Throughout our nearly 250 year history, New Bedford has maintained a vibrant creative and cultural community. Acclaimed artists in visual and performing arts, architecture, literature, and more, lived or worked here, including ornithologist John James Audubon, artist Clifford Ashley, painter Albert Bierstadt, painter William Bradford, author Frederick Douglass, musician Joli Gonsalves, choreographer Carol Haney, author Herman Melville, photographer James Reed, painter Albert Pinkham Ryder, the R&B group Tavares, and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Today, New Bedford is a hub of arts and culture on the south coast of Massachusetts, boasting a wide array of attractions and diverse venues that showcase the history, art, and cultural fabric of a cosmopolitan seaport. The city is home to hundreds of artists and performers who contribute to our distinctive identity, economic development, and the quality of life of everyone living in and visiting the city. This Creative Directory is a resource to connect you to the talented people who contribute to the arts and culture of New Bedford.
Recently, New Bedford Creative has partnered with New Bedford Cable Network to feature many of the individuals and organizations in the Creative Directory. Episode 1 connects viewers to local artists making an impact and pushing the boundaries in music, dance, and visual art. In Episode 2, we say happy anniversary to the ARTmobile, meet the director of the communal space in downtown New Bedford, and visit the free wall where artists can paint on an ever-changing mural in the North End.
If you are someone who works, lives, exhibits, performs, volunteers or contributes in any other way to the arts, culture or the creative economy in the city of New Bedford, please join the Creative Directory. There is no obligation or cost to take part.
Applied and Visual Arts
Adrian R Tio has exhibited nationally as well as regionally in drawing, painting, and printmaking for over 40 years, and has conducted workshops on mural painting, papermaking, and the book arts.
Alissar Langworthy is an oil painter specializing in large-scale canvases. Her practice spans 30 years, and more recently, her abstract paintings have been partially influenced by experiences from life at sea as a maritime captain of a research vessel.
Amanda Medas is an artist and art therapist based in New Bedford. She is a member of the American Art Therapy Association (AATA) and works with various mediums including found objects, paints, oil pastels, and more.
Andy Anello is a performance artist based in New Bedford, who is known for “Lunar Teeth,” a quarterly performance art forum he hosts on the solstices and equinoxes.
Anthi Frangiadis is an architect and shop owner of The Drawing Room at 36 North Water Street, which features original, handcrafted work by New England artisans, with a focus on quality craftsmanship whether you are looking for artful gifts or a statement piece to hang on your wall.
Boston Maki is a New Bedford-based street artist known for affixing murals throughout the city and his tag “Big Brother” that resembles actor Tom Selleck with its mustache and aviator sunglasses.
Bradford Johansen is an illustrator, product designer, graphic artist, character designer and graphic designer whose clients include DC Comics.
Chuck Hauck is a sculptor, humorist, inventor, preservationist, humanitarian and co-founder of the artist collective Gallery X (photo courtesy of Peter Pereira/The Standard-Times).
Colton Simmons is a wedding photographer from Southeast New England.
Cynthia Bliss Ray is an Interior Designer based in New Bedford implementing design solutions with an emphasis on color theory.
David Richardson is a furniture artist who specializes in antique restoration, handmade reproduction, and contemporary furniture in southeastern Massachusetts.
David Stephan Graves is a designer, photographer, maker and art educator from Southeastern Massachusetts. His work explores materiality and social issues in tandem, including topics of waste, temporality, identity and mental health with both traditional and experimental making processes and mediums.
Deb Ehrens uses her camera to create contemplative and painterly imagery. Her photography captures the ephemeral and artful moments hidden in the everyday and is a view into the unexpected rhythms and patterns in the natural world.
Denn Santoro Fine Art Photography’s photos concentrate on the interplay of angles and shapes and light. He composes with a point of view that is intended to confound the viewers’ normal perspective and view of the world.
Design Art Technology Massachusetts Institute (DATMA) presents contemporary art with the convergence of design, art and technology through exhibitions, performances and education for all ages and cultural backgrounds in the SouthCoast region and beyond.
