

She notes that even among artists working in the same medium the contrasts are striking. Phillip Jones’ luminous black and white photographs of bridges, construction equipment and steel beams seem to come from an entirely different world than Peter Harris’ intensely colored studies of similar subjects. Laura Davidson’s carefully rendered depictions of Big Dig landmarks set within the Renaissance-inspired pages of her artist books contrast strongly with the exuberant portraits of trucks painted by Jan Mazur.

The story of the Big Dig also depends on the teller. For photojournalist Michael Hintlian, the drama centers on the people who work on the site, wrestling daily with concrete and steel. Laura Davidson bears witness to the impact of the project on the fabric of her own neighborhood, recording the rapidly disappearing elements of her environment. For T. Kelly Wilson and John Woolf the endeavor demands broad, panoramic views reflecting the historical significance of the Central Artery Project.

“It is clear that there is a great deal of vitality in the response of artists to the Big Dig,” says Haas. “We were delighted to find such a wealth of truly interesting work inspired by the project from both established and emerging artists.”

What:
Boston Artists and the Big Dig

Where:
Boston University Art Gallery
855 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston

When:
Friday, June 4 – Sunday, June 27

Hours:
Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. 1 – 5 p.m.

Opening Reception:
Friday, June 4, 6 – 8 p.m.

The exhibition and all Gallery events are free and open to the public.

For information call 617/353-3329.

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