Gallery to hold May grand-opening show
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MARY MILLER LEE
Robert Sarly, president of the Vermont Institute of Contemporary Arts in Chester, and executive director Abby Raeder are shown inside the new gallery, which features contemporary artists. Its grand opening is scheduled for May 5 and 6.
Published April 24, 2012
The driving forces behind the Vermont Institute of Contemporary Arts (VTica), which is scheduled to have its grand opening in May, think big, dream big, and share a passion for contemporary creative arts.
For Robert Sarly and Abby Raeder, VTica is a labor of love meant to fill a void in the current Vermont art scene. Their hope is to become a catalyst to energize the development of a creative economy throughout Vermont.
“We are committed to bringing thought-provoking, out-of-the-box programming,” said Raeder, executive director of VTica.
Added Sarly, president of VTica: “It is creative thinking that will lead to innovations to get us through these times as we face the need to replace the manufacturing-based economy of the past.”
Before its scheduled grand opening on May 5 and 6, VTica pumped up the economy with a major renovation of the former American Legion Hall in Chester. The general contractor was Richard Crocker Builders Inc. of Chester. The renovation included creating storage that meets the standards of the American Museum Association for such things as climate, humidity and dust.
VTica combines a gallery, museum, school and special-events venue. The 2,000-square-foot gallery showcases contemporary artists in solo and group shows. The gallery space includes a raised stage with theater lighting and a projection screen for special events including performances, gallery talks, lectures and films.
The grand-opening show, “Paradise Suite,” scheduled for May 5 and 6, will feature the watercolors of Jeanne Carbonetti of Chester.
Sarly and Raeder, who share a passion for contemporary art, say that field has been underserved in Vermont. “. . . We want to coax out the artist who may have been let down or intimidated by other galleries,” said Raeder.
Jim Kardas of East Dorset is one of those artists who is pleased about the new venue. “I have often wondered why there was a dearth of quality venues to exhibit my works,” he said.
“When I became aware of VTica, I was surprised and elated: surprised, because I couldn’t believe there was going to be a Vermont venue dedicated to contemporary art. And elated, because I and the entire community of Vermont artists would have a legitimate and respected forum for showcasing our talents.” v