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Collaborations To Bring New Experiences To Saratoga Area Venues

The logo for the All Together Now collaborative summer program with the Tang Teaching Museum and other cultural organizations in the Saratoga region
Image courtesy Skidmore College, Tang Teaching Museum
The logo for the All Together Now collaborative summer program with the Tang Teaching Museum and other cultural organizations in the Saratoga region

Arts organizations in the Saratoga region are collaborating this summer on a number of exhibitions as they look to recover from coronavirus setbacks.

The Saratoga Springs Arts Commission on Tuesday hosted its third quarterly arts town hall.  And with the pandemic subsiding and venues preparing to welcome back summer visitors, the topic of collaboration was on the minds of panelists.

Ian Berry is the Director of the Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College…

“And so we’ve had some really fantastic conversations, and one that I’ve been particularly looking forward to is telling everyone and showing everyone how ‘All Together Now,’ a community, regional collections sharing project has turned out,” said Berry.

All Together Now is organized by Berry and independent curator Lisa Kolosek, and brings together The Hyde Collection, Ellsworth Kelly Studio, the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, Saratoga Arts, the Saratoga County History Center, Saratoga Performing Arts Center, the Shaker Museum, and Yaddo.

As an example of one collaboration, Yaddo in August will display photographs from the Tang’s collection from artist Carl Van Vechten, with images of dancers and choreographers from the mid 20th Century. Here’s Kolosek….

“At Yaddo we’re going to have about 80, 85 photographs, they’re very small – as Ian said, they’re postcard sized, so about 3-and-a-half by five-and-a-half – and they’ll installed in the drinks room and cases…” said Kolosek.

The collaborative effort is bringing new exhibits to the Saratoga County History Center in Ballston Spa. Field Horne is Vice President of the organization’s Board of Directors…

“These art museums and art institutions offer inspiration and we offer information. We try to provide a look into the past for the present,” said Horne.

The All Together Now effort allowed Skidmore professors to help curate a selection of hats for an exhibition to tell the story of the people in Saratoga County through their headwear.

“They enormously enhance our understanding and our appreciation of our collections’ materials because a selection of hats that was buried under 100 more hats had rarely been looked at and certainly hadn’t been assessed as both historically numinous and also aesthetically interesting objects,” said Horne.

At the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, which underwent an extensive renovation in 2020, a new exhibit will pair images taken by pioneering photographer Eadweard Muybridge – known for capturing a horse in motion for the first time – and the museum’s existing collection of equine art. Victoria Reisman is the curator at the National Museum of Racing….

“Until Eadweard Muybridge and his Animal Locomotion series really changed the world of photography and captured the true motion of a horse’s gait. And after his work was released, you really see the change of how the horse is depicted in art, particularly in the artist Henry Stull,” said Reisman.

At SPAC, where a new concession building was recently completed, fans returning this summer can view an exhibit on psychedelic posters from the 1960s.  Christopher Shiley is SPAC’s Senior Director of Artistic Planning.

“And just incredibly, trippy wild art, it’s absolutely amazing and some of the best bands of the early days, The Doors and Steve Miller Band and Jefferson Airplane…”

During Tuesday’s Arts Town Hall, the panelists discussed how they also might collaborate in the future.

WAMC recently toured the reopened Hyde Collection and its new exhibit in partnership with the Tang called “Summer Bomb Pop.”

For more information visit: https://tang.skidmore.edu/exhibitions/356-all-together-now

Lucas Willard is a reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011.
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