Beyond our Walls

When you visit the Danforth Art Museum you see some of the best contemporary art in New England curated by Jessica Roscio and Rachel Passannante. We don’t want to stop at the Museum walls. Our hope is to connect with artists in the community and provide additional exhibition space for them via our virtual gallery Beyond Our Walls. We believe this is a way to broaden the opportunities to inspire and engage through art.


Artist and Danforth Community Engagement Coordinator Mary Erickson serves as a roving reporter—meeting local artists, displaying their work and telling their story. Think of her as the curator of Beyond Our Walls. Please let Mary know if you have something or someone you want to see highlighted on these pages; she loves meeting artists and learning their stories.

Alla Prima Annelyse!

Alla prima refers to a direct painting approach where paint is applied wet on wet without letting earlier layers dry. In Italian, the term alla prima means “at first attempt.” Paintings created in this approach are usually completed within a single session.

And, Annelyse refers to Annelyse Reinertson, a current student at the Danforth Art School who takes independent study classes with Ruth Scotch.

Put alla prima and Annelyse together and you have an energetic, passionate oil painter whose painting are executed quickly with wonderful results!

To read and see more about what makes Annelyse special click here.

A Plein Air Artist and Her Wonderful Rocks

Karen Walter won the Emerging Artist Award in our 2023 Juried Exhibition! Truthfully, it is the recognition of her art that is emerging; art has always been at the core of her being. Karen grew up in Framingham and went to Framingham State University with Fine Art and Art History majors. And, she had her first internship at the Danforth Art Museum.

In one of her classes, Karen learned about painting conservation and thought “wow, very cool…but too much science involved in that for me.” The seed had been planted for a lifelong career in paper conservation! For her initial training, soon after college, Karen worked with a woman who had a private practice in paper conservation. Most of Karen’s career as a paper conservator has mostly been at Harvard University for their libraries that have amazing private collections. Karen loves her job; “the work is endless and you never know what you will work on next…images, manuscripts from poets and authors, maps, and other emphemera.” Projects are often large enough for many conservators on the team to be working on one piece at the same time. “Great people, cool stuff” Karen said with a smile on her face.

To learn how Karen’s career influenced her journey as an artist, click here. It is a great story.

Art on the Cochituate Rail Trail!

I biked to work using the Cochituate Rail Trail (CRT) recently. It was a lovely day and on my way in, I was delighted to see two sculptures on the side of the trail. Of course I stopped to take a look at them; I looked around for signs about who the artists were and what project they were a part of — nothing yet. It was on the way home that I found information and many more sculptures!

This project by Studio Without Walls is called sum of its pARTS. Studio Without Walls is a Brookline-based collaborative group of sculptors and conceptual artists who produce exhibitions of art in outdoor and public settings. Since 1999, they have been educating audiences to appreciate, participate in, and become enriched by site-responsive sculpture, installation, and conceptual art. Sponsored by Friends of Natick Trails and the Natick Center Cultural District, Studio Without Walls made its debut in Natick!

Walk or bike the CRT to see the sculptures between Chrysler Road and Superior Drive in Natick, or park close by, hop on the path and check them out. The sculptures are on view September 9 – October 15, 2023.

For a map showing the exhibition area, pictures of all the sculptures, links to the artists’ website and more, click here for Studio Without Walls’ website.

Young Artist with Many Talents

Jenna Riedl grew up in Framingham and has spent the last four years living in Boston while studying at Boston University. Jenna was a delight to talk with about her art and her many other interests. As she put it, “I like doing a lot of things.” In fact, part of the reason she went to BU was it’s great art program and that she could learn and do a lot of other things too. Along with her fine arts major, Jenna was a statistics minor and also in the honors college.

I first met Jenna when she went to McAuliffe Charter School with my daughter and Jenna’s open spirit, talent and way of being in the world continue to amaze me!

Click here to read more and see Jenna’s art.

Artist with a Spirit of Love

Svetlana Burinskaya lives, creates, and teaches in her home in Ashland. She emigrated from Moldova 30 years ago. Svetlana and her husband came to America with their 5-year-old boy and only $9 in their pockets.

When we first met, Svetlana told me right away that she was shy, but she very quickly became comfortable and I loved listening to her wonderful stories about her life, inspiration, and art making!

Click here to learn more about Svetlana.

Murals Around Town

For my first adventure as our roving reporter, Rachel Passannante (Danforth Museum’s Collections Manager) joined me to spend a sunny morning roving Framingham to photograph some of the public art in our town. After a stop at the Saxonville Mills Cafe & Roastery, we headed out to explore.  Click here to view the amazing murals around town!

To the artists whose work we photographed, we love what you are doing! We see your art and applaud it brightening our public spaces. Thank you for bringing your art to the city!

Close up of a mural of a hand and wrist with black lines coming down from it. On the hand is a gold and black bird.