In this digital exclusive, each of the four members of North Adams Contemporary discusses their experience as an artist living in the Eclipse Mill in the Northern Berkshires after spending most of their careers in big cities. 

See A Sense of Place, a recent exhibition by North Adams Contemporary, in our full feature on the exhibit. 

Read the full transcript:

Betty Vera, Artist: It was amazing to me that, out here there was this artist community at the Eclipse Mill, and there were other things going on as well. And I wasn’t well acquainted with it. So, I — I really was excited. And so, when I came back to visit and I walked in this building and I saw all the artwork on the walls, I thought, “Oh, I’m home. This is amazing. All these people making artwork here!”

Debi Pendell, Artist: For me, the joy of art is the solitary-ness. I love being alone. I love being in my studio. I get so lost in my work. It doesn’t matter when I’m frustrated. It doesn’t matter when I struggle. I really get a lot of peace and clarity when I’m involved in my work.

Sarah Sutro, Artist/Writer: This is kind of like being in-the-city-in-the-country, because the building is like this old factory building, but like a few steps away is just like acres and acres of wildness. So, it satisfies a number of things to be here. It’s also, like, no traffic. Easy to park. You can walk to downtown and do whatever you need. So, it’s sort of combines country-city in a really positive way.

Diane Reed Sawyer, Artist: It is much more peaceful out here than it was when I was living in Boston. Being away from all that craziness, all that traffic, all this — all the construction, it’s been really a nice change. I love being able to go out into the hills and all the water, waterfalls, streams, hiking in the woods. It’s great to be here.