Artful Ice Shanties return, displayed at Retreat Farm
BRATTLEBORO - Last winter over 1,000 people attended the inaugural Artful Ice Shanties exhibit, presented by the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center and Retreat Farm. Visitors saw ice shanties shaped like a giant iridescent fish, a black die with moon-shaped dots, a seascape with a threedimensional octopus, and more.
The wild and whimsical Artful Ice Shanties are back for 2022, with many more shanties on display and a full schedule of outdoor activities for visitors of all ages. Visitors are welcome to stop by Retreat Farm from Saturday, February 19, to Sunday, February 27, from dawn to dusk to view the shanties. There is no fee for admission.
A panel of local judges will bestow a variety of lighthearted awards at an outdoor awards ceremony on Saturday, February 26, at 2 pm.
Among the 18 individuals and groups who have constructed shanties for the event are third- and fourth grade students from Wardsboro Elementary School and their teachers who constructed “Animals in Winter,” a shanty that showcases what the students have learned about animals’ winter survival strategies.
Tiny house expert Erin Maile O’Keefe designed Namaskônek, a braided sweetgrass shanty, in collaboration with local Abenaki ice fishermen, local architects, and staff from Gedakina, a network that provides resources and opportunities for Native American/indigenous youth, women, and families from rural, urban, and reservation communities across New England.
Others include local artist Justin Kenney; Green Street School art teacher Rachel Mangean; ice fisherman Stephen Theater camp Circus camp Haisley; members of Brattleboro West Arts; and former BMAC Education Curator Linda Whelihan, who worked with family and friends to build the Northern Light Box, a glass box that makes use of recycled lenses from Omega Optical to simulate the experience of northern lights.
This year’s event coincides with numerous other outdoor events in Brattleboro, many of them back after a COVID19-related hiatus in 2021. Brattleboro’s Winter Carnival will be held Saturday, February 19, to Sunday, February 27. The 100th anniversary of the Harris Hill Ski Jump will take place Saturday, February 19, to Sunday, February 20.
While the Artful Ice Shanties are on display, BMAC and Retreat Farm will present a full schedule of related events at Retreat Farm, a full list of which can be seen at www. brattleboromuseum.org. For more information call (802) 257-0124 or visit the website