Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Joke of the Week: Watch Your Language

Posted By on Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 1:05 PM

In celebration of the annual Vermont's Funniest Comedian Competition, which runs Wednesday through Friday, October 26 through 28, at the Vermont Comedy Club in Burlington, all this week we're posting a daily version of our ongoing Joke of the Week feature. Today's dose of local hilarity comes to us from Winooski's Beth Norton. Take it away, Beth …

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Monday, October 24, 2016

Joke of the Week: Cheery Ohs

Posted By on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 at 6:00 AM

It's Monday, which means it's time for your weekly dose of locavore levity: the Joke of the Week! But guess what? In celebration of the annual Vermont's Funniest Comedian Competition, which runs Wednesday through Friday, October 26 through 28, at the Vermont Comedy Club in Burlington, we'll be posting a new joke every day this week. Kicking off our week of local hilarity is Burlington's Annie Russell. Take it away, Annie…

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Sunday, October 23, 2016

A Wall for the Ages in Burlington's Intervale

Posted By on Sun, Oct 23, 2016 at 8:00 AM

"Allée Portal" - THEA ALVIN
  • Thea Alvin
  • "Allée Portal"
This election season, "the wall" has become a staple of divisive political rhetoric. But sometimes, walls can be markers of unity. Last Monday, Gardener's Supply and the Intervale Center in Burlington unveiled a new sculptural stone wall, created under the guidance of celebrated Morrisville artist Thea Alvin.

For three days, 12 paying stone masonry students worked to transform roughly 75,000 pounds of stone into a gracefully sloping wall and archway, dubbed "Allée Portal" by Alvin.  

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Champlain College Students Color South End Wall

Posted By on Sat, Oct 22, 2016 at 8:00 AM

Champlain College students in front of their mural with Anthill Collective - STEPHEN MEASE
  • Stephen Mease
  • Champlain College students in front of their mural with Anthill Collective
Dave Mills and the Anthill Collective are at it again. Last year, Mills, a Champlain College professor, led a group of students from his Aesthetic Expressions class in creating a mural on the exposed foundation of the former Eagles Club, at the corner of Maple and St. Paul streets. 

On Tuesday afternoon this week, Anthill's Brian Clark and Scottie Raymond  led students from two of Mills' classes in creating a new piece on a Champlain-owned building at 40 Sears Lane. It's the future quarters for Burlington makerspace Generator, which will relocate this winter.

Aesthetic Expressions is a core class that asks students to become "aesthetically literate, able to interact critically with works of art in a wide range of media," Mills explains. 

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Friday, October 21, 2016

Playtime: Sugar Pill and Free Pizza at Speaking Volumes

Posted By on Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 9:00 AM

Link up with local witches and wizards next Thursday at Speaking Volumes. - AMELIA DEVOID
  • Amelia Devoid
  • Link up with local witches and wizards next Thursday at Speaking Volumes.

Hey, pumpkins! I hope you had a radical week. It’s getting a little creepy out there, with the trees becoming bare, clowns hiding in the woods and the presidential debates raging. This Halloween is going to be extra weird so you’d better figure out an extra weird costume (or three) for the occasion. Don’t be afraid, get out there and celebrate the witches that died fighting for women’s rights! Luckily there are lots of enchanting beings playing shows next week to make pulling on a costume worth the effort. So let's hone in on one that might fly under your normal radar.

Speaking Volumes has hosted some terrific Halloween bangers in the past. It has survived for a decade by supporting local artists as a true Burlington underground favorite — and the only venue in BTV where you can buy records while you party. This year, the Speaking Volumes warehouse is getting lit up on Thursday, October 27, with an art-rock costume ball organized by local Do-It-Together champions Claire Macon and Caroline DeCunzo

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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Alpenglow's VR-Inspired Video for "Flicker Flutter"

Posted By on Thu, Oct 20, 2016 at 11:28 AM

  • Courtesy of Alpenglow
  • Alpenglow
Alpenglow continue to propel themselves into the future with their dystopian, virtual-reality-inspired new video for "Flicker Flutter." Since leaving Vermont for Brooklyn, the band members have shed much of their earlier, folksy leanings and embraced psychedelia for their 2016 debut effort, Callisto. Alpenglow take their farthest trip over the electro fence with  "Flicker Flutter." 

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Hall Foundation Co-owner Is Sold Forged Paintings

Posted By on Thu, Oct 20, 2016 at 10:16 AM

"White Squad V" by Leon Golub, 1984
  • "White Squad V" by Leon Golub, 1984
Highly successful Wall Street trader and art collector Andrew Hall has been had. The cofounder of the Hall Art Foundation in Reading, Vt., recently filed suit against a former New Hampshire art history professor and her son for allegedly selling him 24 fake paintings. He had been told the works were by the American painter Leon Golub (1922-2004), known for his expressionistic depictions of inhumanity and violence. 

