Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Press Release: Flying High at Studio Place Arts, Barre

As the long winter relinquishes its harsh grip on New England, Studio Place Arts presents Flying High, a multimedia show guaranteed to provide a spirited launch into spring. Running through April 16, Flying High is an exhibit that explores the dynamics of flight. Comprised of 39 works from 22 Vermont artists, the exhibit features fabric, metal and papier-mâché sculptures that hang from the ceiling, clay sculptures that propel off pedestals and clamber up walls, oil, encaustic and acrylic paintings that showcase varying aspects of flight, and photographs that celebrate an athletic twist on the theme.

Steel sculptures such as Soar by James Teuscher of East Hardwick, and Marshfield sculptor Steven Bronstein’s

copper and steel (with attached springs) Dragonflies and Ladybug each reveal different qualities of airborne movement. John Brickel’s quirky ceramic and found object Bat Bots furtively climb up one wall of the gallery, while Nicholas Hecht’s papier-mâché She Spirit seems to glide gently upwards, dancing on air like wisps of smoke or feathers in the breeze.

Anne Davis’s Flock of Birds, a series of 6 brightly colored mixed media paintings, gaily flitter down the hallway wall, and Montpelier artist Kristen Schuyler’s fanciful purple, orange and gold hued Flying Horse fabric sculpture springs forth at full gallop, held aloft by invisible string.

A series of 6 black ink on white vellum drawings by Plainfield artist Adelaide Tyrol elegantly depict a variety of flying creatures at distinct moments of action. Flight portrays a dark raptor hovering in the air, wings extended, as if contemplating its next move, whereas Avatar features a similar bird with legs down and wings in an upward V-shape, dropping in for a landing from a side angle. In her drawing Emergence, a dragonfly carefully extracts itself from the faded shell of its naiad case. In her darker drawing Echolocation, a delicate gray bat navigates the night sky, using its sharp senses to find its tiny white fluttering prey.

Flying High achieves a sense of lightness, buoyancy, and energy through an interactive display of movement, color and texture that is sure to grant a winter weary audience a welcome breath of fresh air!

Images from top: She Spirit by Nicholas Hecht. Flying High – Sculpture by Rob Millard-Mendez (front, right) and drawings by Adelaide Tyrol on wall.Painting, Sister Immaculata and Einstein ascend to the 4th dimension at the end of the Newtonian Universe by Robert Towne, flying insects by Steven Bronstein.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

REVIEW: Fran Bull at Christine Price Gallery in Castleton

“In Flanders Fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below”
- In Flander’s Fields
- John McCrea

By Liza Myers

Fran Bull’s epic installation In Flanders Fields: a meditation on War is an experience not to be missed. The scale alone is extraordinary, particularly because it is offered to us as a single, monumental artwork rather than a collection of individual pieces. The viewer enters fully in, treading upon the shadows of the floating birds above, walking between silent, haunting figures. The steadfast, blank gaze of soldiers who perished in the tragic battles of WWI interlace across the gallery with the mournful, accusatory stares of the women of Lysistrata, creating a piercing gauntlet of sorrow.

Entering the softly-lit gallery space, the viewer is immersed in an elegant visual and intellectual exploration. Ms. Bull refers to the work as her “silent scream in response to all war,” powerfully addressing the tragedy of man’s inhumanity to man over a two thousand year span.

The exhibition draws a line of human connection from Aristophanes’ Lysistrata to the renowned poem by WWI soldier and Field Surgeon John McCrea from which Ms. Bull takes the title of the show. In Lysistrata, Aristophanes’ comedy from 411 BC, the women of all Greek city-states withhold sex from their soldier spouses until the men sign a treaty of peace. While humorous, the play is about the Peloponnesian War, a horrendous, brutal 27-year battle between Sparta and Athens. In Flanders Fields, McCrea speaks to us from the battlefield, spattered by the tragedy of war, yet hearing bird song, seeing windblown petals.

Immediately upon entering the gallery space we are greeted by four larger-than-life white figures. Two elongated soldiers dangle in mid air. Are they ascending to heaven or falling, blasted out of their foxholes? Beneath them, two stately Greek women gesture awkwardly, bewildered, stunned, beseeching us to behold the tragedy, to stop.

While the work speaks to war, it is not visually gory or brutal. Ms. Bull’s color is stark, dramatic. Bloodless white figures and faces are interspersed with the intense red of gracefully drawn poppies. Black larks are elegantly printed on diaphanous, ghostly gauze. These symbolic colors are a relief. They offer balance and serenity: an austere abstraction which allows us to distance ourselves (slightly) from the horror of war. Here and there, the simple beauty of flowers or birds become a respite. A single, relatively comic, brightly-colored print depicts the faces of women interspersed with skillfully drawn birds.

The scale of Ms. Bull’s work is extraordinary. Twenty or more life-sized busts of the women of Greece mounted on simple, bare-wood pedestals, speak to us of ancient battles from groupings placed around the gallery. These sorrowful figures gaze upon 126 shrouded death masks: the faces of the dead from a more recent, 20th century war field. We observe them as if we are gazing down from above, floating with the flocks of abstracted bird forms that dangle in the air, casting eerie shadows on the walls and floor.

Bull states: “I have created an aesthetic and meditative environment in which viewers are led to contemplate the nature of War as it weaves through human history. My hope is that viewers will be inspired to examine afresh the paradigm of War as a response to conflict.”

Artistically, Ms. Bull fearlessly combines and experiments with media demonstrating an astonishing breadth of ability: innovative sculptural techniques and materials, traditional and experimental printmaking, lithography, painting and more. She generously explains her technical explorations in a didactic display tucked into an alcove.

And she invites us to participate. As the show progresses, more and more splotches of red paper punctuate the figures. Ms. Bull has provided small squares of poppy colored paper, asking viewers to write a comment and place it somewhere in the installation.

In Flanders Fields: a meditation on War, a touring installation by artist Fran Bull, will be on exhibit at the Christine Price Gallery at Castleton State College from February 28th through April 1, 2011.

