On April 14, 2021

Chaffee announces summer BenchART for Rutland area

The Chaffee Art Center announced Friday, April 9, that plans are underway for Rutland BenchART — a 2021 Community Street Art Project.

It will be a fundraiser for the Chaffee Art Center, and benefit downtown Rutland and the region, showcasing local creative talent while fostering the economic vitality of our communities.

“This project is a bit different from the All Aboard Rutland Train Project and The heARTs of Rutland 2012 project in that the majority of the benches will be permanently placed in locations in downtown Rutland and the area,” said Sherri Birkheimer Rooker, executive director at the Chaffee Art Center. “This will build on and enhance the current art installations of murals, sculptures and more. It will also be a marketing tool to bring in visitors, showcase Rutland and our region as a place to live and bring new business, and as something fun to do with family and friends.”

As part of the project, Chaffee will create a new walking tour brochure of historic properties in Rutland, which will also include the murals, sculpture trail, Rutland art ramble, heARTs, trains, benches and more that people can use along with the new app from the Downtown Rutland Partnership.

The project will begin with a series of talented local artists who will paint the benches, Birkheimer Rooker explained. “We will be using the high quality Telescope Casual Furniture Bezza bench with a wooden back added that the artists will paint both sides of. The tentative timeline is to have the benches on prominent display for the well-attended and highly visible August 14-15 Art in the Park 60th annual summer festival.”

The auction will be online and live (if the pandemic protocols permit) after the Oct. 9-10 Art in the Park festival.

Community partners include: Mayor Dave Allaire, the Downtown Rutland Partnership, Chamber & Economic Development of the Rutland Region, Rutland Redevelopment Authority, Rutland Regional Planning Commission, West Rutland/Town Manager Mary Ann Goulette, and The Paramount Theatre.

Artists are invited to apply to paint a bench. Sponsorship opportunities available for the limited number available.

For more information visit  chaffeeartcenter.org or stop in to the Chaffee Art Center, 16 South Main Street, Rutland, Thursday-Friday 12-4 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.- 2 p.m.

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