2024 Arts Shabes

On January 19, on Zoom, 30+ people attended BWC’s Arts Shabes III. It was an inspiring evening. After our three blessings in our four languages, Sandy Martin, BWC’s Director of Operations, talked about her history of blowing glass for over 20 years, primarily at MIT where she also teaches students. Sandy showed us some very beautiful functional vessels and described what it takes to make them. 

Sandy’s work will be on sale next on Monday, May 6, 10am-8pm and Tuesday, May 7, 10am-5pm. Location: Lobby 10, MIT Campus

In the meantime, if you are curious, you can look in the window and watch glass blowers at the MIT Glass Lab in MIT’s Building 4. Best to look at a map of MIT to find Building 4. (There’s a maze of buildings, and it is not directly on a street, but tucked in the middle of campus.)

Both Sandy and the evening’s second presenter, Roz Freeman, shared how they felt and thought about making art — what about it gives them most pleasure and what they are still working toward. The descriptions of each of their relationships to making art were illuminating and a special part of their talks. 

BWC member Roz Freeman has been making art since she was a child. During the day, Roz works to make our food system more equitable and works to support businesses owned by women and people of color. What she enjoys most as an artist is collaborating with other people, for examples, by creating a visual of a plan for a community project, doing a graphic for a shop owner, working with couples on their marriage ketubahs, creating a banner for an event, and setting up an art activity for a community gathering. Roz mentioned two artists who inspire her: Wendy MacNaughton (who has many works, one of which is in Salt Fat Acid Heat), and Jessica Love (who wrote the children’s book Julian is a Mermaid) If folks are interested in collaborating with Roz on a project, you can e-mail her at rozfreeman1@gmail.com.

You can view Sandy and Roz’s presentations here:

In between Sandy’s and Roz’s talks, we had small groups in which the participants showed and told about works of art that particularly matter to them, created either by them or by others. It was particularly fine to see additional works created by a number of artists in the BWC community and by a some guests to BWC. 

Sandy shared two wonderful quotes at the start of her talk with which it’s fitting to end this post:

“Go into the arts. I’m not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven’s sake.  Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something.”

Kurt Vonnegut

“We often find the thing we seek- the special magic of absorption – first and most intensely in the pastimes where we exhibit the least mastery. The better we are at something by external judgment, the less pleasure it supplies inside.”

Adam Gopnick, The counterintuitive rewards of not being very good at something”, Boston Globe, July 2, 2023

NEXT SHABES: March 15. It will by hybrid, both on Zoom and at Webster St. and will have a focus on Food. Professor Jonathan Brumberg-Kraus will give a talk titled: “Food-Tourism and Cultural Identity in Israel/Palestine” during which he will share observations, stories, and slides from his and Maia Brumberg-Kraus’s trip to Israel/Palestine last Fall. Attendants (both in-person or Zoom) will have a chance to share a picture, description or if in person, a sample of something they ate during a memorable trip or occassion.

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