Environmental Alchemist, Rhonda M. Fazio is the founder of Dyer Maker Studio specializing in natural color and sustainable textile design. A transportable maker space based in the South Coast, offering educational workshops -“Dyeing to Wear It” and “Teaching through Textiles” – for secondary schools and adults, taught regionally and abroad.
Elin Noble is a master artisan of myriad fabric art materials and processes, including complex quilting, shibori resist dyeing, and the technique known as kyokechi. She is also an award-winning author of Dyes & Paints: A Hands-On Guide to Coloring Fabric.
Elizabeth Gouveia is involved with the Encompass Community for Independent Learning located at Friends Academy. They provide experiential offerings and free or affordable resources to support homeschool families and life-long learners of all ages.
Erik Durant is a figurative sculptor residing in New Bedford. Durant’s personal work is a quest to understand the human condition. As a sculptor his main interests lie in gesture, movement, and pose.
Hatch Street Studios is New Bedford’s largest community of visual and performing artists in the city’s North End. Working in a variety of mediums, Hatch Street artists create a vast array of traditional and contemporary works.
Jamie Uretsky is the curator of New Bedford Art Museum/ArtWorks!, which presents a rotating schedule of exhibitions, studio classes, and experiences as a cultural institution.
Jennifer Halli is a contemporary artist who works with ceramics and printmaking, creating structures that explore place and material while excavating themes of travel and loss. She lives and works in Wellington, New Zealand and New Bedford, Massachusetts.
Jessica Bregoli is a sculpture artist, event planner, curator and landscaper. Her intent is to bring into focus both the beauty of nature and the results of our careless actions upon it. In her sculptures she wants to help change the way we treat this earth and each other by focusing on art and nature
Joe Quigley is a political cartoonist and Labor and Gay rights activist, covering local, state, and national topics. He has taught in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, and Oklahoma City.
John Magnan Studio’s passion is to make things by hand. Sometimes the work is inspired by his observations of the world around him or helping someone else realize their personal vision through art.
John Middleton collects objects along the shoreline and brings them together in works that call attention to the dignity, beauty, and uniqueness of their transformations while offering them the opportunity to tell their stories.
Kat Knutsen‘s work is a cross pollination between drawing, painting, animation, computer graphics, fiber arts, and sound design. As a multimedia artist, her work fluctuates between different platforms ranging from fashion design to the animated film depending on the concept. Knutsen was one of the 148 selected artists worldwide to work on the 2018 Oscar
Kate Frazer Rego is an artist and educator living in Southeastern Massachusetts. A graduate of UMASS Dartmouth and Boston University, Rego’s work has been shown nationally, including at an international performance art festival in New York City, NY in 2018, as well as the Cambridge Art Association’s Emerging Artist Exhibition in 2019.
Kelly Zélen’s sculptures have been exhibited around Massachusetts and New York, including a solo show at Colo Colo Gallery in New Bedford. (Photo by Shauna Andrus)
Ken Bizarro specializes in model ship building and restoration in the historic whaling port of New Bedford, Massachusetts.
Lasse Antonsen has curated and organized more than two hundred exhibitions. As an artist he has created installations at the Artists Foundation in Boston, the Whaling Museum in New Bedford, and the Museum of Natural History in Providence, and his work was included in exhibitions in Brooklyn, New York, at Proteus Gowanus, and in Jersey
Laura Lee Franco’s sculpture for the 2019 Seaport Art Walk entitled “Triptych of Thaumatropes” was awarded Best in Show, and is located on the corner of Union and Route 18. She graduated from Bristol Community College in 2019.
Lauren Savoia’s work is driven by a personal reaction to different found man-made and natural materials. Organic, raw and often neglected objects play an important role in her creativity.
Lisa Elliott is a hand weaver and member of the Cranberry Country Weavers Guild. Elliott sells her hand-woven wearables and home accessories at the Made in Warren Artist Cooperative in Warren, Rhode Island.
