Four-County Arts Excursions | Fall 2020
The Four-County region (Franklin, Lamoille, Grand Isle, and Washington Counties) curls from the Mad River Valley in central Vermont up to the islands of Lake Champlain in the far northwest.
Start at the Bundy Modern in Waitsfield, an art and sculpture gallery in the Bauhaus style on a plateau with mountain views. Open anytime by appointment only, their current exhibit, Triad 2020: Paintings by Patrick Dunfey, Pam Glick, and Richard Jacobs shows until Oct. 18.
Also in Waitsfield is Valley Arts, a community arts organization that regularly exhibits work and promote the Mad River Valley’s creative sector through its annual Valley Arts Guide. Until Dec. 18 in their Festival Gallery, Valley Arts is exhibiting Favorite Things, a show highlighting the favorite subjects of a number of local artists. Valley Arts’ gallery hours are Wednesday through Friday, 1 to 5 p.m. In the heart of Waitsfield’s historic village is Artisan’s Gallery, which represents over 150 Vermont crafters and is open Thursday through Tuesday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. In nearby Warren, Art in the Village’s gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., next door to the famous Warren Store.
Travel north along the Mad River and you’ll reach the heart of Washington County, a corridor of the Winooski River connecting towns like Waterbury, Montpelier, and Barre.
Vermont’s capital city of Montpelier is known for Art Walk, a semi-regular evening similar to Brattleboro’s Gallery Walk, when the public mingles with artists and musicians at downtown businesses and special events. The last scheduled Art Walk this year is Friday, Dec. 4.
Montpelier’s newest gallery is The Front, an artist-run cooperative open Friday through Sunday or by appointment. The Front’s current show is Show 40, a group show featuring 14 artists. Down Barre Street is the T.W. Wood Gallery, open by appointment, which has shown works by local Vermont artists since 1895. On Main Street is Artisans Hand, an award-winning Vermont State Craft Center gallery and shop open daily.
Through October, the Susan Calza Gallery is showing Cribbed, a new exhibition confronting America’s legacy of race and implicit bias. The exhibition includes sculptural installation, timeless symbols and prose. The exhibit is part of "2020 Vision: Reflecting on a World Changing Year," a statewide project of the Vermont Curators Group. The gallery is open for walk-in visits, max three people per visit, plus mask required. Hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday through Sunday.
Montpelier is also home to the Savoy Theatre, an arthouse cinema showing the best in independent and foreign cinema. Films are shown in two theaters with limited seating for social distancing, and tickets should be reserved online when possible.
For an outdoor performance, turn to City Hall on Main Street, home of Lost Nation Theater. On Friday, Oct. 16, Lost Nation's founder and artistic director Kim Allen Bent will perch atop City Hall's front porch balcony to perform Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven." On Saturday, Oct. 17 at 5 p.m., Lost Nation presents "Songs of the Stage from the Steps of City Hall," a free, socially-distanced concert featuring several local artists.
Neighboring Barre’s Studio Place Arts offers three stories of visual arts, and an outdoor show. In their main gallery is Rock Solid XX, an annual show of stone sculpture by area artists, highlighting Barre’s long history as a granite and marble town. Rock Solid XX also extends throughout the town as Studio Place Arts’ annual Art Stroll, complete with downloadable map. In Studio Place Arts’ second floor gallery is work by Autumn Tomlinson, and in the third floor gallery is work by Larry Bowling. Studio Place Arts’ current exhibits run through Oct. 30.
For more outdoor sculpture head into the hills of nearby Calais, where The Kent Museum has taken their usual exhibition outdoors. Visitors are welcome during daylight hours to tour the grounds, where the work of several sculpture artists and the poet Megan Buchanan are on display. Check out our First Person experience of the Kent’s 20/20 Hindsight outdoor sculptures exhibit, and read about 2020 Creation Grant recipient Otto Muller's upcoming hybrid performance at Kents Corner.
North of the capital region, in Vermont’s dramatic Lamoille Valley, is the ski town of Stowe. For glassworks, visit Little River Hotglass Studio, or Ziemke Glassblowing Studio in nearby Waterbury Center. On Mountain Road in Stowe is Robert Paul Galleries, which shows artists from around the world in a wide range of styles and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Stowe’s Helen Day Art Center is exhibiting the photography of Dona Ann McAdams until Dec. 31, and their annual outdoor sculpture exhibition, Exposed, can be seen throughout Stowe through October.
Up the river in Morrisville, River Arts is exhibiting work by Gen Z artists reflecting on resilience until Oct. 30, and paintings by Seb Sweatman until Nov. 6. River Arts has also organized a socially distanced scarecrow decorating festival, viewable along the Morrisville Rail Trail through Oct. 31.
Further up the valley is Johnson, home to the famous artists residency, the Vermont Studio Center. In the Studio Center’s Red Mill Gallery until Nov. 4 is The Parallax View, an installation by artist duo Gibson + Recorder that reproduces one of the light experiments of Leonardo da Vinci. The Parallax View is available to be seen by appointment only.
Continue northwest to lakeside Franklin County, where in St. Albans the Artist in Residence gallery features four local artists through October, with gallery hours Thursday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Last updated October 20, 2020.