From Jan. 9 to Feb. 20, two artists will be displayed at The Nature Museum at 186 Townshend Road in Grafton.
The aim of the Art and Nature Exhibits is to connect people more fully to the natural world and to stimulate their interest in interpreting and protecting it. A portion of sales from the art sold will help fund the Museum's educational programs and exhibits. The art is displayed in the Program Room on the first floor.
"The Beauty of Nature in Glass" is the title of the exhibit of paperweights and other works by Chris Sherwin of Sherwin Art Glass in Bellows Falls. Sherwin apprenticed with Simon Pierce, Inc., in Vermont before moving to California to learn iridescent and torchworking techniques from "masters of the trade" at Orient & Flume Art Glass. He returned to New England in 2005 and opened his studio at 33 Bridge Street. His design ideas come from the beauty he finds in Nature, as well as from family, friends, and studio visitors. When designing a piece, his goal is to allow the decoration or floral pattern to dictate the form of the piece so as to provide harmony between the two. Find Chris at his studio by chance or appointment. Contact him at www.sherwinartglass.com for information on glass-blowing demonstrations.
In her exhibit entitled "Visions of Nature," Diane Gibbons shows works done primarily in acrylic and watercolor. Gibbons often incorporates her own digital images of animals into her pieces to express her love of wildlife, nature, and interest in nature-based spiritual experience.
Gibbons is an author, wildlife tracker, artist, and illustrator. She holds a Master of Science in conservation biology and a Master of Divinity and has studied art, tracking, and nature-based spiritual practices for many years. Her books include Mammal Tracks and Sign of the Northeast and Stories in Tracks and Sign.
During all January and February weekends, The Nature Museum will host a Nature Drawing Open House that will feature different creatures from the Museum's collections.
From insects to bobcats, from Great Horned Owl to an extinct bird - each will sit still for aspiring artists to draw. Whether it's the whole family or an individual seeking quiet time, the museum will supply paper, pencils, and clipboards and is eager to try to satisfy requests for specific animals or specimens.
Artists may take their work home or display it at the museum's Annual Community Nature Art Show opening on Feb. 27. Each Open House is free to members; for non-members the regular admission charge applies.
On Jan. 16, Saturday, 1-4 p.m., Botanical Drawing: Nature Up Close will be offered to individuals age 8 and up. The course - free to museum members and $15 for non-members - will be taught by museum Director of Education Betsy Bennett Stacey, who has a degree in Studio Art and has taught courses in nature journaling, beginning watercolor, and beginning drawing.
The course is designed for amateurs who want to practice and hone their nature-drawing skills and for beginners who want to learn the basics of a skill that could become a lifetime hobby or profession. The class will include drawing from fresh specimens, photographs, and items from the museum's collections. It will focus on botanical sketching, scientific drawing, and techniques to heighten observation skills, coupled with individual instruction.
For more information visit www.nature-museum.org or call 843-2111.