ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 6 * * All Arts News On the Web * * April 18, 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.


      "Our maple syrup is better than last year," Fairfax sugarmaker Doug Webb said. "It looks like a good amount of all grades."
      Any year with maple syrup is worth celebrating with food and fun and music. A good harvest is worth celebrating a lot. The 36th Vermont Maple Festival will be bigger than ever, with more entertainment, more food, more art, and of course, more maple. The Maple Festival begins next Friday, April 26 through Sunday, April 28.
      St Albans City Hall will be jam-packed with good food and fine art on Saturday and Sunday as the All Arts Council and the Vermont Specialty Food Producers bring together a taste testing and an exhibit of works by Franklin County artists.
      Pottery sculptor Diana Herder Bennett will demonstrate hand building techniques in the City Hall AAC exhibit on Saturday, 12-3 p.m., and Sunday, 1-4 pm.. "I'll probably do some pinch pots, a coil piece, and continue work on a tree piece," Diana said.
      The feature work is an original Louise Bellows Cuonos still life in oil to be raffled by St Luke's Episcopal Church. The drawing will be held at the St Luke's Art Show on May 11.
      The AAC exhibit in City Hall will also have oil and watercolor paintings and prints, fine art photography, sculpture, and original music from AAC member artists Eric Bataille, Bob Brodeur, Connie Clay-Bickel, Dick Harper, Mary Harper, April Henderson, David Juaire, Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard, Joy Mashtare, Matt Moreau, Patrick Murphy, Kate Ritz, Wayne Tarr, Valerie Ugro, Gustav Verderber, and Lauren Young as well as newcomer (to us) Helen O'Riordan and more.
      The City Hall show will also feature an exhibit of upcoming young artists from area schools and a Vermont Information Center display of Vermont's heritage, recreation, history, and products.
      "We will showcase the best bands and entertainers from Franklin County," said AAC director Jon Scott.
      There are free shows at the Main Street stage, plus magic acts and two concerts in the BFA theater, and a benefit weekend at the Kept Writer
      Starting at noon on Friday, the Main Street stage offers continuous free entertainment starting with the country music of Borderline, Kids on the Block-Vermont, the BFA Chamber Singers, and the exceptional Christian rock 'n' roll of Obediah. Friday evening features the annual Talent Show in the BFA Auditorium. Tickets are available at the Chamber of Commerce and at the festival office.
      Friday evening also opens the Three Muses Weekend at the Kept Writer Cafe in a weekend of song, words, and art to benefit the Abuse and Rape Crisis Center shelter project.
      The Saturday, April 28, lineup includes Magician Tom Joyce, The Most (Ben Patton and Matt Peck), Mark Sustic's Farewell Tour, the country music of Yankee Wild, and a free preview of the Fiddler's Variety Show. The Roxy Bissonette Dance Studio show and award winners from the Talent Show will perform. Claire Hungerford will officially open the 36th annual Maple Festival at 11 a.m. with the National Anthem. The Three Muses continues a "Muse-ical" lineup all day at the Kept Writer. Tom Joyce will host two more free shows Saturday afternoon in the BFA Auditorium. The Fiddlers Variety Evening Show in BFA Auditorium spotlights Canadian and American singers, dancers, comedians, pickers, cloggers, and fiddlers. Storyteller George Woodard will emcee.
      On Sunday, the Main Street Stage hosts WLFE Disk Jockey Jane Silk warms up the Main Street Stage and leads into the 10K race and Maple Festival Parade. After the parade, stick around for the rock and roll music of Silverback and the classic Green Mountain Wind Ensemble plus the Three Muses at the Kept Writer Bookstore and Cafe.


ST ALBANS--The Kept Writer hosts three musical events in a row this week. Open Mic night is now every Thursday. Musicians from all over New England show up to play and listen. You should sign up by 6 p.m. or e-mail the Kept Writer for info.
      Friday evening, the Cafe presents the great songs and great voice of folk and pop singer/songwriter Patrick Fitzsimmons at 7 p.m. On Sunday, the Kept Writer Magazine hosts a Release Party to celebrate the birth of a new literary magazine from 2-4 p.m. Meet some of the artists and writers in this premiere issue. Free finger food will be served and copies will be on sale at the cafe.

SWANTON--New England's British ballad tradition invades the Swanton Free Public Library on Monday as singer and scholar Burt Porter presents a free program of Vermont ballads.
      Ballads are a rich part of our literary and musical heritage. Mr. Porter's New England songs relate the often tragic narrative with intricate poetry and familiar melodies. He sings, plays fiddle and mandolin, and focuses on the Vermont versions of these songs. He offers a running commentary on the history and art of balladry.
      This free program from the Vermont Council on the Humanities is co-sponsored by the Swanton Free Public Library and the Swanton Historical Society, Monday at 7:30 p.m. in the Library Community Room. Call Ron Kilburn (868-3892) for info.

ENOSBURG FALLS--The Enosburg Town Band wants new musicians to join the Band at a rehearsal Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Elementary School Band Room. Call Alisa Martin (933-2062) for info.


      The Vermont Department of Agriculture is soliciting submissions for a traveling exhibition of ten major works. Ten Vermont visual artists will be commissioned.
      The works will center on Vermont's agricultural heritage and activities. The Department of Agriculture will also select one artist's work of the ten and purchase rights for the use of that image in print and electronic promotions for as much as the next ten years.
      All visual artists working in two and three-dimensional media are eligible to apply. Digital work printed on suitable substrate for exhibition in a traditional wall hanging style is eligible for consideration. This project open to Vermont residents only; the deadline is May 10.
      A prospectus is available from the All Arts Council or online on the Vermont Arts Council site.


ARTOCONECTO 2002 PRESENTS EXPOSED! (April 20)--NEA-sponsored event promotes new and emerging artists. All media. Click here or e-mail for info.

SCULPTURE SALMAGUNDI VI (May 1)--Juried indoor/outdoor exhibition at the Rocky Mount Arts Center open to all US sculptors 18 years of age or older. $5,500 in prizes. e-mail your postal address to e-mail for a prospectus.

NORTHERN NATIONAL ART COMPETITION (May 15)--Open to all 2-D art, this juried Nicolet College competition offers three $1000.00 Awards of Excellence and over $8500.00 in prizes. e-mail for info.

STAN & TOM WICK POETRY PRIZE (May 1)--$2000 plus publication given annually by Kent State University for first book of poems. Poets who have not published a full-length collection are eligible. Entry fee. Click here for info.


      Attorney Ivan Hoffman writes a fairly regular series of articles about legal issues of interest to artists, musicians, writers and publishers, web site designers and site owners. His topics include trademarks and domain names, about privacy, entrepreneurial topics including venture funding, and e-thics. He has recently covered fair use, trademarks, and protecting slogans.
      The latest article on his site is Co-Author Issues in Book Contracts.


      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 © 2002 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.