Photographs by Don Ross

Monday, March 28, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Arcadia Now at Christine Price Gallery in Castleton

The Christine Price Gallery at Castleton State College explores the idea of "the country"—our actual and ideal relationship to the natural environment, in harmony (or at odds) with society—in Arcadia Now: Contemporary Art in Country, on view from Monday, April 11, to Sunday, May 15.

Combining photography, painting, sculpture and video, Arcadia Now is a collection of works that invokes the idea of the pastoral past and asks the 15 featured artists—each with a unique perspective—to envision what that pastoral idea, or an idyllic place of remove, might look like in the present. The exhibition addresses issues of nature and human consequence on nature, beauty and banality, and the ideal and the real in both abstract and figurative terms.

An opening reception on Wednesday, April 13, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., features a talk with three of the artists on art in relation to the rural environment: sculptor and installation artist Alisa Dworsky of Montpelier; photographer Sally Apfelbaum of Bennington and New York City; and sculptor and performance artist Nathaniel Lieb, of upstate New York and Brooklyn. The reception, free and open to the public, welcomes visitors to contribute to the discussion on how we "see" the country.

In creating the exhibition, Curator and Professor of Art Tom McGlynn says he reflected on his move to Vermont from the New York City metro area in 2007, and the tranquil imagery the state invokes with visitors and residents alike.

"In an almost uniquely rural state like Vermont, there has grown a complex web of interrelationships with the landscape—utilitarian, recreational and contemplative—which are most often utilized by the tourist industry so important to the state," McGlynn says. "There is, however, a deeper ideological relationship to the natural environment in harmony with society, which is a recurring theme in much contemporary art. Many of these artists seem to access a deeper, more complex relationship to the natural world, which might include an ancient longing or a symbolic reality that we may all feel at certain times."

"There is a long history of human society projecting idealistic intentions (with mixed results) upon the country landscape that go back to the ‘earthly paradise’ of the Garden of Eden. Do we see a need to return to this origin or do we need to reshape a newer utopia on the ruins of our previous intentions? ‘Arcadia Now’ leaves this as an open question."

The 15 artists featured in the exhibition are photographer Sally Apfelbaum of Bennington, Vt. and New York City; New Jersey-based painter and printmaker Tim Daly; multi-media artist Alisa Dworsky of Montpelier, Vt.; painter, performance artist and curator Bill Doherty of New York; Japanese sound artist Ken Ikeda of New York City; New York photographer Justine Kurland of New York City; sculptor and performance artist Nathaniel Lieb of upstate New York and Brooklyn; painter Mary McDonnell of upstate New York and Brooklyn; painter Rebecca Purdum of Ripton, Vt.; sculptor, printmaker and installation artist Kiki Smith of New York City; Swedish sculptor Frederik Strid; Canadian photographer and philosopher Scott Walden, of Newfoundland and New York; black-and-white abstract photographer Tenesh Webber of New York City; photographer James Welling of Los Angeles; and mixed-media artist Aaron Williams of Brooklyn. For more information on the artists, visit

Images: Justine Kurland, Peach Tree (2002); photograph: c-print; 17 3/4" x 22 ½ Sally Apfelbaum, Green Pathway (1994); photograph: e-print; 30" x 40"

PRESS RELEASE: Grace Weaver at S.P.A.C.E. Gallery in Burlington


April 1st - 30th
First Friday Opening, April 1st 5-9pm

Thin-Skinned is a solo exhibition of new paintings, drawings, and objects by Grace Weaver. The work examines the surfaces that separate the body from the external world—a straw, binoculars, a sock. Figures are isolated in tense predicaments—straining to smell, taste, or touch the undefined realm beyond their bodies. The works range from delicate line drawings to larger works, in which Weaver stains paper and stretches thick "skins" of paint, creating images which are at once goofily physical and mysterious.

Image: Binoculars, 24 x 18", Oil and Enamel on Paper, 2011

Sunday, March 27, 2011

REVIEW: Lowell Snowdon Klock at the Brandon Artist Guild in Brandon

By Liza Myers

Manipulated Polaroids by Lowell Snowdon Klock

The Brandon Artist Guild is currently featuring an exhibition of Manipulated Polaroid images by photographer Lowell Snowdon Klock. The intimate size of these images compels the viewer to approach closely and examine the world through the photographer’s eye.

The images are diverse. Landscapes, interior scenes, pastoral settings, still lifes and motorized vehicles – trucks, trains, and antique cars are united by dynamic composition and saturated color. Delicate, slightly wavy diagonals inform us about light and shadow, venetian blinds, truck radiators.

In an era dominated by digital photos, Ms. Klock puts her SX-70 Polaroid Camera to good use. Invented in 1972, the camera features a unique, hermetically sealed packet of liquid photo-chemicals. This chemical soup produces a fixed photograph approximately one minute after exposure to light. Klock must work quickly to achieve the desired alteration. Using her fingers, a bone folder or other un-sharp object she presses and prods the emulsion, creating a painterly effect as the emulsion squishes within the packet.

Klock states: “Delineation is diffused and often expresses more of a feeling rather than structured composition. One has no idea where this will go and where to start. This mystery is what makes the process so enjoyable and addicting.”

While the viewer might anticipate a smeared mess, the delicate effects accomplished in this process are quite lovely. Klock’s manipulations are deft and intentional, resulting in a finely detailed, almost watercolor effect, transforming the literal into a magical, new reality.

Artists such as Lucas Samara seized upon this new technology in the mid-70’s, developing methods to alter the emulsion and distort the image, enhancing it in the process. Klock follows in this tradition. It is important to note that without a finely composed photograph as a starting point these manipulated images might be gimmicky. But this is not just about technique. Klock’s skillful photographer’s eye captures dynamic compositions in everyday images: vegetables on the kitchen counter, the brightly lit radiator of an old truck, a beckoning pair of Adirondack chairs. Klock's eye discovers subtle visual relationships in pattern and color. In MG Grill, the almost zebra-like pattern of the metallic radiator grille is punctuated by spherical forms which reveal themselves as multiple reflective headlights. In Coffee Exchange, the ribbon-like ripples in a simple water bottle echo the linear shadows of a venetian blind.

This show is definitely worth a slow perusal. It will be on display at the Brandon Artists Guild at 7 Center Street (Rte 7) in Brandon, VT until April 30.

