Arts News for December 2020—Covid-19 Edition
Reimagining Public Spaces
The Vermont Arts Council is proud to partner with the Agency of Commerce and Community Development and the Vermont Community Foundation along with funding partners, Preservation Trust of Vermont, and the National Life Group Foundation to announce $90,000 in grant funding to launch the Better Places program. This statewide partnership will help communities reimagine and reopen public spaces for safe dining, shopping, and recreation, while showcasing the unique sense of place their community offers. Applications are due January 22, 2021. For more information and to apply, visit the Better Places program website. 

Eligible activities include projects that stimulate the creative economy and/or support public art. The project location (not necessarily the applicant) needs to be in a state designated downtown, village center, new town center, or neighborhood. Applicants can be the municipality or nonprofit organizations, like arts/cultural organizations or downtown organizations. Also, community groups can use a fiscal sponsor if they don’t have nonprofit status.
CARES Act Report to the Community
In March 2020, when the Covid-19 pandemic hit Vermont, the Vermont Arts Council and Vermont Humanities developed a joint response to deliver urgently needed economic aid to struggling cultural organizations.

From weekly Zoom strategy sessions for cultural leaders to appeals to state and federal political leaders, we advocated for resources and support for museums, galleries, historical societies, performance venues, libraries, theater and dance companies, cultural centers, and more. And we continue this daily work in the ninth month of the pandemic.

Together, we have produced a final report, our “Cares Act Report to the Community,” which tells the story about this joint program that brought $781,000 in a matter of weeks to 123 cultural organizations across Vermont in all 14 counties.
Our Commitment to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access
Since the season of protests for racial justice began, the Vermont Arts Council has, like many organizations, worked to examine how we contribute to and how we can help dismantle systems of injustice. This is ongoing work that takes many forms throughout the Council—in our programs, applications, communications, hiring, leadership, and more.

We are pleased to share this statement of our commitment to inclusion, diversity, equity, and access. Included is a list of steps we have taken in 2020 to honor that commitment, a list of what goals we are working toward, and a growing list of resources for pursuing social justice in the arts.

Poetry Out Loud Goes Virtual for 2021
Every year since 2006, Poetry Out Loud has brought school communities together around the country for the largest poetry recitation contest in the nation. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, most states, including Vermont, are preparing to hold virtual competitions in 2021. Over 20 Vermont schools have registered to participate; the school registration deadline is Dec. 31.

Vermont Poetry Out Loud always provides helpful resources for teachers and students like toolkits and teaching artist workshops. This year, teaching artists like Morgan Irons are recording training videos for students, which we've made available to all lovers of poetry recitation on our YouTube channel. Watch Morgan Irons' "Understanding and Performance" or "Physical Presence and Articulation."
An Interview with Poet Sarah Audsley
For Sarah Audsley, to be a rural poet is to “claim belonging in a rural landscape.” While the average American may not associate a Korean American woman with the phrase “rural poet,” that sense of belonging has always been natural to Audsley. Raised in Woodstock, VT, she once aspired to be a mountain guide. She grounds her poetry in a reverence for the natural world while working language to claim a less straightforward part of her identity: that of a Korean adoptee raised by white parents.

Audsley received a Creation Grant in 2020 to support the completion of her first full-length poetry manuscript, as yet untitled. Mixing familiar and experimental forms, the book is Audsley’s exploration and invention of her experience as a Korean American transracial adoptee in rural Vermont.

Explore 2020 Vision With the Passport Program
48 Vermont museums & galleries are reflecting on this world-changing year through a statewide cultural conversation, with exhibitions both in-person and online. Find more at, and learn how you can submit passport entries to win prizes for each exhibition you experience.
571 Projects
Through Jan 29
Spruce Peak Arts
Through Feb 28
Heritage Winooski Mill Museum
Through March 12
Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery
Through Jan 30
Holiday Arts Briefs
Burlington City Arts' New Years Eve party is virtual this year, featuring performers of all stripes from around Vermont—poets, dancers, chefs, singers, and more will present on BCA's virtual stage to ring in the new year. Tickets for the Highlight House Party are $10.
Did you know that many of Vermont’s artists and crafters are selling their wares online this holiday season? In addition to supporting artists, in some cases, sales also support the galleries, art centers, and museums too. Check out our list of holiday art markets, festivals and auctions on our website. 
Thanks to micro-grants from the Vermont Crafts Council, over 20 artists and galleries across the state are offering discounts and incentives to shoppers. Participants include the Milton Artists Guild, Artisans Hand, and many more. Find deals on the Crafts Council website.
New Arts Experiences
Northern Stage
Dec 8 - Jan 3
Vermont International Film Festival
Dec 7 - Jan 21
Chandler Center for the Arts
Nov 28 - Dec 30
Recent Classifieds
Sales & Marketing Associate (Northern Stage)
Posted: November 30, 2020
Category: Job Postings
End Date: December 30, 2020

Posted: December 14, 2020
Category :Job Postings
End Date: January 8, 2021

Posted: December 17, 2020
Category: Calls to Artists
End Date: January 22, 2021
Submit Listings to Our Arts Calendar and Classifieds
Are you organizing an exhibit, concert, class, or other arts event? Do you need to list an ad for space, residencies, or a call for submissions? Submit your event listing to our calendar, or submit a classified ad listing.

Listings are free and seen by thousands of people throughout and beyond Vermont. Once submitted, eligible listings are reviewed, categorized, and published within two business days. Council staff may contact you for more information.
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The Vermont Arts Council is funded, in part, by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, which requires a 1:1 match from the Vermont State Legislature. Council grants, programs, and statewide arts promotion would not be possible without the critical funding provided by these government agencies.
Vermont Arts Council | 802.828.3291