Berkshire Arts Festival: A Summer Tradition in Western Massachusetts

Hands forming pottery over a pottery wheelNow a highly anticipated summer tradition, the Berkshire Arts Festival attracts thousands of art lovers from across the country to western Massachusetts each July. Founded by Richard and Joanna Rothbard, the festival returns for its 19th season on Friday, July 5 through Sunday, July 7, 2019. Held at Ski Butternut in Great Barrington, MA, this annual event features 175 juried artists, with 40 new artists debuting at the event, adding a fresh new perspective to this year’s show. Art mediums include ceramics, jewelry, sculpture, wearable art, mixed media and more. Here are but a few of the many talented artists exhibiting at this year’s event:

Heather Bevilacqua, a fiber artist creating unique women’s clothing, designed and produced on the north shore of Massachusetts. All the designs feature her signature handcrafted clay buttons.

M’s Handmades, creator of decorative and useful boxes covered in gorgeous papers from around the world are as functional as they are beautiful. The boxes come in all shapes and sizes and the materials used to make them are acid-free.

Barbara Doncaster, a Berkshire watercolor artist, discovered her love of painting early on, but did not have the chance to fully embrace it until she’d raised four children. With a studio in Great Barrington she favors the landscape of the Berkshire Hills along with the wild beauty of the Maine coast.

Jonathan’s Spoons, designer of handcrafted cherry wood spoons and utensils, Jonathan fell into his craft accidentally when he lacked a spoon to eat his lunch one day. As an apprentice furniture maker, he crafted a makeshift utensil from a scrap of wood that ended up changing his life.

Jacqueline Galusha, also a native Berkshire artist, embraces the natural world around her in her various collections. From her Leaf and Leather Collection to her Sea Glass Collection, each piece is an homage to color and texture.

New to the show this year, a special ticketed event features Harpeth Rising, a chamber folk group. Performing on Saturday at 4:00 and 6:00 PM, the all-female trio combine classical with folk, rock, and what they call “new grass” into a unique and truly unusual sound experience. Festival tickets are available online and advance purchase is highly recommended.

So many talented artists travel to the Berkshires to exhibit at this wonderful event in the charming village of Great Barrington, MA. Don’t put off booking your stay at the Staveleigh House Bed and Breakfast located just six miles from this celebration of the arts. Be sure to let us know your favorite artist at the show and share pictures of the treasures you bring home.

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