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The Rescue Dogs
November 26, 2023 at 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Starting November 24, Frog Hollow Craft Gallery’s window will be inspired by a traditional shopper’s question, “How much is that Doggie in the window?”
Frog Hollow Craft Gallery will show a series of original wood-carved dog sculptures by artist Norton Latourelle. His show, “Rescue Dogs,” features a large collection of wood-carved dogs spanning his 50-year career. They include the first of a series of many breeds, old favorites he kept, and others that simply appeared through long-ago inspiration. Now retiring, the artist says he hopes these “shelter” dogs, who have been living at the Norton Gallery will find their “forever homes” this Holiday season. Frog Hollow has shown Norton’s work for over 30 years, featuring carved birds, dogs, and other animals.
Norton grew up in upstate New York along the Vermont border. After college in Boston, he moved north up the coast to Newburyport and the Parker River Wildlife Refuge, which reignited his interest in nature. He quickly began carving, using the inherited skills of his woodworking father. The tall and elegant Great Blue Heron, seagulls, and many migrating songbirds stirred his passions and he soon found a little storefront along Water Street, opening in 1975.
In 1989 he met and married Marlene and together they moved back to Vermont, found an old farm along Lake Champlain with sheep, a steer named Clarence, the barn cats that seemed to just come with the place, and built a gallery in one of the old buildings.
Over the years he had done craft and one-man shows around the country, but it was now time to stay home and be a part of the wonderful countryside they had discovered. With Marlene taking on much of the business duties of paperwork, photography, and communication, Norton worked in new directions inspired by the environment, many years of birdwatching, and the domestic animals that were now part of his life. Dogs, cats, and cattle all began appearing more and more in his work. Garden vegetables—onions, pumpkins, giant acorn squashes, their insects both beneficial and pests, all seemed to need documentation.
Over time they built a new house and spent countless hours removing and repairing old buildings, clearing brush, mowing fields, and establishing a sculpture field along the road. The gallery has now become two galleries and they continue to invite bike tours, day trippers and neighbors all to share in their beautiful Lake view, historical area, and the sense of peace, long a part of the Champlain Valley.