ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 8 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 6, 2004


      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 live music and more at the Fairfax Music Sessions at the Foothills Bakery in Fairfax most Saturday afternoons at 1 p.m., at ChowBella in St Albans 8-10 p.m. most Wednesday evenings, at the Kept Writer in St Albans mostly once each month, at the Bayside in St Albans Town most Sunday afternoons, and the Cambridge CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the first and third Wednesday of every month.
     These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. The booked performances and acoustic Open Mike Nights feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.


      St. Lukes Episcopal Church presents the Third Annual St. Lukes Art Gala and Auction on Saturday in St. Albans.
      The featured painting is Mount Mansfield at an Angle, painted in acrylic on canvas by Louise Bellows Cuonos. The mountain is painted from the lower Pleasant Valley area. "Of course I cut in cattle and sheep," Ms. Cuonos said. "I tucked them in because I thought they should be." The painting will be raffled at the exhibit.
      "I usually work with [acrylic on canvas]," she said. She works from photographs in her studio. "I should work outdoors, they tell me. I prefer to take the picture and do it when I am in the mood at home. Somehow I'm not as at ease when I'm out as when I'm in my studio."
      Studio work is freeing. The time a landscape artist is available to sit for the hours needed may not be the time the light is right.
      Ms. Cuonos studied at Moore Institute in Philadelphia, then "didn't do much for several years." She has taken workshops in Enosburg and St. Albans and participates in a winter group in Florida. "I prefer to paint by myself and then take it to a class," she said, feeling more relaxed about painting on her own.
      She is now doing portraits in pastels and likes to do animals. She captures her subject's personality through the eyes. "I think if you can get the look in their eyes, to me that's a good share of the importance of a portrait," she said.
      The raffle for Mount Mansfield at an Angle began at the Maple Festival and ends on Saturday.
      The art show and sale has grown each year. This year artists from the entire diocese will participate. The first year had 14 artists. Last year featured 21 and there are about 32 this year. "It would be nice to have it for all denominations," organizer Barbara Hamm said.
      The Art Show spans the generations. Exhibitors include Norma Bard, Barbara and Dick Barnard, Erica Brooks, Jane Bower and Clark Bushey, Pat Burton, Elizabeth Casavant, Ian Chase, Louise Cuonos, Kimberlee Forney, Carolyn Fouts, Barbara Hamm, Dennis Hayward, Chris Kenyon, Carol Livingston, Dollie MacNeil, Cindy, Mary, and Taffy Marshall, Deborah Melhuish, Carolyn Murray, George and Eamon Murphy, Amanda Parker, Miss Frances Plant, Brian and Dale Powers, Cynthia Rugg, Douglas Underwood whose painting is featured on the Art Show poster, Howard Van Dine, Calypso Vester (call Nancy 527-7186), Debra Wilkinson, Russ Walters, and Jan Young.
      Artists from St. Lukes have donated pieces for a silent auction to benefit the church. The artworks will be available immediately after the show.
      The St. Lukes art group meets in the Parish Hall every Thursday for suggestions, encouragement, and learning. They share books, magazines, and special techniques over a brown bag lunch. The group will soon meet year round.
      The St. Lukes Art Gala, Auction, and Reception runs from 1-5 p.m. on Saturday only in the St. Lukes Parish Hall in St. Albans. The reception will include punch, ice tea, cheese and crackers, Barbara Hamm's brownies, and more.


SOUTH HERO--Island Arts presents the Catamount Singers, 12 of the University of Vermont's finest undergraduate vocalist, in a concert of seasonal works on Mother's Day at 3 p.m. in the South Hero Congregational Church. Island Arts suggests a donation of $10/person for their scholarship fund.

COLCHESTER--The Vermont Youth Orchestra Association offers a residency for students to work with the string quartet Ethel, in conjunction with their performance at the Flynn Center on May 14.
      Billed as "America's Hippest String Quartet," Ethel plays amplified music, works with rock composers and has a "set list" with big expressive pieces.
      The residency will be held next Thursday, May 13, at the VYO home in the Elley-Long Music Center. It includes a composer reading session in which Ethel will play and give feedback on new works by composed by 8 VYOA students. There will be a string quartet masterclass.
      All events are open to the Vermont Youth Orchestra Association, their families, and the general public. Space is limited. Call the VYOA (802-655-5030) for info and reservations.


      Dana M. Whitco has been appointed Director of the National Dance Project, a New England Foundation for the Arts. NDP is beginning its tenth year as a program to support contemporary dance in the United States. Its strategy links the creation of new work with its potential to tour and reach audiences.
      NDP awards 15 to 20 production grants per season. These $15,000 to $35,000 grants are awarded in conjunction with NDP Touring support to assure that new work tours in the season following its creation. The Project is overseen by a group of 12 performing arts presenter Hub Sites, and seven dance field leaders, the NDP Advisors. Margaret Lawrence, Director of Programming at the Hopkins Center of Dartmouth College is the nearest Hub Site.
      Ms. Whitco served as a Program Associate at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, where she managed the Foundation's $15.5 million performing arts program. She has been the Associate Director of Development for Center Theater Group in Los Angeles.
      NDP receives major funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation


      Mother's Day certainly requires a special effort by young artist both culinary and visual. Kids Domain has a free collection of Mother's Day work, colorized (and reworked) from black and white copyright free clip art. Many are small enough fro easy download and have transparent backgrounds to use on color pages. A Kids Heart has flowers and other Mother's Day pieces in a zip file of .gifs for free download.
      As always, be wary of advertising pop ups and run your antivirus. software on all downloads.


      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 © 2004 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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