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Hampshire Life

CAROL LOLLIS
Randi Stein at her home in Amherst.

Art Maker: Randi Stein | painter, collage artist

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

During the past year, Amherst artist Randi Stein has been investigating the qualities of the Hebrew letters — letters, which according to Jewish legend, called the universe into being. For her latest exhibit, “The Letters Speak,” on view at the Jewish Community of Amherst, Stein, 66, says, “I invited the letters to speak to me, and have let my hands respond with the media of paper and paint.” Hampshire Life: Describe the work you are doing now. Randi Stein: The images are produced using colored papers and paint — collages that are my response to the sounds, shapes and meanings of the letters. I am …

Kathleen Mellen’s Best Bets: Showtime’s ‘Homeland’; ECA+’s ‘Light up the Arts Holiday Bash’

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

COME BACK HOME(LAND) If you used to love Showtime’s “Homeland,” but tuned out because of mind-numbing boredom with last year’s extended focus on Brody’s daughter and her adolescent angst, take heart and get back onboard. This season, Carrie, Saul and company — “The” company — are back on track with great cliff-hanging episodes in what is, once again, a top-notch intelligence thriller. Warning: …

Laurie Loisel’s Best Bets: Florence Christmas parade; ‘Messiah’ sing-along with Da Camera Singers

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

TIME TRAVEL For a homespun community event that makes you feel as though you’ve stepped back in time, check out the Christmas parade in Florence, now in its 25th year. The parade features city political leaders, Santa and Mrs. Claus and the Florence Community Band playing up a storm. It sets off Saturday from Trinity Row Park at 10 a.m., heads down Main …

‘The Good Wife’ is a who’s who of Broadway talent

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Next time you’re seeing a show in New York, here’s a new diversion while you’re waiting for curtains to go up and people around you to, please, turn off their cellphones. Take a look at the last few …

Style Stop: Phoebe Clewley

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Phoebe Clewley, 19, of Newburyport, looked casual and comfortable when the Style Stop team spotted her recently in downtown Northampton. The Smith College psychology student had donned jeans, a puffy vest, simple silver rings and clogs from French …

ID: Lisa Downing

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Lisa Downing, assistant director and patron services librarian at the Forbes Library in Northampton since 2004, has worked in libraries for nearly her whole life. She grew up in the Hudson Valley of New York and has lived …

Chef’s Best: Hankering for comfort food? Consider the knish

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

If you’re looking for some cold weather comfort food, you might want to consider the knish. Though there are many variations of the knish, they essentially are the hand pie of classic Jewish cuisine — a baked (though …

Art Maker: Elizabeth Stone | figurative artist

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Elizabeth Stone is a contemporary figurative artist who works at her home studio in Florence, which she loves, she says, because of its “village feel.” She began painting in the late 1990s when she inherited her grandfather’s set …

Bruce Watson’s Slice of Life: Too big to fail? Remember the dinosaurs

Thursday, November 20, 2014

For the past few weeks, I’ve found myself thinking about dinosaurs. And about Einstein. Stay with me now. I loved dinosaurs as a kid. I collected little plastic ones and knew all the names. Brontosaurus, T. Rex, Trachodon. Many of these names have since changed (How does a …

Tim Driscoll’s Barhopping: First impressions

Thursday, November 20, 2014

You can only make a first impression once. At The Mick, the bar at the entrance of the Delaney House on Route 5 in Holyoke, they make a good one. My friend Chris and I arrived at The …

Kathleen Mellen’s Best Bets: John Hodgman at the Academy of Music; Smith College Fall Faculty Dance Concert

Thursday, November 20, 2014

A FUNNY GUY TV ads are more annoying than edifying, but a few are worth watching. Like the ones some time back for Apple computers that featured John Hodgman as a PC. He was hilarious. Hodgman, who was also very funny as a “resident expert” on “The Daily …

Laurie Loisel’s Best Bets: ‘The Diorama Show’ at A.P.E. Gallery; ‘Raise Your Voice’ concert at the Academy of Music

Thursday, November 20, 2014

LITTLE WORLDS Dioramas, three-dimensional scenes created within containers, are fascinating. They are often small, but to scale, and sometimes they are held within the most ingenious containers. “The Diorama Show” at the A.P.E. gallery, 126 Main St., Northampton, features eight local artists whose work can be scene in …

Steve Pfarrer’s Best Bets: The Jack DeJohnette Trio, ‘Speak No Evil’ at UMass; Rainy Day People at the Iron Horse

Thursday, November 20, 2014

JAZZED AT UMASS Looking for instrumental or vocal jazz this weekend? The University of Massachusetts Amherst has you covered. On Nov. 21, the Jack DeJohnette Trio, which includes Ravi Coltrane — son of saxophone legend John Coltrane — plays Bowker Auditorium at 8 p.m. Tickets at fineartscenter.com. On …