ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 6 * * All Arts News On the Web * * February 15 , 2002


      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 second and fourth Wednesday 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.


     Oops. The AAC/WLFE Feature Artist Showcase got bitten by the ice storm last week. We will spotlight from Maalox Mylanta and You--A Gastrointestinal Love Story, Tyrone Shaw and the Oleo Romeos' new CD, tomorrow morning. The Feature Artist Showcase is broadcast on Fridays at 8:20 a.m. on WLFE-102.3 FM, when there is a new release by Franklin County artists.
      The Oleo Romeos include Tyrone Shaw, vocals and guitar; Doug Southworth, keyboards and harmony; Will Patton, bass and mandolin, Casey Dennis, bass; and Eric Belrose, drums. "The real heavy lifting on guitar is Ted Mortimer," Tyrone said.
      Maalox Mylanta and You, a mix of blues, rockabilly, country, country rock, and swing, is the Oleo Romeo's first CD. Recorded at West Street Digital, it is available at Bakersfield General Store, Borders, Kept Writer, Lynn's Market, Pure Pop, and Rail City Market.


      Expo 2001 will feature Art. The Rotary Club of St Albans will fill both handball courts of the Collins Perley Sports Complex with fine oil and watercolor paintings, photography, digital art, and sculpture of artists including Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard, Wayne Tarr, and Fred Swan.

      Working artist and former AAC Vice Chair Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard paints primarily in acrylic on large canvas, makes trompe l'oeil murals, and creates digital art. Her pieces bring a spiritual feel to landscapes or skyscapes of the imagination. "I paint not just as a form of expression and communication, but as a song," she said. She often listen to inspirational music as she paints. She has grown from painting "what looks pretty" to expressive, emotional works.
      Natalie airbrushed acrylic on canvas in many of her earlier paintings but new gets a similar effect with traditional brushes. She called her digital art the same style of work but in a medium that offers more freedom.
      Natalie works as a full-time graphic designer, illustrator and graphic artist at LG Printing in St Albans and is an online mentor to student artists. In a program started several years ago with the Web Project, she goes online, guides students, and critiques their artwork. Her popular projects around St Albans include the Centennial Homecoming logo and the City Pool and Houghton Park murals.
      She is working on new traditional and digital work specifically for the Rotary Show.

      "Black and white is my passion," teacher and professional photographer Wayne Tarr said.
      Wayne received the Mack Derick Award from the Vermont Professional Photographers. Derick, a landscape photographer, was the first president of the group; the award celebrates the hands-on work of a photographer from original exposure to final print. In 1994, he was named The Most Promising Newcomer by the VPP. That same year he also won a Court of Honor award for his print titled, Quiet Moment. and is now working toward a Master of Photography degree, the Professional Photographers of America designation for top professionals.
      Wayne specializes in portraiture. Although he started as a freelance sports photographer for the St. Albans Messenger, he has also photographed weddings, served as staff photographer for the Tyler Place, and did advertising photos for the Daffodil stores. He opened a downtown St. Albans studio in 1990.
      He hasn't bought a digital camera yet. "I plan to be an old-time craftsman," he said about using competitions to improve his skills.
      Wayne will bring a high school student in the grass next to a cornfield in color and a new black and white dancer with a fine art look to the Home Show.

      The All Arts exhibit at the Rotary Home Show opens Friday, March 9 and continues through Sunday March 11. We will raffle a well-known work by Vermont artist Corliss Blakely to raise funds for ongoing programs. Many of the works will be available for sale.


JEFFERSONVILLE--Cambridge CoffeeHouse presents an open mike evening at the Cambridge CoffeeHouse at Dinner's Dunn at the Windridge Bakery next Wednesday, February 21, at 7-9 p.m.
      The Cambridge Arts Council sponsors the CoffeeHouse on the first and third Wednesday of each month. Admission is free but donations are appreciated. e-mail for info.


WHOA (February 20)--W H O A needs a new logo. A volunteer organization, WHOA fights online harassment and works to create safe and welcoming environments for all internet users. They want a professional image, appropriate for use on their web site and printed materials. First prize includes, autographed books, and more. e-mail or Click here for info.
PLANO ART ASSOCIATION (February 28)--National Juried Exhibition $1,000 Best of Show with $5,000 minimum prize money for water media (on paper), oil/acrylic, pastel/graphics, photography/printmaking/computer, mixed media/collage, and three-dimensional. Click here for info and prospectus.
CALL FOR POETRY (February 28)--Magazine/broadside series wants 3-6 pages and a brief bio; they prefer work of one page or less. Send a SASE to Poetry Motel, Box 103, Duluth MN 55801 for info.
BIRDS IN ART 2001 (March 31)--26th annual juried Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum exhibition. Contemporary paintings, works on paper, and sculpture must interpret birds and related subject matter. $35.00 entry fee. Click here for info
ABD16 AN INTERNATIONAL ART SHOW FOR ARTISTS WITH DISABILITIES (March 31)--Open to all ages, this juried exhibition will include over 40 works at California State University. e-mail for info.


      The first school recess comes at the end of this month. In the interests of finding artsy stuff to do, we are planning a week's worth of assignments in music and art on the Internet.
      United States artists have created two unique art forms: jazz music and the Western movie. Let's build one assignment around Jazz.
      The Internet delivers pretty good audio, video, and still imagery, particularly to users with a broadband connection. In fact, the Web is awash in music. Rock bands upload rare tracks and unreleased song mixes. and similar sites share or sell music by the track. Unfortunately, jazz music is hard to find.
      Online portals such as,, and give easy access to the thousands of musician, fan and commercial music sites, and search engines such as Google will find track listings for current and for out-of-print albums.
      Live jazz practically doesn't exist online. There are a few live concert performances, available as real-time cybercasts or archived downloads, on sites like the Global Music Network at and, until recently, the Blue Note jazz club at . (88.3 FM in New York) transmits diverse programming over the Web and the online-only has jazz channels. The New York Jazz Festival will cybercast many concerts from this spring's festival at .
      None of this is as good as a live performance in person, but it's getting closer and it is accessible from home.
      Half of the Winter break assignment is to research Jazz online. Check out Ken Burns' PBS series, find new sources of music and musicology, and share your findings with me care of this newspaper. We will collate the results and make it available at the Rotary Home Show in March.


      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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      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).
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