Faculty and Staff Artists Showcase Work at Salon

Art teachers at Williston are professionals in their field as well as dedicated teachers. The saying, “Those who can’t do, teach,” in no way applies to these creative individuals. One of them is Marcia Reed, who has taught art and design at Williston since 1978. She is best known for her small- and large-scale expressionist paintings that make vivid use of color and gesture in landscape. Her work is represented by galleries in New England, California, and London; her most recent showing was as part of a juried exhibition at the Broome Street Gallery in New York. She also teaches during the summer at various locations including Snow Farm: The New England Craft Program, Mispillion Art League in Milford, Delaware, and Le Petit Rousset in France.

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A view of Water, an installation by Burns Maxey

In addition to our talented faculty, Williston staff members are creative as well. Burns Maxey, an associate in the Office of Communications, is a visual and conceptual artist whose work combines new and old technologies in order to study place. In 2009 she began a multi-year, inter-media project exploring the city of Easthampton through the lens of the four elements, two of which (Earth and Water) have been presented so far. Other recent projects of hers include Remnants, a five-hour performance incorporating materials from Earth and Water, and Reflections, a collaboration with artist Maggie Nowinski that featured maps, postcards, and video conversations about daily life in Easthampton.

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Marcia Reed with one of her paintings

Marcia and Burns were both recently honored with an invitation to present their work at the Hillside Salon, a monthly event put on by the chancellor of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. On April 26, along with artists Ali Moshiri and Michael Tillyer, they presented their work in the pecha-kucha (pe-chak-cha) fashion: Each presenter is allowed 20 images that are shown for 20 seconds each, a total of 6 minutes 40 seconds of fame before the next presenter is up. The presentations were followed by a roundtable discussion and time to answer audience questions. “They were very good visual observers,” Marcia says of the salon attendees. “People in the audience were genuinely interested in asking us personal questions about our work after the presentations.”

The Hillside Salon is organized by Sabine Holub, wife of UMass Chancellor Robert Holub, a passionate supporter of the arts. The monthly events are open to the public but preregistration is required. The Hillside Salon brings together artists of a wide variety of disciplines to share their work and exchange ideas and concepts.