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Art exhibit is tribute to folklorist Greg Sharrow

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Posted on July 9, 2018 |
By Addison Independent



Folklife exhibit.jpg
MASTER ARTIST MASITI Mohamed continues the tradition of Somalian needlework, called farsama, by teaching young women in her community. Photo by Ned Castle

MONTPELIER — The Vermont Arts Council, in partnership with the Middlebury-based Vermont Folklife Center, is opening a new exhibit, “New American Artists: Celebrating Tradition and Culture.”

The exhibit, opening July 10 in the Spotlight Gallery in Montpelier,  is a tribute to the work of Gregory Sharrow, who established the Vermont Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program during his 30-year tenure at the Vermont Folklife Center. The program ensures the cultural retention of Vermont’s traditional arts — including those of new Americans — by providing support to master artists working with apprentices in their communities.

Sharrow died this past April 2 after a 12-month struggle with multiple myeloma.

In the exhibit, vivid and personal photographs by Ned Castle, Jeff Woodward and Kathleen Haughey highlight the work of seven cultural groups participating in or involved with the Vermont Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program. From a Burundian choral and dance group to a Burmese weaver, each set of photos and accompanying text expresses the artists’ devotion to preserving and sharing these art forms.

“Greg saw the opportunity to embrace the artistic traditions of new Americans through the Apprenticeship Program,” said Haughey, who is executive director of the Folklife Center. “He recognized that by practicing and sharing their cultural expressions, new Americans could sustain their cultures and enrich the creative fabric of Vermont.”

“New American Artists: Celebrating Tradition and Culture” opens Tuesday, July 10. A reception will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. in the Council’s Spotlight Gallery. The exhibit runs through Friday, Aug. 31.

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