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Strut: A Members' Exhibition

January 13 through February 12, 2023

ArtsWorcester Main Galleries

Wearable or frameable, these works are all about fashion, textiles and styles Prizes were awarded by theo tyson, Penny Vinik Curator of Fashion Arts at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. Strut also showcased five new pieces by Worcester designers acquired by the Worcester Historical Museum for its Costume Collection.

Leslie Schomp: With You Here Between

November 3 through December 18, 2022

Window Gallery

Leslie Schomp’s stitched hair drawings are both objects of devotion and drawn illusions. Hair has a history of being a medium of commemoration and love. By pairing self portraits with images from nature, the artist emphasizes our place in the natural world through this humble medium. Her drawings serve as a love letter to all that nature is: heartbreaking, terrifying, awe-inspiring, nostalgic, and magical.

Catherine Smith: Dread Running

November 10 through December 18, 2022

East Gallery

Smith’s series investigates humanity’s relationship to the animal world, establishes a place to mourn and pay tribute to countless unnamed shelter dogs, and asks the viewer to acknowledge painful truths about our society. In a complicated act of grieving and honoring their lives, she combined the discarded cremains of dogs with ceramic glaze to create a set of relief sculptures. When compiled into a stop-motion video, these reliefs evoke the past lives of these creatures and the eternity in which they now run.

Go Big: A Juried Members' Exhibition

November 3 through December 18, 2022

West Gallery

Large-scale works induce drama and can provoke oversized reactions. For this competitive exhibition juried by Nancy Burns, Stoddard Associate Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs at Worcester Art Museum, we invited members to think big.

Outside of Class: Works by Worcester Public Schools Visual Arts Faculty

November 3 through December 18, 2022

ArtsWorcester at the Davis Art Gallery

In collaboration with the Worcester Public Schools, Outside of Class highlights the studio work of the WPS visual arts faculty, the artists teaching this city's K-12 students. Artists constantly explore their environments and personal histories in the creation of new art. This wide-ranging exhibition showcases that process for these unique artists, and their diverse studio practices.

partnership exhibition

Fathom: The Art of Kat O'Connor

July 16 – October 16, 2022

Worcester Art Museum, 55 Salisbury Street

Worcester artist Kat O’Connor, explores the world above and below the surface of swimming pools from the unusual perspective of someone underwater. Her otherworldly paintings feature figures gently distorted by ripples, bubbles, and reflections, and immerse the viewer in a dreamlike environment. O'Connor  was awarded the top honor of the the Sally R. Bishop Prize at the ArtsWorcester Biennial in 2021, which rewards the artist with a solo show at the Worcester Art Museum. Click here for a price list of artworks.

Material Needs 2022

September 8 through October 9, 2022

West Gallery

The artists of this year’s Material Needs exhibition received awards ranging from $500 to $1,500 to create new work in Worcester County, art that is new to the region and to the artist’s practice. Projects supported by these anonymous grants this year include extruded ceramic sculptures, mixed media portraits of notable historical women of Worcester, and enamel works inspired by African traditions. Since they were first awarded in 2013, eighty-nine artists have had their work advanced by these grants.

Project Spaces

Evan Charney, Woodcut and Wood Engraving: Craft and Art

John Slepian, Small Worlds

Amber Rose Tortorelli, Mani(a)c

Jill Watts, From my Yard

Mark Zieff, Ghosts of Seasons Past

September 8 through October 9, 2022

East Gallery

The Tenth Annual One: A Members' Exhibition

July 14 through August 21, 2022

East and West Galleries

An annual favorite turns ten! For the Tenth Annual One, all ArtsWorcester members were invited to exhibit one artwork they want to exhibit most, regardless of medium or theme. Prizes were awarded by Karl Cole, Art Historian and Curator of Images of Davis Publications and Co-Curator of the Davis Art Gallery.

