Aug 17, 2019

Public Arts Commission Meeting

May 20, 2019
Meetings & Notices

Public Arts Commission
North Adams, Massachusetts
May 20, 2019 | 6:00pm
City Hall, 10 Main Street, Room 202, North Adams
Anna Farrington, Chairperson
1. Call to order
2. Approval of April 2019 minutes
3. Review of proposed North Adams Public Library sculpture
4. Website and email update
5. Review of standard PAC procedures and submittal process.
6. Public attendee comments
7. Member comments/future agenda items

Public Arts Commission
North Adams, Massachusetts

Meeting Minutes

May 20, 2019

The North Adams Public Arts Commission held a public meeting on May 20, 2019 at the North Adams City Hall, 10 Main Street, Room 202, North Adams.

Members Present: Anna Farrington, Chairperson
Derek Parker, Vice Chairperson
William Blackmer, Secretary
Eric Kerns
Sarah Sutro
Bryan Sapienza (Non-Voting, pending reappointment)

Absent: All Present

Also Present: Michael Canales
Anthony Abuisi
Mary Ann Abuisi
Dawn Blondin
Robert Smith
Tammy Daniels - iBerkshires
Other members of the public


Chairperson Farrington called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.


Farrington moved to accept the Public Arts Commission (PAC) minutes from its April 29, 2019 meeting. Sutro seconded. All voted in favor. None opposed.


North Adams Administrative Officer Michael Canales provided several images of possible locations on the North Adams Library lawn for the sculpture being gifted to the city by the Abuisi family. The images depicted the thirty-eight inch high by forty-two inch wide bronze statue of a boy and a girl reading on a bench at those locations at the front and side of the library. Farrington discussed the Public Art Application and Mr. Canales advised he will submit one regarding this installation proposal. Discussion followed regarding the size of the sculpture and where it could best be placed to be noticed and enjoyed, possibly near an existing bench. Further discussion followed regarding footings or a concrete pad to secure the sculpture and provide for maintenance around it without damaging it. Kerns suggested that discussion and input have now been given, and the Abuisiís should choose where they would like to see the statue placed. Parker advised that the commissionís expertise might be beneficial at the onset of the siting so that the decision doesnít have to revisited for some reason. A site visit will be considered once an application is received.

Mary Ann Abuisi provided some background history on her sister and the familyís connection to the library and to East Main Street. She advised there will also be a bronze plaque. The plaque text and placement location will be added to the application.


Farrington advised that she and Parker will manage the email account if that is amenable to the other commissioners. Further advised that the website could be consolidated some. She will work with Parker regarding those changes.


Farrington advised that the process seems pretty straightforward and the PAC Application is available online. One could also print out the application, but it does not say where to then send it. So, that should be added to the website. Kerns suggested having several copies of the application printed out and available at the City Clerkís office for someone making an inquiry there.

Referencing tonightís sculpture discussion, clarification was made that a site visit, when necessary, would follow the submission of an application. Kerns also suggested that the visit be done in conjunction with a PAC meeting.

Sapienza advised that there was some confusion regarding where to submit a PAC application. There was a reference to refer the PAC application to the Community Development Office that he saw recently in a newspaper article. Kerns advised thatís another example of the commission not having a city liaison to clarify matters. Farrington will contact the Mayorís office regarding a possible liaison, and regarding the current commissioner vacancy.


Dawn Blondin of Berkshire County Head Start in North Adams provided information about the collaboration between the Clark Art institute and Head Start that exposes the three to five year old children to art at the Clark and creating their own art works. She extended an invitation to attend their Second Annual Art Show being held on Wednesday, May 29, 2019, from 6 to 7p.m. at Johnson School, North Adams. She is also looking to propose having some of the artwork that the children create exhibited in City Hall or other public buildings. Kerns advised of a past PAC conversation regarding having an area in City Hall designated for the art of the various school groups, possibly on a rotating basis, so that an application would not be needed each time the student art works were displayed there. Farrington suggested it being something we could work on and address with the Mayor.

Robert Smith commented that he thinks the just proposed student artwork display is a great idea. Also stated that he believes it would benefit the children to have the statue for the library grounds placed at either entrance of the library, as opposed to out on the lawn where it will not be seen that well. Kernís advised it would be good for him to address his thoughts regarding the statue location to the parties involved in donating the sculpture, as they are presenting an application to the PAC, and the PAC suggest and advise based on that, as opposed to telling them where it should be located.


Next meeting of the PAC scheduled for Monday, June 17th, at 6p.m., at City Hall


With no other business to discuss, Sutro moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:38 p.m. Parker seconded. All voted in favor. None opposed.

Respectfully submitted,

William Blackmer, Secretary