VTLIB produces its first Vermont-based audio book recording

MONTPELIER -- The Vermont Department of Libraries is pleased to announce the completion of its first locally produced audio book for the blind. The Department’s Special Services Unit, which includes the Vermont Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, will add this new recording to the wide selection of audio book recordings now available from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. These digital recordings are available by mail at no cost to eligible Vermonters of all ages. The first Vermont title in the Department of Libraries’ recording program is "Invasion on the Mountain," by Vermont author Judith Edwards, the first in a trilogy of historical fiction for middle school readers about the Civilian Conservation Corps on Mt. Ascutney in the 1930s.

The Department plans to add more Vermont content to the audio book collection available from the National Library Service for the Blind & Physically Handicapped (NLS). NLS records some 2,000 titles each year, including books by Vermont authors Chris Bohjalian, Katherine Paterson, and Archer Mayor. The locally recorded books will include both fiction and non-fiction about Vermont and by Vermont authors, including books by Howard Coffin, Chris Graff, Jody Williams and Sydney Lea. The audio books will be available to those who cannot read regular print due to visual or physical impairment. The Department’s Special Services Unit provides a program of advice and consultation to public and school libraries and to libraries in state institutions, providing books and audio matierals to persons having difficulty using a library. The Vermont Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, located in Berlin, is a regional network library of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped http://www.loc.gov/nls, providing recorded books and other materials to qualifying individuals. To apply for these free library services, including "talking books," large print books, materials in braille, or audio-described videos, citizens can contact the Special Services Unit at: 800-479-1711 (toll free in Vermont) or 802-828-3273.

What’s the Color of Love?

BENNINGTON -- Kicking-off the 2014 Regional Artist’s Program at the Bennington Museum is What’s the Color of Love? works by Karl Mullen, on view through May 4.

Mullen, who was born in Dublin, Ireland, currently lives in Massachusetts where he works in his studio located in the cow stall of a nineteenth-century barn. He has developed his own distinctive approach to art making. Painting largely with his hands, he creates primitive, poetic figures that float on fields of color using walnut oil, raw powder pigment and a wax medium that coalesce into color-saturated, luminous images. Mullen begins with artist-stock Arches paper, old book pages, sheet music, photographs and other ephemera that glow with the passage of time. He has experimented with non-traditional materials such as wine, tea, salt, Indian spices, spit and ash, applied with bottles, knives and other kitchen utensils to give a drafts-manly quality An Excerpt from the Artist’s Biography by Cassandra J. Cleghorn, poet "Mullen discovers his subjects as he paints, surprising himself, restless.

Some figures will have limbs that stretch in ways at once impossible yet familiar. Some will have rather more vestigial parts, like tadpole ancestors toward whom we feel inexplicably drawn. Rib-like lines may radiate from a spine; a torso may store organs of secret color. Mullen’s figures wear hats or crowns, play instruments, balance odd packages. They may stand apart, listing toward one another or veering away. They may embrace with elastic, ecstatic arms. One body may subsume another. Their faces may tilt dog-style, wondering, waiting. Around the figures Mullen may gouge curves and tracks, carving a la cuneiform." Mullen’s paintings are included in many private collections in the U.S. and Europe and in the permanent holdings of The Polk Museum, The Hurn Museum and Robert Morris College. They were also showcased in the PBS syndicated TV series Rare Visions & Roadside Revelations and are included frequently in art/design magazines such as Home Accents and Elle Decor. His work is shown annually.

At The New York Outsider Art Fair, The Intuit/SOFA Show , Chicago, Folk Fest, Atlanta and in galleries in the US and Europe.