Tom Grady: 100 Views of Worcester

April 30 through August 27, 2022

Multiple locations

This ambitious series of small oil paintings depicts with pride and love Worcester’s everyday vistas, buildings, and streetscapes. As a 300th anniversary gift to the City, the entire series goes on view during the last half of May in additional downtown venues, including the Printers Building, the Jean McDonough Arts Center, and the YWCA.

Playing Games: A Members' Exhibition

May 12 through June 19, 2022

ArtsWorcester West Gallery

This huge exhibition is all about fun and games, and works that are fun and games! Touchable and kinetic pieces will turn the gallery experience upside down, and offer us all the chance to stop, look, and play.

Jason Fiering: Turned Down

April 14 through June 19, 2022

ArtsWorcester at the Davis Art Gallery

These precise, minimalist assemblies offer multiple interpretations of the bed, a site associated with rest, refuge, intimacy, illness, and violence alike. Fiering reflects the ambiguities of that site in the constructions themselves. The motif of a single fold, the “turn down,” bends the picture plane and emphasizes the ambiguities of front and back, image and object, and painting and sculpture. Fiering’s meticulous construction, uncompromising hard edges, and mathematical proportions invite us to consider a familiar form anew, and challenge our desires for security and certainty.

Material Matters: A Members' Exhibition in partnership with the Fitchburg Art Museum

March 17 through April 24, 2022

ArtsWorcester East and West Galleries

This tenth anniversary celebration of our partnership with FAM returns to their extensive collection of African art, the catalyst of the first “call and response” collaboration in 2012. For this exhibition, artists consider the materiality of their own work, the choices behind their medium, and engage with one of the works loaned by FAM. From Material Matters, FAM’s curators select ten works to go on view there, alongside the original loan.

Tracy Spadafora: Left Behind

January 8 through April 23, 2022

The Franklin Square Salon at The Hanover Theatre

Dumpsters and trash bins are ubiquitous yet often go unnoticed. Through her observation of containers behind office buildings, strip malls, construction sites, and restaurants, Spadafora captures signs of corrosion and decay in her latest series. By documenting the layers of wear, she searches for a history within the marks, creating a record of human impact on our environment.

The 18th ArtsWorcester College Show

a juried online exhibition

online only

The Eighteenth Annual College Show is a juried, online exhibition open to undergraduate college students in any major. This year, prize winners were exhibited in-person at ArtsWorcester after the online exhibition went live. The College Show has no theme and is open to students pursuing any degree program. This year's juror was Jessica Roscio, Director and Curator, Danforth Art Museum. Artists selected for exhibition have been announced.

Lisa Barthelson: meld merge mix

January 20 through February 27, 2022

ArtsWorcester East Gallery

A sharp look at sustainability, meld merge mix is an immersive, site-specific installation that scrutinizes consumerism and its persistent byproducts. Through the creation of a new environment using one family's cast-off debris, Lisa Barthelson reimagines the impact of "disposable" objects familiar to our everyday lives and actions.

Dodge and Burn: A Juried Members' Exhibition

January 20 through February 27, 2022

ArtsWorcester West Gallery

Dodging and burning are the ways photographers in the darkroom either lighten or darken different areas of an image, a technique that has since been modernized in digital editing software. The resulting effect is a heightened visual contrast. For this juried exhibition, artists capture elements of contrast--visual or thematic--within a single artwork.

The Little One: a members' exhibition

November 18 through December 18, 2021

ArtsWorcester West Gallery

We’re bringing our biggest exhibition down to scale. For the ninth iteration of ArtsWorcester’s “One,” all artist members are invited to exhibit one small-scale artwork.

Joan Ryan: Myth Busters

November 18 through December 18, 2021

ArtsWorcester East Gallery

Ryan’s paintings and drawings juxtapose visual imagery–historical depictions, cartoons, children’s stories, and political iconography–to explore modern society and concepts of identity. Myth Busters takes the form of a wall installation, creating a dynamic interplay between pictorial elements and expanding the open-ended and disjointed narratives suggested by her imagery. By invoking and critiquing nostalgia for an America that never was, Myth Busters asks us to question our manufactured desire for a fictitious past and the belief system through which we see ourselves.

