Art Reception: Corrine Yonce

We are pleased to invite you to our next Montpelier Art Walk event: a reception with painter Corrine Yonce. Her large acrylic portraits of residents in affordable housing units has been on display in our second floor Community Gallery, sponsored by National Life Group. The reception will take place on Friday, Dec 3, from 5 – 7 PM. Light refreshments will be provided.

painting by Corrine Yonce

This exhibit, part of the Voices of Home project, was curated by the Vermont Folklife Center. Voices of Home is an audio-visual storytelling project launched in 2015 by Corrine Yonce when she served as an Americorps VISTA volunteer with the Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition.

This exhibit brings together work from two of Yonce’s collaborative efforts, Voices of South Burlington Community Housing and Voices of Decker Towers. Yonce envisioned Voices of Home as a way to “erase the stigma surrounding affordable housing communities and educate our friends and neighbors about the importance of a stable, reasonably priced home in helping people lead fulfilling lives.”

Through the project she interviewed residents in a number of Vermont affordable housing communities, engaged with them through their stories, and learned how having affordable homes impacted their lives. She recorded those conversations and subsequently paired the recordings with painted portraits of each interviewee. www.cmyonce.com

Saturday: Family paint class with Katie O’Rourke

We’re hosting a special family version of our Mocks and Smocks event tomorrow at the T.W. Wood Gallery with local artists Katie O’Rourke. This class is perfect for families with children ages 8 and up. Look at this nighttime owl painting we’ll be working on together!

Owl and full moon, painting by Katie O'Rourke
Get into the Halloween spirit with this painting!

The class is on Saturday, October 23rd from 2 – 4 PM. This is the only family class we will have in this winter’s series.

One parent/child ticket is $40 and covers supplies for one painting. Additional children and canvases can be added to your ticket purchase. RSVP your canvas(es) today!

5 Questions with Emma Norman

This Friday’s Art Walk will feature Emma Norman’s work in our first floor studio gallery. Emma is one of CAL’s studio artists. We recently had a chance to ask her a few questions to better know her and her work. You’re invited to meet the artist at the reception: Friday, October 1, 2021, 5-7 PM.

Image from Emma Norman's exhibit at CAL
from “In the Night of Day”, currently on exhibit at CAL through December.

What is your background? 

I was born in Hawaii in 1988 and grew up in Vermont and Washington, D.C. I went to Pitzer College in Claremont, CA, and completed a Master’s in Visual Arts from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Montpelier in 2017. In addition to photography, I have also spent many years working in the coffee industry. I recently moved back to Vermont after a decade of living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

When and where did you start pursuing your art? 

My dad is a novelist and my mom is a poet, and they encouraged me to explore the arts from a young age. I took my first photography class at 11 years old in a repurposed Maryland amusement park called Glen Echo. I had a great photography teacher in high school named Karen Keating, who also ran the Glen Echo darkroom. She encouraged me to attend the Maine Photographic Workshops (now the Maine Media Workshops) where I learned darkroom techniques and alternative processes from the talented cyanotypist Brenton Hamilton. When I was 15, I began a mentorship with East Montpelier photographer and master printer Andrew Kline.

Who and what has influenced you the most ?

In addition to my teachers, my early influences were photographers Sally Mann, Francesca Woodman, and Claude Cahun. I cast a wide net of inspiration, from writers to musicians to other photographers and visual artists.

How would you best describe your style? 

I try to strike a balance between the formal and intimate. I like to explore narrative, memory, historicity, queer representation, and everyday life. Someone once told me I have a “promiscuous sensibility” which I took to mean that my influences are very eclectic. I have also been described as a magpie- I guess I am a collector and a maximalist! I tend to think of my work as pretty straightforward, though, and not overly reliant on concept.

Do you have any dreams or inspirations you are currently pursuing or would like to create?

I am getting ready to launch a small commercial portraiture business here in Montpelier and looking forward to becoming more immersed in our local arts scene. Please contact me if you’d like to have a portrait made!

I am currently working on a long term photography and oral history project called See My Heart, about a friend of mine from San Francisco. I met Morgan when I was working as a barista at Pinhole Coffee in Bernal Heights, San Francisco. I soon realized that my new friend was exceptional in myriad ways, and I became interested in helping to share her incredible life stories with the public through the form of an artist book. 

