Saturday, July 21, 2012

Chaffee Art Center launches Artist in Residence Program in Rutland

The Chaffee Art Center has launched an Artist in Residence program with artist Cesar Persi Narvaez Machicao from Lima, Peru. Persi comes to us through connections with the Carving Studio in West Rutland. He is interested in developing community art projects and has had similar residencies in Massachusetts and South Carolina. Support for the program has been provided by Barbara and Bill Carris, and Chaffee Board Member Erin Shimp.

Artist-in-residence programs exist to invite artists and creative people to spend time in new environments. These programs provide a time for reflection, research, presentation or production for an artist. They also allow artists to explore their practice within another community environment, meeting new people, using new materials, experiencing life in a new location. Art residencies emphasize the importance of meaningful and multi-layered cultural exchange and immersion into another culture. The Chaffee Art Center is developing the artist-in-residence program as a means of engaging the community in new and creative ways and introducing new ideas. The program will focus on developing community art projects.

The project for the 2012 residency is a mural on the back of the Opera House building, in downtown Rutland. The project is a collaboration between the Creative Economy, the Carving Studio, and the Chaffee Art Center. Sponsors of the project include Vermont Country Store, Foley Properties, and Sherwin-Williams Paint. Narvaez has created a design with input from building owner, Mark Foley, Jr. The design starts from 10 feet off the ground, incorporates the building’s windows and will cover the entire wall. All work is being done from a lift. Local artist Brian Sylvester will be assisting Narvaez on most days. Volunteers are being recruited to stay on the ground to run errands, answer questions and help as needed. There is also a need for lunches for the artists and a bicycle to help Persi get around town. Anyone interested in volunteering or donating can contact the Chaffee Art Center at (802) 775-0356.

Image: Study for Mural, Persi Narvaez