Community Day – February 1 – FREE Admission for All
For Immediate Release: January 21, 2020
Contact: Susan Strano, Marketing Director
802-447-1571 ext. 204
Scot Borofsky (b. 1957) King on Throne, 1984
Enamel on cement
East 6th Street between Avenues B and C
Tiffany Family, Safford Street, Bennington
Photographer unknown, ca.1885 (altered 2020)
Original from the Collection of Bennington Museum
Bennington Museum’s Community Day – FREE Admission and GREAT Exhibitions
“From its beginning, Bennington Museum has collected documents, objects, and art that reflect, in part, the region’s, and state’s rich history. However, over the past year, the Museum has begun to ask itself whether they have done a good job at being inclusive of indigenous people, people of color, and women. Whose stories have we been telling? How do we better tell the entire story, not just that representing one point of view? We are being asked to break through the “dominant narrative,” to face up to the problematic history of many museums, and to dismantle it. As we re-open the doors for another season, we will be taking a more inclusive stand in some of the exhibitions we present.” Deana Mallory, Director of Programs
Sponsored by Price Chopper’s Golub Foundation, you are invited to visit the Museum on Saturday, February 1 when admission to Bennington Museum is FREE for everyone from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Visit all the new exhibitions and interact with some of the student artists who are invited to come in and pick-up their Certificate of Participation in the 2020 Annual Student Art Exhibition.
Art, history, and innovation are on view too in the Museum Store, and on Community Day all Museum members receive a 25% discount on their entire purchase, while non-members receive a 15% discount. Select from a wide variety of Vermont artisan crafted items. Glass, jewelry, puzzles, prints, and a full range of Grandma Moses products are available. Don’t leave without stopping by the Shop.
Another new addition to this Community Day is the opportunity to explore and learn more about the Museum’s Research Library. Bennington Museum’s library is the region’s most comprehensive resource on the history of Vermont and genealogy of New England and Vermont families. The library’s collection has placed emphasis on documents not found online including books, vital records, newspapers, and other primary sources. The library will be open 10:00 am to 2:00 pm with presentations by Research Librarian Tyler Resch at 11:30 am and 1:00 pm.
Tiffany Family, Safford Street, Bennington. Photographer unknown, ca.1885 (altered 2020) Original from the Collection of Bennington Museum
Experience the sounds and silences from instruments held in the Museum’s collection in (re)Sounding, on view through May 25.Join the curators from 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm and hear about their experiences as they unfold the soundscape of early Vermont and present new contemporary compositions created on many of the instruments in the exhibition. Curated by artists/musicians Angus McCullough, Jake Nussbaum, and Adam Tinkle, collectively known as Seven Count, this visual and auditory installation brings new life to old instruments which in many cases have laid silent in the Museum’s collection for decades. Hear contemporary compositions created specifically for this exhibition on instruments that haven’t been played in decades and explore yet another set of “silences” that have been uncovered.
While the sounds created by these instruments stand as the primary focus of (re)Sounding, addressed through this avant-garde installation are questions of gaps in the Museum’s collection created by the lack of instruments played by the Abenaki or Mahicans, the native people who lived in this region for thousands of years and the instruments of Africans and People of Color, many who survived the epidemic of slavery throughout the country only to find themselves in the Bennington area either enslaved or as a free person. Only a few instruments in the collection represent those which were played by women in the late 19th to early 20th century, when publicly performed music in this region was dominated by white males. And what does it tell us that the Museum has acquired no instruments dated later than the 1920s? Sound and music, meanwhile, remain an ongoing, essential part of life, and the diverse communities of people who live in this region together in harmony and dissonance continue to create and recreate their world through sound. Certainly, the Museum’s collection practices have changed over the years, as well as its relationship to “history.” So why then does the timeline stop where it does? Why are the instruments of everyday life deemed historical only before a certain time?
“The objects here sound out histories of war, empire, nationalism, spirituality, technological innovation, gender inequality, and colonialism. More broadly, they insist on the importance of music and collective sounding as essential practices in the making of identity, community, and history. They emerge out of a shared past that is unstable, contested, noisy, and filled with silences.” state the curators.
Scot Borofsky (b. 1957) King on Throne, 1984 Enamel on cement East 6th Street between Avenues B and C
Featured in the Regional Artists Gallery through May 10 is Gritty Streets to Green Mountains: Paintings by Scot Borofsky. Borofsky has navigated an artistic journey divided between the Green Mountains of southern Vermont, where he grew up and has lived and worked much of his adult life, and the gritty streets of New York City, where he had a vibrant career as a street artist from the early 1980s into the mid-1990s. In addition to his home bases of Vermont and New York, Borofsky has traveled extensively in Mexico and Central America. His work draws on a deep well of visual precedents and inspiration, from the patterning and pictographic motifs of ancient and indigenous cultures that he has encountered on his travels and the mountainous landscapes of Vermont, Mexico and Central America, to his fellow Street Artists, with whom he worked side-by-side during his years in New York City. This exhibition illustrates the development of Borofsky’s work over the last 40 years, ranging from early spray paintings created in the streets of New York City, looking like modern day ancient ruins, to his more recent works from his Brattleboro studio, which incorporate an evolving language of complexly layered symbols and the gestural language of paint. This exhibition is on view through May 10.
Of course, the kickoff for 2020 would not be complete without the annual Student Art Show on view through March 10. For more than fifteen years, the talented students of the region’s elementary, middle and high schools have brought to the Museum artwork which has ranged from whimsical projects by the young students to more advanced work of older students. Visitors can explore the artistic development of children as they address a topic or by age grouping. Ceramic work, paper sculptures, and more complement collage, pastels, and pen and ink drawings. This exhibit is on view in the Parmelee and Limric Galleries.
March 28 – June 10 – Love, Marriage, and Divorce. The highs and lows of love and heartache, from Victorian wedding gowns to scandalous tales of sexual harassment.
June 27 – November 3 – Robert Frost, “At Present in Vermont.” Frost’s life and work as a poet and farmer in Bennington County, 1920 – 1938.
About the Museum
Bennington Museum is located at 75 Main Street (Route 9), Bennington, in The Shires of Vermont. Beginning February 1, the museum is open 10 am to 5 pm Thursday through Tuesday, closed Wednesday through May. Then, open daily June through October (closed July 4.) It is wheelchair accessible. Regular admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and students over 18. Admission is never charged for younger students, museum members, or to visit the museum shop. Visit the museum’s website www.benningtonmuseum.org or call 802-447-1571 for more information.
Bennington Museum is a member of ArtCountry, a consortium of notable art and performance destinations in the scenic northern Berkshires of Massachusetts and southern Green Mountains of Vermont, including The Clark Art Institute, Williams College Museum of Art , Williamstown Theatre Festival ; and MASS MoCA , all within a half hour drive. Visit ArtCountry.org for more information on these five great cultural centers.