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Six Must-See Fall Art Exhibitions in and Around Boston

Where to go and what to see for your fall design fix.


Boston Book Festival

For the first time since its inception, the annual Boston Book Festival will take place over a full weekend this October. Stop by Copley Square on Friday or Saturday to listen to the likes of former U.N. ambassador Samantha Power or fiction writer Ibi Zoboi, then spend Sunday in Roxbury—poet and memoirist Reginald Dwayne Betts will be among the featured speakers.

10/18–10/20, Copley Square and Dudley Square, 857-259-6999, bostonbookfest.org.

Charles Hawthorne, Seascape from the Truro Hills, Gift of Marguerite Wilson, Courtesy of Paam Collection.

“Color Beyond Description”

Drawn to picturesque views of the sun and sea on the Cape, renowned artists Charles Hawthorne, Hans Hofmann, and Paul Resika painted abstract, nature-inspired watercolors exploring color, movement, and space. See their wild brushstrokes at work in this exhibition at the Provincetown Art Association and Museum.

8/30–11/3, 460 Commercial St., Provincetown, 508-487-1750, paam.org.

Hiroko Mukai, Copper and gold leaf object, Courtesy of Society of Arts and Crafts.

“kogei-kyoto at sa+c boston: Contemporary Innovators in Japanese Arts and Crafts”

Sixty years ago, Kyoto became Boston’s first sister city, cementing the bond between two major players in the international Arts and Crafts movement. Celebrate the occasion at the Seaport-based Society of Arts and Crafts, where Japanese artist group Kogei-Kyoto brings a mix of handmade glass, metal, wood, and textile-based works to their first show in the States.

9/10–11/10, 100 Pier 4, Boston, 617-266-1810, societyofcrafts.org.

Richard Misrach, Wall, East of Nogales, Arizona, 2014, Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Margaret Fisher Fund, 2018, Courtesy of the artist and Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco.

“Crossing Lines, Constructing Home: Displacement and Belonging in Contemporary Art”

Take a deep look into the migrant experience and what it means to leave home behind at the Harvard Art Museums. Encompassing more than 40 works created by international artists, “Crossing Lines” challenges assumptions about migration and highlights how people preserve their cultural practices after they’ve been forced to relocate.

9/6–1/5/20, 32 Quincy St., Cambridge, 617-495-9400, harvardartmuseums.org.

“Not Recent Color”

Travel back in time to 1970s and 1980s Boston in photographer John Goodman’s exhibition “Not Recent Color,” showing at the Howard Yezerski Gallery. An intimate look into a young artist’s coming of age, Goodman’s photos capture fleeting moments in dimly lit gas stations, local diners, old phone booths, and more.

9/6–10/15, 460 Harrison Ave., Boston, 617-262-0550, howardyezerski.com.

“Them and Us / Ellos y Nosotros”

While President Trump continues to make building a wall a top priority, Tijuana-born artist ERRE examines the interdependencies between Mexico and the U.S. in a timely new exhibition at Mass MoCA—complete with a 120-foot-long re-creation of the border fence.

Opens 8/3, 1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, 413-662-2111, massmoca.org.