ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 5 * * All Arts News On the Web * * January 11, 2001


      ArtBits always features a calendar of the goings on of Franklin County artists. Check out these events around Franklin County. Each issue includes the entire text of our weekly newspaper column.

      Stop in for the AAC CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the first and third Thursday of every month. These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and workshops. We come together on the second Wednesday for a booked musical performance and an art exhibit at Simple Pleasures in St Albans. On the fourth Wednesday come to the Kept Writer in St Albans for acoustic Open Mike Night featuring music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.

Programming note: we have changed the AAC CoffeeHouses to a new date and time in January:
Simple Pleasures ... 2nd Wednesday of each month
Kept Writer ... 4th Wednesday of each month


      Heather McKeown of East Berkshire has opened the new Rock On Art gallery for exhibit and sale of her work.
      "These are real Vermont scenes painted on Trout River rocks" that she personally harvests, Heather said. "The crop this year was fabulous."
      One piece on display is a winter/summer topographic. Heather has painted on just about every media, canvas, wood, eggs, and has been selling paintings since she was 19. She has painted on rocks commercially for about 9 years and has pieces on exhibit in Canada and Europe. "I love it," she said. "I don't want to work in anything else anymore."
      Heather also works on commissions, from photos of homes, barns, or favorite scenes. She was commissioned to paint the historical buildings in the Eastern Townships. Those works are part of a permanent exhibit in the Frederick Amsden Gallery in Stamstead PQ
      The Rock On Art Gallery is in her home, which doubles as the Town Library, on Route 105 in East Berkshire. Call 933-2498 for info.


      Long hours and no pay, but great working conditions!
      Last week, I wrote about our planned activities for 2001. Now we have to figure out how to implement them. The All Arts Council is, after all, an all volunteer organization. That means we need your help.
      We offer fun, community services, neat programs, and a free gift but we need a membership director to sign people up. Our goal is 150 members.
      We are also looking for a permanent home, so we need a development director to help us raise to money for that as well as for programs like our Rotary Home Show exhibit, the AAC CoffeeHouse, and a Franklin County music and art CD.
      Please E-mail the All Arts Council for more info or to volunteer.


      The All Arts Council needs friends who want to attend concerts and shows, assemble art exhibits, support the arts, book bands, spread the word about events, and to paint or dance or sing or write.
      Member benefits include networking with artists and other members, a member night celebration, regular news of local cultural happenings, priority seating or discount admission to AAC events, advance notice of events, educational and cultural opportunities, as well as other parties and discounts.
      Residents, businesses, and visitors can join at the saint, patron, donor, benefactor, sponsor, or general member level. Student memberships are free; our student members complete community service projects to fulfill their membership. E-mail the All Arts Council for details.


      The Kept Writer has a regular poetry reading on the first Sunday of each month. Starting in January, Jedd and Launie will also host a new Writer's Workshop on the other Sunday afternoons.
      The idea is to bring work, read some work to other writers, and critique work "We're going to be getting writers together and letting them define how they would like it to be," Launie said.
      This will be a self directed workshop. "We don't see this as a standup reading," Launie said. "We'll push two or three tables together and let people do their thing."
      The workshop is for anyone who puts words in a row: novelists, textbook writers, poets, short story writers, and even arts columnists. "Bring what you are working on and want opinions on," Launie said. There will be homework. Writers should bring current work to the Kept Writer Workshops on Sundays at 2 p.m. starting this Sunday, January 14. Call Jedd or Launie (527-6242) for info.


      The first All Arts Council workshop of 2001 takes place on January 22. Business Development Specialist Simeon Geigel of the Micro Business Development Program will talk about creating a business plan and marketing issues for the individual artist and for our cooperative gallery.
      The Micro Business Development Program is a non-profit center operated by the five Community Action programs in Vermont. They provide technical assistance and training to Vermonters who own or intend to start a small business and will be helping the All Arts Council with feasibility assessment, business planning, and market analysis for our coming cooperative gallery as well as group workshops like this one.
      The workshop will be held in the NMC Conference Center on January 22. It is free and open to the public.


      010101: Art in Technological Times was the first museum opening of 2001. The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art's five freshly commissioned works went online one minute after midnight on January 1. The real museum was closed for the opening.
      The interactive digital artworks were created for the virtual gallery that exists solely online. A cable modem or other fast Internet connection will reduce loading time and the exhibition site's complicated interface takes some getting used to. (Hint: the box in the upper left-hand corner of the black grid leads to the art.)


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at the bookshelf or night stand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site.


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Dick Harper, Chair

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      This article was originally published in the St Albans Messenger and other traditional print media. It is Copyright © 2001 by Richard B. Harper. All rights reserved. Archival material is provided as-is. Links are not necessarily maintained (if a link in this article fails, try or your favorite search engine).
      Thanks to recent misuse of copyright material on the Internet by individuals and archival firms alike, we emphasize that your rights to this article are limited to viewing it and printing it for personal use only. You must receive explicit permission from the All Arts Council and the author before reprinting or redistributing this article in any medium.