Zhen Ren Chuan 2021
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Reception held for ACA's 'REAL!'

aca new

Join the Arlington Center for the Arts staff, juror, curators and exhibiting artists to celebrate -- in person -- the opening of "REAL!" at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21.

This exhibit celebrates the beauty, technical precision, and advancement of the realism art canon through a variety of creative perspectives. Co-curators and artists, Gwen Chasan and Dan Cianfarini, incorporated works selected by juror Phil Young to create an intricate tapestry of local artists’ subjects. 

Register for the reception here >>

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Art flowing at Spy Pond through October

Artists hope to inspire people to rehabilitate waterways

Arlington Commission for Arts and Cultural logo

UPDATED, Sept. 30: "Confluence," a new public-art installation by Arlington artists Laurie Bogdan and Kimberley Harding, is on display at Spy Pond Park near the playground through Oct. 31.

The artists shared a children’s activity regarding waterway health during Spy Pond Fun Day on Saturday, Sept. 25, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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Deadline extended for 2022 arts grants

Arlington Commission for Arts and Cultural logo

UPDATED, Oct. 17: The grants committee of the Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture (Arlington Cultural Council) has announced the opening of the 2022 grant-application cycle on Sept. 1. All applications were to be submitted on or before Oct. 15, but because of software issues, that deadline was extended to Monday, Nov. 1, at 11:59 p.m.

The committee offers annually grants that typically range from $150 to $1,000. A grant can be used for many purposes to benefit the community of Arlington, including using the arts to create cultural inclusion, to bring interpretive science or history to life or to address social or environmental justice. 

The committee receives its funding from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. For the complete guidelines, click here >>  

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Celebrate 'Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington' Oct. 30

Arlington Commission for Arts and Cultural logo

UPDATED, Oct. 16: An open-air celebration of "Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington" is set for Saturday, Oct. 30, from 1 to 2 p.m., outside the Edith M. Fox Library, 175 Mass. Ave., East Arlington.'Remembrance of Climate Futures in Arlington'

Rain date: Sunday, Oct. 31, 1 to 2 p.m. 

Join those involved for a celebration of the achievements of 12 Arlington High School interns who spent the summer working with artist/designer Tom Starr and mentors Rachel Oliveri and Cecily Miller creating a public art project to raise awareness of the impact of climate change on our community. 

In dialogue with volunteers and professionals in the fields of environmental activism and town planning, the interns developed 18 markers imagining landmark future events and strategies for mitigation and resilience. As a first step toward a townwide public art project, the marker designs will be installed on the walls of the Fox Library using a temporary street art technique called a "paste up."

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23rd annual Open Studios returns to in-person Nov. 13

ACA 2021 Open Studios

Porchfest Stage at Town Hall steps

Join the Arlington Center for the Arts (ACA) for its 23nd annual Arlington Open Studios on Saturday, Nov. 13, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This event will be returning to a primarily in-person format, with lots of new features and visitor favorites. Find information about the event and Covid-19 policies on the ACA website.

The ACA will present more than 50 participants featured at three locations in Arlington Center, and the Robbins Library will feature a Book & Art Sale as part of the event.

ACA hosts its open studios for 2021 on its largest event footprint to date. This year's event will include, for the first time, a Porchfest Stage on the steps of Town Hall, and poets from the Red Letter Poems Project will do readings!

ACA's six studio artists will open their doors to visitors as well.

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Dallin Museum celebrates town's first Indigenous People’s Day

Forrest CuchForrest Cuch

In honor of Arlington’s inaugural Indigenous People’s Day, the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum is hosting Ute Elder Forrest Cuch in a virtual event at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 7.

Cuch, Ute tribal elder and former director of the Utah Division of Indian Affairs, will discuss the history of oppression of the Utah tribes within the context of the Doctrine of Discovery, a principle of international law used to justify centuries of Colonial violence against indigenous peoples.

Cuch will explore the still-present effects of this doctrine and provide insight into a broad range of issues affecting indigenous communities in the United States today. He will also share his thoughts about how to learn from the past and build a more just, equitable world for all.

This one-hour program builds on artist Cyrus Dallin’s lifelong commitment to listening to and learning from the Ute people, with whom he established close relationships during his formative years living in Utah Territory.

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Book reading, conversation about race held

Arlington Commission for Arts and Cultural logo

Join a reading and conversation at RepHAIRations1339 Mass. Ave., on Wednesday, Sept. 29, from 7 to 9 p.m.. as author Dax-Devlon Ross speaks directly to those who are awakening to race and racism in his book Letters to My White Male Friends. Dax-Devl0n Ross

Please register for this event here >>

You can purchase copies of the book here >>

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Ratiner joined poets at Heaney Memorial

Steven RatinerSteven Ratiner / David Andrews photo 

The Hastings Room Series returned, presenting the Seamus Heaney Memorial Reading at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22.

Readers are Fred Marchant, Hilary Sallick and Steven Ratiner, Arlington poet laureate. 

The event is at the First Church Congregationalist, 11 Garden St., near Harvard Square. 

Marchant is the author of five books of poetry, most recently Said Not Said (Graywolf Press), recognized as an "honored book" for 2017 by the Massachusetts Book Awards. Earlier books include Full Moon Boat, House on Water, House in Air and The Looking House. His first book, Tipping Point, won the 1993 Washington Prize, from The Word Works, and was reissued in a 20th-anniversary second edition.

Sallick is the author of Asking the Form (Cervena Barva Press, 2020) and Winter Roses (Finishing Line Press, 2017). She teaches reading and writing to adult learners in Somerville, and she is vice president of the New England Poetry Club.

Ratiner has published three poetry chapbooks and is completing work on two full-length collections. His work has appeared in journals, including Parnassus, Agni, Poet Lore, Salamander and Poetry Australia.

Giving Their Word – Conversations with Contemporary Poets was reissued in a paperback edition (University of Massachusetts Press) and features interviews with many of contemporary poetry’s most important figures.

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Dallin Museum online fund-raising auction ends

Dallin Museum auction image

Going, going, gone – sold to the highest bidder!

From 9 a.m. Aug. 15 until 9 p.m. Aug. 29, you can bid on a wide range of fabulous items―artwork, getaways, restaurant certificates and more. To place a bid, go to Then click “here” to register, and you’re ready to go!

Arlington’s Dallin Art Museum is hosting this online auction to support its continued work developing uplifting and thoughtful museum experiences that reflect Cyrus Dallin’s values as an artist, educator and social-justice advocate.

In addition to providing crucial support for the museum’s daily operations, funds will help achieve this year’s strategic goals:

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Dallin Museum receives artist’s only self-portrait painting

Cyrus Dallin self-portraitCyrus Dallin self-portrait.

The Dallin Museum is delighted to acquire Cyrus Dallin’s only two-dimensional self-portrait known to exist. 

“This painting was quite a surprise to us,” says Geri Trembly, one of the museum founders. 

A 20- by 26-inch oil painting depicts Dallin in middle age, wearing a tan suit and sporting dark hair graying at his temples and a silver goatee. He appears introspective and perhaps slightly weary. 

Donated by the grandchildren of Daisy Dallin Southworth, Cyrus’s only sister, it can now be appreciated and enjoyed by everyone for generations to come. 

The painting, however, is more than 70 years old, and had suffered a lot. The side nails (to attach the canvas to the frame) were rusted. There was also cupping on the paint and many bare spots.

The painting has since been restored. 

Peter Williams Museum conservator services of Boston meticulously cleaned, relined with new backing and inpainted to correct any areas of loss. Stanhope Framers of Boston provided the period-appropriate, museum-quality framing. 

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