Salem Art Works’ Strength: The Power of Art Inside and Out | Vermont Arts

The three panels of Zack Lobdell’s “Wild Things” burst with color and movement. The explosion of orange, yellow, blue and green almost fills the canvases, black background pressed to the edges. Pale yellow lines evoke that exuberant energy of scribbling with a flashlight outside on a dark night, lines of light lingering in your eyes. Amidst the profusion, small glyphs and occasional characters float.

“Wild Things” particularly resonates with this moment in time as we move forward from our unprecedented last year.

Beyond its own complexity, “Wild Things” engages visual conversations with adjacent works of art – the ceramic “Glacial Melt” by Jordan Becker with its streams of pale glaze, the wood and steel by Paul Mauren ” Bicycles and Bamboo “and the painful moving glass and steel of Michael Scupholm” Private. “

This weekend, thanks to a new partnership with Salem Art Works (SAW) of Salem, New York, two exhibitions open at the Southern Vermont Arts Center in Manchester. ‘Force’, the indoor exhibit in the galleries of the Elizabeth Museum by C. Wilson, features works by 16 artists affiliated and invited by SAW and includes sculptures, paintings, prints, mixed media, glass and ceramic.

The open-air exhibition features 30 other artists affiliated with SAW, some with several works, their sculptures installed in the vast sculpture park and gardens of SVAC. Exterior work is expected to reside at SVAC for the next three to five years, although some may change during this period.

Also at SVAC at Yester House is the All Members’ Spring / Summer Exhibit and the Vermont Pastel Society Exhibits, both until June 6.

For “Force”, Pearl Cafritz, curator of the interior exhibition and administrative director of Salem, selected “art representing and interpreting forces both visible and invisible in contemporary life,” she said. Explain.

The pieces in the open-air exhibition “include a wide range of forays and investigations into artistic expression and the way in which physical objects exist in the landscape. The exhibit represents a collection of contemporary expressions of what is possible, ”said SAW Founder and Executive Director Anthony Cafritz, who organized the outdoor exhibit.

A short drone filmed video introduces visitors to SAW and its 119-acre campus. Founded in 2005 and located on a former dairy farm, SAW is a vibrant contemporary art center and sculpture park dedicated to supporting regional and international artists in the creation of progressive and new material.

Glassblowing, printmaking, painting, digital art, blacksmithing, ceramics and other workshops, a carpentry workshop, a performance and education space and accommodation for artist residences make part of its extensive facilities.

The extent of creativity at SAW is evident in “Force”.

“It’s in vibrant colors. It’s the materials. It is exploration. It’s in it all – including the barn dirt, “said Pearl Cafritz, noting that in Michael Scupholm’s” Reverence, “the oven-cast glass and the weathered iron fork lie in a hauled piece of earth. from Salem.

Throughout “Force” viewers have a lot to do with the selections of individual artists and also the connections between the pieces.

In Russell Serrianne’s pieces, the viewer is drawn to the curls and twists of his lines, recognizing their organic nature up close.

“I use the vine tendril as a drawing tool, as a guide, as a three-dimensional line. My process revolves around the selection of individual tendrils, each with a complex simplicity… which when intertwined create a fluid form, a composition. … In making these works, I am interested in creating a visual interaction with what is natural and, when applied out of context, creates a pause for re-examination, ”explains Serrianne in her artist statement.

In Brian Cirmo’s “People are Absurd,” viewers come face to face with faces – 18 individual faces, each filling its square canvas. The eyes are closed. In each is a revealing detail: a white cat, a diamond earring, an iced donut.

The last exterior pieces were installed on SVAC grounds this week. With the work of 30 SAW artists joining the spectacular pieces already on the site, there is an abundance to see. The installations give viewers the opportunity to see the work in the landscape – in open meadows, framed by trees, up close or from pathways or the causeway.

The distance between SVAC and SAW is less than 45 minutes by car. This partnership between the two organizations can raise awareness of creative opportunities on both sides of the border.

“I hope that in our partnership, we create greater regionalism for the arts. It’s so within an hour. We can build a stronger community through the arts, ”said Anthony Cafritz.

Christopher S. Washington