On our cover: A Michelle Ratté curtain

This issue’s cover is a detail from the fall-themed painted curtain by Michele Ratté (micheleratte.com; mmratte@comcast.net), one of five artists who agreed to participate in Main Street Arts’ ambitious painted curtains project. (See “Curtains up,” page 38). The result of Ratté’s art has been described by Vermont Public Radio commentator Anne Lawrence Guyon as “a stunning alchemy of past and present, organic evolution and human manipulation, fragility and mass.” Ratté’s work can be seen in “Unravelled: Contemporary New England Fiber Art,” from Sept. 20 through Dec. 6 in the Remick Gallery at The Museums of Old York in York, Maine, and from March 14 to May 3, 2015, at Brattleboro Museum and Art Center in...

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Our picks: Fall events in Southern Vermont not to be missed
Sep08

Our picks: Fall events in Southern Vermont not to be missed

Wine & Harvest Festival Sept 19–21, http://www.thevermontfestival.com Set in the backdrop of our world-renowned Vermont fall foliage, attendees at this seventh annual festival will discover, savor, and enjoy Vermont vintners, small specialty food producers, chefs, painters, publishers, cheese makers, potters, jewelers, photographers and farmers. Chester Vermont Fall Festival Sept 20-21, 10-4p, http://www.chesterfallfestival.org Arts, Crafts, Food, Activities, Demonstrations Peru Fair Sept 27, 9-4p, Parade-9:45 $6 Admission – Children under 6 free, http://www.perufair.org “An Old Fashioned Country Fair.” ITV Fest Sept 26-28, Dover, http://www.itvfest.com ITVFest exists to propel the best of the best indie TV, web and filmmakers into the next phase of their career wherever that may take them. This ninth festival is the second one to take place in Dover. Brattleboro Literary Festival Oct 2-5, http://www.brattleboroliteraryfestival.org The 13th annual Brattleboro Literary Festival is setting the stage for another wonderful celebration of literature and books. More than 50 authors, artists and illustrators, poets, book professionals and writers for young people converge on Brattleboro to create a series of powerful, memorable, not-to-be-missed events. More than 5,000 people will attend one or more of the 30-plus events featuring authors such as Pulitzer-Prize-winning Irish poet Paul Muldoon, Pulitzer-Prize-winning historian Joseph Ellis (Founding Brothers), and best-selling fiction authors Emma Straub (The Vacationers), Paula McLain (The Paris Wife), and Andre Dubus III (House of Sand and Fog). NPR personality Ophira Eisenberg (Ask Me Another and Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!) and 2014 Golden Kite Award winner Tim Federle, who will read for 750 middle grade students and their teachers, who will converge on the Latchis Theatre from points all over Windham County. Columbus Day weekend • Grape Stomp, http://www.honorawinery.com. Oct 11-12. • Newfane Heritage Festival, 10-4p, newfaneheritagefestival.blogspot.com.Oct 11-12. • Heirloom Apple Tasting Day, all day, http://www.scottfarmvermont.com. Oct 12. • Dummerston Apple Pie Fest (www.findandgoseek.net/listing/dummerston-apple-pie-festival-2/food-festivals), Oct 12. • Stratton Columbus Day Weekend Celebration. All day, http://www.stratton.com. Oct 11-13. Pumpkin festivals • Keene (N.H.) Pumpkin Festival, www. pumpkinfestival2011.org, Oct 18. • Townshend Pumpkin Festival, 9a-4p, http://www.townshendvermont.org, Oct 18. • Manchester Pumpkin Festival, 10a-4p, http://www.visitmanchestervt.com, Oct 18. • Gilfeather Turnip Festival, Wardsboro, http://www.friendsofwardsborolibrary.org, 10a-3p, Oct 25. An entire family-oriented day dedicated entirely to one of Vermont’s tastiest heirloom vegetables. What would old Farmer Gilfeather think to see us having such a good time with his unusual hybrid tuber? Shop for turnip gifts, the commemorative Gilfeather T-shirt, Gilfeather movie DVDs, and the ever-popular Gilfeather Turnip Cookbook. Come to the Turnip Café for the turnip tastings, where local cooks show off their best Turnip Recipes. The celebrity judge for the Gilfeather Turnip Contest this year is Margaret Roach, a noted garden author and former garden editor for Martha Stewart...

