about new bedford creative

about new bedford creative

Margo Saulnier

ㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤCreative StrategistㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤNew Bedford Creative

Jasmyn Baird

ㅤㅤㅤㅤSenior Creative FellowㅤㅤㅤㅤNew Bedford Creative

Zane Cox

ㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤCreative FellowㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤㅤNew Bedford Creative

A graduate of New Bedford High School, Margo received her Bachelor of Music from Boston University, and a Master of Fine Arts in Performing Arts Management from Brooklyn College. Prior to moving back to New Bedford, Margo worked at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Boston Pops at the Boston Orchestra, Celebrity Series of Boston, and was a lecturer for Northeastern University’s Music Industry Program.

In her role at New Bedford Creative, she manages the City of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund, facilitates the implementation of the city’s strategic arts and culture plan, New Bedford Creative: our art, our culture, our future, and oversees the volunteer-led New Bedford Creative Consortium. Currently, she is the lead project manager for MassDevelopment’s TDI Creative Cities initiative, supervises the place-based pilot of ArtsMidwest’s New Bedford Creating Connection initiative, administers two grant programs called Wicked Cool Places and Art is Everywhere, and manages the Seaport Cultural District and Seaport Art Walk.

Margo joined the team in October 2017.

Jasmyn is a graduate of The New School Master of Media Management program and received her Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from UMass Dartmouth. As a New Bedford native, Jasmyn has been involved with creating an impactful digital footprint for nonprofits in the local area of New Bedford, most recently with Youth Opportunities Unlimited.

In her role at New Bedford Creative, she supports the Creative Strategist in the implementation of several projects to fulfill strategies of the city’s arts and culture plan. Currently, she is the Project Manager for the place-based pilot of the Creating Connection initiative, where she coordinates the curriculum with Arts Midwest and is the main point of contact for the cohort of eight New Bedford organizations. She is also the lead for Peer-to-Peer Sessions, one of the components of MassDevelopment/TDI’s Creative Cities, and the Seaport Art Walk. Last year, she was the lead for NB Creative’s Collective Imagination for Spatial Justice conversations, funded by New England Foundation for the Arts. She assists in the overall brand management and social media strategy, artist liaison and outreach, and other projects, such as compiling research about public art and placemaking, coordinating professional development, developing relationships with community partners, artists and the general public.

Jasmyn joined the team in February 2020.

Zane Cox was born and raised in New Bedford’s historic Seaport Cultural District. As both a producer and consumer of the arts, he has been able to observe the city’s arts and culture scene change and flourish at a personal level over the past two decades. Since 2018, he has aimed to incorporate his connection to the city and its people into all facets of his work at New Bedford Creative.

In his role at New Bedford Creative, he supports the Creative Strategist in the implementation of several projects to fulfill strategies of the city’s arts and culture plan. Currently, he assists in managing the websites for New Bedford Creative and SouthCoast Spring Arts. He is also the main content creator for Facebook and Twitter. He takes notes at all New Bedford Creative Consortium meetings, and is the point person for many grassroots community building initiatives.

Zane joined the team in October 2018.

New Bedford Creative

Margo Saulnier, Creative Strategist – msaulnier@nbedc.org
Jasmyn Baird, Senior Creative Fellow – bairj583@newschool.edu
Zane Cox, Creative Fellow – 217@mediumstudio.com

New Bedford Creative is housed at the New Bedford Economic Development Council, and tasked with implementing the city’s first-ever strategic arts and culture plan, published in December 2018. The vision of the plan is that “In New Bedford, the creative community is an engaged and powerful partner, inspiring social, economic, and cultural growth.

In this authentic seaport city, each and every person enjoys an opportunity to experience a diversity of cultures. Art is everywhere, encouraging fun, provoking thought, and nurturing the soul.” Funding is provided by the New Bedford Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund,  proposed by Mayor Jon Mitchell in the spring of 2016 and signed into law by Governor Baker in January 2017. The New Bedford Economic Development Council has a three-year agreement to manage the fund for the City. This work is led by the Creative Strategist, a 24-member volunteer Creative Consortium, with staff support from the NBEDC and Departments of City Planning, Tourism & Marketing, Parks, Recreation & Beaches, and the Mayor’s Office. Additional funding is provided by Barr Foundation, Bristol County Savings Bank, Mass Cultural Council, MassDevelopment/TDI, and New England Foundation for the Arts.

History and Funding

New Bedford Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund was proposed by Mayor Jon Mitchell in the spring of 2016 and approved by the City Council in June 2016, and consists of revenue generated from the city’s lodging tax, capped at a total of $100,000. Creation of the fund also required the passage of a home rule petition by the state legislature and the petition’s passage, led by state Senator Mark Montigny and signed into law by Governor Baker in January 2017. The purpose of the fund is to create a dedicated revenue stream to provide for additional planning, programmatic, and administrative capacity to allow the City of New Bedford to take full advantage of its cultural and tourism assets, and to catalyze and manage the growth of the cultural and tourism sectors in the years ahead. The NBEDC has a three-year agreement to manage the fund for the City. This work is lead by the NBEDC’s Creative Strategist. Additional funding is provided by Bristol County Savings Bank, Mass Cultural Council, and MassDevelopment.

New Bedford Creative Consortium

The New Bedford Creative Consortium is the leadership group whose purpose is overseeing the execution of the citywide strategic Arts and Culture Plan entitled New Bedford Creative: our art, our culture, our future. The Arts and Culture Plan is a huge step forward in building a thriving creative ecosystem in our city, and these are the people dedicated to implementing it. This volunteer group is facilitated by the Creative Strategist, with additional staff support from the New Bedford Economic Development Council and the Departments of City Planning, Tourism & Marketing, Parks, Recreation & Beaches, and the Mayor’s Office.

