Four Vermont artists competing for the Burlington Public Art Commission

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  • The installation proposed by Phillip Godenschwager

Now is the time to voice your opinion – or at least take a poll – about the public art that will be on display in Burlington. Four works of art are finalists for a $43,000 commission for the John Zampieri State Office Building at 108 Cherry St., which houses the Vermont Department of Health and the offices of the Vermont Agency of Human Services.

Preliminary design concepts and artwork descriptions, each by a Vermont artist, are posted on the Vermont Arts Council website. The public can view the proposals and comment until December 14.

The four artists are Phil Godenschwager from Randolph, Dan Gottsegen from Woodstock, Kathryn Wiegers from Rutland and Noa Younse from Richmond.
The final selection will be made by a committee whose members include building employees and art experts, according to a statement from the Vermont Arts Council.

Godenschwager offers a single panel glass mosaic. In his proposal, he writes: “I approach public art of any scale with the feeling of finding a story to tell. Godenschwager plans to tell his story through the image of a tree – “the tree being a metaphor for the community that is served”.

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Installation proposed by Dan Gottsegen - COURTESY

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  • The installation proposed by Dan Gottsegen

Gottsegen imagines a series of glass panels to welcome visitors into the building. Their appearance would change “with [the] the time of day, the season and the angle of the sun. He “gathered images from sources linked to the agencies and
constituencies.”

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Installation proposed by Kathryn Wiegers - COURTESY

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  • Installation proposed by Kathryn Wiegers

Wiegers features a large outdoor mural that draws its theme from the natural world of New England. The painting, she wrote, “would bring a sense of wonder, exploration, and joy to all who passed by.”

The installation proposed by Younse is entitled “Empowering a Healthier Tomorrow”. The piece would be a “living sculpture that will continue to inform after installation,” he wrote. A series of scorecards would show the state’s performance on a set of health indicators, against its targets.

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Installation proposed by Noa Younse - COURTESY

  • Courtesy
  • The installation proposed by Noa Younse

The commission in Burlington is part of the Vermont Art in State Buildings program. More than two dozen works have been installed since the program was established in 1988, according to the arts council. The most recent is a granite sculpture by Sean Williams, “The Origin of the River,” located at the Roxbury Fish Culture Station.

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