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An art getaway to the Azores – in Boston

While many in eastern Massachusetts hail from the Azores, most people know little about that island paradise that is only about a four-hour flight from Boston. A special art show and culinary festival at the Langham Hotel Boston is aimed at changing that.

Catarina Branco-Medo do Mar.   Galleria Fonseca Macedo show of Contemporary Azorean art at the Langham Hotel.
© Catarina Branco-Medo do Mar, Galleria Fonseca Macedo
Urbano Recendes #46 As Ultimas Flores
©Urbano Recendes #46 As Ultimas Flores,Galleria Fonseca Macedo

Contemporary art of the Azores

In cooperation with the Galleria Fonseca Macedo in the Azores, a series of works of contemporary Azorean artists now decorates the Langham’s lobby area and in the new lobby champagne lounge, The Reserve. The bright, light and open space of the lounge, where snacks and light meals are served from 6 am to 10 pm weekdays (later on weekends), makes it a perfect location for this show.

All three of the artists represented in the exhibit are natives of the Azores and currently living there. Works include several different media: paint on paper, oil on canvas and photography. The works were developed for individual artists’ shows at the gallery in Ponta Delgada, capital of the island archipelago, which is an autonomous region of Portugal.

A multi-media showing of five contemporary Azorean artists

The works by Urbano Resendes, in water color on paper, are fresh and inviting in their simplicity and directness. They constitute the largest single part of the showing, from a collection entitled “Last Flowers” that Urbano created as a tribute to his flower-loving mother. Each of the works is done on paper of differing color and, while at first glance they may seem to be of the same subject, a closer look reveals subtle shifts in emphasis that affect the feeling and vitality of each work.

A series of photographs by artist Sandra Rocha along the back wall of The Reserve are part of a project that she called “Love Stream”, reflecting their subject in images taken in several countries, including the United States. Another artist, Victor Almeida, is represented at this showing by a pair of paintings on paper, of his infant daughter.

Two large oil canvasses on display are by artist Maria José Cavaco from a project she called “Sense of Possibilities”. One of them was inspired by the book A Fairer House than Prose by Emily Dickinson and the other, entitled “A Hazy Medium of Mist” was inspired by a phrase in The Man Without Qualities by Robert Musil. Guests entering the lobby are drawn immediately to a stunning pair of large works in hand cut paper, created by Catarina Branco. This traditional art form reaches new heights with these two outstanding works.

And a celebration of Azorean wines and culinary arts

As an integral part of this project, Langham chefs have joined forces with chef Sandro Meireles from the Azores to present special menus in three of the hotels restaurants. The Reserve, the Café Fleuri and the impressive lounge and dining room, Bond, have an especially designed menu featuring specialties and products from the Azores, these include cheeses from several of the islands of the archipelago as well as excellent wines, little known outside the islands.

The month-long event will come to an end on March 28 with an elegant Azorean Wine Dinner ($165pp). Reservations can be made by calling the Langham. (617) 451-1900.

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