 Morgan has performed comedic autobiographical storytelling since the 80s, and has a successful woodcraft business. While she has entertained countless audiences with vulnerable (and hilariously rendered) stories of her gender transition from male to female, See My Heart explores the stories which haven’t made it onto the stage. This book offers a glimpse beyond Morgan’s gender and into the untold personal experiences of a talented woodworker, an important community member, and a cherished friend.  

Morgan in Her Element, Emma Norman

See My Heart is also the story of a friendship between two queer people of different generations (I’m 33 and Morgan is almost 70!) who’ve come together to ensure that her stories of adventure, survival, addiction, recovery, transition, love, loss, and triumph are not lost to history. Rather, we want to uplift and amplify these unique memories and present them in the timeless, fine-art medium of an artist book. I have a GoFundMe set up if you would be interested in helping me to complete this exciting project.

Our first floor Studio Gallery is sponsored by The Drawing Board, Montpelier’s arts supply and framing shop.

The SHARE Room is open!

Located in B5 (basement level), the SHARE Room is open for public use. It’s a self-serve swap room for usable art materials. The room is open any time the CAL building is open: Monday – Friday from 8 am – 5 pm and on the weekends from 10 am to 4 pm.

As the Surplus Hub for Artistic Resource Exchange, the SHARE Room is designed with these goals in mind:

  • Divert reusable items from the waste stream: please share your art materials with others.
  • Offers low-cost access to materials: art supplies can be expensive and hard to find. It’s FREE to use the SHARE Room
  • Easy and convenient swapping: come by when it’s convenient for you. No appointments needed. Take whatever you want to use.

Today’s items include: frames, ribbons, scrap wood, magazine and more. Every day is different. We only ask that items left behind are useable for the next person. No trash, please!

We can also host a swap event for your group! Please email us to schedule one: info@cal-vt.org

We are grateful for the general operational support of the Vermont Arts Council, Vermont Humanities Council, and the City of Montpelier for their support of our work, including the SHARE Room.

Mocks and Smocks Fall/Winter 2021

Painting by Cindy Griffith

In collaboration with the T.W. Wood Gallery, we’re excited to present Mocks and Smocks to the Central Vermont community. This is an alcohol-free paint and sip event held every 3rd Friday at the T.W. Wood Gallery. These run from 6 to 8 PM and are appropriate for ages 14 and up.

A special family event will be held on Saturday, October 23rd as well. This is great for groups with multiple children and geared for ages 8 and up.

Teachers include Katie O’Rourke and Cindy Griffith. All classes include paints and canvas, and refreshments. To see the schedule and to purchase tickets, click the button below.





Center for Arts and Learning Reopens for Montpelier Art Walk, June 4th

Art Walk Map for June 2021.

MONTPELIER, VT  — June 1, 2021 —  The Center for Arts and Learning (CAL) is reopening to the public starting June 4th to coincide with Montpelier’s Art Walk program, beginning at 4 PM. CAL is located at 46 Barre Street (number 6 on the map)

Featured during this one-night event is Chris Jeffrey, whose new glass works will be on display. He’ll be available for a meet and greet during Art Walk. CAL’s in-house artists that will open studios also include Liz Le Serviget and Michelle Kessler.

From the T.W. Wood Gallery’s contemporary archive, five artists will be on display in the second floor gallery. They include: Ray Brown, Claire Van Vliet, Phil Osgatharp, and Geneva MacDonald.

The first floor gallery features artwork currently for sale as part of a fundraiser for the T.W. Wood Gallery. They include works by: Dennis Lucas, Kari Meyer, Sue Stukey, Michelle Lesnak, Caroline Tavelli-Abar, Lois Eby, Joy Spontak, Roger Erikson, and Carolyn Ann Steward

Both exhibits will run through August 27th, with an opening reception during the June Art Walk. They are curated by CAL’s exhibits committee, led by Phillip Robertson. The public is invited to return throughout the summer to view these works. The Center for Arts and Learning will now be open 8 AM to 5 PM Mondays through Fridays, and from 10 AM – 4 PM on the weekends. 

A full listing of all the Montpelier Art Walk participants can be found here.

Montpelier Art Walk ad for June 2021.

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About the Center for Arts and Learning

The Center for Arts and Learning is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit 22,000 square foot facility at 46 Barre Street, Montpelier, Vermont where arts nonprofits and independent artists of any medium or modality can draw inspiration, create, perform, and connect with a larger artistic community.

