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MANCHESTER — Like millions of others, artists have faced challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic in their work: how to overcome isolation, how to maintain productivity, how to find solace, and how to document these events for posterity.

In the new exhibition “Unmasked: Artful Responses to the Pandemic” opening Jan. 16 at the Southern Vermont Arts Center, more than 40 artists address those issues in diverse media, including 2D work from watercolor to ink to charcoal to acrylic; and photography, textile/fiber art, book making, 3D masks, video, a site-specific outdoor installation, and more.

“This exhibition combines an exciting mix of artists, showcasing not only some of the tremendous talent that resides in the state of Vermont but also bringing national and even international perspectives into the conversation about COVID’s impact on artists,” Alison Crites, SVAC’s manager of exhibitions and interpretive engagement, said in a media release.

“What we hope will be especially meaningful for visitors is how these artful responses to the pandemic invite us all to consider the ways in which cultivating creativity in our own lives can help us cope with hardship,” Crites said.

The exhibition also includes a Response Station, where visitors are invited to share their own stories of creativity during the pandemic.

The exhibition is supported in part by the Vermont Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, and will be in SVAC’s Yester House. More information is available at SVAC’s website,

SVAC is located at 930 SVAC Drive, Manchester. Winter hours are Wednesday-Saturday, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and Sunday, from noon-4 p.m. The museum is closed Monday and Tuesday.


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