Right to Left, What’s Left to Write? | A Dialogue Between Two Cultures | May 11, 12, 13, 2018

A performance art exhibit with Ernesto Montenegro and Dr. Foad at A.P.E Gallery at 126 Main St., Northampton, MA (next door to the gallery)

May 11, 5-8 pm, in conjunction with Northampton’s Arts Night Out and continued on Saturday May 12, and Sunday May 13, 12-5 pm.

There will also be a display of sculpture from Mr. Montenegro’s flatmensquared series on the main floor of the gallery.

Right to Left, What’s Left to Write? Painting by Ernesto Montenegro, Calligraphy by Dr. Foad. Oil on canvas 70×72 in. 

Over forty years ago, sculptor, then painter, Ernesto Montenegro was commissioned to do a series of Renaissance-style paintings for a residence in Boston’s South End. His career has since turned from painting to sculpture and his works can be seen in public spaces across the country including the Gateway to Manchester in NH, the Cyclist in Greenfield, MA, and the 53 foot Ourhandsthenandnow in Claremont, NH.

Dr. Foad fled Iran in the late 1970’s as a 16 year old boy, fearing danger because of his Baha’i faith which was prohibited and was widely persecuted in the new Islamic Republic. He came to the United States and educated himself at Boston University and Harvard University.

Mr. Montenegro has recently re-acquired this series of paintings and is joining with Dr. Foad for an event and conversation about cultural fusion. Dr. Foad will be engaging the audience in a dialogue and with their help will write a narrative over these paintings in the calligraphy of Ancient Persia, his native language of Farsi.

In our time of political polarization, cultural identity has brought with it both opportunity and strife. This event is intended to start a conversation about the nature of those identities and how they can co-exist.

See images of the paintings before their transformation here.

Please join the artists in this important and timely conversation. There will be food, drinks, music, and plenty to talk about.




Mo Willems | Wordplay | March 1-31st, 2018

Artist reception Friday, March 9, 2018, 6-8pm. In conjunction with Northampton’s Arts Night Out. (Mr. Willems will not be signing books at this even)

See the series here.

The last year has underlined the remarkable power of words in our public discourse. These simple collections of letters can be wielded to denigrate and destroy or illuminate and liberate.

This collection of recent drawings is an attempt to grapple with words’ power while retaining a sense of playfulness. Playfulness has power, too, and I fear for its future.

The proceeds of my sales for this exhibit will be donated to The Center For New Americans, to support their language and literacy education.

-Mo Willems, Northampton, MA

Wordplay, Crayon Pencil, 6.5×9.75 in, 2018