There's a lot to celebrate this month at Amherst. The Common launches its 14th issue. The Russian Center Art Gallery opens a new exhibition. The Music at Amherst series hosts award-winning classical pianist Angela Hewitt. Theater & Dance premiers its fall show, a contemporary adaptation of Ibsen's Peer Gynt. And conceptual artist Anicka Yi delivers the annual Rapaport Lecture in Contemporary Art.

There's more, a lot more, but we'll let you take it from here...

Exhibition Opening & Artist Talks 

Exhibitions-and-Artists Russian Center Art Gallery, detail of work by Anicka Yi, and Zackary Drucker

The Amherst Center for Russian Culture celebrates the opening of Varieties of Nonconformism: Unofficial Art from the Soviet Union, on Tuesday, Nov. 14, at 4:30 p.m. in the Russian Center Art Gallery. The exhibition—organized by Alla Rosenfeld, curator of Russian and European art at the Mead Art Museum—represents a broad range of artists united in their search for alternative means of artistic self-expression.

The Department of Art and the History of Art hosts two visiting artists this month. Joyce J. Scott, a jewelry maker and sculptor repositioning craft as a potent platform for commentary on social and political injustices, discusses her work at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 6. On Thursday, Nov. 29, at 4:30 p.m., the department welcomes conceptual artist Anicka Yi for the annual Rapaport Lecture in Contemporary Art. Yi, a New York-based conceptual artist, works with fragrances and creates sensory experiences often using biological manipulation and living organisms. Both events take place in Pruyne Lecture Hall, 115 Fayerweather Hall.

As part of Trans Empowerment Month, the Mead Art Museum welcomes American transgender multimedia artist, LGBT activist, actress and television producer Zackary Drucker, and Los Angeles-based gallery director Tarrah von Lintel, for a conversation on Wednesday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. in Stirn Auditorium. The following day, Thursday, Nov. 9, at noon, students are invited to an informal lunch and conversation with Drucker and von Lintel in the Queer Resource Center.

Fiction & Poetry Readings

The Common reading

Sarah Whelan ’17 and the cover of The Common Issue 14

Amherst’s award-winning literary magazine, The Common, launches its 14th issue of place-based stories, poems, essays and artwork, with readings and refreshments on Friday, Nov. 3, at 5 p.m. in the Mead Art Museum. Issue 14 features works by established and emerging writers, and a selection of prints by Amherst College resident artist Betsey Garand and painter/printmaker Michael Mazur ’57. (Mazur’s prints are also on view in the Mead Art Museum exhibition Perspectives on Michael Mazur through Dec. 31.)

Vievee Francis Vievee Francis

The Creative Writing Fall Reading Series concludes with a reading by poet Vievee Francis on Monday, Nov. 13, at 8 p.m. at Amherst Books. Francis is the author of Blue-Tail Fly (2006), Horse in the Dark (2012), and Forest Primeval (2016), winner of the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Poetry. She is an associate professor at Dartmouth College and an associate editor for Callaloo. The reading is followed by a reception. 

Concerts & Performances

Concerts and Performances Illustration for Peer Gynt by Yana Birÿkova, Phuong-Nghi Pham ’18 and Angela Hewitt

The Department of Theater and Dance presents a contemporary adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s early play Peer Gynt, Thursday, Nov. 9, through Sunday, Nov. 11, at 8 p.m. in Kirby Theater. Directed by Assistant Professor Yagil Eliraz, and adapted by Eliraz, Joshua Wren ’14 and the company, Peer Gynt is a phantasmagorical journey that spans over the lifetime of Peer, a young, dreamy and ambitious man who sets out on a quest to find his true self. The performances are free and open to the public, but reservations are recommended. Call the box office to reserve tickets: (413) 542-2277

Music at Amherst welcomes Angela Hewitt, one of the world’s leading pianists, whose renditions of Bach have established her as one of the composer’s foremost interpreters of our time. Hewitt performs on Friday, Nov. 10, at 8 p.m. in Buckley Recital Hall. The following day, on Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. in Buckley Recital Hall, Hewitt teaches a masterclass for Amherst students that is free and open to the public.

In two events over two days, Ryan Vigil—composer, pianist, musicologist and visiting lecturer in the Amherst College Music Department—presents an emphatic defense of musical abstraction. On Wednesday, Nov. 8, at 4:30 p.m. in the Center for Humanistic Inquiry, Vigil argues for the inherent power and poignancy of an unexpectedly rare musical aesthetic. The following day, on Thursday, Nov. 9, at 5 p.m. in Arms Music Center Room 3, Vigil gives listeners an opportunity to explore the new listening paradigm outlined in his talk, presenting a solo piano recital of original compositions.

Finally, on Sunday, Nov. 12, at 3 p.m., Phuong-Nghi Pham ’18 presents “Kaleidescope,” an honors thesis in piano performance featuring works of Schubert and Chopin.


Uncommon Literarture

More Arts Events

Check out the Arts Calendar for more information about these and additional arts events.

American Art Collection

Join the Mailing List

Enjoy more of the arts at Amherst with our Happenings Ahead e-Newsetter, delivered to your inbox each month.