Lori Bradley is inspired by the great mid-century feminist artists who recognized and honored traditional women’s decorative work by embracing all the pattern, the complexity, the bright colors, the swirling lines and shapes.
Lucas Amaral is a custom shoe designer and owns LXR Customs.
Material Creative Studio is a collaborative partnership between designers David Graves of Fall River and Meridyth Espindola of Quincy, offering affordable and hands-on creative workshops for communities across the South Coast.
Mediumstudio is a full service design studio that provides high end products for print and digital. Their client base is a diverse group ranging from large corporations and institutions to small businesses. They are driven by a philanthropic mission, specializing in the support of non-profit organizations and the creative economy, and devoted to community development
Merri Cyr has worked as a fine art and commercial photographer since the early 1990s. Primarily focused on portraiture of musicians and artists, her clients include Disney, Apple, Columbia Records, Sony, Vimeo, Warner Brothers, Verve, Polygram, Rolling Stone, among many others.
Michael Pietragalla | Furnituremaker is an artist and craftsman who owns Floating Stone Woodworks, which is a custom furniture shop in New Bedford. He specializes in hand-crafted tables, bookcases, consoles, case pieces, benches and more.
Michelle T. Lapointe has been creating artworks of stained glass for more than 30 years. She is also a painter and photographer, working in a wide range of styles from fluid forms to hard-edged geometrics.
Milton Brightman’s paintings are lush with vibrant color and exacting detail. They are nearly all landscapes of some sort, be they dense city images, bucolic forest scenes, or nautical views. His work has been shown at the New Bedford Art Museum, The Federal Reserve in Boston, One Man Show, Bristol Art Museum, Gallery X and
Pat Coomey Thornton is a painter who creates a work where color, texture, and mark offer the observer an absorbing entrance to their own experiences and thoughts.
Phyllis Dobbyn Adams Contemporary Fine Art evokes the natural beauty of coastal New England, the ocean, the beaches and the wild life are her constant inspiration.
Ralph B. Beach is a visual storyteller creating prolific art of the African Diaspora.
Rhonda M. Fazio is an artist, teacher, writer, public speaker, and storyteller, who specializes in the art and craft of sustainable textile design, natural dyes, weaving, and spinning.
Roger Andrews is a freelance illustrator specializing in conceptual illustration with a focus in intellectual property development and design.
Ron Fortier paints prolifically and has participated in various group and individual exhibitions in the United States and Europe. His work is represented in various private collections, and he maintains a studio in Portugal where he is represented by the Galeria O Rastro.
Rotch-Jones-Duff House & Garden Museum is a Greek Revival whaling mansion where patrons can experience period rooms and a full city block of gardens. It’s the best example of the “brave houses and flowery gardens” described by Herman Melville in Moby Dick.
Roy St. C. Rossow is a painter who seeks to capture the poetic beauty of the landscape in its changing of light and time in his work. By drawing inspiration from his immediate environment, he becomes more aware of the subtle changes of light both natural and man made.
S&G Project Gallery was founded by Denn Santoro to feature coherent bodies of work by artists. Artists often create a series of related works, bodies of work built around a certain theme, or collaborations with other artists on a theme or idea.
Sarah G. Kocur is the owner of LoveMODA, a purse and clothing company based in downtown New Bedford.
South Coast Surface Design (SoCoSD) is a new design studio in downtown New Bedford. The exhibits feature local surface design artists and introduce national and international artists to the Massachusetts and Rhode Island South Coast region.
Stephen Remick paints the backyards of New England and the woods beyond.
Susan Gilmore | ART is an art director, graphic designer, illustrator, and photographer primarily with Moore & Isherwood Communications, Inc. in New Bedford and Nantucket. She also specializes in landscape painting, 2-D assemblages, 3-D assemblages, and wire sculpture.
Tabitha Harkin is a fine artist inspired by life in diverse places, traveling, nature, color, gardens, and the work of Marsden Hartley, Wolf Kahn, Paul Klee and Edward Gorey, among others. She also does graphic design, landscape and architectural work.
