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Compassionate Community

Compassionate Community

Posted: June 22, 2017

It’s just after 6:30 Thursday evening. I enter Burlington’s Town Center Mall and scan the directory for Victoria’s Secret. The group I’m looking for meets in an empty store across the hall from the lingerie boutique. Two bassists, a cellist, and an equal smattering of violinists and wind players are sitting on folding chairs warming up their instruments. Caroline Whiddon manages the group. She moves from the front of the room to the back, stopping to answer questions, check in, and hand out tickets for the upcoming concert. Other musicians filter in. When it’s close to 7:00, Ronald Braunstein arrives. He is the conductor, but it is a violinist who first takes the podium. She tells the players to put both feet on the ground. They do. She visibly inhales then exhales, gesturing with her arms as she breathes. Read More
Artists and Their Communities

Artists and Their Communities

Posted: May 31, 2017

I spent most of May speaking with artists about their community. I feel lucky. My purpose was to curate a survey of Vermont contemporary art organized around artists’ connections to one another by asking artists to select someone for the exhibition. The results of this experiment, the exhibition “Connection: the Art of Coming Together” will be on view June 5-October 6 at the Vermont Arts Council Spotlight Gallery in Montpelier. A version of the exhibition will appear in print in Vermont Art Guide #5, due out in August 2017. Read More
Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper

Posted: May 25, 2017

A year ago, the Council published the results of the 2016 Vermonter Poll. The study made clear that art matters to us in our public life, schools, and homes. A full 85% of Vermonters agreed with the statement, “I value the arts as an important element of life in my community.” We shared this data with Paul Costello, executive director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development since 2000. He said, “This statistic doesn’t surprise me. It mirrors what we hear from Vermonters all around the state. In all the years I’ve been involved in work with Vermont communities, the arts turn up time and time again as key local assets, as a driver for the local brand, and as one of the crucial points of attraction for entrepreneurs, youth and new residents.” Read More
2017 Annual Meeting

2017 Annual Meeting

Posted: May 15, 2017

The Arts Council’s annual meeting will be held in Room 11 at the Vermont State House from 3:30 to 4:15 p.m. New board members will be elected by vote of the membership. Members have been sent a ballot in the mail; ballots can also be submitted in person prior to the 3:30 convening. The final quarterly board meeting of Arts Council trustees will be held on June 5 from 12:30-3:30 p.m. in Room 10 at the Vermont State House. The board meets four times a year to ensure the health of the organization by providing expertise and insight into policy development, financial vitality, and programmatic integrity. All Council board meetings are open to the public. Read More
The 2017 Garden Party is Here

The 2017 Garden Party is Here

Posted: May 15, 2017

… and you're invited! Gather in the Council's Sculpture Garden from 4:30 to 6 p.m. for music by Cajun Double Fiddles, good food, and a celebration of Connection: The Art of Coming Together. Step into the Spotlight Gallery to view a group show by the same name curated by Ric Kadour. Read More
The Art of Chance

The Art of Chance

Posted: April 27, 2017

Laura Jane Walker calls her pieces paintings and says the colored threads are brush strokes. The threads run inches or feet between nails in plywood. Some of the panels are brightly colored, some shimmer, some have only earth tones. The newest employ seed-shaped divots carved into the wood. All are built around a chance event — a spilled cup of coffee, an I Ching coin toss, a burn. Read More