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Sisters share a creative family bond

Ronnie Gould’s show in Concord is called “All Dogs,’’ and Ilene Richard’s is “May Flowers.’’Handout

All creative types run into internal roadblocks once in a while. Novelists and poets get “writer’s block,” visual artists may find that a particular rendering just isn’t working out the way they’d pictured it.

When that happens, it’s good to have another creative type with whom to commiserate. All the better if it happens to be your sister.

Such is the case for Ilene Richard of Andover and Ronnie Gould of Bedford. Both work as full-time studio artists, and although their homes and studios are several towns apart (each has a work area at home, and Richard also has space in Western Avenue Studios in Lowell), it turns out that both artists are exhibiting at galleries in Concord this month — galleries that face each other across Main Street in the center of town.


Throughout their upbringing, according to Gould, “Ilene was always known as the artist, always drawing. I was more just in the background doing my thing. Art didn’t really come to the foreground for me until later.”

The two women, who also have a brother, came from a family that valued art. Their mother was a commercial artist, and she filled the house with various works by herself and other people.

“The language of art was always there, and the appreciation for it,” Gould said. “It was part of our family culture and who we were.”

Art has forged a lasting bond between the sisters, Gould said. “Art was always this place where we were able to meet. As we grew up, we took different paths in our lives many times, but this was a place our paths always converged. We’ve always supported each other, and that has only grown stronger through the years.

“Artists always have ups and downs in their careers,’’ she said. “When either of us hits a down, the other has advice. It’s so helpful to be able to turn to my sister and ask what she thinks about a piece of mine.”


Their work is very different, the sisters emphasize. Gould is a sculptor particularly known for her dog pieces; Richard is a painter whose show at the Albright Art Gallery in Concord features flowers.

“Art is my passion and I have always known that it was the direction I was heading in,” Richard said. “As the youngest, my mother would drag me along to art shows while Ronnie and our brother were at school. From a very early age, I’ve loved drawing and being surrounded by art.”

Professionally, Richard has spent time as a graphic designer, a jewelry designer, and a children’s book illustrator. Eventually she took Gould’s advice and leased studio space in Lowell; that led to larger paintings on canvas and eventually the flowers she is now showing.

Gould’s exhibition, “All Dogs,” opens at the Lacoste Gallery, 25 Main St.,on Saturday and runs through June 21, with an opening reception Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. and an artist talk Sunday at 2 p.m. For hours and more information, call 978-369-0278 or go to .

Richard’s show, “May Flowers,” is on exhibit through July 6 at the Albright Art Gallery, 30 Main St. For more information, call 978-369-7300 or go to

SOLO RECITAL TONIGHT: High school senior Charlotte Copp caps off seven years of guitar lessons and four years of voice instruction at Indian Hill Music School with a solo recital Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Artists whose songs Copp plans to perform during the free performance include Guster, Ingrid Michaelson, and the Dave Matthews Band.


FOCUS ON HARP: The fifth season of Newton’s Distinguished Harpist Series, featuring the world’s most accomplished musicians performing in salon-like settings in private homes, concludes with an hourlong recital by Japanese harpist Naoko Yoshino on Sunday at 7 p.m.

The concert at 18 Chase St. in Newton Centre will be followed by a reception.

Tickets are $25, or $15 for students, payable by check or cash at the door. For more information, call 617-527-0818.

CANTORS IN SONG: On Sunday at 3 p.m., the rich heritage of Jewish music is celebrated at the annual New England Region Cantors Assembly, which will feature cantors Marilyn Becker, Emil Berkovits, Gaston Bogomolni, Marcie Jonas, Michael McCloskey, Elias Rosemberg, Neuba Miriam Silva, Sarra Spierer, and Pharrel Wener, at Congregation Beth Elohim, 133 Prospect St. in Acton.

The program includes liturgical, Hebrew and Yiddish art and folk songs, popular music and Broadway, and Jewish music from around the world. The cantors will be joined by choirs from Congregation Beth Elohim and Temple Emanuel in Newton.

Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door. E-mail, call 978-263-3061, or go online to for more information.

HEALING MUSIC: On Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Congregational Church of Littleton, 330 King Street (Route 110), the Healing Wave Music Project presents a healing music workshop featuring Bernadette Yao on guitar, vocals, and singing bowls; Rebecca Swett on harp; and Deanna Johnson on flute.


Experience healing music and sound therapy through chanting, singing, listening, and meditating to the gentle sounds of guitar, harp, flute, and singing bowls. Suggested donation is $15.

To register, e-mail or call 781-771-2201. For more details, go to

BLACK AND WHITE: Gallery Seven opens “Absence of Color,” featuring works by Catriona G. Baker, Alicia Dwyer, Arthur J. Garrone, and Joel Moskowitz, Tuesday at 7 Nason St. in Maynard, where it will continue through July 19.

An artists reception will be held June 14 from 7 to 9 p.m., when guests are encouraged to wear black and white.

For more details, call 978-897-9777 or go to

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