The Landing | Laurie Botelho owned by Laurie Botelho and run by Manager Carlos Chamarro, is a little shop filled with local artisan wares in the heart of New Bedford’s Seaport Cultural District. They are located across the street from the #1 Fishing Port of America and Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket Ferries.
Tracy Silva Barbosa of Duende Glass is an artist of Azorean heritage who has worked with the world-renowned architectural glass artist, John Lewis, assisting with the glass marvels of the Oklahoma City Memorial and One World Trade, New York. Her artistic process uses painstaking layers of transparent color mixed with various images such as post-industrial
Violet Foulk is a photographer from the Southcoast, initially pursuing live music photography in Brooklyn before returning to New Bedford and opening a studio.
Weinport Creative LLC is a brand-centric, independently owned creative services company based out of New Bedford, MA. Through strategic thinking, research, and creative direction, they design intelligent and beautiful visual messaging that brings brands to life.
Yue Ryder is a cosplayer, model, and content creator based in New Bedford.
Zachary M. White is a New Bedford based printmaker and photographer who is heavily influenced by New Bedford and its history as well as cartography. His works have been included in various exhibitions throughout Massachusetts; he is a member of Gallery X in New Bedford, and the Monotype Guild of New England.
Film & Multi-Media Arts
Carry On Productions provides artists a safe, efficient productive hub that values execution. Founder Jeff MacKinnon is a dynamic, multi-faceted creative who is proving resourceful in turning his ideas into business.
Don Burton is a filmmaker and digital media artist whose work explores issues of place, community and identity. His portfolio includes internationally screened documentary, narrative film, experimental video and commercially produced brand content.
Josh Souza is an internationally exhibited and published freelance photographer from the Greater New Bedford area.
Justin Botelho is a photographer, videographer, and content creator born and raised in New Bedford. Botelho identifies with documentary photography, and describes his work as honest and transparent.
Matt Medeiros hosts Southcoast FM, a podcast celebrating entrepreneurs from New Bedford to Fall River who share their lessons learned from starting a business on the South Coast.
Mocha Jean Herrup is a filmmaker and digital content creator, media studies educator, human rights and social justice organizer, technical and creative writer, performer, and community enthusiast. Herrup’s work employs humor, personal narrative, and alternative storytelling practices to confront arrangements of power that hide in plain sight, often blurring the line between fact and fiction.
South Coast Film Forum promotes the power of film, art, and ideas to inspire audiences to create a better world.
Music & Performing Arts
Austin Burns is a New England-based performer, composer, arranger, and curator of original concert programs. He is the founder of Sole Durato, an ensemble consisting of singers, guitarists and pianists, as well as percussionists on occasion. He also serves as the Music Minister at the Pilgrim United Church of Christ in New Bedford.
Cedric Josey is a New Bedford based singer/songwriter, who wrote and produced a song called “Being in New Bedford,” that was used to promote the city for many years.
Culture*Park Theatre is a collaborative theatre of performing artists and entities that supports the production and development of new works in theatre and dance, especially those with regional and culturally provocative themes.
Cynthia Brenner is the founder of the Downtown Ceili (pronounced “kay-lee”) at The First Unitarian Church In New Bedford. She has adapted this Irish & Scottish social event to New Bedford’s unique style, which includes folk music, singing, dancing, and storytelling.
Dori Rubbicco is a singer-songwriter and recording artist who crosses musical genres in her writing and performances, bringing jazz, blues, folk and R&B influences to her original compositions and artfully reimagined covers.
Imalay Lugo is the owner of Ever After Storybook Entertainment, a children’s entertainment company providing performers and services all over the South Coast, from princesses and glitter tattoos to superheroes and face painting.
Jeff Angeley & Southcoast Lessons host group & individual music classes for early learners through folks in the 2nd half of life taught by kind, caring instructors who welcome absolutely everyone.
Kara E. McEachern is a New Bedford native, who has performed as a solo vocalist for over 15 years and teaches privately. She is the choir director at St. Francis of Assisi, where she has been a lifelong parishioner.
