MCLA-IAH, BCRC to Present Two-Part Virtual Speaker Series on August 6 & 13


NORTH ADAMS, MASS. —In partnership with MCLA’s Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC), the MCLA Institute for the Arts and Humanities (IAH) plans a two-part webinar series from 5:30-6:30 p.m. on August 6 and 13 featuring Aruna D’Souza, Genevieve Gaignard, and Ben Ripley, who will address conversations on race and transformation within art institutions.  

This webinar series is free and open to the public. Participants can register at 

In part one on August 6, artists Ripley and Gaignard will participate in a live Zoom conversation where they will introduce each other with images of their work to explore the intersections between their artistic practices. Each artist will pose questions to one another to establish a conversation around “unlearning” socially conditioned ways of being; they will then open up the space to invite participant inquiry and dialogue.  

Both artists are committed to exploring this platform and using it as a vehicle to address difficult questions around Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA) in the context of the “art world” as well in the Berkshires. This joint session will be the basis for a follow-up panel discussion to be moderated by renowned writer Aruna D’Souza.  

On August 13, D’Souza will moderate a panel discussion between Gaignard and Ripley; each artist will continue the conversation by talking about how they address themes of ‘race’ and ‘transformation’ within their work while also expanding the conversation beyond art to involve inquiry from the audience.  

Following the webinar series, participants will receive additional resources and suggested readings selected by D’Souza to continue the conversation within their own communities.   

About MCLA-IAH: 

The MCLA Institute for the Arts and Humanities (MCLA-IAH) is a grant-funded initiative, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which works to strategically promote equity-centered change on campus and in the community by (1) expanding access to area arts and humanities resources, (2) catalyzing opportunities for interdisciplinary engagements, and (3) advancing experiential teaching and learning practices in higher education. 

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.