MCLA Berkshire Cultural Resource Center Pivots to Virtual Programming

April 28, 2020

NORTH ADAMS, MASS.—MCLA’s Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC) is presenting a full season of virtual programming for spring/summer 2020, with a visiting artist, a virtual senior art exhibition, portfolio reviews for local artists, a virtual Downstreet Art kickoff, and more.

The majority of the BCRC’s virtual season is open to the public, and is designed to create arts and culture experiences in a time of social distancing. Community members can view the BCRC’s program listing at Listings will continue to be updated through spring/summer 2020.

In the time of COVID-19, arts and cultural outlets have moved programming online, created virtual events, and worked to make the best of the current situation. With BCRC’s lineup, “We’re trying to be really thoughtful and intentional. We want to be as interactive as we can be,” said BCRC Director Erica Wall. “We want to appeal to our art community and address things that are pertinent to them. This also gives us an opportunity to get people to MCLA who wouldn’t be able to come here physically.” 

MCLA Artist’s Laboratory

Los Angeles-based artist Genevieve Gaignard will be the inaugural MCLA Artist’s Laboratory Artist in Residence from April to August 2020. Gaignard, whose work focuses on photographic self-portraiture, sculpture, and installation to explore race, femininity, class, and their various intersections, will create work for a final exhibition at MCLA Gallery 51 and will offer multiple workshops, talks, and other programming open to students in April and to the general public in May.

Gaignard will hold regular virtual workshops to share her origin, practice, and experience navigating the LA art scene. Among other projects, she will also collaborate and collect community submissions for a lip-sync video as well as a virtual photography exhibition.

The daughter of a black father and white mother, Gaignard’s youth was marked by a strong sense of invisibility. Was her family white enough to be white? Black enough to be black? Gaignard interrogates notions of “passing” in an effort to address these questions. She positions her own female body as the chief site of exploration — challenging viewers to navigate the powers and anxieties of intersectional identity.

Gaignard received her MFA in Photography at Yale University and her BFA in Photography at Massachusetts College of Art. She has exhibited throughout the United States, including shows at Studio Museum in Harlem, the California African American Museum in Los Angeles, and the Houston Center for Photography.  In 2017, her work was included in the Prospect.4 Triennial in New Orleans. Gaignard's work has been reviewed in The New York TimesThe New YorkerW MagazineThe LA TimesArtforum, and on Vice News Tonight, among others.  Her work is in the permanent collections of the Studio Museum in Harlem, California African American Museum, LA, Pérez Art Museum Miami, the Nasher Museum of Art, Durham, the FLAG Art Foundation, New York, the Seattle Museum of Art, and the San Jose Museum of Art. Read her full artist biography and learn more about her at

Senior Art Show

MCLA’s senior art majors will have their traditional exhibition, but it won’t be presented in a traditional format. “And So it Goes,” featuring the work of artists Emery Bibbins, Liz Brick, Gillian Catherine Fournier, Spring Hajjar, Samantha Louise Hinds, Sierra Lamonde, Kelsey Sherman, and Macie Turrell, all Class of 2020, will launch a website-based exhibition on May 1, 2020, at

The students will also hold a virtual opening with artist talks from 5-7 p.m. on May 1, 2020. A limited number of tickets are available to the public for this online virtual event. You can reserve yours here:

Gallery 51 Featured Artist Series

MCLA Gallery 51 and BCRC want to continue to highlight and showcase talented artists in the Berkshire community, in the region, nationally, and internationally.

If you are an established artist or would like to recommend an established artist (of any discipline) to feature, please email Gallery 51 Manager Veronica Preciado at Your practice, along with selected work, will be showcased on the gallery’s website. A recorded discussion will also live on the site for later viewing.

Artist Portfolio Reviews

Two gallerists will join the BCRC virtually on May 23 and 24 to provide artists with portfolio reviews. Each artist will have 30 minutes to discuss up to three works with the gallerist and have specific questions prepared in advance. These reviews will be recorded and will be available on the Gallery 51 website for others to learn and be inspired by. Please contact if you are interested in participating.

Downstreet Art

Downstreet Art (DSA) events are still planned for their usual summer season, with hopes to gather in person and virtual plans in place. On June 3, Gaignard will kick off an official countdown to DSA’s inaugural Misfit Parade and Prom, set to take place August 22. DSA’s kickoff will take place on June 25 and feature a virtual party and happy hour including a theme-inspired drink. Learn more about plans for the DSA season at

Additional programming is being planned and developed through August 2020. Learn more (and make plans to attend) at

MCLA Gallery 51 is a program of MCLA’s Berkshire Cultural Resource Center. Go to: for gallery hours & more information or call 413-662-5324.

About BCRC:

MCLA’s Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC) provides opportunities, resources, and support to the Northern Berkshire Community. BCRC brings together the Northern Berkshire , MCLA and greater Creative Communities through its cultural programming including: MCLA Gallery 51, Downstreet Art, B-Hip, and MCLA Presents! We will promote, facilitate, and encourage a dialogue in order to foster a sustainable creative community. BCRC is a collaborative project of MCLA, MASS MoCA, and the City of North Adams.