Artist Barbara Takenaga gives free talk at BMAC

BRATTLEBORO — Artist Barbara Takenaga, whose installation, “Looking at Blue,” is currently on view at the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center, will discuss her work at BMAC on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 7:30 p.m. BMAC Chief Curator Mara Williams will moderate the free talk, which will be followed by a question-and-answer session.

“Looking at Blue” was created specifically for the Museum's Mary Sommer Room. The installation's central feature consists of large swaths of digitally printed wallpaper with hand-painted additions.

Takenaga begins her paintings with faux abstract-expressionist backgrounds of poured and dripped paint, then uses a labor-intensive approach of applying dots, tracings, outlining, and painting around splashes. The artist describes her work as both abstract and narrative.

“There is a meditative aspect to this process, as well as unexpected shifts of image as concentric lines morph and change,” Takenaga said in a news release. “While the finished painting is primary, this process of play and control is particularly important to me.”

Williams calls “Looking at Blue” “a full-body experience,” adding, “We are enveloped by a sacred or cosmic, or simply mysterious, space - a space of awe and wonder, where the enormity of a universe with no edges or boundaries can be not just imagined but felt.”

Takenaga holds an M.F.A. and a B.F.A. from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She was a professor of art at Williams College from 1985 to 2018. Her work has been shown in solo installations at the Neuberger Museum of Art and MASS MoCA and in group exhibitions at the National Academy Museum and the American Academy of Arts & Letters, among many others.

Her artwork is included in the public collections of The Library of Congress, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, the San Jose Museum of Art, and the United States Embassy in Algeria.

For more information, call 802-257-0124 or visit

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