Hours are 10-5 daily. Phone: 802-247-4956

Images: MG Grille, Coffee Exchange, Under the Umbrella, all Manipulated Polaroids

Saturday, March 26, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Cartoon Show at T. W. Wood Gallery & Arts Center in Montpelier

T. W. Wood Gallery & Arts Center Presents
In the Main Gallery
Drawn From Vermont: The Cartoon Show

Featuring the creative, insightful, thought provoking and humorous work from four of Vermont's best known Masters of the graphic visual arts: Jeff Danziger, Ed Koren, Hal Mayforth and Tim Newcomb.

This unique and exciting new exhibit will be shown from Tuesday, March 29 through Sunday, April 20th. Meet the Artists at our Opening Reception on Thursday, March 31st from 5-7 in the Gallery.

T. W. Wood Gallery & Arts Center is located on the first floor of College Hall -Vermont College of Fine Arts Campus - 36 College Street - Montpelier Vermont
Hours of operation are: Tuesday-Sunday, Noon - 4 pm
College Hall and the Gallery is Handicapped Accessible
For more information Call (802) 828-8743 or visit

Images: Top: Tim Newcomb, Bottom: Hall Mayforth

Friday, March 25, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Lynne Barton at Studio Place Arts (SPA) in Barre

Closer: Stony Details
An exhibit by Lynne Barton

Lynne Barton of West Rutland is exhibiting a new body of work in the Third Floor Gallery at Studio Place Arts (SPA) that was inspired by a trip to a beach located on Malin Head in the Republic of Ireland where she impulsively filled her pockets with stones that would make the journey back to Vermont to serve as her creative muse. The exhibit showcases 20 works, including charcoal and pastels on paper, mixed media on paper, and monoprints. “Closer: Stony Details” is on view at SPA through April 16, 2011.

She recalls in her artist statement, “I began to think that what was notable about these stones was not how pretty they were, but what their existence in this place might mean. I wanted to know the story of why so many differently colored but similarly shaped and sized ones were here. Where did they come from? How were they formed?

“This work is a result of my initial foray into the study of rocks and attempts to address my interest in penetrating the surface of stony aesthetics. It is also an exploration of texture, form and the random partnerships of earthy materials motivated by this new curiosity. It reveals that despite a deeper scrutiny, I remain spellbound by the mysterious beauty of rocks - from texture, color, and form, to the metaphoric partnerships suggested by placement.”

Eroded Inclusions; Left and Right
, Charcoal & pastel on paper
A viewer gets Closer to the
Closer exhibit!

PRESS RELEASE: Mary Zompetti Lowe at 215 Gallery in Burlington

215 College Gallery’s current exhibition, and then..., features work by Mary Zompetti Lowe. The opening reception was Friday March 18, from 5-8pm.

This collection of work is an exploration of living spaces – our homes, outside and in, where inanimate objects become animate and we lose ourselves in their stories...

The exhibit will be on view from March 18 - April 17, 2011 on Fridays 12-8, Saturdays 12-6, Sundays 12-4 or by appointment.

CALL TO ARTISTS: Carving Studio and Sculpture Center Annual Members’ Show in West Rutland

The Carving Studio and Sculpture Center announces their Annual Members' Show, May 21 - June 26, 2011 at the Gallery, 259 Marble Street in West Rutland. All members of CSSC have the opportunity to show their work in this popular exhibition. This is a great opportunity to show work and mingle with other artists after the involuntary solitude of winter.

Space in the exhibit is limited, so members who plan to participate should let the Carving Studio and Sculpture Center know of their intentions as soon as possible. The deadline to receive works is Friday, May 13, 2011. Membership must be current to exhibit, please phone (802) 438-2097 or email to renew or become a member.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

REVIEW: Frances Wells and Kate Emlen at BigTown Gallery in Rochester

This review was first published in the March 24 issue of the Randolph Herald.

Maine Coast to the Hudson River to Rochester, Vermont

by Dian Parker

Landscape painting in oils has a long tradition in America. One of the most famous groups is the Hudson River School, a mid-19th century American art movement of landscape painters whose vision was influenced by romanticism. Their zeitgeist was to emphasize aesthetics, an appreciation of beauty and emotions – a reaction contrary to the celebration of the machine in their day, at the tail end of the Industrial Revolution. These artists lived and worked alongside the grand Hudson, attempting to replicate the beauty and majesty of this river.

Today, we have Frances Wells painting the Hudson River in all its glory, as represented by her work currently showing at the Big Town Gallery. Her palette is more subdued than the old painters, displaying an impressionistic view in muted tones. Painting on panel board, she dispenses with the heavy gold ornate frames of yore and chooses to outline each painting with a delicate gold trim which serves as an understated border for her work. The result is a mysterious blend of realism and impressionism. Moody woodlands, dreamy marshes, or a lush autumn afternoon. Her paintings are peaceful and graceful meditations, slowing the viewer down to appreciate the beauty and grand scope of the river, mountains, a barn, or a pasture at dusk.

One painting, Grove of Trees (pictured), 20" x 36", portrays a field with a line of trees in the distance. The light is tranquil, perhaps a sunset, glowing in the distance. The grass is long and flowing. Perhaps the day is humid, as is so often the case during summer in the Hudson River valley. Hook Mountain, Tappan Zee, 14 3/4" x 23 3/4" has the quality of a dream: the mountain casting a misty reflection in the river, the soft turquoise of the water with the dusky chalk-like look of pastels. Even though her paintings are small, these are big landscapes. Wells said of her work, “Painting navigates me with myself.” It is an inward journey of outer beauty, reflecting her generous and loving view of nature, which takes us inside her view.

The second artist in the current show at Big Town is Kate Emlen, another landscape oil painter, altogether different in feeling, color and tone. Her paintings come out to you, bold and forceful, full of movement. Emlen paints the Maine Coast. Big trees, rivers and glens. She doesn’t try to realistically paint the landscape; instead she manages to get you to live inside it, to feel the light on your skin, the texture of the bark, the sweep of the sea. One painting, Spring Woods II, oil on canvas, 20" x 16", shows a grove of small trees with sunlight angling through the trees. Try looking at the painting from afar, at an angle, and see how expertly she slants the light onto the blue forest floor. Another is Spring Thaw (pictured), 36" x 36", also showing trees in a forest, except you aren’t certain if it is mist hovering around the base of the trees or if it is late winter snow. Emlen’s landscapes evoke the sensation of being right there, on the soggy soil, feeling the cool air and smelling the sap on the rise.

