CAC to be Workshop Presenters at NEFA CCX

The Cambridge Arts Council was selected out of nearly 100 applicants to be a presenter of a workshop on leading art initiatives at the upcoming New England Foundation for the Arts' Creative Communities Exchange in New London, CT this June. The group will present on the success of the Silo Project. 

Send Sarah a Tip

Sarah's work on The Silo Project (#siloprojectvt) exceeded our expectations. For that reason, we would like to send some more money her way (think of it as a tip). For those of you who appreciate her results as much as we do and want to contribute, please add your digital tip here or send your contributions, payable to Sarah C. Rutherford to:

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Mother Nature Adds to Our Weekend Celebration

Mother Nature's having her way this weekend so the Cambridge Arts Council's Silo Celebration and Potluck (yes, we WILL have the potluck dinner) will be held Friday, 8/12/16, 5:00-8:00PM at the Cambridge Community Center. There will be live acoustic music and we will have some tables and chairs though it would be a good idea to bring your own chair if you can. At 6:00PM, weather permitting, we will head over to the Silos for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the amazing work of our mural artist, Sarah C. Rutherford, as well as to honor the collaborative efforts of our community and sponsors to bring this project to fruition. 

The 8th Annual Festival of the Arts on Saturday, 8/13/16, 10:00AM-4:00PM, will also be held at the Community Center as the weather forecast for Saturday is for heavy rainfall and thunderstorms. Safety is our greatest concern so while we would prefer to be on Main Street, being inside is our best option. There is parking available at the Center and overflow parking is available at the Farmer's Market location. We won't let a little rain keep us from bringing this wonderful event to the community.

Lastly, keep in mind that the 20th Anniversary On-line Art Auction closes on Sunday, 8/14/16, 12:00PM and the donated art will be available for viewing at the Festival of the Arts. There's still time to place your bid! 

We are grateful for our partners at the Community Center, John Dunn and Russ Weiss, for making the space available to us. We hope to see all of our friends and neighbors this weekend to Celebrate Art & Community!

Silo Art Approved; Painting to Begin June 22

On May 16, 2015, Silo Artist, Sarah Rutherford, submitted her final design for the proposed artwork on the silos. Subsequently, hours later, the artwork was presented at the Village of Jeffersonville Annual Meeting. The 46 village residents in attendance assessed the artwork, asked questions, and ultimately voted unanimously to approve the artwork. 

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Meet Silo Muralist Sarah Rutherford This Week

The Cambridge Arts Council will host a gathering for residents of the community to meet Sarah Rutherford, the artist selected to paint murals on the silos on the former Bell-Gates property. The gathering will be held on Thursday, November 5th, 2015, 4:00-6:00PM at Visions of Vermont Fine Art Galleries’ Carriage Barn.

A Rochester, NY-native and a graduate of the University of Vermont, Sarah has painted more than 30 murals, bringing extensive experience to the project. “Vermont is a really important place to me,” said Sarah. “Ultimately, I would like these murals to bring pride to the current residents for the rich history of the generations that came before, and for the beautiful home they are passing down to their children.”

The artist will also be meeting with students at Johnson State College (JSC) to present on her background and personal journey as well as her wants and needs for the project and how to connect it with JSC students. Michael Zebrowski, Assistant Professor of Fine Arts at JSC, has created an internship program that gets students engaged in public art from concept, design, and implementation. Students interested in the internship are encouraged to attend.

Cambridge Elementary School students will share the books they made during their local history unit with the artist to help inform preliminary designs for the silo murals.

The first silo design draft is due in January 2016.

Silo Artist Selected

Since the day that Justin Marsh and Carol Plante attended the Animating Infrastructure grant workshop in early September 2014, neither knew the next two years of their lives would we focused around two giant concrete silos. Joined by Ellen Bethea, Tamra Higgins, and Ellen Hill, and comprising The Silo Sisters committee under the Cambridge Arts Council, the team progressed through two grant rounds and ultimately, in late February 2015, were awarded $15,000 from the Vermont Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Throughout this process, it has been the goal and intention of the committee to solicit ideas and feedback from the community, providing updates about the project, answering questions as they came up and have been thoughtful about creating a process that, to them, made sense.

The voting results on the night of the interviews (8/17) was the first consideration in the decision making process – it provided a starting point. From the beginning, the committee planned to take all of the information from all of the ways they received it — hand written surveys at Town Meeting Day, Front Porch Forum posts, website surveys, Facebook posts and comments, in-person conversations, the community forum, and the votes received during the interviews —  and use it to inform their decision. After seeing the voting results from the interviews, it was a long process to examine budgets, experience, how the design would impact our community, what other resources might be required to get the project done, and much more. It’s believed by the committee that this was their main role.

The committee also knew from the beginning that they needed to select a muralist that would 1) meet the criteria in the request for proposals and 2) best represent the community interests, which are diverse and deep. It was agreed to put aside personal choices, to the best of human ability, and make the choice that would be for the greater good of the community and they are confident that they have.

