BCA appoints new directors, unveils flashy rebrand

Two experienced leaders from within the Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) organization have been tapped to lead the arts organization into and beyond its 50th year – unveiling a new website, a new logo and a total re-brand of their image this week.
Kristi Keefe and Emily Foster Day were announced this week as the new co-executive directors of the BCA as it approaches its 50th anniversary celebration in May. Along with that, the BCA announced the hire of Lauren Pellerano Gomez as the senior director of communications, who has been working to re-brand the organization with the new directors.
The rebrand and new organizational structure became official on Weds., Feb. 12.
“The rebrand really does a great job of anticipating the next phase of the BCA,” said Foster Day. “We are re-committing to making sure and stressing that artists are at the center of our work. We aren’t just a series of buildings, but a place that supports Boston artists in taking risks, where they can practice their skills and a place where Boston artists can thrive.”
Keefe and Foster Day are no strangers to the organization, and there will be no ramp up time for them to learn everyone’s name or the lay of the land. That will be a good thing as the organization moves past the sudden departure of former Director Gregory Ruffer last fall amidst allegations of misconduct many years ago while working in Florida.
Keefe was the former Chief Operating Officer, and Foster Day was the Chief Advancement Officer. Both were appointed to their new role from within the organization.
“We both benefit in that Kristi and I have already held leadership roles here,” said Foster Day. “For Kristi, it’s been 18 years and for me, a little over five years.”
Said Keefe, “I’m thrilled by the opportunity to join Emily as part of the new phase of leadership at BCA at such a pivotal time for the organization. It is a privilege to work with such a dedicated board and talented staff committed to making Boston a place where artists at every stage can advance their practice and careers.”
Day and Keefe will continue the strategic planning process, led by the Technical Development Corporation (TDC), which provides a roadmap for BCA to achieve current and future initiatives including: a new organizational strategy and future master planning.
As BCA approaches its 50th anniversary, the organization recommits to supporting working artists to create, perform, and exhibit new works while developing new audiences. Connecting the arts to resources and opportunities, BCA redefines the role an arts organization plays in
serving its community.
That will play out most importantly in a programmatic way, and the biggest part of that is the controversial Expanded Resident Program at 551 Tremont St., once dubbed Studio 551. That will kick off on July 1, 2021, and comes after some controversy last fall with the existing artists in that building – many of whom that have been there for multiple decades.
That program is meant to help artists who are struggling to find space to create their art, and each year the BCA supports 12 artists for visual arts, dance, music and theatre. By subsidizing their space, the BCA believes it can help them to focus on new work, pushing their creative skills and being able to take risks.
There will also be a Master Planning process in the future, but that is a few years down the road.
“We have been excellent stewards of the buildings for 50 years,” Foster Day said. “We have invested in them and kept them functioning well. We want to make sure we can do that in perpetuity…We’re not going down that road yet. It’s more long-term.”
The new logo and branding features vibrant colors, bright pink and yellow, with more of a modern and urban graphics palette. Created in partnership with global architecture, design, and planning firm, Gensler, the new
brand emphasizes BCA as a vibrant collaborative redefining the experience between artists and their audiences. Just as the organization’s blue color palette is re-energized with neon touches, so too is the organization’s ethos as the BCA refocuses its approach. A new logo, Brand Strategy, and a redesigned website — new domain name bostonarts.org — together create a bold exclamation of purpose, enthusiastically announcing the BCA as the center of arts in Boston.
“Gensler’s Brand Strategy and Design team was thrilled to partner with the Boston Center for the Arts to craft a brand strategy that celebrates and advances the organization’s vital role in Boston’s cultural community,” said Denise Korn, Creative Director of Gensler. “Capturing the core essence of the BCA, the boldly reimagined visual identity and website are designed to resonate with the evolving needs of contemporary artists and connect more deeply with existing and new audiences.”
Opened to the public in 1970, the BCA has for five decades engaged creative
community for public good. While the organization’s physical residence can be found in the historic South End, BCA touches every part of Boston’s cultural ecosystem.

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