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Summer: On The Road Again
Bao buns, art, and finding ice cream
Longer daylight hours and no snow nor threats of ice storms are what I love about summer. After 40+ years in the Upper Valley, I have come to accept winter as a season for cocooning at home. But summer? I am road-tripping and overnighting as often as I can.
Montpelier: Coconut Shrimp Bao Bun with spicy pepper agro dolce, citrus mayo, jicama pickles (photo, top) is on the menu at Oakes and Evelyn and is all the reason needed to drive north to the Vermont capital. True story.
Brattleboro: Two (of the many) exhibitions at Brattleboro Museum and Art Center:
GLASSTASTIC touches my heart every time. School kids are invited to imagine and draw creatures and to invent short backstories. Selected drawings are handed over to talented glass artists who produce 3D sculptures of the imaginary creatures. Drawing and sculpture are then displayed side by side. One example: Just above is a photo of the glass sculpture by Jocelyn Brown (JBFineArt), based on 9 year-old Jorja’s drawing of a“unumer” (her word) named Sally, a creature that is part unicorn, part mermaid. And, according to Jorja , Sally “ . . . loves to eat pie. . . And she likes to adventure to places.” For more information, click here, or if you’d like more than a sneak peak, this link will take you to the exhibition photo gallery. On view from June 24 through October 9, 2023.
On a more serious note, Human Nature Walk by Aurora Robson (photo, below) is the artist’s response to the deluge of plastic waste that surrounds us. Her new site-specific installation will be on view at the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (BMAC) from June 24, 2023, through February 11, 2024,
“ . . . For over 20 years, Robson has been radically reframing the potential of plastic debris, creating otherworldly sculptures and installations—"transforming trash into beauty," as BMAC Director Danny Lichtenfeld puts it—and supporting other artists in their efforts to do the same.”
Robson says she loves “working with debris that has bits of text, as I am a big fan of language and wordplay. I try to choose text that is in the present tense and is active and positive, or reassuring and uplifting.”
Have any plastic bottle caps? You can contribute to the exhibition. Click here to find out how.
Randolph: If you happen to find yourself far from Mac’s Maple in the middle of a heatwave (as I did recently) in need of a maple creemee to lower the temperature, Poulin and Daughters Family Farm is just outside of downtown Randolph. (I googled “ice cream near me” while I was several miles north of the Randolph exit on I-89 and for once was thrilled with the power of technology. GPS did the rest.) Creemees are made with the farm’s own maple syrup. They also raise beef cattle, with meat products for sale at the store.
Manchester, VT. The Red Dress is finally here! It’s the United States début of this stunning garment that has passed through the hands of seamstresses and embroiderers throughout the world for over a decade. At the Southern Vermont Arts Center July 1 through September 24, 2023. Here’s the story.
(Photo, top by Susan B. Apel, other photos courtesy of BMAC)
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And in case you are wondering . . . Susan B. Apel shuttered a lifelong career as a law professor to continue an interest (since kindergarten) in writing. Her freelance business, The Next Word, includes literary and feature writing; her work has appeared in a variety of lit mags and other publications including Art New England, The Woven Tale Press, The Arts Fuse, and Persimmon Tree. She connects with her neighbors through Artful, her blog about arts and culture in the Upper Valley. She’s in love with the written word.