Brattleboro-West Arts Celebrates "Articulture"
The area west of Brattleboro is rich in artistic vision, talent, and quality craftsmanship. The historic Whetstone Brook corridor provides a rich seedbed for beautiful, quiet workspaces in this supportive community with easy access to metropolitan areas. It is no wonder that artists and craftspeople of local, national, and worldwide reputation have chosen to live and work here.
Brattleboro-West Arts includes artists and craftspeople whose workspace is west of Interstate 91 and within the Whetstone Brook watershed. This includes West Brattleboro, Marlboro, and the parts of surrounding towns that are within a few miles of the Whetstone Brook. BWA members are dedicated to supporting the artistic and economic growth of its members and community. The group has been in the formative stages since this past winter and consists of artists and artisans working in a variety of media including painting, ceramics, sculpture, wood-working, musical instruments, textiles, garden arts, culinary arts, and more, practicing at the highest professional level of creativity, innovation, and technical standards.
The association serves the arts community and its members by providing opportunities for artistic and business peer support, as well as access to expertise and shared marketing ventures. In turn, the strong arts presence contributes to the vitality, appeal, and "creative economy" of the area. As of this writing, current members include Josh and Marta Bernbaum, Doug Cox, Petria Mitchell and Jim Giddings, Michelle and David Holzapfel, Malcolm Wright, Naomi Lindenfeld, Xi Cai, Matthew Tell, Karen Kamenetsky, Kris McDermet, Ron Karpius, Sharon Myers, Jason Breen, Nat Waring, Zachary Roesmann, Walter Slowinski and Mark Littlehales.
The premiere event of the association is a juried group show throughout June of work by members of Brattleboro-West Arts (BWA) at the C.X. Silver Gallery at 814 Western Avenue in West Brattleboro. The opening reception is Saturday, June 6, from 4 to 8 pm. Located on Route 9, one mile west of I-91 Exit 2, on the left, the Gallery is open daily 9 am to 9 pm by appointment (802-579-9088) or chance.
The group show of 16 artists also heralds Brattleboro-West Arts' first annual Fall Studio Tour on September 19 and 20. Select members of the group will open their studios to the public to observe the creative process in its native environment and have an opportunity to purchase the fruits of this process. The tour meanders through the beautiful back roads of the area to spots made special by the eyes and hands of working artists and artisans. Each tour includes a diverse sampling of the breadth of art and craft that make up the richness of this creative community.
More information is available from Doug Cox, firstname.lastname@example.org or (802) 257-1024, or by viewing www.brattleboro-west-arts.com.
On the occasion of the Strolling of the Heifers, Doug Cox, in his Brattleboro-West Arts Manifesto, explains the celebrated "Articulture":
So, what do art and farming have to do with each other?
Agriculture is the application of human effort and accumulated knowledge, skills, and tradition to produce food and fiber from our environment.
Articulture is the application of human effort and accumulated knowledge, skills, and tradition to produce beauty and meaning from our environment.
As Brattleboro art mentor Ric Campman used to say: "Art is like food." Man does not live by bread alone.
Art is part of the working landscape. As we take deep satisfaction from the patterns we see when our world is shaped by the practices of good agriculture, so our lives and communities are enriched when shaped by the practices of good art.
Good agricultural practices require a profound and intimate relationship to the climate and soil of its place. Just so, art benefits from relating deeply to its place in space, time, and community. We believe that our task as artists is to dig deeply into the history, soil, and society along the Whetstone and share what we find.
The meaningful expression of our individual experiences of life can only happen within the context of the world we share with others. While our lives touch universal truths, the world in which we work is one of particulars: a particular place, a particular time, a particular set of relationships, a particular culture in which we work. The arts are the seedbed, to be nourished and cultivated, where the particular and universal grow together to feed our souls.
Copyright 2009, Gallery Walk, Brattleboro, Vermont