Founded in 2012, CAL houses more than 25 studios — in addition to the founding partners, the T.W. Wood Gallery and Museum and the Monteverdi Music School.

CAL is supported by the founders and artists renting the studios, donations from the general public, and various municipal and state grants. 

Studios available!

Several private studios are available now for artists, musicians, and writers available in a community of creative people. Our building is currently closed to the general public, but accessible by studio tenants. Most spaces are about 8’x10.5′. Limited parking, wifi, utilities included, starting at $220/month. Please note our shared facilities are currently closed, and we’re asking visitors to wear masks. We’d love to have you join us – contact us for details!

Cat McQ: United Signs of America/ Paintings by Jeanne Thurston

For its first shows of 2020, The Center for Arts and Learning will be presenting Cat McQ: United Signs of America in our second-floor gallery, and Paintings by Jeanne Thurston on the first floor. Join us for our rescheduled opening reception on Saturday, February 15 from 4-6pm. Both exhibitions run through March.

Cat McQ, Fair Haven, VT, November 2018

Cat McQ: United Signs of America takes the viewer on a road trip looking backwards. Intense skies are punctuated by vintage signage, some rusted, some vibrant, each signaling a larger road culture. Each engages the viewer in a different way; for some, the sign’s story or geography is the obvious focus, but for others, the image’s composition and color come to the fore. In a country we often think of as regionally divided, these photographs portray a common aesthetic of glitzy convenience. Many of them promise the exotic, with all the comforts of home. Removed from their locales and presented against the same skies, they become like formal portraits of forgotten sitters.

Jeanne Thurston’s paintings use intensely colored, dimensional bars of color to create reliefs. As you move around the space, the optics of each piece change, revealing new colors that combine to effect remarkable movement and volume. Thurston takes inspiration from her work keeping bees. Like beehives, her pieces use stable, simple geometric forms to build a base for a dynamic, ever-changing surface. Her colors buzz and flutter, dancing to communicate.

Dec.6 Artwalk: Lauren Hood / How to Draw Everything

Join us on December 6, 2019 from 4-8 pm for Montpelier Alive’s Artwalk. We’ll have works in the first-floor gallery from How to Draw Everything, an observational drawing class taught this fall by Glen Coburn Hutcheson. How to Draw Everything features drawings by Daryl Burtnett, Hasso Ewing, Glen Coburn Hutcheson, Ned Richardson, and Nicole Wolfgang. These accomplished students show us individual ways of looking and seeing, detailing their world from objects to the human form.

Lauren Hood, Explore, collage

Upstairs in the second-floor gallery, we’ll be presenting works by Burlington collage artist Lauren Hood. Lauren’s richly colored, surreal images combine retro advertising shots with landscapes to create a dreamlike, floating narrative full of strange nostalgia.

We’ll also be hosting the Secular Holiday Jam Session & Sing-Along from 7-8pm in room 207 at CAL, presented by Monteverdi Music School. Sheet music will be on hand for classic holiday songs – musicians and singers of all ages and abilities are welcome!

Don’t miss other events in the building as well – get your tickets for the River Rock Holiday Raffle, hear artist talks at 5pm and see exhibitions by Elliott Burg and Athena Petra Tasiopoulous at the T.W. Wood Gallery, and don’t miss the unveiling of the newly-restored painting Old Home by the Sea by Hudson River School painter Worthington Whittredge (1820-1910) at 6pm, also at the T.W. Wood Gallery.

See you at Art Walk!

Laura Gans

Second Floor Gallery, Sept. 6 – November 30, 2019
Opening Reception Friday, Sept. 6th, 3-8pm

Laura Gans has an eye for structure. While her subjects range from architecture to the natural world, her compositions are unequivocally clean and graphic, focusing on details that articulate solid forms. Her stark, direct approach sheds new light on forms that are relatively ordinary – a flower or the side of a building. Many of Gans’ images, some taken years apart, have an uncanny compositional resonance with each other that brings out new meanings – whether it’s the rational, architectural quality of pine needles or the elegance and grace of a bird and a parachute in flight. The weight of spaces in her photographs draws in the air around them. Looking at them is almost an experience of sculpture.

Image of two birch trees, by Laura Gans