October 24 2020 Edition
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By the Way
It's been a week of conversations. I have walked virtually into an artist's studio on the West Coast and listened to family stories of survival, and I could almost feel the textures of oil paint and beeswax. I've looked into the timber-frame house a farmer built herself and seen up close the sheen of the long, curling fleece from her sheep.

People tell me about what they make, and who they make it for, and how much they want to get out of the house, and so they let me in with a notebook to listen, until I feel as though I can almost understand how it would feel to be able to draw my grandfather's face in ink. Imagine how it would feel to get up early with the dew on the grass and have to convince a pissed-off ewe to get back inside the fence — how the border collies' utter glee would rub off on you.

Those stories will be up soon, and as I write I am realizing how much I miss textures. All of these necessary guidelines for safety tell us not to touch, and they need to, and so we become aware of daily contact when we're out of the house, and we limit it, even in simple things, picking an apple or taking a book off a shelf. And so I'm thankful more than ever for everyone who will let me respectfully (and virtually) touch a few minutes of their lives, and thankful they will share their stories with me, and their determination and laughter. By the Way Berkshires

Stories

Sunset on a summer night in the Gilded Age gardens of Naumkeag in Stockbridge.

Living history adapts in 2020: Shakers and gardens

Robert Crighton planted the gardens here on the ridge. He tended the magnolia and the sweet bay hedge. On a summer day the Madame Colbert white roses would be covered in bees. ...

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Berkshire artist, actor and playwright Merudjina Normil will perform at the Foundry in West Stockbridge.

Don’t Touch the Art — performance invokes strength

Raw, and difficult, and reaching for joy — somewhere trauma is etched in paint as a community breaths towards wholeness, and art offers a space for holding and healing.

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Events

Peter Mulvey will play HiLo in North Adams. Photo by Rodney Bursiel, courtesy of Peter Mulvey.

Singer songwriter Peter Mulvey live in concert

September 25 at 8 p.m.

Wide-ranging New England singer songwriter Peter Mulvey will perform a live, outdoor concert at the Egremont Barn.

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The legendary neurologist and storyteller Oliver Sacks considers his own life.

Oliver Sacks: His Own Life

September 25 to October 8

Images Cinema presents the film 'Oliver Sacks: His Own Life,' as the legendary writer and neurologist Oliver Sacks looks back from his last days.

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A fall cart with pumpkins at Hancock Shaker Village.

Autumn weekend and artisan festival

September 26 and 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Hancock Shaker Village will hold an Autumn Weekend celebration of culture, tradition, artistry and nature, with artisans and food in the historic village.

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Maya Machin's tiered vessel shades from dun to amber to jade.

Hilltown 6 Pottery Tour moves online

September 26 and 27

Hilltown 6 ceramic artists and 20 guest artists will offer their wares with virtual demonstrations and open studio visits (digital or onsite) by appointment.

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Percussionists keep a rhythm on djembes, drumming by hand.

Berkshire Drum Fest

September 26 from 10:30 to 4 p.m.

The 11th annual festival will bring live music to the Windsor Town Park with master drummer and Djembe Fola Namory Keita from Sangbarala, Guinea West Africa.

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Grammy-winning musician Dom Flemons strums his guitar with deft fingers. Press courtesy photo

FreshGrass Presents Chris Thile and Dom Flemons

September 26 at 8 p.m.

FreshGrass presents Grammy-winning musicians Chris Thile and Dom Flemons on what would have been the 10th bluegrass and roots music festival at Mass MoCA.

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