Chelsea Bradway: Be a Lady They Said

September 19 through December 11, 2021

The Franklin Square Salon at The Hanover Theatre

Bradway’s photographs capture unique images of female empowerment in a challenging age. Women of different ages and races were invited by the artist to bring important personal objects into her studio and to pose for black and white portraits in a stark, simplified environment. The monochromatic, bare setting sets off the joy and confidence radiated by the subjects, and their diversity of strength, power, and presence.

Material Needs 2021

October 7 through November 7, 2021

ArtsWorcester at the Davis Art Gallery

The artists of this year’s Material Needs exhibition received awards ranging from $500 to $1,500 to create new work in Worcester County, art that is new to the region and to the artist’s practice. Projects supported by these anonymous grants this year include welded steel sculpture, a series of paper-based works inspired by Indigenous teachings on humanity’s relationships to the natural world, full-size portraits inspired by 20th century Viennese Expressionism, printed-silk photographs that consider alternate forms of visual perception, and more. Since they were first awarded in 2013, seventy-seven artists have had their work advanced by these grants.

Jennifer Davis Carey: Redemption

October 7 through November 7, 2021

ArtsWorcester East Gallery

At the intersection of art, craft, and history, these portraits in enamel re-interpret nineteenth-century American daguerreotypes depicting unclad, enslaved people. Carey uses a combination of photographic transfer and vitreous enamel to give the figures clothes in vibrant colors, drawn from different fashions and eras. This intervention removes the figures from the distortion of "race science," shifting the images towards portraiture and transforming them into figures of agency, presence, and grace.

Virtually Identical: Works by Worcester Public Schools Visual Arts Faculty

October 7 through November 7, 2021

ArtsWorcester West Gallery

Part of ArtsWorcester’s partnership with the Worcester Public Schools, Virtually Identical showcases the diverse studio practices of the artists who also teach this city’s students.

partnership exhibition

Urban Green and Blue

October 7 through November 21, 2021

Preservation Worcester's Park View Room

Urban Green and Blue is a juried exhibition of paintings featuring Worcester’s urban green and blue spaces: the city’s public parks, wildlife sanctuaries, nature reserves, publicly accessible reservoirs, lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds. This exhibition is a collaboration between Preservation Worcester and ArtsWorcester, funded in part by the Worcester Arts Council.

Now in Technicolor: A Juried Members' Exhibition

August 19 through September 19, 2021

Thirty-four ArtsWorcester artist members turn up the heat with bold hues for Now in Technicolor. Juried by: Joshua Croke, Founder, Action By Design; Stephen DiRado, artist and professor; Birgit Straehle, Associate Painting Conservator, Worcester Art Museum and Creative Consultant, Sprinkler Factory Art Gallery.

Madge Evers: The New Herbarium

August 19 through September 19, 2021

Mushrooms generate tiny aerosolized spores to reproduce. Working with fungi cultivated for this purpose, Evers catches the spores and their pigment as they land on paper, filtering them with other plant materials and manipulating their powdery traces. In this series, Evers uses foraged plants to shape the light-colored spores on black paper. Inspired by early modern herbaria, in which plants were preserved for study, these works conjure a natural world both strange and deeply familiar.

The Nineteenth ArtsWorcester Biennial

June 3 through August 1, 2021

Since 1985, the ArtsWorcester Biennial has exhibited a range of the region’s best visual art. From over 470 submissions, juror Beth C. McLaughlin, Artistic Director and Chief Curator at Fuller Craft Museum, selected 63 works for inclusion in this celebrated exhibition.

They Travel Together: Leslie Schomp, Mary Kenny, & Andrea Olmstead

April 1 through June 13, 2021

They Travel Together is a three-artist exhibition–Mary Kenny, Andrea Scofield Olmstead, and Leslie Schomp–whose drawings and sculpture seek to shorten the imaginary and experiential distance between humans and animals.

