Selfie,  a contemporary art quilt by Jill Kerttula at Whistler House Museum of Art.
Selfie, a contemporary art quilt by Jill Kerttula at Whistler House Museum of Art.

In early August, Lowell settles down after the Folk Festival frenzy. But the quiet time brings another favorite tradition to town with the annual array of quilts on view in various Mill City venues.

Hosted by the New England Quilt Museum, 18 Shattuck St., it has been dubbed "A Summer Celebration of New England Quilts," and runs through Aug. 27. The museum is currently showing "Threads of Resistance," a showcase of contemporary quilts that question political policies. It also hosts several special events in conjunction with the summer celebration, including a family program, "Patterns, Patterns, Everywhere," on Saturday, Aug. 5, 1-3:30 p.m., presented by park rangers from Lowell National Historical Park. Another family program, also presented by park rangers, is "Fabric Art Frenzy," on Saturday, Aug. 19, 1-3:30 p.m. Several lectures are also planned. Visit www.nequiltmuseum.org for details.

 Japanese Tea Garden  contemporary art quilt by Allison Wilbur at Lowell Telecommunications Corporation gallery.
Japanese Tea Garden contemporary art quilt by Allison Wilbur at Lowell Telecommunications Corporation gallery.

The Whistler House Museum of Arts, 243 Worthen St., presents "Contemporary Art Quilts 2017." It runs Aug. 5-Sept. 1, with an opening reception on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2-4 p.m. in the Parker Gallery. Each summer, the Whistler House hosts a juried exhibition of quilts centered on varied themes. But this year's show is different, since the theme was left open to provide artists with the opportunity for free expression and creativity, allowing them to showcase their strongest work and create contemporary quilts of all kinds, colors and subject matter.

At Lowell's Brush Art Gallery and Studios on Market Street, "A New Twist on the Little Black Dress" is on view Aug. 5-Sept. 23, with a reception on Aug. 26 from 2-4 p.m. Visit www.thebrush.org for details.


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Lowell Telecommunications Corporation, 246 Market St., presents "Japan: Tradition and Inspiration," a solo show by Allison Wilbur on view through Aug. 31.

Ayer Lofts Gallery on Market Street presents "Thinking Out Loud," fashion photography by Jessica Bloom. It's on view through Aug. 26, and a reception will be held on Saturday, 5-7 p.m. The show is open every Saturday through August.

Art picks

 Around the World in a Little Black Dress  by Bobbie Sullivan at the Brush Art Gallery and Studios
Around the World in a Little Black Dress by Bobbie Sullivan at the Brush Art Gallery and Studios

HOT BUTTONS: Has anyone pushed your buttons lately? Activism is in the air, and regional artists have responded by creating 50 wearable, collectable "hot buttons" designs for the "Hot Buttons!" exhibit at Lowell's Loading Dock Gallery. On view Aug. 2-27, with a reception and trading event Thursday, Aug. 3, from 6-8 p.m., the designs show an immediate intense reaction on the part of the artists. They cover such areas of interest as social, foreign policy, health care, educational and other hot topics sure to pique the public's curiosity. At Thursday's main event, you'll see the display of 50 collectable buttons and may purchase one or more bags or randomly selected buttons for $5. Buttons you want to collect, you must trade, cajole, buy or beg someone who has the pinback button you want.

See a free screening of  A Shadow of the House  on Wednesday, August 9 at the Concord Museum.
See a free screening of A Shadow of the House on Wednesday, August 9 at the Concord Museum.
It will be a lively, fun and socially interactive evening that is sure to generate a lot of energetic chatter. The gallery, part of Loading Dock Arts Inc., is located at 122 Western Ave., Lowell. It is open Wednesday-Saturday, noon-5:30 p.m., and Sunday, noon-4 p.m. Call 978-656-1687 or visit www.theloadingdockgallery.com.

FREE FILM: On Wednesday, Aug. 9, at 7 p.m., Concord Museum presents a free screening of the documentary film "The Shadow of the House, Photographer Abelardo Morell." For more than seven years, director Allie Humenuk filmed Morell and his family both at home and abroad. During the film, Morell returns to Cuba for the first time since his escape in 1962. His decision triggered intense anger and fear in his family, forcing him to wrestle with issues of identity, family allegiance and cultural politics. Morell's work is currently on view at the museum in "Walden: Four Views," which will be open to film attendees beginning at 6 p.m. Call 978-369-9763, ext. 216, or go on line at www.concordmuseum.org for reservations.

REDCOATS AND REBELS: Old Sturbridge Village hosts New England's largest Revolutionary War re-enactment this Saturday-Sunday, Aug. 5-6. More than 1,000 historic military re-enactors and up to 10,000 spectators are expected to converge on OSV for the 14th annual "Redcoats and Rebels" event. Weekend highlights include mock battles, cannon and musket demos, fife and drum music, and exact re-creations of daily life for soldiers in battle and encampment. Visit www.osv.org for details on the weekend and info about a new VIP experience that offers many perks for the price of admission.

Nancye Tuttle's email address is nancyedt@verizon.net.