I’d like you to meet some of my favorite Burlington minds and makers. I’m sure every town has their share of talented citizens. But I’m still holding fast to the Einstein theory, discussed in Part I, that mystery (ie: Champ the lake monster) begets & attracts creativity, because there is an awful lot of talent in this one horse town.
And I discovered that I’m not alone in my monster-ous thinking. Tove Ohlander of Arentzen Ohlander Glass (AO!), based in Burlington, sent me a note yesterday telling me that one of the subtle reasons she agreed to move to Burlington, so far from her native Sweden, was in fact because her childhood vacation area Östersund also had a lake monster, “Storsjö adjuret”. Her husband and business partner Rich Arentzen even makes tiny modern versions of Champ! (see below) So let’s see who else our lake beast friend has fueled the creative fire for…
[Champ, Rich Arentzen]
I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Jed for a few years and often rely on his keen design mind to be a sounding board for my ideas.
His latest business venture Hepper “Modern pet furniture that will make you jealous” is bringing crisp, yet cozy podular comfort to small beasts everywhere. (well at least to the ones whose owners REALLY love them…) And he’s right, I’m jealous. I want a herringbone curl-up cave that’s my size. Not to mention those lucky birds with the Roost birdhouses that get to be the modern neighbor that outshines all the other ‘old school’ (ie: twig style)houses and causes feathers to ruffle. I’m also loving his new UpNom feeders that he just unveiled at the Model Citizens show in NYC this past weekend. Yummy flat pack fun!
[clockwise from top: Minimal Lamps, Jed at his studio, Roost birdhouse, UpNom feeder, Pod bed, & Jed's studio in hip alley, Lawson Lane]
[Ice Hotel, David Seaver]
Dave is one of the smartest life livers I know. He works hard all spring/summer taking photos for weddings, commercial products, the local hospital, upscale Vermont Vows Magazine, among others. In the fall /winter he can be found in Cambodia, riding his motorcycle or swinging in a hammock. And when he’s not working hard at relaxing there, he’s busy documenting the life and colors of that beautiful country. He just put out a book of his travels titled, “Cambodia Breaking the Bonds of History” and it’s breathtaking. Dave was also kind enough to be my man on the Burlington scene and take all the shots I needed for this guide, so a BIG thank you goes out to him!
[Cambodia Cow, David Seaver]
[orange orchid, David Seaver + the man himself]
When I moved to Burlington in 2003, one of things that stood out to me the most about my new city was the creative license the town appeared to give to it’s local artists. The big metal power boxes that inhabited a lot of the street corners were skillfully painted up in bright & fun patterns. I really liked that, imagining that someone had commissioned this work done as a way to add color & visual interest to an otherwise ‘blah’ aspect of the urban landscape… Then one day they were all back to what I assume was their original color, gunmetal grey, and I learned that this C.Derbes had gone rouge and painted them all himself without permission or payment. Shame on the town officials who decided that grey was more civilized. Shame. Today Clark continues to create bright, bold, & beautiful work, now represented by Anne Connely Fine Art in Baton Rouge, and does so along side a very lovely & talented friend of mine, who is now his wife, Wylie Sophia Garcia. To see and learn more about Clark’s work click here and for Wylie, here.
[Untitled, 11x13 mixed media on a panel, Clark Derbes]
[clockwise from top: appliance door paintings, Circles painted with paper pulp, skateboard to be auctioned off to raise money for local art mentor program]
*One of Clark’s encaustic paintings was featured in a recent Katie Runnel d*s guest post. Check it out here (reflected?)above the fire place.
[clockwise from top: from her MFA show, The Origin of the World, Hysteria, Your Red Hot Body]
This was of course just a tiny taste of the many amazing Burlington Makers. Thanks so much for taking the time to meet them and I’ll be back tomorrow with Part I of the Kelowna, B.C. guide. xo