Celebrating Abenaki Art, Heritage, and Culture Art Show Open at Stone Valley Arts Center

Stone Valley Arts announces the opening of Celebrating Abenaki Art, Heritage, and Culture art show and events in collaboration with the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association.  The show opens in May and runs through Sunday, July 30th

The community is invited to meet some of the artists at a reception on Saturday, June 3, from 5pm to 7pm.  Prior to the reception on Saturday, VAAA founder and executive director, Vera Longtoe Sheehan, will present a lecture-workshop titled:  Reflections of Place:  Twist, Tie, Knot: Indigenous Textiles of the Northeast from 2:30pm – 4:30pm in the arts center’s first-floor gallery.

Understanding Place:  Wabanaki Textiles and Fiber Art provides the audience the opportunity to examine samples of twined weaving and learn how it connects to the land and Abenaki history. The lecture will cover Vera’s family oral tradition as well as her research into Wabanaki archeology and first-hand studies of surviving ‘material culture.’  Additionally, participants can make a hands-on connection to Abenaki culture by making a small textile sample, similar to what has been found at archeological sites of the northeast. 

Additional outreach events over the course of the run of the art show include painting inspired by nature with Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park artist-in-residence, Amy Hook-Therrien, storytelling and music with Saratoga Springs poet-laureate, Joseph Bruchac, and a workshop with Chief Don Stevens of the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki NationThe events are free, as it is in gratitude that we announce that Celebrating Abenaki Art, Heritage, & Cultureevents are supported by Vermont Humanities & the New England Foundation for the Arts.  Donations, as always, are welcome and greatly appreciated.

Featured artists include Charlie A., Amy Hook-Therrien, Francine Poitras Jones, Hawk Schulmeisters, Vera Longtoe Sheehan, Diane Stevens, Paul Rene Tamburro, and Kerry Wood.  The work represents a variety of media including basket making, photography, weaving, digital prints, painting, birch bark biting, ink prints, carving, and other traditional work that all connect to the cultural heritage, traditions, and philosophies of a people who have walked this land for over 13,000 years.  Please come and celebrate this heritage with us. 

 “As someone who greatly values my own Polish heritage and all it has to offer,” says SVA executive director, Diane Bargiel, “I am captivated by what I am learning about the values, philosophies, talents, and traditions of our Abenaki neighbors whose ancestors have been here for over 13,000 years.  I might be a little biased, but it seems to me that the Arts offer great ways to kind of ‘shake hands’ with each other.” 

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed do not necessarily represent those of the Vermont Humanities or the New England Foundation for the Arts.  

This project is funded in part by the New England States Touring program of the New England Foundation for the Arts, made possible with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts Regional Touring Program and the six New England state arts agencies.

Stone Valley Arts is located at 145 E. Main St., Poultney, VT 05764.  SVA can be found on the web at www.stonevalleyarts.org .  Click on the Events button to see the calendar and stay up-to-date on all that SVA offers.