Exhibit highlights female artists
10/08/09 12:50PM By Lynne McCrea
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(Host) A new exhibit that just opened this week is highlighting the talents of female artists.
"Women to Watch 2010" at the West Branch Gallery in Stowe features five women artists who were selected from hundreds of others from across the state.
VPR's Lynne McCrea paid a visit, to see why these five women are being considered for a spot on the national art scene...
(McCrea) Curator Idoline Duke is helping with some final lighting adjustments of the "Women to Watch" exhibit.
("I think that's great, it's just lighting too much of the wall behind...")
(McCrea) Duke was in charge of choosing five figurative painters for the exhibit, which is sponsored by the Vermont Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, in Washington, D.C.
The museum reaches out to states to foster local artists, and, potentially, to bring their work to Washington for the museum's biennial exhibit.
(Duke) "I combed the state for what I felt was the most compelling figurative art out there right now. What of the work is really museum quality? And also, what group of artists will make a dynamic exhibit?
(McCrea) Thirty pieces in all hang in a far corner of the gallery that's been sectioned off to create a wall for each of the five artists.
(McCrea) "It's not a big space..." (Duke) "No, it's not and at first I was a little panicked about it, because we have 5 artists and I was worried about how we're going to fit it all in this tiny space. But when I brought them all in, and found the right spot for each artist I found that some wonderful relationships happened between the artists and the work ..."
(McCrea) The term ‘figurative painting' can bring to mind the traditional portrait. But it's more than that. Susan Abbot is one of the painters in the show, and she describes how the artists here present ‘the figure' in very different aspects...
(Abbot) "...You know, figures in relationship to their environment in my case, or in the case of Aline Ordman... Or portrait - which is a much more introspective view. And then, in Adelaide's case, there's the evolution of the figure - which is a juxtaposition to the human figure... and then, nudes - which you'd think would be the most intimate view, but actually there's a kind of ‘remove' from these figures. So it's a great variety, I think, in the show."
(McCrea) At the exhibit's opening reception, Wendy Love, of the Vermont Committee of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, spoke about the importance of museum, which is the only one in the world devoted to art by women...
(Love) "Less than 1% of the art hanging on museum walls around the world are by women. And less than 5% of the collections. So we think this is a very important resource...
(McCrea) The work of the five Vermont artists is now being reviewed by the museum for possible inclusion in its national exhibit next summer.
Curator Idoline Duke says the effort is especially helpful to artists in rural states like Vermont, where exposure to their work - and financial support - can be limiting.
(Duke) "Anything to create more of a community among women artists, I think is helpful. And then if one or two or even three of these artists are chosen to go to Washington, D.C., how great for those artists. It could change their careers".
(McCrea) In the mean time, the "Women to Watch 2010" exhibit will be at the West Branch Gallery in Stowe until November. Then it tours around the state at a variety of galleries, through next summer.
For VPR news, I'm Lynne McCrea.
Women to Watch 2010 Exhibit Schedule:
West Branch Gallery, Stowe: October 4th through November 8th.
Christine Price Gallery, Castleton: November 30th through December 18th.
Amy Tarrant Gallery, Burlington: January 8th through March 29th.
St. Michael's College, Colchester: June, Dates TBA