We're on the Move!

We're on the Move!

 Our VR rig set up on top of a tractor at Dorset Peak Jerseys in Danby, VT.

Our VR rig set up on top of a tractor at Dorset Peak Jerseys in Danby, VT.

We’re on the move across the state with exciting new efforts we want to share with you. In the coming months, we’ll unveil new touring exhibits, a series of in-person immersive events, and a rich variety of new media including a podcast, comics, videos and virtual reality.

“We’re a statewide organization whose offices happen to be in Middlebury. We’re eager to bring our message and programs consistently to more cities and towns—and more Vermonters—across the state,” says Executive Director Kathleen Haughey.
 
“To grow our statewide reach, we’ll shift more resources to activities around the state—toward dynamic, portable traveling exhibits and through new technologies, allowing us to share the knowledge of everyday living among more and more Vermonters,” she adds.
 
Our emerging Virtual Reality (VR) work is one among several initiatives serving this outreach effort, and thanks to the support of the Vermont Arts Council we are acquiring VR technologies to create new, immersive ethnographic documentary experiences. Other initiatives include the use of storytelling media such as comics; short- and longer-format documentary films; traveling kiosk exhibits; and the launch of VT Untapped™, our new podcast series.

To support these new statewide efforts, we’ll stage exhibits at our Middlebury Vision & Voice Gallery that reflect the Center’s core fieldwork, showing visitors the impact it has on Vermont and its people. After showing in Middlebury, many of these exhibits will travel the state to reach new audiences.

"Thanks to the support of the Vermont Humanities Council and the Vermont Department of Libraries, beginning this fall the first of our new exhibits will be reaching communities across the state," says Haughey.
 
Another facet of the Folklife Center extending its influence is a rethinking of the use of our stately 88 Main Street historic headquarters. We’ve closed our small shop—several of its craftspeople have been picked up by the Sheldon Museum, next door—and we’ve consolidated staff offices to the ground and first floors. Doing so frees up space for us to lease second-floor offices, enabling the building to generate revenue, funds that will underwrite core VFC programs and maintain our National Register of Historical Places headquarters.
 
The Folklife Center Archive and recording studio continue to live on the ground floor, and the Vision & Voice Gallery is open to the public Monday-Friday 10AM to 5PM. We’ll continue hosting our beloved Annual Holiday Gingerbread Competition, opening receptions for exhibits, and other events at 88 Main. And we’ll continue to offer our popular Cultural Sustainability Institute workshops and Summer Institute, which are now also being offered in other towns around the state.