Hall is asking that the sellers, Lorettann and Nikolas Gascard, provide restitution of $676,250, the amount he paid for the artworks.

The New York Times broke the story in an article posted online on Monday. The piece details how Hall acquired the 24 paintings from the Gascards. Hall had intended to mount a show of more than 60 Golub artworks at his Reading gallery, according to court documents. In the process of corroborating the Gascards' account of the paintings' provenance, Hall learned from Golub's family that they were forgeries. 

Lorettann, 68, and Nikolas, 34, are currently missing. They're also difficult to find online. A search for Lorettann turns up an unrelated 2014 disability suit she filed against her employer, Franklin Pierce University of Rindge, N.H., and a short editorial piece in the Berlin Observer from 1994 (scroll to page 6 for a photo).

Lorettann obtained her doctorate from the Free University in Berlin in 1978. The article profiles her work teaching art history to American students studying abroad. "'My goal is to get the students to learn to read, not just view, art,'" the article quotes her saying. "'I tell them to build a relationship with the piece, communicate with it, don't just look at the pretty colors of interesting scenes.'"

The Hall Art Foundation did not respond to a request for comment.

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On Jealousy, Jokes and English Muffin Pizzas: Dan Bolles and Steve Waltien Interview Mike Birbiglia

Posted By on Thu, Oct 20, 2016 at 6:30 AM

  • Courtesy of Mike Birbiglia
  • Mike Birbiglia
Mike Birbiglia is a comedian, actor, director, writer and English muffin pizza savant. His latest film, Don't Think Twicecenters on a close-knit NYC improv comedy troupe that begins to splinter when individual members attract the attention of a network sketch-comedy show called "Weekend Live." It's a not-so-subtle stand-in for "Saturday Night Live," long the holy grail for improv comedians. 

In the thoughtful, shambling style that has become his signature, Birbiglia explores themes of jealousy and ambition. Perhaps most potently, he also ponders the inevitable moment when aging artists are forced to confront Peter Pan syndrome and reconcile creative passions with the desire for conventional stability.

Birbiglia stars in the film alongside the likes of Keegan-Michael Key ("Key & Peele") and Gillian Jacobs ("Community"). Among the film's other notable comedic talents is Vermont's Steve Waltien, who plays the supporting (OK, minor) character Hugh Finn. Waltien is a Shelburne native and an alum of the iconic Chicago improv theater Second City. He's presently a writer on Jon Stewart's forthcoming animated HBO series. (Full disclosure: He is also one of this writer's oldest and dearest friends.)

On Sunday, October 23, Birbiglia brings his new show, "Thank God for Jokes," to the Flynn MainStage in Burlington. Ahead of that performance, we checked in via email to ask him about comedy, his new movie and his mastery of English muffin pizzas. 

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Monday, October 17, 2016

Can Eben Bayer Save the World With Mushrooms?

Posted By on Mon, Oct 17, 2016 at 1:41 PM

A table made by Ecovative - ECOVATIVE
  • Ecovative
  • A table made by Ecovative
Eben Bayer is coming home to talk about mushrooms. The Vermont native who grew up in South Royalton is  speaking at the University of Vermont today, October 17, about his new line of homegrown furniture. Well, factory-grown. Bayer's company, Ecovative, just released a line of furniture made entirely from mycelium and organic matter, such as corn husks and other agricultural byproducts.

His presentation, titled "Disrupting Everything: How Biological Technology Will Fuel the Sustainable Revolution," is on the fourth floor of the Davis Center at 4 p.m. Its sponsors are UVM's  Community Development and Applied Economics, the Energy Alternatives class, and Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. 

The furniture joins Ecovative's existing line of  biodegradable packaging materials, which are used by corporate giants including Dell and Crate & Barrel, as well as smaller folks such as Rich Brilliant Willing, a lighting designer and manufacturer. Those molded items, Bayer says, are incredibly lightweight. They're also a heck of a lot better for the planet than Styrofoam, or polystyrene, which takes hundreds of years to decompose. Not to mention it's a carcinogen.

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Joke of the Week: Famous Last Words

Posted By on Mon, Oct 17, 2016 at 4:00 AM

It's Monday, which means it's time for your weekly dose of locavore levity: the Joke of the Week! This week's joke comes from Burlington expat and current Baltimore resident Richard Bowen. Take it away, Richard…

"I ain't goin' out like this." — The last words of a guy who was about to go to the club but realized his outfit was whack and then died.

About that joke
Says Bowen: "If I had a nickel for every time I have turned a popular phrase or idiom into a joke, I would guess that I would have 50 to 60 nickels." 

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