Vt. artists welcome fall visitors to their studios

Vt. artists welcome fall visitors to their studios

Open Studio Weekend is held at sites across the state on Oct. 4 & 5

Oct. 4-5 — STATEWIDE — Leaf peepers love autumn in Vermont and traveling the state to see the brilliant show of reds, oranges and yellows shimmering in the mountains and valleys. Foliage visitors will also find artful surprises during their stay by meeting Vermont artisans in their studios during the Fall Open Studio Weekend.

The free tour takes place from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 4 and 5 when craftspeople and artists at sites in every region of Vermont will open their studios to the public. Bright yellow Open Studio signs are posted along the roads to guide visitors to each studio. Visitors experience a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the workspaces of glassblowers, weavers, sculptors, potters, woodworkers, printmakers, jewelers, furniture makers, painters, quilters, and other makers.

The Open Studio Map/Guide is free and available at Vermont welcome centers, galleries throughout the state, or on the Vermont Crafts Council website, vermontcrafts.com. It is easy to plan a tour with the Open Studio map: Just choose a section of the state to explore and find studios along the way. The destination might be a classic Vermont village with a number of nearby studios. Or, a tour can be fashioned by looking for studios with a favorite art form like pottery or woodturning or photography. Those who prefer spontaneity can look for Open Studio yellow signs along the roads and follow them to studio locations. Visitors will find appealing works of all kinds: traditional and cutting edge, functional and aesthetic, simple and sophisticated.

Martha Fitch, Director of the Crafts Council, says Open Studio is a great event because people have the flexibility to spend as much time as they want, whether on an interesting activity for a few hours or two full days of exploration. “It’s a chance to meet the artisans, share their passions and enjoy their hospitality,” says Fitch. “What better way to learn about Vermont than through the lives and works of its artists?”

The Vermont Crafts Council, which organizes the event, publishes a free map booklet available at Vermont welcome centers, galleries, and community centers that gives people an easy way to plan an individualized tour route. Regional information centers are highlighted in the guide as places to give studio explorers an overview of a particular area. Each studio is numbered with the location shown on the Open Studio map/guide. Directions, addresses and contact information are also listed. A map can be requested online at www.vermontcrafts.com, where an online version is available; or by calling 802-2223-3380 or emailing vt1crafts@aol.com.

Vermont Open Studio Weekend is a statewide celebration of the visual arts and the creative process in which Vermont artists and craftspeople invite the public to visit them in their studios. Open Studio Weekend is also a featured event during American Craft Week, a nationwide celebration of American craft over 10 days, Oct. 3-12.

Photos courtesy of Vermont Crafts Council

A collection of John Chiles’ quirky glass goblets. John Chiles, glassblower, is number 32 (Orwell) on the Open Studio Map. 

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