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Music and theater
Sep08

Music and theater

Actors Theatre Playhouse Main St, West Chesterfield, NH actors-theatre.info, 877 666-1855 Thru Sept 20: Copenhagen. In Nazi-occupied Denmark, the play’s characters meet secretly and discuss a subject that may change the world forever. Oct 2-18: Ten Minute Festival. Ten Minute Plays capture pivotal moments and are comic, tragic, and uplifting life-changing upheavals that occur in exactly ten minutes. They challenge the playwright, the director, and the actors to make it all happen now, the way it does in real life. Bellows Falls Opera House 7 Centennial Square, Rockingham bfoperahouse.com, 802 463-3964 Ongoing: Known as the civic and cultural heart of the Bellows Falls community, the Opera House shows movies and has live events on a regular basis. See the web site for details and a schedule. Brattleboro Music Center 38 Walnut Street, Brattleboro bmcvt.org, 802 257-4523 Sept 13: Special Benefit Chamber Orchestra Concert, 7:30p. BMC faculty, past and present, former New England Bach Festival musicians, and other regional musicians will perform Haydn’s Symphony 49, Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins, Vivaldi’s Concerto for Two Cellos, and Mozart’s Symphony 29. Oct 12: 4th Annual Blanche Moyse Memorial Concert, 4:30p, Persons Auditorium at Marlboro College. The Chorale reunites with past members of the New England Bach Festival Orchestra in memory of their mentor, Blanche Moyse, to perform four of Bach’s glorious Motets, as well as two brilliant orchestral works. Dorset Theatre Playhouse PO Box 510, Dorset dorsettheatrefestival.org, 802 867-2223 Sept 18-20: Travels with Mark Twain, Ron Crawford’s riveting and funny one-man show re-creates Twain’s lectures from a hundred years ago, his adventures as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi, his mining days out west, the Hawaiian Islands, and his first tour of Europe along with his caustic, humorous observations (and a few tall stories). Grafton Inn, Phelps Barn 92 Main St., Grafton graftoninnvermont.com, 802 843-2231 All shows at 8p. Sept 26: Jason Cann, classic acoustic and current rock hits. Sept 27: First Annual Grafton Blues, Brews and BBQ Festival, 12-7p, with Ross Robinson, Chris Kleeman Blues Trio and Bob Stannard. Oct 4: Butterfly swing Band, classic swing grooves from the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Oct 11: Jason Cann, classic acoustic and current rock hits. Latchis Theatre 50 Main St, Brattleboro latchis.com, 802 254-6300 Nov. 1: To help bring attention to the critical need in the country and New England for specialized mental health care services for the LGBT community, the Brattleboro Retreat is presenting the Boston Gay Men’s Chorus Live at the Latchis, 7:30p. They are one of New England’s largest and most successful community based choruses. This event will also include the presentation of the Retreat’s Anna Marsh Award, created to...