Morning, 42" x 47", is a large landscape that greets you when you first enter the gallery. It is a view from the sea looking at the distinctive rocks of Maine along the shore, the great stones reflecting in the water, a mirage of color. A pine tree towers above and the sky is a delicate blue. Emlen said, “I like painting large. It is a physical activity, like running a mile.” She also likes painting the same subject over and over to “get it in my bones”. Her paintings get into our bones too. They sweep and curl, filled with movement and light.

The current show of these two dynamic painters runs through May 1. Their pairing is wonderful -- Wells’ meditative and subtle; Emlen’s dashing and active. What rich ways to capture the changing seasons in such diverse ways. This show is a perfect springtime excursion.

Frances Wells, Grove of Trees, 2010, oil on panel, 20" x 36"
Kate Emlen, Spring Thaw, 2006, 36" x 36", oil on canvas

PRESS RELEASE: Betsey Garand at UVM's Colburn Gallery in Burlington

Betsey Garand:
Proof of Existence – Drawings and Prints

Visiting Artist Exhibit at the UVM Colburn Gallery

March 28th – April 8th

Gallery Talk and Reception at 5:30 on April 7th

Betsey Garand grew up in New Hampshire on a small, self-sufficient family farm. She received her BFA in Printmaking from the University of New Hampshire and an MFA in Printmaking from Tyler School of Art of Temple University. Betsey is presently Resident Artist at Amherst College in the Department of Art and the History of Art, where she is head of printmaking.

Artist Statement:
The recent prints and drawings represent themes and interests of continuum, balance, and growth, elements existent in physical and psychological life. Seemingly familiar objects are layered beneath and above biomorphic and geometric shapes. Garand has numerous influences, one of which is a childhood spent in the woodlands and fields of New Hampshire:

The seed to my work was planted in Hancock, New Hampshire. Growing up surrounded by nature, I made countless hours of observances of natural forms and spectacles from static frogs’ eggs suspended in gelled encasements, plump spider bellies in dew laden webs, a maple leaf, a fern, the pattern of birch bark. This infinite variety of form, color and change inherent in nature has continued to significantly impact my prints and drawings.

In my work, I observe and invent. A source of inspiration is evident in the symbology of shapes utilized in pictographs and petroglyphs by indigenous peoples from the Anza-Borrego Desert to the Chauvet Cave. This combination of observed and invented shapes to create imagery and a form of written, visual language is paradoxically narrative and symbolic as well as representational and abstract. It interests me that two horned goats are adjacent to a quadranted circle or the head of a feline is adjacent to a dot pattern. The significance of this imagery is ever present and powerful, an entwinement of nature and geometry.

We’re only ever seeing part of something larger, a glimpse, a section, a fragment of a whole. An ever-expanding vision quest of recognition, for the past and the future. My imagery moves between the imagined and seen, the miniscule and vast, the microcosm and macrocosm. All are connected, with the beginning and end unknown. The simplicity of complexity and complexity of simplicity.

Image: Hark II, 2010, Two zinc plates: lift-ground aquatint monoprint and monotype

PRESS RELEASE: Sterling College Artists at Art House Gallery in Craftsbury

Sterling College Artists

Friday, April 1

Artists Katie Connor and Ira Powsner and adjunct faculty in Northern Studies at Sterling College Dick Smyth open their mixed media show with a First Friday Art Talk. We will see slides of work not hanging in the show, and hear about the processes and influences of this eclectic group of artists. The show will include digital photography, wood etchings, and graphite sketches.

The exhibit will be up through April.

The Art House Gallery, Studio & School is at1146 North Craftsbury Road, Craftsbury Common

Image: Photograph by Katie Connor

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Liza Myers at Green Mountain College in Poultney

Promises Kept

An exhibition of Current Paintings, Sculpture, and Clay Drawings
by Liza Myers

March 18 - April 15, 2011
Opening March 25, 5-7 pm
Feick Art Center
Green Mountain College
Poultney, Vermont

Promises Kept, a multimedia exhibition by Brandon artist Liza Myers, is now on display at Green Mountain College's Feick Fine Arts Center. A reception for the artist will be held at the Feick on Friday, March 25 from 5-7 p.m.

Myers refers to herself as a citizen of the western hemisphere, having lived, studied and traveled on both continents and beyond. "Visionary realism" is the term she uses to describe her paintings, using information from acute examination of the natural world to create a personal reality. Light, color and shadow inform us of a complex world of mystery and beauty. Promises Kept features lushly colorful acrylic paintings and ceramic sculpture.

Myers received her BFA from the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, N.M., and her MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, Md. She is an adjunct professor of art at Castleton State College and has shown her work in numerous solo and group exhibitions across the country and internationally.

Feick hours are 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and Tuesday and Thursday from 12-6 p.m. The Feick is open to the public and there is no admission charge. "Promises Kept" will be on display from March 18-April 15.

Originally a carriage shed barn, the Feick Fine Arts Center has been renovated into a climate and light-controlled exhibit space, which serves as the main campus gallery. The gallery displays 8-10 exhibits per year, primarily drawing from the best regional artists in the Vermont and New England area. The gallery strives for diversity and has featured exhibits of painting, sculpture, environmental found art, photography, and mixed media including international exhibits from Wales and Korea.

The Feick continually seeks potential exhibits and welcomes artist inquiries.

Image: Jimson Weed with Towhee Nest. 40" x 56", acrylic on canvas

PRESS RELEASE: Robin LaHue at Gifford Medical Center art gallery in Randolph

Paintings by Robin LaHue of Northfield Falls will hang in the Gifford Medical Center art gallery from March 30 to May 25.

An accomplished artist, LaHue's work has been featured on publication covers and in solo and juried exhibits around Vermont.

