“Out of Site: Contemporary Sculpture at Chesterwood” through Oct 9

Out of Site: Contemporary Sculpture at Chesterwood
On view June 16 – October 9, 2017

Matt Crane, The Camp (detail), 2017, Wood and paint

Matt LaFleur, The Camp (detail), 2017, Wood and paint

STOCKBRIDGE, Mass. (June 5, 2017) For 39 years, Chesterwood, the summer home, studio and gardens of America’s foremost sculptor of public monuments, Daniel Chester French (1850-1931), has presented exhibitions of contemporary large-scale artworks that have been diverse in both their content and theme. This year’s iteration of the annual contemporary sculpture exhibition, Out of Site: Contemporary Sculpture at Chesterwood on view June 16 through October 9, celebrates Chesterwood as a site for creativity.


An artist reception for “Out of Site: Contemporary Sculpture at Chesterwood” will be held on Sunday, June 25 from 3 to 5 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

The exhibition features the work of 14 artists invited by guest curator Sharon Bates to develop new projects or to adapt existing works that directly respond to the environmental, cultural, and aesthetic attributes of the landscape at Chesterwood. A number of sculptors in the show have exhibited their work nationally and internationally and have been engaged in public commissions. Some of the artists have also exhibited their work at Chesterwood in the past. For others, this was their first opportunity to make site-specific work in an outdoor setting.

“It is incredibly exciting and a little risky when you reach out to a group of artists and invite them to propose new work for an exhibition – you don’t know what they’ll come back with,” said Bates.

Artists Roberley Bell and Colin C. Boyd have taken cues from the natural world and re-imagined them for Chesterwood’s dramatic outdoor setting. Matt Crane, Roger Bisbing and Chrissy Scolaro have employed a number of materials to construct forms that are both narrative and illusive. Brian Kane and Michael Oatman and Portia Munson present creatures of monumental scale and Derek Parker, Deborah Zlotsky and Amy Podmore address the passage of time in our present day lives. Douglas Culhane, Matt La Fleur and Amelia Toelke explore different aspects of home through built structures.

In conjunction with the exhibition, Bates will lead a curator’s walking tour of the sculptures on Saturday, June 17 at 11 a.m. Additional walking tours are scheduled Fridays at 2 p.m. on July 7, 14, 21 and 28 and Aug. 4 and 11 with Maggie Mitts, Chesterwood intern. The walking tours are free with admission. A children’s scavenger hunt handout, with clues to help find and understand the sculptures, is available for families. Special programs with the artists are planned for July and August. See www.chesterwood.org for more information.

“Out of Site: Contemporary Sculpture at Chesterwood” has been made possible through the generous gift of the Lillian Heller Artist Award, as well as through the generosity of other donors who have underwritten artists’ expenses including Philip and Anita Heller; Ned Foss and Margaret Enderhees; Bates-Miyamoto Design; Beth Henriques and Andrew McMains; Holly Kaye; and Evelyn Trebilcock and Doug Hammond. Take Magazine – New England’s New Culture is the media sponsor of the exhibition.

This process of artist support is a form of giving we are hoping to foster and grow in order to continue Chesterwood’s contemporary sculpture exhibition for many generations to come,” said Executive Director Donna Hassler.

For a list of events associated with this exhibition, please view our Calendar of Events here.

About the Guest Curator


Sharon Bates

Sharon Bates is the founding director of the Albany International Airport Art & Culture Program, which has become a national model for public art. For almost two decades, she curated rotating exhibitions, site-specific projects, and satellite museum exhibitions in the Albany International Airport Gallery and throughout the 250,000-square-foot terminal. Bates has presented at national conferences on public art, juried numerous contemporary art exhibitions, and has served on public art review committees and grant selection panels for the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York Foundation for the Arts. In 2016, Bates left her position at the airport to pursue her studio art practice and was invited for a month-long artist residency at Chesterwood.

About Chesterwood

Chesterwood, a site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation is the summer home, studio and gardens of America’s foremost sculptor of public monuments, Daniel Chester French (1850-1931). French is best known for his sculptures of the Minute Man (1871-75) and the seated figure of Abraham Lincoln (1911-22) for the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC.

Chesterwood is notably one of the earliest venues in the United States to showcase large-scale works in an outdoor setting. Since 1978, close to 600 emerging and established artists’ works have been exhibited at Chesterwood. Situated on 122 acres in the idyllic hamlet of Glendale near Stockbridge, MA, the property and its buildings were donated to the National Trust for Historic Preservation by French’s only child Margaret French Cresson (1889-1973). Chesterwood is recognized as both a National Historic Landmark and a Massachusetts Historic Landmark. For more information, see www.chesterwood.org.

About the Berkshires

Less than three hours from New York City and Boston, the Berkshires offers culture and adventure year-round. The surrounding mountains provide plenty of opportunity for outdoor excursions in all seasons while world class culture and entertainment, along with a deeply rooted food culture and an array of lodging options amidst picturesque towns, set this region apart. For more information visit berkshires.org.


Daniel Chester French Sculptures (Flickr)

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Contact Us

4 Williamsville Road (physical address)
PO Box 827 (mailing address)
Stockbridge, MA 01262

Telephone: 413.298.3579
Extension 2023 for Admissions/Shop
Extension 2034 for additional tour information,
including group reservations

Fax: 413.298.1065
Email: chesterwood@savingplaces.org

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