Inside Voices: A Members' Exhibition in partnership with the Fitchburg Art Museum

March 18 through May 2, 2021

Our ninth "Call and Response" collaboration with the Fitchburg Art Museum, an important center for contemporary art in New England. Inside Voices prompts artists to consider a wide range of interiors, including domestic environments, psychological subjectivity, bodies, architecture, and sculptural containment. These spaces reveal symbolic weight, mental and emotional states, fantasy worlds, gender roles, and personal memories.

The 17th Annual College Show

Winter 2021 | online only

One of our favorite annual exhibitions returns, this time with a virtual twist. The Seventeenth Annual College Show is a juried, online exhibition open to Worcester-area college students in any major. From over one hundred and eighty submissions, Aprile Gallant (Smith College Museum of Art) selected 51 works by 44 artists in traditional and new media, including film, printmaking, photography, paint, and digital art.


Rebecca McGee Tuck: Along the Wrack Line

December 3, 2020 through February 14, 2021

Rebecca McGee Tuck weaves a sculptural narrative using sea debris she collects along the Massachusetts shoreline. The Present Tense Prize, awarding a solo exhibition and a $1,000 award, recognizes an artist whose work exemplifies new practices, artistic risk-taking, and excellence in execution. We thank the individuals who generously support the Present Tense Prize.

State of Being: Works by Worcester Public Schools Visual Arts Faculty

December 3, 2020 through February 14, 2021

Part of ArtsWorcester’s partnership with the Worcester Public Schools, State of Being showcases the diverse studio practices of the artists who also teach this city’s students.

Material Needs 2020

Eugenie Lewalski Berg | José Criollo | Christine Croteau | Rebecca Duffy | Maureen Hebert | Clifton Hunt | Amanda Kidd Schall | Donalyn Schofield | Joanne Stowell

Fall 2020 | online only

Material Needs Grants fund the cost of the supplies required to make new artwork. Awards range from $500 to $1,500, and are supported by a single anonymous donor. This year's exhibition showcases new work created in Worcester County by the 2019-2020 cohort of Material Needs Grant recipients.


The Eighth Annual One: A Members’ Exhibition

September 10 through November 8, 2020

The largest and most varied exhibition ArtsWorcester produces each year, the "One" represents the work that each artist most wishes to show, regardless of medium or theme. Over 160 works by our artist members filled the galleries. See every piece--as well as artist talks from three prize winners--here.


Gravity/Levity: A Juried Members’ Exhibition

July 9 through August 16, 2020

Gravity/Levity, a juried exhibition of three-dimensional artwork, is the first all-sculpture show at ArtsWorcester. Lisa Crossman, Curator of American Art and Arts of the Americas at the Mead Art Museum at Amherst College, selected twenty-nine sculptures by twenty-five artists that capture approaches to weight and weightlessness.

Gloria Goguen: Botanical Dreams

Spring/Summer 2020

Botanical Dreams is a solo exhibition of fourteen drawings by Gloria Goguen. Her work in deeply-layered colored pencil marries traditional botanical subjects with personal perspectives. This work draws inspiration from traditional French, German, and Flemish botanical artists such as Pierre-Joseph Redoute, Gerard van Spaendonck, and Johann Christoph Dietzch, in a contemporary medium and format.

The Eighth Annual One

In Transition: A Members’ Exhibition in partnership with the Fitchburg Art Museum

Spring/Summer 2020

In this members’ exhibition--the eighth “Call and Response” partnership with the Fitchburg Art Museum--over one hundred and twenty artists show a single work in response to this year’s theme of transition. This exhibition begins with a loan of ten works on the year’s theme from FAM’s permanent collection, on view at ArtsWorcester to illustrate approaches to the theme, and to provide inspiration. From the resulting members’ exhibition, Marjorie Rawle, Terrana Curatorial Fellow at FAM, selected ten works to go on view at FAM alongside the original loan.