Art Projects


In August and September the Art Bus toured Starksboro's neighborhoods and stopped at Cota Field, the Jerusalem Schoolhouse, Lazy Brook Park, Common Ground Center and Clifford Pond.  Residents shared food, stories and created poetry together.  Each neighborhood has a local artist that will be creating a piece from the Roadside Conversation.  Jim Geier has chosen to take residents painting in the fields and backyards of Starksboro following the Cota field conversation.  Lausanne Allen, Ellen Spring, Matt Witten and Frank Bryan will be creating art from the South Jerusalem, Lazy Brook, Common Ground and Clifford Pond gatherings respectively.  Special thanks to the Jerusalem Schoolhouse Group, Linda Barnard, Meghan Hahr, Shanleigh Provost, and Alexis Weightman, Jim Mendell, Peg Kamens and the staff at Common Ground Center, Nancy Custer-Carroll, Art and Susie Clifford, Eric Rozendahl or Rockville Market Farm, Priscilla McQuade and Jan McCleery for hosting, volunteering their time or sharing their produce.  The artwork will be unveiled on Friday, November 6th at the Roadside Hoedown. To see photos and read more about Roadside Conversations 2009 click HERE.

Four teams of Mt. Abe teens paired with an adult resident of Starksboro interviewed and documented an individual in town and created a portrait of that person.  The portraits are mixed media wall pieces that had their grand opening on November 1st.  Caitrin Walsh is seen here working on her portrait of Ellen Spring, local artist.

The project celebrates the tradition of making maple syrup through the arts.  Sap buckets were painted by local youth and artists like Cynthia Guild Kling.  Buckets were auctioned off at the Roadside Hoedown to raise money for an arts and cultural heritage fund.  See the Sap Bucket Art event for more photos.

Through a series of informal community gatherings information has been collected that reflects what makes Starksboro a great place to live as well as what makes it challenging.  This clothesline of laundry states some of those challenges and opportunities.  The tags on the inside of the laundry normally tell you how to care for the item.  On these particular laundry items, the labels are blank and residents have been asked to pick up a pen and write a suggestion or thought about what could meet the challenge or help to solve/care for the problem.  The Clothesline will travel with the Art Bus.

Youth ages 7-teens worked with Matthew to create a photo documentary of their community.  Using disposable cameras youth created a photo documentary of their community/neighborhood.  Devin Humiston chose to photograph a tractor as something that was important to him and his family.

Brookside children ages 6-teens drew and painted images for "SLOW CHILDREN" signs to remind the adults to slow down as they drive into their neighborhood.  Images will be reproduced on colored vinyl and adhered to 10 wooden signs and installed on August 17th, when the Art Bus returns!

The space between the sign posts has been empty for too long so Brookside held a sign contest.  Ryan Lee featured cardinals, his mom's favorite birds, in his winning design.  The new sign was hung on October 25th.


Matthew and local artists-- Cynthia Kling, Ellen Spring, Sarah Detweiler, and Emily Rossheim illustrated section headings for the Jerusalem Schoolhouse Cookbook.  The Cookbook includes recipes from Starksboro residents and is being sold as a fundraiser.  Cookbooks are available at the Starksboro General Store, Starksboro Library, Town Clerk's office and Jersusalem Store.  Contact Blair Hall at 453-2044 if you'd like to order one.

Past Events

Handmade & Homegrown in Starksboro, 
Nov 1, 6, 7, 2009

Face the Canvas with Jim Geier

An easel, paper, paint brushes, strong cardboard backing to paint on, masking tape, acrylic paint and an old detergent bottle to hold the water for rinsing brushes are what Jim Geier carries in his artist toolbox.  At Art & Soul's  Roadside Conversation at Cota field Jim Geier, local artist and owner of Vermont Folk Rocker, shared his thoughts and experience as an artist and invited residents to go painting with him.  For five weeks this fall residents have joined Jim in the field behind the town clerk's office.  He'll be back in the spring with more community painting classes.

Neighborhood Photo Project, July 2009

Before Matthew could complete his sentence the youth of Brookside were already clicking photos of each other with their disposable cameras as part of the Neighborhood Photo Project.  On a recent Art Bus tour July 20-22nd that traveled from Brookside to Lazy Brook to Hillside to Robinson Elementary, Matthew was able to team up with some of Starksboro's youth to document the important things in their neighborhood.

Starksboro's apprentice photographers document the important things in their community

Garden Gate Project, June 25, 2009
Especially when the grass was high many wondered where the Community Garden was.  Tucked on the hill behind the preschool, Ruth Beecher's fifth and sixth graders and residents like Priscilla McQuade have been busy tending squash and beans.  After Thursday's Art Bus visit no one will be able to miss Starksboro's Community Garden now.  

The Art Bus made its inaugural voyage to Starksboro on June 25th for the Garden Gate Project. As part of the library's summer program, Matthew Perry worked with Starksboro youth to create a sign and fencing for the Community Garden. With Lisa Daudon, town librarian, and the gracious help of volunteers like Craig and Katrina Camara, Sam Cota, Tiffany Thompson, Alexis Weighman and Priscilla McQuade, Starksboro youth created a sign and decorative fence for the Community Garden.  Inside the library the 3-6 year olds decorated sumac branches and pie plates for startling the birds and other critters who attempted to ransack the growing produce. Outside, the older youth peeled, dug, drilled, sanded, nailed and hung their way to a new sign and fencing.  On Friday Sam Cota painted the scene of horses plowing a field-- a scene from earlier in the year when Pat Palmer harrowed the soil with his team of horses.

Sap Bucket Art, March 28, 2009

Residents created sap bucket art during the sugarmakers' celebration on March 28th at the First Baptist Church.  A number of Starksboro's youth added their artistic flare to buckets that have been retired from sugarmaking.  The decorative buckets will be auctioned off at the final Starksboro Art & Soul celebration in the fall.  

19th Annual Sugarmakers' Weekend Activities
In addition to sap bucket art, residents were busy sampling home-made syrup around town at 19 Starksboro sugarhouses and tasting sugar on snow at the First Baptist Church.  See more photos from the weekend below.

Starksboro Stories, December 4, 2008

Over 250 residents gathered at Robinson Elementary to hear stories from their neighbors that were gathered by Middlebury College students.  This town-wide celebration was the culmination of the first phase of the project.