ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 14 * * All Arts News On the Web * * December 16, 2010


      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 various restaurants around Franklin County throughout the week, 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.

      Find links to these events and more in our Spotlight!

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      Franklin County artists and musicians have great works available now but they also have stocking stuffers that range from photo cards and single CDs to miniature oils and iPad paintings. Their work can be found at the Artists in Residence Cooperative Gallery in Enosburg Falls, The Blue Heron Gallery in Hinesburg, Rail City Market and STAART Gallery in St. Albans, the Vermont Fine Art Gallery in Stowe, and other fine locations.

CORLISS BLAKELY--One of America's best known oil painters, this St. Albans artist added the iPhone and iPad to her palette of tools. "The painting comes to life before my eyes," she says of the new media. "It's all magical to me."
      Some of her 8 x 10" iPhone paintings or 9 x 12" iPad paintings are available for just $25. Call 802.782.9550 or click here for more info.

FARM--Sat., Cloudy, Calm, 36F, 10:44 p.m., the 2010 CD from this Franklin County band, is online at Tunecore, iTunes, Napster, and Amazon. The actual, physical CD (with silkscreened covers) can play in an actual stereo; that is available from the band at 802.933.2994 or by email.
      Farm has "three two-handed men who write songs and play them": Joshua Givens, Ben Maddox, and Jedd Kettler. Their "Americana-noir" music ranges from quiet, dark folk, and catchy indie pop to full-frontal rock

NATALIE LAROCQUE (BOUCHARD)--Franklin County's favorite muralist has a selection of her Vermont photography at the AIR Gallery. "Depending on the size of the stocking," she said, the gallery also has several of her original acrylic on canvas paintings, including Franklin Deer Herd, a waterfall, Woodducks on the Missisquoi River (Refuge), and Canadian Geese over the Missisquoi.
      Call 802.933.8370 or email for more info.

P.J. PARKS--My writer friend Peggy lives on Lake Michigan's shoreline. Her cookbook, Welcome Home: Recipes, Memories, and Traditions from the Heart, is cozy, warm, welcoming, and sends good smells from the kitchen. She sprinkled the recipes with family stories and photographs from the past. $26 with shipping from .

VERMONT SONG--The Vermont Historical Society's first CD, Vermont History Through Popular Song features mezzo-soprano Linda Radtke on a Vermont tour through the songs in the VHS sheet music collection. This sampler begins with the earliest song, The Green Mountain Farmer, from 1798 and continues to Vermont's state song adopted by the legislature in 2000. A 24-page booklet contains historical information and lyrics.
      The CD is available for $12.95 plus shipping online at or by phone (802.262.2626 x 307).


ENOSBURG FALLS--The Opera House at Enosburg Falls and Mountain Road Productions present a community theater tradition, Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol" at the Opera House starting this evening. Show times are tonightm tomorrow, and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m.
      Adapted and directed by Emily Frappier, the story of Ebenezer Scrooge who receives a visit from the ghost of his partner, Jacob Marley, on Christmas Eve. The cast includes many local children (and adult) actors.
      Admission is $10 for adults and $7 for senior citizens and students. Tickets are available at the Opera House and at Precious Things, Enosburg Pharmacy, Merchants Bank, Community National Bank, Peoples Trust Company and Better Planet Books in St. Albans. Email for tickets and info.

AROUND VERMONT--The Counterpoint Chorus has a busy weekend with the VSO Brass Quintet. They perform tonight at the Warren United Church at 7:30 p.m., tomorrow at Jay Peak Resort 7:30 p.m., Saturday in Grafton at the White Church 5 p.m., Sunday in Manchester at the First Congregational Church at 4 p.m., and Monday at the Brandon Congregational Church at 7:30 p.m.
      Robert De Cormier returns to lead the ensemble in a festive combination of brass and choral works perfect for the holidays.
      The twelve voice Counterpoint Chorus is Vermont's only professional chorus. They perform traditional music, new works, and Vermont compositions, offer rarely performed works, unique arrangements, and the work of contemporary composers, and do educational outreach and choral workshops in schools around New England.
      Soprano Claire Hungerford of Franklin and director Robert De Cormier are celebrating their final season with the chorus.
      The Brandon and Grafton concerts are free but tickets are required. Call 800.VSO.9293 or click here for ticket and show info.

SHELBURNE--The Shelburne Steakhouse 8 presents Carol Ann Jones and the Superchargers tomorrow evening at 9 p.m. The show will include the amazing flying Maqueras.
      "The band will join me for this rockin' performance at the former Sirloin Saloon," she said. "We'll sprinkle some holiday tunes, classic rock and good dance numbers in to make you merry! The Steakhouse is great about supporting local music." Ms. Jones also plays a solo gig there on Wednesdays.
      No cover, drink specials, and an atmosphere to dance in. Call 802.985.5009 or click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--The Cosmic Bakery hosts Carol Ann Jones in a benefit concert for the Franklin County Humane Society on Sunday morning from 10 a.m. - 12 noon.
      Call 802.524.0800 for more info.


FOCUS PROJECT (December 22)--Do you take photos of those you love? The Focus Project, UCLA's international archive of the world's most compelling photography, offers the opportunity to share your photography of those you love with the world. And maybe pocket five large. Entry fee. Click here for the upload links and more info.

VERMONT PHOTOGRAPHY (December 22 and January 18)--The Vermont Photo Space Gallery host juried exhibits with free matting and framing of accepted entries. The gallery hosts educational seminars and workshops in a 1,300 sq ft first floor store front at the Five Corners in Essex Junction.
      In The Arrangement, due December 22, showcase arrangements, from advertising to record photography, the abstract to the obvious, in still-lifes of your favorite images. Entry fee. Juried.
      Art and fashion meet in Human Artifact/Fashioning Photography, due January 18, images will cover the range of the pliable, influential field of art and commercial fashion photography. This exhibit will accept multi-page photo essays. Entry fee. Juried.
      Email or click here for details and questions.

WORKS ON PAPER (January 5, 2011)--The Main Gallery at the Pacific Art League features a new themed show every month. Works on Paper is open to all United States residents. JPG entry only. Small cash awards. Entry fee. Call 650.321.3891, email, or click here for more info.


     Let's be careful out there.
      There are more holiday parties per unit reindeer now than at any other time in the year. You may be the designated driver, but the other guy might not.


      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 © 2010 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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