Friday, July 27 - Sunday, July 29 - 4:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Sandbar Inn, 59-US2, South Hero, Vermont
For three days only Overnight Projects will bring the historic lakeside Sandbar Inn to life with site-specific artworks by five regionally-based artists. Mid-summer exhibition From Away will occupy the former motel from Friday, July 27, through Sunday, July 29, with original multi-disciplinary installations by Wren Kitz, Angus McCullough, Sarah O Donnell, Charmaine Wheatley, and Mary Zompetti.
As an icon of transience, the roadside motel is simultaneously a place of leisure and utility, occupying a space in the American imagination that conjures nostalgia, longing, and sometimes, fear. The Sandbar Inn, built in the 1950s, was for decades a quintessential vacation spot — the stuff of sunsets, mod bathing suits, and hand-tinted postcards home.
Long before its role as a site for Vacationland fantasies, the sandbar was a key point of transport for First Peoples and, post-colonization, for the burgeoning Northeastern railroad network. The thin, shallow strip of land was referred to as “the carrying place” by the Abenaki, who took advantage of its geography to transport their canoes. As the gateway between the mainland and the Lake Champlain Islands, the sandbar represents both physical and psychological crossings — an interstitial place you could briefly call home if you rented a room at the Sandbar Inn.
In 2018, the now-dilapidated motel is tinged by yet another layer of history: the rippling effects of the recession on both the American middle class and its outgrowth, the hospitality industry.
These entwined environmental and cultural histories will inform the works in From Away, ranging from an intangible audio environment created by Wren Kitz to a sculptural intervention by Angus McCullough to immersive analog projections by Mary Zompetti. Each artist will let the inn guide their creation of new works, many of which will incorporate materials gleaned from the immediate surroundings — among these, haphazardly strewn planks and otherworldly seed pods. With reverence and care, From Away will once again animate the rooms of the Sandbar Inn with voices from elsewhere.
From Away will open on Friday, July 27, from 4-9 p.m. The exhibition is free and open to all. There are no bathrooms and not all of the spaces are handicap accessible.
Wren Kitz is an experimental sound artist and musician based in Burlington, Vermont. Blending traditional guitar-and-voice song writing with field recording and tape collage, Kitz has developed a ghostly and contemplative form of expression that transcends genre categorization.
Angus McCullough is a conceptual artist based in Bennington, Vermont, whose work integrates a closeness to materials, intuition, and deep theoretical inquiry of time and space. He has worked nationally and internationally, including with This Will Take Time, Border Patrol, Lust Gallery, and the Bronx Museum of the Arts.
Sarah O Donnell is a Burlington, Vermont based interdisciplinary artist whose work investigates the tensions of memory and the hazy spaces between fictions and realities, the still and moving image, and personal and artificial recollection. She is a MacDowell Colony fellow and has shown work nationally at venues including Little Berlin, Burlington City Arts, and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.
Charmaine Wheatley is a performance artist based in New York City whose work frequently incorporates painting and printed matter. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, including at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the Carnegie Art Center, with works in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art. charmainewheatley.com
Mary Zompetti is a photo-based artist based in rural Grand Isle, Vermont, whose work investigates the physical and intangible geographies of place. She has exhibited nationally and internationally at venues including Mjólkurbúðin Gallery, A.I.R. Gallery, and the Griffin Museum of Photography. maryzompetti.com