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At the museums
Sep08

At the museums

Bennington Center for the Arts 44 Gypsy Lane, Bennington 10a to 5p, Mon-Sun (Closed Mon) thebennington.org, 802 442-7158 Thru Sept 14: Impressions of New England. Annual exhibition including scenes of seashores, rolling hills, foliage and New England wildlife, all captured in paint and bronze. Thru Dec 21: Small Works Show, with figuratives, landscapes, cityscapes, wildlife, still-life’s and more. Thru Dec 21: Portraying the Human Spirit exhibit, a small show of 26 pieces that capture the essence of the human spirit. Ongoing: Permanent collection, featuring Native American and Southwestern artwork, with 300 paintings, 50 bronzes, 50 Hop Kachinas, 85 hand-woven Navajo rugs and numerous pieces of pottery, jewelry and baskets. Bennington Museum 75 Main St, Rte. 9, Bennington 10a to 5p (Closed Wed) benningtonmuseum.org, 802 477-1571 The Bennington Museum’s major exhibition this year is an example of a major new trend in museum shows, writes Jamie Franklin, curator at the Museum since 2005.   “Museums, galleries, critics and collectors are all espousing the value of mixing and matching art across cultures and time periods, to powerful visual and conceptual effect. Not usually one to embrace trends, I’m all for this one. In fact, bringing the past and the present into dialogue and questioning traditional art-historical boundaries have long been core principles of my curatorial practice.”   Franklin writes: “Alice Neel/Erastus Salisbury Field: Painting the People (July 5–November 2), serves as the perfect illustration of how we are putting new strategies into practice by building on the strengths of our collection while simultaneously moving forward into new territory. The exhibition will juxtapose portraits by Erastus Salisbury Field, one of America’s best-known itinerant painters active during the 19th century, and Alice Neel, one of the most acclaimed American artists of the mid-20th century. It is my hope that this unusual pairing will cause visitors to the museum an initial shock, or at least a mild confusion, forcing them to ask, ‘Why?’   “Though separated by one hundred years, the portraits created by the 19th-century itinerant painter Erastus Salisbury Field and the 20th-century master Alice Neel have a remarkable resonance with one another. Examining the artists’ cultural, political and social milieus, as well as the subjects of their paintings and what painting meant to them personally, this exhibition reexamines the relationship between Modernism and its romantic notions of the “folk” in order to bring viewers to a more nuanced understanding of these great artists and their work.   “Field is represented in the museum’s collection by nine portraits, all depicting sitters from Bennington County. Included in the exhibition are three of these paintings that rank amongst the artist’s best work, including portraits of...

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Farmers Markets
Sep08

Farmers Markets

Every Saturday • Brattleboro Brattleboro Farmers’ Market, Western Avenue (just west of Creamery Covered Bridge), 9a – 2p, brattleborofarmersmarket.com. • Norwich Norwich Farmers’ Market, Route 5 south in Norwich, 9a-1p, morwichfarmersmarket.org. • Bennington Walloomsac Farmers’ Market at the Bennington Station, 10a-1p, 802 442-8934. • Londonderry West River Farmers’ Market, routes 11 and 100, 9a-1p, 802 824-4492. • Rutland Downtown Farmers’ Market, Depot Park, 9a-2p, 802 747-4403. • Springfield Springfield Community Market, People’s Bank Parking Lot, 10a-1p, springfieldonthemove.com. • Wilmington Wilmington Farmers’ Market, Main Street, Wilmington, 10a-3p, 802 464-9069. • Woodstock Mt. Tom Farmers’ Market, Mt. Tom Parking Lot, 9:30a-12:30p, mttomfarmersmarket.com. Every Sunday • Jamaica Jamaica Farmers’ Market, Main Street, Jamaica, 10a-2p, jamaicavt.com, 802 874-4151. • Chester Chester Farmers’ Market, at Zachary’s Pizza House, 11am-2pm, 802 875-2703. • Dorset Dorset Farmers’ Market at HN Williams Store, 10am-2pm, 802 558-8511. • Putney Putney Farmers’ Market, at the Putney Co-op, 10a-2p, putneyfarmersmarket.com. • Stowe Stowe Farmers’ Market, intersection of routes 100 and 108, Stowe, 10:30a-3p, stowefarmersmarket.com. • Windsor Windsor Farmers’ Market, on the green (State St), 11:30a-2:30p, windsorfarmersmarket.blogspot.com. Every Tuesday • Rutland Downtown Farmers’ Market, Depot Park, 2-6p, rutlanddowntown.com. Every Wednesday • Brattleboro Brattleboro Farmers’ Market, on the Whetstone Pathway, 10a-2p, brattleborofarmersmarket.com. • Woodstock Woodstock Farmers’ Market, on the Green, 3-6p, woodstockvt.com. Every Thursday • Poultney Poultney Farmers’ Market, Main Street, 9a-2p, 802 287-2460. • Manchester Manchester Farmers’ Market, Adams Park, Manchester, 3-6p, manchestermarket.org. • Castleton Castleton Village Farmers’ Market, Main St, Castleton, 3:30-6p, 802 273-2241. • Royalton Royalton Farmers’ Market, South Royalton Town Green, 3-6:30p, 802 763-6630. Every Friday • Bellows Falls Bellows Falls Farmers’ Market, Waypoint Center, 4-7p, bffarmersmarket.com. • Brandon Brandon Farmers’ Market, Central Park, Brandon, 9a-2p, 802 247-8473. • Fair Haven Fair Haven Farmers’ Market, The Park, 3-6p, 802 265-4240. • Ludlow Ludlow Farmers’ Market, 4-7p, Main Street, 802 734-3829. • Hartland Hartland Farmers’ Market, Hartland Town Library, 4-7p, 802 296-2032. • West Townshend West Townshend Farmers’ Market, West Townshend Country Store, 4-7p, nofavt.org. For more information about Farmers’ Markets in Southern Vermont, including a full schedule of market days/hours, visit nofavt.org. Most Farmers’ Markets in Vermont close by the end of...

