Arts

Ruff styles: Eclectic furnishings

Churning out everything from huggable seahorses to 6 by 7 foot acrylic chandeliers, Dorchester's Shane Ruff epitomizes the new breed of artists who have both the creativity to produce a wide variety of public-pleasing works and the skills to get their goods seen and sold.  Read more

Renovated Strand ramps up to present bigger shows, films

The Strand Theatre may be on the verge of a breakout year, with a flurry of new productions set to take to the refurbished Uphams Corner stage in the coming months.

The Menino administration, which has led an ambitious effort to re-cast the historic, city-owned theatre as an urban arts destination, have fingers crossed that names like Reuben Studdard and Mozart will bring music-lovers back to Columbia Road.

Stoddard, the 2003 American Idol champion, leads the cast of "Ain't Misbehavin'" onto Columbia Road for a two-day run in April.  Read more

Black History celebrated on canvas

Ralph Beach's large scale portrait of "Obama" is just one of the many contributions of Dorchester-based artists who are represented in a current Black History Month exhibit at the Bunker Hill Community College Art Gallery.

BHCCAG Director Laura Montgomery curated "P A I N T BLACK on CANVAS:Boston African American Painters," a show featuring 11 city artists, more than half of whom have Dorchester roots. Besides Beach, they include Cagen Luce, Cynthia Maria Bogues, Darrell Ann-Gane McCalla, Radiant Jasmin, and Barbara Ward.  Read more

Dot artists make holiday pitch 'Think of us when choosing your gifts'

Ekua Holmes' painting "Free" is one of the paintings that will be on exhibit at this weekend's Franklin Park art show. Image courtesy Franklin Park Coalition/ Ekua Holmes

"Buy local."  The slogan works for veggies, fruits, and dairy products. Why not for holiday gifts? At least that's the pitch from visual artists from Dorchester and near-by neighborhoods who make at least part of their living from sales of their work.  Read more

Local Poet starts small, wins big with 'chapbook'

Poet and Dorchester resident Anna Ross enjoys her backyard with her daughter Ita Berg. Photo by Kendra Stanton Lee.

When trying to establish oneself in the publishing industry, it may be best to start small. As small as, say, a chapbook. And what exactly is a chapbook?

Ask Dorchester poet Anna Ross who was awarded first prize in the 2008 New Women's Voices chapbook contest by Finishing Line Press.  Read more

True Hip Hop at 450 Washington St.

Locals help give First Night its groove

One way or another, each of the over one million people participating in the upcoming 32nd First Night Boston, the oldest, largest and most-often-copied New Year's Eve arts celebration in North America, will sample the work of Dorchester and Mattapan artists who teamed with other talented, hard-working peers from across the region to bring off the day-long extravaganza.  Read more

Dot roots resonate in OFDer's music

In conversation, Bryan McPherson is soft-spoken and understated, even a bit reserved.

Give him a guitar, a mic and a stage - or a few tiles of MBTA platform - and he's a house afire.

The 30 year-old singer-songwriter &endash; whose latest CD project was launched at a release party earlier this month &endash; spends much of his time lighting up the clubs and coffee houses on the other end of the Red Line. McPherson's lyrics, however, capture the street-corner sensibilities of his native neighborhood, which he spotlights in a new song, "O.F.D."  Read more

Many mothers, one heart

The audience was hushed in suspense; the dancer danced as the music would dip and crescendo with the emotions entwined with the events revealed as the agonizing stories of two mothers unfolded.

They were heart-broken mothers; one whose son was killed. Another whose son had killed.  Read more