- March 29 – September 3, 2007
Boxed Sets featured assemblages and stained glass artworks of three artists — Lisa Nilsson and Laura Christensen of North Adams, MA, and Debora Coombs of Readsboro, VT — alongside new works they created with local students. The three artists’ works relied on boxes and grid-like containers, which are used to form compelling, intricate, and colorful designs, as well as narratives and metaphors. Nilsson created wooden box assemblages — grids that were densely filled with interesting artifacts found in town dumps, flea markets, and hardware stores — alongside miniature paintings and drawings to create humorous, strange, and exciting combinations. Christensen made assemblages uniting handcrafted wooden boxes, old photographic portraits, oil paint, and unusual found objects that together illustrated memories and mysteries. Coombed paints images of people and symbols onto pieces of colored glass assembled to create curious new relationships and narratives in the form of stained glass windows.
Boxed Sets also examined influences on artistic processes and how individuals impact others through mentoring. During the school year, the three artists completed artist residencies in Florida, Savoy, and Clarksburg, MA, and Stamford, VT, schools, mentoring children in grades K–8. These students were invited to create art, some of which was included in the exhibition, using similar processes and themes as the artists. In addition, visitors could view the artists’ “Brain Boxes”— display cases with objects and images reflecting their personal influences, such as books, photographs, letters from their mentors, and images of other artists’ works.