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Arts Beat for May 21: Exhibits look back; one to 1968, one to childhood

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Arts Beat for May 21: Exhibits look back; one to 1968, one to childhood

THE EXHIBIT “1968: The Whole World is Watching,” opens at Middlebury College’s Johnson memorial Gallery on Friday, May 25 and will run through Aug. 12.

By GREG PAHL

Two new exhibits open on Friday, May 25, at the Middlebury College Museum of Art. The first, is located in the Christian A. Johnson Memorial Gallery. 1968 was a year of upheaval and transformation — a year in which national and international events spawned intense vocal expression and protest. This exhibit, through the lens of art, music and literature, looks back 50 years to consider the issues that transformed American society.

The second exhibit, “Just Kids: Photographs from the Nicholas Gift,” is on display in the Overbrook Gallery.

Whether it was a time of joy or a time marked by turbulence, every adult has survived childhood. Whatever the circumstances, one thing is certain: children have always been a magnet for photographers, ranging from elated ?rst-time parents to cool-eyed professionals with decades of experience. For whatever reason, children are likely to be more photographed than any other single subject. Some of the most universally beloved images to be found in art and literature — from Gainsborough’s “Blue Boy” and Degas’s “Little Dance” to “Pinocchio” and “Huckleberry Finn” — present us with a vision of the state of childhood, a vision constantly evolving and re?ecting changes in historical experience.

Thanks to the gift of Dr. and Mrs. Stephen Nicholas, the Museum now holds many hundreds of photographs of children. Drawn from every corner of the globe and representing a broad spectrum of social and economic circumstances, the images portray children in good times and bad, in states of blissful play or harrowing isolation, or just being kids in a world that either answers their expectations or exceeds their comprehension.

Some of the photographs in this exhibit invite us to imagine lives and situations very different from our own, and some may remind us of moments in our own earlier existence, in another time, another place. Among the photographers included are Henri Cartier-Bresson, Louis Stettner, Danny Lyon and Leonard Freed.

Both exhibits, which are on display through Sunday, August 12, are free and the public is welcome.

GUMBO YA YA AT LINCOLN PEAK VINEYARD

Gumbo Ya Ya will perform at Lincoln Peak Vineyard on Friday, May 25, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Gumbo Ya Ya is a rock and roll stew, cooking up soul calypso, ska, reggae, worldgroove, and n’awlins funk, topped with delicious spicy solos and improvisations, served with an uplifting message and fine vocals. With flavors of the Allman Brothers Band, Little Feat, Traffic and The Band, tunes are dished up by the superbly funky Felix Anderson and Glenn Goodwin on drums and bass, Jim Carroll and John Dickason on guitars, and taken into the interstellar reaches by Ron Rost on keys and Poppy Rees on vocals.

The vineyard opens at 5:30 p.m. for picnicking. Delicious hot food available from The Antidote, and wine by the glass. Admission is free. Bring lawn chairs or a blanket. No alcohol may be brought onto the grounds, and please leave your pets at home. The concert series happens rain or shine — there’s room on the winery porch in case of rain. Lincoln Peak Vineyard is located at 142 River Road in New Haven. More information is at lincolnpeakvineyard.com.

LIVE MUSIC AT NOTTE

There will be two live musical performances this week at Notte Neapolitan Pizza Bar located downstairs at 86 Main Street in Middlebury. The Open Mic is hosted at 9 p.m. every Wednesday by the ever-talented Mark Sikora. Play solo or join Sikora and friends for a jamming good time. All talent levels are welcome. You never know, what you are going to see and hear at open mic: musicians, comedians, poetry, slam poetry or short stories. It’s free to enter and there is no cover charge.

Then, on Saturday, May 26, Del Rue takes to the stage at 9:30 p.m. Del Rue is a band based in Rutland, and consists of Aaron Brush on rhythm guitar and lead vocals, Austin Herber on rhythm and lead guitar, Justin Fornari on drums and Zack Primrose on bass and saxophone. Their debut album Solid Ground is an eclectic mix of rock, funk and almost ska sounding tracks.

For more information, call 802-388-0002.

SENIOR WEEK CHOIR CONCERT

There will be a Senior Week Choir Concert on Friday, May 2, at 8 p.m. in Robison Hall at Middlebury College’s Mahaney Center for the Arts. The College Choir delights the audience with their favorite choral repertoire of the past four years, celebrating singers in the class of 2018. This Music Department-sponsored performance is free and the public is welcome.

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