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MCLA Arts and Culture Welcomes 2021-22 Artists in Residence

NORTH ADAMS, MASS.—MCLA Arts and Culture, formerly the MCLA Berkshire Cultural Resource Center, will offer events and exhibitions from three visiting artists in 2021 and 2022: Conrad Egyir, Nathaniel Donnett, and Joshua Ross.


Upcoming Events 

Ross will deliver his opening lecture as an artist in residence at 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 5, in Murdock Hall Room 218 on the MCLA campus.


Egyir will give an opening lecture as the inaugural Benedetti Teaching Artist in Residence at 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 19, in Murdock Hall Room 218 on the MCLA campus.


Both events are free and open to the public; email to register.


MCLA Artist Laboratory Residency 

The MCLA Artist Laboratory Residency, now in its second year, will host Ross for the Fall 2021 semester and Donnett for the Spring 2022 semester. Each of these artists were selected based on their practice, their contribution to the art world, and the way in which their career reflects the diversity of thought, talent and triumph that exists among artists striving to contribute to, and consequently expand, what is considered the art history canon.


Joshua Ross holds an MFA in Art at the University of California, Irvine, and a BFA in Photography from Herron School of Art in Indianapolis. Ross’ research-based practice is an entrenched phenomenological approach that investigates institutional, bodily, and spatial structures that organize and influence perception. Ross’ multi-disciplinary practice employs and appropriates a variety of material and media developed through relationships to methodologies inherently related to his research and archival experiences of photography. Some recent notable exhibits Ross has featured artwork include Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, Queens LA, and Human Resources Los Angeles.


Nathaniel Donnett lives and works in Houston, Texas. Donnett received his BA in Fine Arts from Texas Southern University and his MFA from Yale University School of Art. Donnett is a recipient of a 2020 Dean’s Critical Practice Research Grant, 2020 Art and Social Justice Initiative Grant, and the 2020-2021 Helen Frankenthaler Scholarship. Donnett is the founder of the website blog “Not That But This.” Donnett has been awarded a 2017/2011 Houston Arts Alliance Individual Artist Grant, a 2014 Harpo Foundation Grant, 2015/2011 Idea Fund/Andy Warhol Foundation Grant, and a 2010 Artadia Award. His work has been shown at The Virginia Museum of Fine Art, Richmond, VA, The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, Virgina Beach, VA, The Mennello Museum, Orlando FL, The American Museum, Washington, D.C., and many other museums across the U.S.


Benedetti Artist and Teaching Residency 


New this year, the MCLA Arts and Culture Benedetti Artist and Teaching Residency welcomes a teaching artist to campus to spend the school year creating work, teaching, and engaging with the students, staff and faculty as well as the North Adams community and beyond. The inaugural Benedetti Artist and Teaching Resident is Conrad Egyir.


Conrad Egyir’s work borrows from Afrocentric folklore that is rooted in political and religious erudition. He creates narrative paintings that focus on subjects from the Afro-diaspora who interact with identical versions of themselves. Concurrently they take on multiple staged roles as both an antagonist and a protagonist, a friend and foe, or a noble and a commoner as a tool that behooves the viewer to step into the multiple incarnations of each subject, in reverence of a collective human spirit. Conrad Egyir has exhibited work at Jessica Silverman Gallery, San Francisco; Library Street Collective, Detroit; and Mindy Solomon Gallery, Miami, among others.


The Benedetti Teaching Artist Residency seeks out dynamic exhibiting artists with an understanding of technical and conceptual issues in the medium of painting, sculpture, graphic design, illustration, or mixed media, with knowledge of historical and contemporary practices and a commitment to artistic imagination and education. The Resident is selected on the basis of outstanding professional attainments, creative accomplishments, and recognition in their specific field, and renders specified service to the College, including lectures, performances, demonstrations, master classes, and consultations. This residency is funded by a generous bequest from the estate of Alma Benedetti ’37.  A beloved North Adams art teacher and life-long advocate and friend of the College, Alma Benedetti inspired generations of children with her keen sense of color, composition, and design.


About MCLA:
At MCLA, we’re here for all — and focused on each — of our students. Classes are taught by educators who care deeply about teaching, and about seeing their students thrive on every level of their lives. In nearly every way possible, the experience at MCLA is designed to elevate our students as individuals, as leaders, communicators, fully empowered to make their impressions on the world. In addition to our 125-year commitment to public education we have fortified our commitment to equitable academic excellence. For eight of the last 10 years, MCLA has been named a Top Ten College by U.S. News and World Report. MCLA also appears on the organization’s list of top National Public Liberal Arts Colleges, as well as on the top 50 schools in U.S. News’ Social Mobility Ranking, which measures how well schools graduate students who receive Federal Pell Grants.


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