Featured Stories

In the Height of the Season

In the Height of the Season

Posted: August 1, 2019

We’re at the tipping point. The ground has warmed since the solstice; the days are as hot as they get. Cicadas sing. And when you notice the sun sets earlier you hear the call. "Get out. Now. Grab what's left of summer while it's here." Get out on the road with the windows down. Get out on the lawn and picnic or dance, listen, or watch. Whatever your groove is, and whichever #VTArts251 towns you still need to score, look to a festival as a solution. These events abound in Vermont in August and September. Read More
Sliding Into Tree Time

Sliding Into Tree Time

Posted: July 17, 2019

SiteTime : Cordwood was deliberately a slow-moving installation in the Council's garden. SiteTime : Cordwood : Sharing is a new exhibit in the Spotlight Gallery comprising documentation, sketches, and artifacts highlighting that two-year process which was presented in four scenes. Erika Senft Miller expressed abstraction through her performances and costumes. Nancy Winship Milliken worked with the materiality of wood through sculpture and prints, and Michael Zebrowski chose to create and record the situations for the cordwood to change throughout the time span. When you visit, you're invited to slide into something the makers of this work call “tree time.” Reflections by the artists explain. Read More
What Placemakers Say

What Placemakers Say

Posted: June 20, 2019

Creative placemaking is a growing part of Vermont’s landscape and language. The term, well-defined by Ann Markusen and Anne Gadwa in this white paper, refers to projects where “partners from public, private, nonprofit, and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood, town, city, or region around arts and cultural activities.” Creative placemaking emphasizes strategic action by cross-sector partners, a place-based orientation, and a core of arts and cultural activities. Read More
All About Place

All About Place

Posted: June 6, 2019

“It. Took. Hours.” —Gerry Whitaker , social studies teacher at Miller’s Run School referring to this stop-frame animation made by his students. Miller's Run is a PreK-8 school in Caledonia County. The entire school population, coming mostly from the towns of Sheffield and Wheelock, is about one hundred and twenty. An Artist in Schools Grant from the Arts Council supported, in part, ten days of work with Teaching Artist Evan Premo.The residency was a part of Gerry's and his sixth, seventh, and eighth graders' exploration of place and community; a unit called Thrive or Survive. Read More
A Thoughtful Invitation

A Thoughtful Invitation

Posted: May 23, 2019

The Flynn Center for the Arts in Burlington serves as a model on many fronts, including established and new ways of addressing inclusion. Executive Director Anna Marie Gewirtz notes that “the Flynn has really had a commitment to making the arts accessible for a very long time … it’s been central to our mission.” That commitment shows in the physical space. In addition, training for internal staff and calling on the expertise of external partners are priorities; teaching artists are well-versed in addressing multiple learning styles. The organization presents a diverse range of performers and has hosted multisensory exhibits. Anna Marie and former Director John Killacky offered a glimpse into the thinking that has backed consistent progress. Read More
You Are Welcome

You Are Welcome

Posted: May 9, 2019

“There truly is room for everyone under the big top.” Jennifer Carlo, executive director at Circus Smirkus posits that the history of the circus is a story of inclusion. “Circus really is all about celebrating differences and bringing it all into a cohesive whole.” Often performers excluded from more traditional art forms have been recognized and given a home. Circus, as she describes it, is built on “bringing different talents and different people together to create something that is just magical.” Jen is guiding the organization, with strong support from the board and their newly formed Diversity and Inclusion Committee, in renewed efforts to expand their residency program. The work stems from intentional strategic decisions. From a birds-eye view to feet on the ground, personnel at Smirkus strive persistently to eliminate barriers. Read More