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The Arts Intel Report

A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler
A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler

Widow's Walk

Installation view of “Widow’s Walk,” at the Winter Street Gallery, 2023.

July 22 – Aug 27, 2023
22 Winter St #955, Edgartown, MA 02539, United States

Widow’s walks are railed platforms on the rooves of houses, built to provide an unobstructed view of the sea. The worried wives of mariners would spend hours sitting up there, watching for the return of their husbands. “The widow’s walk meant both hope and despair, life and death in the same element,” the architect John Hejduk wrote in his book Mask of Medusa (1985). This elevated space—the female equivalent of a ship’s crow’s nest—is the point of departure for a touching group exhibition that brings together artists such as Carmen Almon, Carlo Bugatti, Camille Henrot, and Andra Ursuta. At first glance the works may feel unrelated—for instance, there’s a portrait of Mary Magdalene from the 17th century, a hospital photograph from 1940, and a 2021 photograph of a burning house by Matthew Leifheit—but the metaphor of the widow’s walk unites them. The show is curated by the architecture and interior design firm Charlap Hyman & Herrero. —Elena Clavarino

Photo courtesy of Winter Street Gallery

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