  • Eldric Abreu – Waterfront Historic Area LeaguE (WHALE)
  • Lee Blake – New Bedford Historical Society
  • Iva Brito – Indigenous Business Collaborative
  • Janet Coquillette – Retired consultant to nonprofit organizations
  • Rhonda M. Fazio – Interwoven, Dyer Maker Studio, La Rhonda Catering
  • Steven Froias – New Bedford Now, New Bedford Port Authority, Seaport Cultural District, Love The Ave
  • Jeff Glassman – Darn It!, Hatch Street Studios
  • Dena Haden – Co-Creative Center, SuperflatNB, Seaport Cultural District
  • Wendy Hall – New Bedford Festival Theatre
  • Victoria Lacy – Abstrakt Music
  • Viera Levitt – UMass Dartmouth College of Visual and Performing Arts
  • Lindsay Mis – Massachusetts Design Art + Technology Institute (DATMA)
  • Joclyne Nunes – New Bedford Whaling Museum
  • Eric Paradis – Your Theatre, The Steeple Playhouse, New Bedford JazzFest
  • Penny Pimentel – Zeiterion Performing Arts Center
  • Dawn Salerno – Rotch-Jones-Duff House & Garden Museum
  • Jennifer Smith – New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park
  • Darlene A. Spencer – Cape Verdean Association, Carney Family Charitable Foundation
  • Patricia Thomas – Culture*Park
  • Nathan Vaughan – Bristol Community College, Downtown New Bedford Inc.
  • Samia Walker – EforAll, 3rd EyE Youth Empowerment, Doodles Creative Sessions
  • Zachary White – Gallery X

Latest Press Release


JULY 11, 2022

Link to Photos

Reconnect with “Open Spaces” on New Bedford’s Seaport Art Walk

NEW BEDFORD, MA  — One of the most eagerly anticipated public art exhibitions returns to the New Bedford waterfront with an opening reception on Thursday, July 14. 

Coinciding with AHA! New Bedford’s evening in the city, the 2022 Seaport Art Walk officially introduces this year’s artists and their work to residents and visitors during a free tour of the outdoor exhibit from 5:00-6:00 p.m. beginning at 82 Front Street. 

The theme of this year’s Seaport Art Walk is “Open Spaces.” To reflect that concept, sculptures and murals were created that expand upon the notion of creating open space for our minds and our souls – imagining in their work the wilderness, the ocean, meditation, parks, and nature – thus opening ourselves to healing and love. 

New Bedford’s annual summer Seaport Art Walk was founded in 2013 by artist Jessica Bregoli – and she is one of the exhibiting artists this year. It was the city’s first large format outdoor public art installation. It strategically places sculpture and murals along New Bedford’s working waterfront – the highest value fishing port in the nation and part of the Seaport Cultural District. 

Bregoli and her partner in art, Jessica England, write of their work in this year’s exhibit, “Our piece ‘Reconnecting’ represents our need to get back in touch with nature. During the past few years, we have lost touch with ourselves and simply being outside in nature. We have been isolated and absent from our own communities. Now we are at a time where we are relearning how to be out and connect with others again.”

Other artists in the 2022 Seaport Art Walk include Keith Francis with “Glittering Patterns”; Jacob Ginga with “Another Year, An Osprey’s Story”; Erin Meade’s “Mirrored Iridescence”; and “A Discovery of the Native Algae, Seaweed and Kelp” by Collin Wetzel. 

Wetzel notes, “One of our most beloved ‘Open Spaces’ happens to be the shoreline, marshes and beaches we visit. My mural for the retaining wall below the upper level parking of the ferry terminal below the Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard ferries’ sign features a background of slate blue to reflect the color of the ocean, and olive green, muted-red/coral for the seaweed, Algae and Kelp.

“The many species of algae, seaweed and kelp provide shelter and breeding for many native crustaceans, fish fry and other microorganisms. What surprised me during my study was the many uses these important and often overlooked species have provided over the years. Some species were great sources of iodine, gelatin for cosmetics and food, a thickening agent, stabilizer or alternative sugar substitute. Others were used for treating goiter, joint pain and swelling and even fertilizer for crops.”

The idea of reconnecting is ably reflected in Erin Meade’s “Mirrored Iridescence.” The visual art teacher at Keith Middle School in New Bedford writes, “I work hard to create installations that speak both to me and the community. Before I begin brainstorming my ideas I tend to think about the process, theme, and how it will speak for itself.” 

“Glittering Patterns” by Keith Francis encomapsses a historical view of the waterfront in his art. He writes, “New Bedford’s past, present and future is beholden to the ocean. Glitter patterns consist of many bright points of light that come and go, blending together to form a smooth path of glittering light when viewed at a distance.”

Meanwhile, Jacob Ginga gets personal though universal with his entry into the Seaport Art Walk. He poignantly states, “In 2021 I painted murals here of two beloved friends and local fishermen who passed away. 

“This year I repainted those same panels with the images of two Osprey, migratory birds of prey. It feels appropriate to reimagine them as Osprey, a bird that roosts all around the area where we used to farm shellfish together.”

Ginga’s “Another Year, An Osprey’s Story” sums up the theme of reconnecting and is particularly appropriate for the return of the Seaport Art Walk to New Bedford’s waterfront this July, 2022. 

City of New Bedford residents and visitors alike are invited to reconnect as a community and meet the artists on AHA! Night, Thursday, July 14 beginning at 5:00 p.m. The gathering spot is at 82 Front Street, New Bedford and the free tour will commence from there. 

The 2022 Seaport Art Walk “Open Spaces” is presented by New Bedford Creative, and funded in part by New Bedford Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency, as well as the city of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund, and Bristol County Savings Bank.

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