Twenty Summers was founded with the dual aim of preserving the Hawthorne Barn in Provincetown, Mass., and maintaining its legacy as a place promoting the private creation of and public engagement with art.


Twenty Summers is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization in Provincetown, Massachusetts, founded to foster public engagement with art and artists, and to honor the legacy of art in Provincetown. Its efforts led to a full restoration of the historic Hawthorne Barn, where that legacy began and where its festival of concerts, conversations, artist residencies, and special events takes place annually from mid-May to mid-June. To visit the Barn or purchase tickets, please see our calendar of events. Please note that the Barn is only open to the public when we have a listed event. Each season we film and record all events, having now grown a rich media archive. You can watch or listen to past events for free on our videos page and podcast page.

The name Twenty Summers is a phrase in Stanley Kunitz’s poem “Route Six” connoting both the pull of Provincetown and its legacy of art.


“[The Barn is] where many say this storied peninsula got its start as an art colony. Norman Rockwell studied there. Norman Mailer, renting a house next door, attended parties in the space. Tennessee Williams danced and Jackson Pollock got drunk in the barn…. [Twenty Summers’] launch is being hailed by locals, long-frustrated by bulldozers rolling over sites of historic significance.”
—The Boston Globe, May 10, 2014

The barn “is part of the foundation of American art history.”
—NPR, August 16, 2007

Twenty Summers “is eager to document the barn’s historic significance and preserve a living link to the barn’s heritage.”
—The New York Times, November 10, 2010


Press Contact:
Camille Ives Beck

“Twenty Summers shouldn’t, technically, exist at all. Twenty Summers takes place in an historic barn at the end of an obscure little street, on top of a hill, reached by way of a narrow dirt path.

And yet, Twenty Summers has been packing them in since its first season, in 2014. People find the obscure street, people climb the little path, for the poetry and music, the art and conversation.

It makes sense, in its nonsensical way, in Provincetown, which has always maintained only a passing acquaintance with that which is technically impossible.

Art, however, will always be on the endangered species list, even as it continues to demonstrate its necessity to the human ecosystem. Even as people seek it out in remote and challenging places.

Thank you for supporting Twenty Summers. Thank you for whatever you’re doing to help keep its lights on, the lights at the top of a hill; the lights that demonstrate, for a month every summer, the ongoing life of our shared desire to know, to consider, to feel more than we’re technically supposed to.”
— Michael Cunningham, 2017