Brickbottom Artists Association

Speaking Out September 9 – October 16, 2021 (Re)Sisters: Speaking Up, (Re)Sisters: Speaking Up, Brickbottom Artist Association Presents... Brickbottom Gallery Our non-profit exhibition space is open to emerging and
established artists in the greater Boston metropolitan area.
Brickbottom Artists Association Meet our members, and learn how you can join the BAA.

The Brickbottom Art Gallery is Reopening!

Brickbottom Artists Association and Gallery

Artists' building, non-profit gallery, artists' association -- Brickbottom is all of this, and so much more. Some know us as one of the country's first and largest artist-developed live-work buildings, located in the former cannery and bakery of the A&P Grocery chain. Some associate our name with our building's annual Open Studios events. Others know Brickbottom as a neighborhood of Somerville MA that, in the 1800s, produced the clay to make bricks for ritzy Boston residences.

The artists who made Brickbottom their home in the mid-1980s also established a vital community arts organization and gallery:

  • Brickbottom Artists Association (BAA): A non-profit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to preserving and expanding the arts in Somerville and the greater Boston area. Founded in 1987 by residents of the Brickbottom Artists Building, the BAA today welcomes both resident and non-resident artists and supporting members.
  • Brickbottom Gallery: A non-profit exhibition space established in 1989 and operated by the BAA. The gallery presents 3 BAA-member shows per year, along with exhibitions of work by emerging and established artists from the greater Boston area and beyond.

Welcome to the BAA's web site!

Explore our pages to learn more about our members and their work, our annual Open Studios weekend, and our history, and get information about exhibition opportunities at the Brickbottom Gallery, and consider joining the BAA as an artist or supporting member!

Support the Brickbottom Artists Association!

As a non-profit artists association and gallery, the BAA funds its events, art exhibitions and our annual Open Studios with your support!  Help support the BAA today!


Somerville as Muse: 12 Artists Influenced by The City

On view December 9, 2021 – January 15, 2022 at Brickbottom Gallery. Watch a video intro/overview with curator Debra Olin, and interviews with each of…

Upcoming Events

Member Spotlights

    I was born into a dissident family in Moscow in 1971 and had an early interest in art. I took classes from a group of underground artists in the Soviet Union and studied under the dissident artists who later gained world acclaim as an émigré artist. In 1989, I immigrated to the U.S. I received a BFA in Painting in 1995 from State University of New York, and an MFA from The School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, MA in 1997 After moving from NYC to Boston my paintings became more narrative and landscapes less abstract. My work began to resemble theatrical stages and a fully-formed sense of visual narrative emerged. Since 2010 I have been working on a series titled Moving In..., which focuses on playful and humorous narratives of her cohabitating with famous artists. Through this series she wants also to touch upon questions of artistic influence and dialogue, emulation and creativity, continuity as well as discontinuity in contemporary art and the world as a whole. I had solo and two-person exhibitions at the Ann Loeb Bronfman Gallery in Washington, DC, Gallery 360 in Minneapolis; Clark Gallery in Lincoln, Massachusetts and Fitchburg University in Fitchburg, MA. Her group exhibitions include, among others, The Painting Center of New York, Multicultural Arts Center in Boston and the Moscow Center of Contemporary Art. In September of 2018 she had a solo show at Hudson Gallery in Gloucester MA, titled Blind Dates. Since 2016 I have been a core member of the Fountain Street Gallery in Boston, MA. Her show in 2020 has been postponed due to COVID 19. It happened with Nora Valdez in the Fountain Street Gallery in Boston in February 2021.
    I make modern jewelry designed to bring a bit of special to the every day. Clean lines, symmetry, and pleasing shapes play a big role in my work. The stones I use aren't the ones you see every day, and in some cases, I mined them myself. Each piece is made by me in my Jamaica Plain studio.
    MYRTH specializes in hand thrown stoneware vessels that blend modern design lines with calm, natural inspired finishes.
    Feeling unsettled in 2018, I decided to let my hands do what my hands want to do. My paintingshave a range of subject matter all focused on found and lost beauty.
    I like the little things of life, the spectacle of nature, the lines and shapes of the world. I use them to create images, to map voyages, to share impressions. If you think my work is colorful, warm, and a bit mysterious, if it makes you smile, or travel, or imagine, if you want to take it home with you, I have reached my goal.
    PHOTODRAWINGS As a child, my favorite things were to build structures with my erector set and to draw with crayons. My current work is a manifestation of those loves. For years - with no particular purpose in mind - I have been collecting tiny found treasures on the street: pieces of flattened rusted metal, shards of broken plastic, twisted and flattened wire - all visually captivating. Sometimes I know what these pieces once were: a wooden ice cream spoon, a bottle cap, a washer, a muffler, the head of a hoe - but mostly they are simply mysterious, wonderful textured forms. I began to play with these pieces, putting several together and glued to form a sculptural relief. With these small four-inch assemblages came the question, what would happen if they were enlarged? So I had them photographed at a very high resolution and then printed with exacting quality at a greatly enlarged scale. The results were unexpected and exciting. But I realized there was more that could be done by drawing over the resulting images with colored pencil to bring out or change some features. Here, enhance a sense of depth; there, fine-tune textures -- intensifying or reducing as needed. Experimenting with these images, I give them a distinct and different personality. Although when I start out I have no idea what these PhotoDrawings will look like in the end, I love finding out.
    Iwalani is a Painter who lives and works in Brookline MA and Martha’s Vineyard. She is an alumni of Massachusetts College of Art. Her subject matter is movement and its inherent transitory and transformational nature. Her paintings are a juncture of kinesthetic movement and tactile sensing. They celebrate dance and scenarios of relationship dynamics. Couplets, triplets, choirs, panels, and or chains of figures are abstracted down to gestured shapes. They are cut out, arranged, or painted in intervals to suggest temporal progression and spatial pathways. In addition to being a Painter, Iwalani has studied dance and movement for many years. She chooses to incorporate a multidisciplinary approach to creative process, as each of those practices share threads of formal ideas. Themes are often about re-presenting, re-construction, shaping and repetition.
    The work I make owes a lot to the traditions of history painting. Themes in the paintings are often derived from stories and myths I enjoyed as a child and instead of a straightforward approach, I reinterpret these stories using pictures appropriated from a wide range of sources. Images taken from advertising, cartoons and search queries are given equal weight with images drawn from the works of the old masters. This is not meant to disrespect the works of previous artists but meant to show how these images can have the same power, importance and meaning. Pictorial symbols in art used to be a language clearly read by the public, allegorical paintings had set codes of symbols used in order to communicate to an illiterate audience, now these same symbols can have a multitude of meanings depending on their context.
    I depict the sometimes conflicting aspects of life through painted images. I utilize various techniques and subject matters- each chosen to best communicate my questions to the viewer. While seemingly disparate, my bodies of work are not at odds. Rather, they offer several entrance points to the question of how people balance multiple spheres of influence and experience – often overlapping, interfering, or repelling one another. Throughout my work I explore the tension between memory and reality, the urban and rural landscapes, and the extraordinary complexities of everyday life.
    I draw stuff for clients, as well as for myself.

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