An artist since her early years, LaHue has taken art classes at the New York Institute of Technology in Old Westbury, N.Y., Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Conn., the Farmington Valley Arts Center in Avon, Conn., and Studio Place Arts in Barre, where she is a member. She is also a member of The South End Arts and Business Association of Burlington and is on the board of the Art Resource Association in Montpelier.

LaHue primarily works in water-soluble oils of late. "I have found them to be a remarkably forgiving medium," she says. "I paint on layers, scrub and wash them off and play with the results. Sometimes I put a whole painted canvas in the sink or bathtub, or even outside in a summer rainstorm, and let the water drops work their magic."

Watercolors, collages and mixed media will also be part of her Gifford show. LaHue calls her paintings "a spiritual path" and "a journey of discovery."

"Trees play a major role," she notes. "I admire the way their branches reach out to heaven while their roots are firmly entwined into the earth. They sway and bend with the wind, going along with the flow of life."

Gifford Medical Center is located at 44 S. Main St. (Route 12 south of the village) in Randolph. The gallery is just inside the main entrance to the left. The show is free and open to the public. Call Gifford Volunteer Coordinator Julie Fischer at (802) 728-2324 to learn more.

LaHue's work is also on display at O'Maddi's Café and Deli in Northfield this May.

Image: October Crossing, water soluble oils, 2009

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Bill McDowell in the BCA Center 2nd Floor Gallery in Burlington

Burlington City Arts is pleased to announce a new contemporary exhibition at the BCA Center (formerly the Firehouse Gallery) on Church Street entitled Ashes in the Night Sky, featuring work by Vermont artist and UVM Professor Bill McDowell. The exhibition opens on Friday, April 1st, with an artist talk and reception from 5-8pm, and runs through June 18th, 2011.

Bill McDowell’s poetic exhibition, Ashes in the Night Sky explores notions of loss and transcendence through large-scale black and white photography. McDowell writes, “This work is a meditation on my father’s passing, but also an exploration of the interconnectivity of life on Earth and in the Universe.” McDowell drops the ashes on the glass of a flatbed scanner, often seeking to replicate specific celestial bodies using astronomical photography as reference. In detailing certain bone fragments, his photographic process connects the astronomical imagery to the archeological examination of ash and mineral and echoes the universal connectivity of matter.

In a statement from the artist’s website, McDowell states “In the beginning, this project was driven by the desire to make images in the shadow of my father’s death. I wanted to take creative advantage of the emotional jolt his absence caused. As that grief subsided, however, the acknowledgement of my own aging and inevitable death maintained my interest in the confluence of ashes and sky.”

McDowell, who lives in Vermont, is the Chair of the University of Vermont Department of Art and Art History. He received an M.F.A. in Photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology. His photographic works have been exhibited in Vermont, New York, Texas and elsewhere, and his work is part of the permanent collections at the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House in Rochester, NY and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston.

PRESS RELEASE: Auction of Drawings to benefit Japanese Earthquake Relief

Wylie Sofia Garcia is having an auction of 40 ink drawings produced in 2008 with 50% of all auction proceeds donated to the Emergency Relief Fund for the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Save the Children Fund.

The auction starts Tuesday, March 22 at 12:01 am Eastern time and goes until Tuesday March 29th at 11:59 pm Eastern time. To see items and find out how to bid, visit the auction site

Artist Statement:
I became interested in density and textiles while observing laundry hanging out to dry during a residency at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing China in 2007. Every veranda, porch and patio had clothes hanging out to dry. This is a very interesting symbol of humanity because I realized I could be in Texas, Vermont, Spain, China or any where in the world and still find a place where laundry is hung out to dry on a line. It is a poetic universal image that inspired a year of exploration using black ink, lace and mixed textiles on paper.

The idea for this auction came about from picking up the Saturday March 14th New York Times in a local coffee shop this past Saturday evening. On one page was a striking image of a 30 year old Bahrainian who's body was being washed as part of funerary ceremony, while on the next was an image of a recently evacuated two month old Japanese boy who was being washed by a volunteer near the town of Okuma, close to where the Fukushima nuclear plant is located. Two images, so drastically different in content were so powerfully related to the rise and fall of life and humanity in our world. The juxtaposition of both images moved me so much that they have become my call to arms. I cannot go another day without trying to do something to impact an help this/my/our global crisis. I may be an artist living in Burlington, VT, but I am also a human on this planet and I would like to take some responsibility for my being here. Therefore after much research I have decided to donate 50% of the proceeds from this art auction to Save the Children, specifically I am donating to the Save the Children Japan Earth Quake and Tsunami Children in Emergency Fund. To find out more about this organization please visit:

Vanishing, ink on yuppo paper, 2008, 9"x12"
Closeness II, ink on paper, 2008, 6.5"x5"

PRESS RELEASE: Space For Rent at UVM in Burlington

Space for Rent

Photography Exhibition
Thursday March 24th 6:00 Pm
Colburn Gallery Williams Hall

PRESS RELEASE: Daisy Rockwell at the Main Street Museum in White River Junction

Political Animal: Paintings by Daisy Rockwell

At the Main Street Museum’s front gallery from Thursday 14 April 2011 to 1 July, 2011

With an opening reception Friday, 15 April, 2011 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Vibrant Indian snacks both sweet and savory. Elegant samosas and refreshments. Byob.

Raised in western Massachusetts in a family of artists (her grandfather was Norman Rockwell), Ms. Rockwell has recently moved to the Upper Valley. After a detour into academia, where she acquired a PhD in Hindi literature, she returned to her roots and took up painting again. Daisy Rockwell paints under the alias, Lapata (pronounced ‘láh-puh-táh’), which is Urdu for “missing,” or “absconded,” as in “my luggage is missing,” or “the bandits have absconded.”

Ms. Rockwell has exhibited in North Adams, Massachusetts, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Los Angeles. She has never exhibited before in Vermont, so we are privileged to present her Green Mountain début!

The Work:
These paintings are small, usually not more than ten inches square, and have a gem-like quality almost like varnish, though they are painted in acrylics and occasionally in acetone-based tempera (nail polish).