From the Silo Sisters:

First, we have to thank the twelve artists who applied for this project this spring, and the four that made it to the final round. The artist finalists were tasked with presenting a draft concept for the project, attending and presenting to the community at the Festival of the Arts, and then interviewing in front of a panel. We realize this was potentially a very long and laborious process for them, more so than a typical project. We wanted to give our final decision on the selection of the artist sooner, but because the vote among the panelists resulted in a tie (with the third place finisher very close behind that), we felt we needed to take more time to have a deeper discussion and ultimately make the best choice for the community. The committee spent an additional two hours following the interviews in making this decision and it was so incredibly hard for us to choose just one artist. But we did.

We have selected Sarah C. Rutherford as our final pick. Although we know either Anthill Collective, Mary Lacy, or Mary Hill would provide us with a fantastic end product and were more than capable of the task, it came down to our role with the community, and making sure we made the best choice to our ability.

Sarah is a graduate of the University of Vermont (2006, Studio Art) and has spent residencies at the Vermont Studio Center. She is a Boston native, now living in Rochester, NY. Since 2012, she has completed over 30 large scale mural projects, using a variety of mediums including latex, acrylic and spray paint. Her most well-known Vermont work is that at the Living/Learning Center in Burlington. She has several large murals at the Highland Hospital; her work has been featured in the New York Times Magazine.

Sarah is excited and honored to be chosen and will be spending the upcoming colder months preparing a final concept, incorporating the heritage and life of this community into her work. In the summer of 2016, Sarah will integrate into our community for several weeks while she completes the art installation.

We ask that, no matter your opinions of this project or the artist chosen, that this community welcomes the artist back to the area and is gracious, respectful, and hospitable. We look forward to the next twelve months, just as we happily reflect on the last twelve, and can’t wait to share in this moment and what it means for our community.

Decision Delayed

As stewards of the community, The Silo Sisters have decided to take another few days to reach their decision on the ultimate artist selected for The Silo Project. We have the community’s feedback, the panel member’s feedback, as well as our own thoughts to take into consideration and want to make sure we choose thoughtfully and with the best interest of the community in mind. That said, if our finalists weren’t so fantastic, we wouldn’t have had such a close race, or as tough of a call. Thanks for your patience, and for our finalists’ patience, while we sort through thoughts and budgets and review every element of each application. -The Sisters

Survey: The Silo Project

On August 8th, three of the four finalists for The Silo Project, submitted their concepts for art to the community at the 7th Annual Festival of the Arts. Below are the artists' renderings. Please complete our survey and choose your favorite art concept. The CAC would like to thank the three artists that attended and spent six hours answering questions from our very engaged community.

The finalists are: Anthill Collective, Mary Hill (absent from the Festival of the Arts; concept unavailable at this time), Mary Lacy, and Sarah Rutherford. For more info on each, visit this post.

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Silo Project Final Interviewing Panel Selected

At the 7th Annual Festival of the Arts on August 8, 2015, 4 members from the community at-large and the business community were selected by lottery to sit on the final interviewing panel for the selection of the artist to perform the painting for The Silo Project.

44 members of the community at-large applied, as did 8 from the business community. 2 from each group were selected by random via a random number generator (random.org) as were 3 alternates from both groups should any of the those selected not be able to fulfill their duties on the panel. The final selected community members will be joined by the five Silo Sisters (the committee at the helm of the Project) for an evening of interviewing the final artists in the running to complete the $15,000 project. The interviews will be held during the evening of August 17th. A final decision will be made shortly thereafter.

Meet the interviewing panel:

COMMUNITY

Eric Ford – Eric is the Communications Director at Burlington City Arts (BCA), where he is responsible for creating marketing campaigns to promote gallery, education and community art programs. Eric’s been with BCA for nearly 10 years. He lives in Westford, just over the town line, with his wife Koi and daughter, Xandra. Eric is involved with the Cambridge Music Festival and has helped other organizations, such as the Cambridge Arts Council and Sundog Poetry Center, with outreach of their programs through his work at BCA. Eric is also the co-Founder of the Vermont Film Society and a board member of the Vermont International Film Festival.

Gail Shea -Gail is a former Art Gallery owner and consultant. She also has years of experience as a woodworker. By combining these two she also made custom frames. She assisted artists who’s work hung at the Fleming Musuem as well as many galleries in NYC. Gail chose and framed art for many public spaces and privately owned homes. Of the public spaces there were colleges, wings of hospitals, restaurants, hotels and doctor’s offices etc. Gail spent ten years working with The Essex Children’s Choir and accompanied them to Carnegie Hall. Gail lives in Jeffersonville with the love of her life Tom Anderson and their two rescue dogs Lily and Ivy.

BUSINESS

Kevin Dobrowolski – Kevin lives in Cambridge with his children – one of which, Brooke, encouraged him to submit his name to the lottery draw. Kevin owns a woodworking/cabinetry business.

Francesca D’Elia – Francesca owns a small jewelry business, which travels to craft shows around the Lamoille County area. Her work is currently on display at the Visions of Vermont Gallery in Jeffersonville. She uses social media as a primary way to promote her work. At 17 years old, Francesca uniquely represents the youth as well; she lives in Cambridge while finishing her last year at Lamoille Union High School.