BRATTLEBORO -- A three-day celebration this weekend is proof that a phoenix doesn’t have to be a bird, and it can rise from mud and rubble as well as ashes.
From Friday through Sunday, the Whetstone Studio for the Arts presents a three-day Gala Celebration of the restoration and re-opening of a grand old building punished by Tropical Storm Irene.
"It’s been a real journey since Irene. Now here it is, better than ever," said Naomi Goldie, one of the Whetstone artists participating in a gala that includes studio tours, artists’ demonstrations, music, food and more. "It’s taking a catastrophe and rising up out of that."
Severely damaged when the Whetstone Brook flooded and ripped a big chunk of the building away, the building’s future was uncertain. Assessed to be safe, the building has undergone a renovation for the last 10 months, always with an eye toward making it better than ever. This weekend’s gala celebrates that spirit.
"The spirit is about recovery. The spirit is about sharing. The spirit is about the dance of life," said building owner David Parker.
Add to that, plenty of fun.
The festivities kick off during Gallery Walk. Anon Thai Food’s new truck, opens for business at 4 p.m., and Dover area musician Colby Dix will play from 6:30 to 9 p.m., featuring as opening act Phoenix Lavender and Tall People at 5 p.m. Also featured will be art installations by the
There will be a booth from Southeastern VT Long Term Recovery Committee, whose aim is to raise awareness about the help the committee can offer (including anything from cleaning yard debris to rebuilding a house) and to reach more affected individuals and homeowners who continue to have unmet needs. They do not have to be FEMA registrants.
There will be tables recycled into works of art by ReNew, and "Vermont Strong" State of Vermont License Plates will be for sale.
On Saturday, Sunny Lowdown and his Electric Blues Band will play from 6:30 to 9 p.m. DJ Pocket will be on hand on Sunday from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m.
The Whetstone resident artists who are taking part include:
* David D. Parker Structural Restoration, who did the repair and restoration work on the Whetstone Studio for the Arts. Specializing in 18th and 19th century barns and houses. Visit www.parkerrestoration.com.
* Twin Vixen Press is co-owned by Helen O’Donnell and Briony Morrow-Cribbs. Twin Vixen Press is an etching studio collective offering classes in intalglio etching and providing press time and studio rental to printmaking artists. Twin Vixen will be open for Gallery Walk on Friday as well as Open Studio on Sunday. Helen O’Donnell and Bobbi Angell will be doing printing demos on Sunday.
* Kim Timlege and The Massage Studio, specializing in therapeutic mindful massage since 1999, and Eli Burke, licensed social worker and Expressive Arts Therapist, providing individual and group therapy for adults, children and families. Burke and Timlege will have a healing arts table outside on the River Patio Courtyard on Friday from 4 to 7 p.m., and Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m..
* Frabjous Fibers. Stephanie Shiman will do an Outside Glass Mosaic Installation Open Studio during Gallery Walk and Fiber Art Demo on Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or check them out on Facebook.
* Shambhala Meditation Group of Brattleboro (in Studio VI on the third floor), featuring a display of Wax and Wick Meditation Sculptures by Philip Hamm. Shambala will have an open studio during Gallery Walk from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., providing information and individual or small group meditation instruction to all. From 7:30 to 8 p.m. will be Sitting Meditation available to all. From to 8:30 p.m., the space will be open and people available to answer questions. On Saturday, there will information available from 3 to 4 p.m., sitting meditation for all from 4 to 4:30 p.m., and the space will be open from 4:30 to 5 p.m. for more information. On Sunday, all are welcome for sitting and walking meditation from 9 to 10 a.m. For information, contact Marcia Hamm at email@example.com or 802-257-1984.
* Sage Feldman -- original oils, cards, industrial tank installation, River Installation, bamboo murals on the Concourse side of building. Feldman will be selling original oils of her trip to India and Greece last spring. Her art cards will be available during the celebration.
* Naomi Goldie -- original oils of Vermont, New York City, Coney Island, the Lower East Side, Drag Queens, and all sorts of subject gaiety. Open Studio on Gallery Walk evening and on Saturday and Sunday from 2 to 8 p.m., with a live art demo each day 3 to 5 p.m. Goldie will have a display of art outside on the brick pavilion all three days (weather permitting) and prints for sale. Visit naomigoldie.tumblr.com.
* James Serry. Ancient Gallic stone masonry is the basis of Serry’s fairy tale maze of building materials and stone fence that surrounds the river side of the Whetstone Studio for the Arts.
* Rosie Schulick -- Rosie’s Wonders -- Handwovens, whimsical cards and beaded jewelry.