Subject Matter:
The subjects of Ms. Rockwell’s paintings are culled from the ranks of the famous and the infamous: a series of portraits of Egyptian protesters in Tahrir Square; a series of paintings of Alina Kabayeva, rhythmic gymnast and alleged mistress of Russian premier Vladimir Putin; a portrait of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange dressed as Santa Claus; a series of paintings of Russian ruler Vladimir Putin in masculine poses (and some in which he holds adorable animals); and a series of paintings of alleged and convicted terrorists in the Global War on Terror.

We hope this gives you some sense of what you will be getting into, when you visit.

Centaur, acrylic on wooden panel, 2011
Emo, acrylic on wooden panel, 2010

Monday, March 21, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Karen Henderson at Central Vermont Medical Center Gallery in Berlin

Atmosphere, seasons, emotions and time are themes that local artist Karen Henderson explores with her fiber wall pieces. Currently her work is on exhibit at the Central Vermont Medical Center's main lobby gallery. Ephemeral Landscapes: Woven Paintings by Karen Henderson features twenty three of her landscape inspired textile pieces.

Henderson creates the work using her hand-woven linen, silk, rayon or paper fabrics. After weaving, she then applies color through various textile dye processes (batik, stitch resist, dye painting, etc). Then she layers other fabrics for color effects, sometimes adding machine or hand-stitching for textural effects.

Coincidentally while this work has been on view, she has been working the past three months on a commission piece that will hang in another medical center -- all the way in Arizona. Karen says: "As I worked on this most recent piece, I gave a lot of thought to the many things people need to visit a medical center or a hospital for. Knowing from personal family experience, it can range from happy reasons to scary reasons...either planned, sudden or chronic...but for many visits/stays for care, they seem to share some aspect of hope…so that's what I decided to call this piece. And I hope it can uplift people, bring a sense of peace and calm to their reception area."

The show at CVMC runs through Friday, April 1, 2011. Located at 130 Fisher Road, Berlin, VT, the show will be open to the public when the lobby area is open at CVMC, 6:30 am to 9pm daily. There is more information on Karen at her website,

Images: Installation view of the exhibit at CVMC Hope, Commission created by Henderson for The Banner Ironwood Medical Center in Queen Creek, Arizona

Sunday, March 20, 2011

CALL TO ARTISTS: Maple Themed Show in St. Albans

The Village Frame Shoppe & Gallery in St. Albans, VT would like to invite you to participate in our first annual maple themed art show Sweeten Your Palette - A Sappy Art Show. This art show will hang April 11 - May 10, and coincides with the 45th Vermont Maple Festival, April 15, 16 and 17.

All styles of artwork and all media will be accepted. Please submit no more than one piece of original artwork with a Vermont maple theme to the Village Frame Shoppe no later than Saturday, April 9, 2011. Your artwork must be tagged with artist name, title, media and price. All 2-Dimensional artwork must be framed with the exception of gallery wrapped canvas paintings.

Although it is not required, we recommend that all artwork be for sale. All artwork for sale is subject to a gallery commission rate of 25%.

To receive a submission form, or if you have any questions, please contact the Village Frame Shoppe & Gallery by emailing Or call the gallery at (802) 524-3699

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Press Release: West Branch in Stowe presents Bisson and Wahlrab

Stowe, Vt.− Waterfalls cascade over heaped boulders and sunlight streams through vaulted forests in the West Branch Gallery’s exhibition, “Outside: New Visions of Nature.” Mariella Bisson, a recipient of both Pollock-Krasner and Gottlieb grants, and Susan Wahlrab, a nationally recognized artist working in paint and ink for thirty years, each bring a strikingly contemporary sensibility to their paintings of the natural world. The exhibition opened March 5 with a gala opening reception and a gallery talk by Vermont State Curator David Schutz, who also authored an essay for Susan Wahlrab’s forthcoming exhibition catalogue.

Bisson works in mixed media, collaging paper, oil paint, charcoal and pencil onto large linen surfaces to evoke the hushed transcendence of the natural world. In her paintings of waterfalls, collaged paper fragments become rushing water, slick boulders and mossy cliffsides. The artist’s preparatory drawings and watercolors are also included in the exhibition, revealing the artist’s labor and time-intensive process, and her experience of the wilderness she captures in her works.

Susan Wahlrab’s recent works arise from the transcendent beauty of northern Michigan and rural Vermont. The artist’s innovative use of watercolor yields a landscape of densely pigmented energetic marks that coalesce into a calm and pleasing whole. The artist layers thousands of small watercolor marks, allowing each layer to dry before applying the next. The West Branch Gallery’s landmark exhibition features fourteen new works by the artist on prepared clay surfaces—a shift in technique that has resulted in a groundbreaking body of work. The West Branch Gallery is open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 – 6 and by appointment. For information or inquiries, please contact Amy Rahn by email ( or by phone (802.253.8943). Or, visit the gallery website:

Artist: Mariella Bisson
Title: "Stowe, the First Snow"
Size: 38" x 50"
Media: Mixed Media on Linen
Year: 2011

LECTURE: Susanne Kubersky-Piredda at UVM in Burlington

Tuesday, March 22nd
5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Waterman Building 427

The King and his Jester:
Material Diplomacy at the Court of Philip II of Spain

Susanne Kubersky-Piredda, from the Bibliotheca Hertziana, Max Planck Institute for Art History in Rome

Antonis Mor, Portrait of Philip II on Saint Quentin's Day, 1560 (Monasterio de San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Patrimonio Nacional, Madrid)

CALL TO ARTISTS: Vendors for the 50th Annual Art in the Park Festivals in Rutland

Calling all fine artists and craftspeople! The Chaffee Art Center is pleased to announce its 50th Annual Art in the Park Fine Art & Craft Festivals for 2011. The Chaffee is currently looking for vendors for the August 13-14 and October 8-9, 2011 shows. We are seeking fine art of any media and totally handcrafted items of good taste and high quality. Artisans and craftspeople who would like to demonstrate their craft are encouraged to do so as well.

In honor of the 50th Anniversary Celebration, refinements have been made to elevate the shows to become signature events for the Central Vermont area. New collaborations with local merchants, new partnerships with arts organizations for marketing and promotion, an increased number of high-end buyers in attendance, and new vendors who represent a range of quality products are exciting aspects to expect in 2011! Vendors will be pleased to know that we are convening a panel of professional jurists who are well versed in the various mediums represented. This will ensure a high degree of quality from the artisans and products that are represented at our events.