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Open studios
Sep08

Open studios

Hand Crafted, Vermont Works by the Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers, Thru Oct 19, Mon – Fri, 8-4:30 and Sat 11-3, The Vermont State House, 15 State St., Montpelier, http://www.vermontfurnituremakers.com/ An exhibit of furniture made by members of the Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers. Admission is free. The Guild is an association of master level furniture makers dedicated to the promotion of quality craftsmanship, excellence in design, and the pursuit of artistic vision. Brattleboro-West Arts 6th Annual Open Studio Tour Sept 27-28, 10a-5p, West Brattleboro, brattleboro-west-arts.com Brattleboro-West Arts’ annual open studio tour brings together what is possibly the most eclectic group of artists ever to share a six-mile radius. Where else can you watch a weathervane maker, a rug braider, a wood carver and a stone mason practice their craft alongside artists who work with hand-dyed silks, colored porcelain, blown and fused glass, and locally harvested hardwoods? And that’s before you get to the landscape artists, portraitists and abstract painters. Check website for special localvore dinner, demos, music performances. 11th Annual Vermont Fine Furniture Woodworking & Forest Festival Sept 27-28, 9:30a-5p Sat, 10a-4:30p Sun, Union Arena, Woodstock, vermontwoodfestival.org More than 60 Vermont furniture makers, bowl turners, carvers, cabinetmakers and more will be on exhibit. Watch traditional methods of woodworking, purchase products made from our forests and see for yourself why Vermont woodworkers are rated second to none. Vermont Celebrates American Craft Week Oct 3-12 Vermont Celebrates American Craft Week is a collaborative effort of the Vermont Arts Council, Crafts Council, Department of Tourism and Marketing, Hand Crafters and the Fletcher Farm School for the Arts and Crafts. Hundreds of individual participants, events will be featured all over the State, including all Vermont State Craft Centers, the 36th Annual Putney Craft Tour, the oldest continuous craft tour in the country. In Vermont, craft provides a “sense of place” and an exciting lead-in to 2015, “The Year of Art” in Vermont (the Vermont Arts Council was founded several months before the National Endowment for the Arts—both organizations will be celebrating their 50th anniversaries in 2015). Weston Antiques Show Oct 3-4, 10-5p, Gala preview Oct 2, 5-7:30p, Weston Playhouse, Rt 100, Weston, 802 824-5307, westonantiquesshow.org Featuring renowned dealers from across the U.S. with American and English furniture, accessories, Americana, folk art, silver, samplers, paintings, oriental rugs, jewelry and more. The Weston Antiques Show is not to be missed for any serious collector, as well as the blossoming antiques enthusiast. Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival Oct 3-5, starts at 10a. The Practice Tee at Riley Rink. Hunter Park Road, Manchester. http://www.craftproducers.com A gorgeous autumn-in-Vermont weekend excursion: 150 juried artisan Exhibitors, great food...

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