ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 9 * * All Arts News On the Web * * January 20, 2005


      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 or at the Overtime Saloon in St Albans 8-10 p.m. most Wednesday evenings, 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.


      This column has often discussed the difficulty making a full time living in the arts in Franklin County. Area artists often juggle employment, families, school, and community, with their arts "job." The business end of the cultural economy, particularly marketing the resulting artwork, is often the forgotten part of the job.
      At least once each month, this column lists some of those resources both near and far. In winter, I like to reach out with calls for artists from warmer, sunnier spaces, but there are always local opportunities. Each might represent an opportunity to grow a new audience and make sales. And often all it takes is a phone call, mouse click, or stamp.
      Most exhibits and events that have appeared in this column over the years have had information and applications available online. This year marks a switch in submission requirements, though, as most of the sponsors ask for submission materials as computer files rather than or in addition to slides. It's a nice change, usually cheaper for traditional artists and far easier for artists who work in digital media.
      Scam watch: Worldwide, thousands of galleries, exhibits, and publishers vie for artists' attention each month. Some are legitimate commercial galleries. Some are email scam spammers looking for a fast buck. I focus on the events hosted by arts councils like ours, colleges, universities, and reputable commercial sponsors. Some have entry fees. Some do not. If you receive a call for artists or other invitation from a presenter you do not recognize, check with the Better Business Bureau, do an Internet search, or email the All Arts Council for more info.


      The 39th annual Vermont Maple Festival will come to St. Albans on April 22-24. The AAC will again showcase the best Franklin County musicians on the Main Street stage and host a major arts exhibit of area artists in St. Albans City Hall. More than 50,000 people attend this annual event, making it the largest Spring showcase in Vermont.
      For 2005, the Maple Festival art exhibit will be a juried show. The show is open to all Franklin County area artists in any media. There is no fee and exhibit space is free. Entries are due February 28.
      Solo singers, small ensembles, comic troupes, and bands from Franklin County can earn actual cash money by performing for us at the Vermont Maple Festival and we even do all the production. Press kits and audition tapes, CDs or DVDs are due January 28.
      Click here or email the All Arts Council for more info if you are an artist or musician.


ARTIST RESIDENCIES (February 1)--The 2005 summer residencies at The Hall Farm Center for Arts & Education are available to artists at all stages of their careers working in a variety of media. The time is an opportunity to work, relax, and reflect in the quiet refuge of the Vermont countryside. No-cost residencies range in length from one to six weeks. Click here for more details and application forms.

ARTS ALIVE 19TH ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF FINE ART (February 29)--Arts Alive invites Franklin County Artists to submit work for the juried fine art festival and exhibit in June. The show is open to all artists in all media. $25 entry fee. Arts Alive also has 10 different exhibit locations in businesses and public buildings in the Burlington area. Mail a #10 SASE to Arts Alive, 1 Main St. Suite #217, Burlington, VT 05401 for an application and show info or e-mail Rob Fitzgerald.

THE WILLIAM AND MARY REVIEW (February 1)--The literary and art magazine published by the College of William and Mary has selected art from professional artists worldwide for over 50 years. All media and themes welcomed. Send digital images of unpublished art in TIFF format (CMYK, not RGB). Contributors are paid in copies. E-mail for more info.

LANDSCAPES OF DESIRE (February 2)--The Center for Fine Art Photography is accepting entries from professional and amateur photographers working in black and white or color, using traditional or digital methods or elements of both processes. Awards include Best of Show, a Solo Exhibition, and Guaranteed Purchase Award. Submission by slides and CD images. The Center also sponsors Intimate Floral and The Essence of Self Portraiture with later deadlines. Click here for details and entry to all three shows.

CALL FOR EXHIBITION PROPOSALS (February 15)--The Constance Art Gallery in The Helene Center for the Visual Arts at Graceland University is reviewing proposals for solo or group exhibitions for the 2005/06 and 2006/07 seasons. Open to all media and US artists 21 and over. Insurance, honorarium, postcards, no commission. Send proposal letter, 20 images in slide or CD format, resume, statement and SASE to

U.S. SHORT STORY CONTEST (February 28)--This is the big contest of the year for short story writers. The Nelson Algren Awards seek short stories to be published in the Chicago Tribune. $5,000 prize, publication, and a lifetime of bragging rights to the winner. Publication and $1,500 prizes for runners-up. Entrants must be U.S. citizens. Submit up to two stories, 2,500-10,000 words each. No entry fee. E-mail or click here for more info.


WATERVILLE--The Cambridge Arts Council presents a Contra Dance at the Waterville Town Hall Friday at 7 p.m. Caller Mark Sustic leads the live music of Franklin Heyburn and Michele Lajoie. Dances are designed for dancers of all ages and abilities, including absolute beginners, with or without a partner. Families with children welcome. Suggested donation is $5 per person/$10 per family. Email Mark Sustic for info.

BURLINGTON--The Vermont Youth Orchestra performs on Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts. Led by Music Director and Conductor Troy Peters, the VYO will perform the Winter Meditation Concert, a blend of spiritual and mood-driven works. It is the perfect antidote for a cold winter afternoon! The concert features solos performed by VYO students Martha Bruce, violin, and Samantha Gelfon, flute.
      The program includes Rimsky-Korsakov, Russian Easter Overture; Mendelssohn, Reformation Symphony No. 5; Tchaikovsky, Meditation; Chaminade Concertino; and the Vermont premiere of Daron Hagen's elegant Emmanuel Fugue.
      Tickets are $10 Adults/$8 Seniors/$5 Students and are available at the door or through FlynnTix at 802.86Flynn. Call 802.655.5030 or click here for info.


      "Preditors & Editors" is a guide to publishers and publishing services for serious writers, composers, game designers, or artists. The site offers information and contacts for the purpose of seeking publication of work and, perhaps even more important, warnings about known scams or problems within the industry. P&E's ratings range from "highly recommended" to "strongly not recommended."
      Preditors & Editors has moved from long time host, the Science Fiction and Fantasy writers of America to Anotherealm and in Virtuo. The deliberate misspelling in the title is both an obvious play on words as well as a reminder that not all publishers or services are trustworthy.


      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 © 2005 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.