Art in the Park Festivals are held in Main Street Park, at the Junction of Routes 4 & 7 in the heart of Rutland. This major crossroads in central Vermont provides a significant market for drive-by traffic. The show already brings traffic from the Central Vermont population with the addition of the tourists who travel Route 4 and 7, with estimated attendance of 7,000 to 9,000. Art in the Park has been voted one of “Vermont’s Top Ten Events” by the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, named one of the “Sunshine Artist 200 Best,” and voted Rutland Herald’s Best of the Best in the category of the Best Arts Festival.

Vendor information and applications can be printed from the Chaffee’s new website . The website will become a new tool to maintain communication with our vendors and the general public. As artisans are accepted, names will be posted on the Art in the Park information page with a link to the vendor’s website. This new feature brings added value by driving traffic to your website in advance of the shows. It’s a great reason to apply early and take advantage of this free publicity. Check out the website often for updates and new information.

Don’t delay. Space will be allocated on a first come, first served basis so we encourage you to submit your application in a timely manner. Application deadline for the August show is March 31, 2011 and August 15, 2011 for the October show. Discounts are provided if you commit to both shows by March 31, 2011. Vendors will be notified if accepted into the show(s). Together, let’s make 50th Art in the Park a celebration to remember! Visit or call 802-775-0356 for more information.

Monday, March 14, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Eight Artists and Numerous Creatures at Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery in Shelburne

Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery of Shelburne, will be showing Furry, Finned, and Feathered : Eight Artists, Numerous Creatures March 25-April 26, 2011. The exhibit will open with a public reception on Friday , March 25, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

The animal world, domesticated or wild, local or exotic, is a source of pleasure, curiosity, wonderment, and of course creative inspiration for us humans. This exhibit presents paintings and photographs by Annelein Beukenkamp ,Richard Brown, Janet Fredericks, Lynn Rupe, Josie Furchgott Sourdiffe, Sarah-Lee Terrat, Polly Thompson, and Adelaide Tyrol.

Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery is located at 86 Falls Road, in Shelburne Village. Hours are Tue-Fri 9:30-5:30, and Sat 10-5.

For more information call 985-3848, write:, or visit
the website at

Image: Two Pigs, acrylic by Sarah-Lee Terrat

PRESS RELEASE: Bread and Puppet Performances

7PM Friday, March 25 at the Bread and Puppet Ballroom, Glover VT: Lubberland National Dance Co. Presents: Man of Flesh + Cardboard, PFC. Manning + Truth Information: (802) 525-4515

4PM Sunday, March 27, at the Old Labor Hall, Granite Street, Barre, VT, Bread and Puppet Presents: The Decapitalization Circus, followed by Soup, Bread and Cheap Art $5 Donation.

Information at(802) 525-3031 & at B&P website:

Image: Photograph by Tara Gita from Song of Every 5 Minutes Being Checked

Sunday, March 13, 2011

REVIEW: Jayn Bier and Chip Hopkins at Art Space in Tunbridge

By Dian Parker

A delightful show, Scrapwork, is at the Tunbridge Public Library’s Art Space, through April 16, 2011.

Jayn Bier and Chip Hopkins are two artists now showing in Tunbridge at Art Space;. They each use recycled materials and both artists’ work is full of whimsy and character, full of story and humor.

Jayn Bier makes folk art patchwork pictures using fabric scraps, yarn, and buttons, stitched and appliquéd. Her textile pictures capture scenes of country life; hunting for arrowheads in her grandfather’s backyard, a cat hunting amidst cattails, autumn in a chicken yard, a man playing a banjo on his porch, the empty slippers of her grandfather at his bedside, boys skating on ice. Each piece is sewn with a sure hand, uniquely mixing fabrics and colors to form not only the details of her images but also the borders and frames around each scene. Checks and plaids, felt and sleek material, black and white, orange and yellow - all her combinations are pleasing, drawing you into the story. One called “Late for the Game” shows a boy on ice skates running to join an ice hockey game in the distance. His ear flaps are raised, his elbow lifted and reaching, hockey stick in hand, one leg pressing his skate into the ice as he rushes to catch up; his body pumping with all his might. The perspective in the picture is wonderful, showing the other boys tiny in the distance, already at play. All the boys have left their shoes tucked under a wooden bench at the side of the ice. There is a shining sun made from a button with its rays of thread, warming the players. The ice is a glimmering fabric of subtle colors.

Beside each of her pictures is a card describing Bier’s related childhood memories; equally charming. For her “Free Range Morning” she wrote: “Inspired by early childhood memories of morning egg gathering with my grandfather. He, I and the hens shared delight in freedom and breakfast.”

“Baby Giraffe and Bird” is an adorable scene, to which her note adds: “Scraps of ‘climbing skins’ husband Bruce discarded after outfitting his back country skis are reborn as a new little giraffe.” The delicate piece has all the charm of a sweet baby animal. For “King of the Roost” Bier uses great color combinations of mustard, rust and yellow along with black and white plaid. All of her patchwork pictures are darling and well made. In her artist statement, Jayn Bier says her age-old technique was “inspired by the frugal simplicity of rural life and learned from the artist’s grandmother and great aunt.” How wonderful that she has chosen to continue this delightful folk art tradition.

Chip Hopkins’s art work includes scrap metal sculptures and oil paintings as well. His sculpture is filled with humor, often tongue in cheek. “Clown” is made up of a liner from a stove burner for the hat, fencing wire for hair, spring from a garage door (maybe) for the body. It evokes the playfulness and pathos of a real clown. “Troubadour” has bicycle handlebars for legs, pipe elbow for a torso and rebar for arms. “Punch” is a fanciful character with his bicycle pedal body that moves. “Devil” is the only piece that is entirely painted. It is bright orange and devilishly imaginative. Hopkins wrote: “Scrap metal sculptures is a metaphor for my life – having been broken and reassembled to being a functioning member of society.”