Lori Gomes is a jazz & soul vocalist based in the city of New Bedford. She also is the owner of Beauty Union, a salon in downtown near Custom House Square.
Eric Paradis is an actor and the founder of New Bedford JazzFest, which features two stages of nonstop diverse music from national and local musicians and singers. JazzFest is produced by and for the benefit of Your Theatre, Inc., New Bedford’s 73-year old community theatre group.
Neal Weiss & Whaling City Sound aims for innovative musicianship, impeccable recording quality, and professional packaging for listeners of all types, from radio and retail, to jazz lovers and fans.
New Bedford Festival Theatre, Inc. is an award-winning musical theater company nationally known for its outstanding professionalism on all levels of production, celebrating 30 years of bringing the best of Broadway to southern New England.
New Bedford Symphony Orchestra is a professional symphonic orchestra that performs with internationally renowned guest artists with subscription full orchestra, chamber music, and free Music in the City and Community Outreach small ensemble concerts. Their Learning in Concert educational program impacts 40 schools, 200 classroom visits, and 8,000 students.
Patrice Tiedemann is the Artistic Director of Seaglass Theater Company and a soprano for classical music and musical theater. Performance highlights include engagements with the Boston Pops, Boston Lyric Opera, Opera Boston, Opera Providence and Cape Cod Opera, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Indianapolis Opera, New Bedford Symphony and many more.
Patricia A.Thomas is a theater performer, teacher, producer and the Artistic Director of culture*park theater company.
Scott Bishop (aka Scapeghost) emulates sonic textures of Sugar-era Bob Mould, anything-goes pop aesthetic of Guided by Voices, and beer-soaked tales of the down-and-out of Crooked Fingers. He has recently been hosting singer-songwriter performances for virtual AHA nights.
Seaglass Theater Company produces the finest classics to the Southcoast-inspiring community engagement and conversation.
The Zeiterion Performing Arts Center entertains, educates, and inspires the community by presenting a diverse array of high quality performing artists and providing engaging learning opportunities that contribute to the cultural, social, and economic vitality of the Southcoast. Each year, the Z’s educational programs engage more than 15,000 local students and teachers, and excite more
Written & Published Works
Iva Brito is an artist, poet, actress, educator, activist, visual and performing artist. She is the author of the poetry book Essence, Tones, Whispers and Shouts, a collection of poetry in which she draws on nature, past experiences, and her vision for an illuminated and inclusive world.
Amanda DeGrace is a science fiction writer that pushes for diverse representation in stories about our future. She has a M.S. in Urban Planning and Community Development from UMass Boston and is a project manager and planner based in Boston.
Lee Blake is an educator and president of the New Bedford Historical Society. She has spent much of her life raising awareness about black history, and the important role New Bedford played in the Underground Railroad in the 1800s.
Patricia Gomes is an award winning poet and author. She has been published in countless literary journals and anthologies, both in print and electronically. She performs her work extensively throughout the New England area in addition to running poetry workshops and hosting poetry venues in and around the greater New Bedford area.
Ralph Hickok is a New Bedford-based author specializing in sports history and biography books. Hickok is a member of the North American Society for Sport History, as well as the Pro Football Researchers Association.
History & Preservation
New Bedford Historical Society celebrates the history and culture of people of color, adding much to the cultural landscape of the greater New Bedford area through special events and educational programming. The Society acquired the Nathan and Polly
New Bedford Preservation Society is a non-profit volunteer-led organization whose mission is to heighten awareness, provide education and guidance, and promote sensitive restoration and preservation of New Bedford’s fine historic structures and the neighborhoods in which they are located. Programs include Holiday House Tour, Spring House and Garden Tour, a Historic Marker Program, self-guided architectural
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park preserves whaling artifacts, offers guided tours and education programs.The park encompasses 34 acres spread over 13 city blocks. They have an Artist-in-Residence Program, Makerspace, Junior Ranger Program, and much more.
Waterfront Historic Area LeaguE (WHALE) is a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to promoting the value and reuse of greater New Bedford’s historic structures through preservation, education and advocacy.