Setting sail. Today’s wind was an appropriate companion to Artists’ Mediums new Art Shop, in Cambridge, for as much as the wind can represent a challenge, it is also a mighty force, launching a vessel upon a grand journey.
The vessel, in this case, is a collective of nearly 40 Vermont artists. Jess Polanshek captains this ship with savoir faire and a keen eye for inspired horizons. Jess is an Illustrator who draws most of her inspiration from the wooded hills of Vermont.
I missed Friday’s soft opening (Grand Opening is coming up in May), but was able to stop by for a visit today. I am fortunate enough to be among the artists who now showcase their work here and looked forward to seeing how Jess had arranged the great, wide open space of her new art gallery.
When I delivered my own inventory here, two weeks ago, there was but a table to sign in artists as we came in for our appointed delivery time, and a few tables and displays set aside for the great staging ahead.
Today, I asked Jess how she wrapped her head around creating the right display flow for the many different styles of art she had brought under this one roof. “I started with a few prints on the wall, and asked myself what felt right next to this. Everything fell into place in this way… one thing leading to the other,” she explained.
It is not that it was effortless, but rather inevitable. Form and color calling upon form and color to weave a display that would be soothing to the eye and inviting to the soul. You’ll see. I will not point out specific artists so that you may be curious and come discover them for yourself.
Many thoughts crossed my mind as I entered, but one stands out among all others. As I drove away, contemplating this truly distinguished new Art Shop atop a hill in Cambridge, Vermont, and remembering Jess’ pragmatic approach to setting the stage for 40 artists, the true meaning of the word “collective” came to light in my mind. So often, we see the world as a competitive place. We assume this might be especially true for artists, but this grand little shop is proving that it is not.
Artists do not compete for exposure in this space; they complement each other by sharing it. We may do similar work in slightly different styles or widely different styles, or we may do widely different work. In the end, all of it comes together like a story book, with each artist offering a new, intriguing chapter.
People who see our work take home the bits and pieces that speak to them the loudest. They may purchase a piece, or walk away inspired. One thing leads to another. Either way, they come out with a fresh impression on the canvas of their minds; one that was painted by many hands. Everyone wins, for inspiration is the greatest gift we can share.
The wind subsided, but this artful journey has just begun. I invite you to step on board, visit Jess Polanshek’s astonishing illustration collection here and on her website, Polanshek of the Hills . And I invite you to be curious about things to come on the Artists’ Mediums Art Shop Facebook Page.
Artists’ Mediums Art shop is an artist-run gallery with a primary focus on all the amazing art and handmade goods that Vermonters create. It is located at 286 Old Route 15, Cambridge, Vermont, across from Boyden Valley Winery & Spirits.
Top Photo Source: Artists Mediums Art Shop Facebook Page… Go LIKE it!