My favorite of his oil paintings are “OIL CHANGE – OIL PAINTING”. Here is a Prussian blue old Mercedes sitting in a stark white room. A man in overalls is lying underneath the car holding an oversized wrench. Hopkins put the painting in an ornate large gold frame and the juxtaposition of subject, the folksy rendering of the painting, along with this fancy, gilded frame is wonderful. Another of his oils is “COVERED BRIDGE”, reminiscent of the Taos Art Colony painter Marsden Hartley from the 1920's. Hopkins’ tangled blue tree, blue road (or water) running through the bridge, white clouds (or snow) are like Hartley’s monumental shapes that he used in his impressionist landscapes. Chip Hopkins’ choice of frames adds an extra dimension to his works especially the metal frame he made himself, surrounding his “SPACE MAN” painting.

This is a show worth seeing.

Jayn Bier, Baby Giraffe and Bird, textile using fabric scraps
Chip Hopkins, Oil Change - Oil Painting, oil painting

PRESS RELEASE: Laurie Sverdlove Goldman at Korongo Gallery in Randolph

Korongo Gallery
18 Merchants Row
Randolph, VT 05060

will have a Vernissage and Grand Opening Reception on St. Patrick’s Day: Thursday, March 17, from 5 to 7 p.m., with its first exhibit: Laurie Sverdlove Goldman's Battlefields: WW1, on exhibit from March 17–April 25, 2011.

Korongo Gallery is proud to open its doors with a presentation of work by Laurie Sverdlove Goldman. "After many years of painting grasslands and wastelands of America,” Laurie says, “I became fascinated by a collection of WWI photographs of battlefields in France and Germany. The transformation of the growing fields I had been painting into nightmare fields of war seemed the most extreme illustration possible of landscape as a human canvas." Laurie moved to Vermont with her husband three years ago from California. Her work has been shown in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and other west coast cities, and is in the corporate collections of Bank of America, the University of California Medical Center, the City of San Francisco, Genentech, and the City of Oakland, among others. She will be at the gallery for the reception on March 17.

Images from:
Soldiers in Trenches – White series, oil on canvas

Soldiers in Trenches – Black series, oil on canvas

Friday, March 11, 2011

PRESS RELEASE: Twin Views at Blinking Light Gallery in Plainfield

Blinking Light Gallery
Twin Views
Exhibit April 1-30; Reception April 3

Twin Views is a photography show featuring work of area youth and their mentors.

The Blinking Light Gallery in Plainfield will host a special exhibit April 1-30, celebrating mentoring in our community. Participants in the Twinfield Together Mentoring program will exhibit their own photographic images in a show titled Twin Views. It includes the work of both volunteer mentors and their student "mentees" who are getting an introduction to photography.

Twinfield Union School's community-based mentoring program serves kids in grades 4 through 9 from Marshfield and Plainfield. Twinfield Together Program Director Merrick Grutchfield observed that "mentored students get more than periodic companionship and role modeling from the program. You start to see a look of confidence and competence in a child born of the broader experiences and adult friendship a mentor provides. It's such a great thing." There's another carry-over factor, too. Any child's life can turn dramatically on a single good or bad decision. Merrick can testify that kids who spend positive time with mentors tend to make better decisions.

In addition to the month-long exhibit in April, there will be a special reception for the exhibitors Sunday, April 3 from 3pm to 5 pm. The Blinking Light Gallery is located at 16 Main St. just off Route 2 in the village of Plainfield. Hours: Thursdays from 2 to 6 P.M., and Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 to 6 P.M. 802-454-0141; The cooperatively-run organization promotes the creative work of regional artists, craftspeople, authors and musicians.

Images: Photography protégées Cassie Homes, above, [photo by mentor Deanne Martin], and Elijah Alexander, right, [photo by mentor Rick Levy.]

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Press Release: ART’S ALIVE 1ST EVER FACEBOOK 1ST 50, Burlington

WHO: Art’s Alive

WHAT: Art’s Alive 1st Ever Facebook 1st 50

WHERE: Art’s Alive Gallery at Main Street Landing’s Union Station 1 Main St Burlington VT

WHEN: March 1 – April 30, 2011. Artist’s Reception Friday April 1, 2011 5-8pm.

HOW: This event is free and open to the public. Gallery hours: M-Fri 10am-6pm, Sat 10am-4pm

Burlington VT – On Monday February 7, 20ll at 3pm a live call to artists was created on Facebook by the Art’s Alive profile. The first 50 artists to respond automatically secured a spot in the exhibition to be held at the Art’s Alive Gallery at Main Street Landing’s Union Station in Burlington from March 1 until April 30, provided they could meet the submission deadline. The show was filled within three hours of the call going live and an alternate list was then compiled.

Art’s Alive is proud to be hosting its second First 50 exhibition continuing a Burlington tradition dating back to the Pascal Spengemann era at BCA. First 50 is a democratic exhibition which provides a showcase for amateur artists to exhibit their work alongside emerging artists, working artists, and professional artists well into their post-emergent careers.

There will be an artist’s reception Friday April 1, 2011 from 5-8pm at Union Station that is free and open to the public. For more information regarding this exhibition please contact:

ALEX DOSTIE 802.310.3211

PRESS RELEASE: Kate Emlen and Frances Wells at BigTown Gallery in Rochester

Kate Emlen and Frances Wells: Maine Coast to Hudson River

Opening Reception & Artist Discussion, Saturday, March 12, 2011

Discussion 4 – 5, Reception 5 – 7

Exhibition dates: March 11 – May 1, 2011

BigTown Gallery is pleased to open its 2011 exhibition season with a tandem showing of recent work by the accomplished landscape painters Kate Emlen and Frances Wells. Emlen is a longtime Vermont and Maine Coast resident. For an equal span of years, Wells has lived and worked alongside the Hudson River. Now in their mid-careers, the distinct path each has taken to an unwavering focus on landscape results in work that transparently registers the artist's direct response to what is seen, but speaks, too, of our relationship with the natural world we inhabit, succinctly expressing how life lived in a particular region accumulates by its year-in, year-out, cycles of life, work, and season; it becomes part of us, and we carry it forward.

Image: Frances Wells, Grove of Trees, 2010, 20" x 36", oil on panel