May 1, 2014
Students’ ceramic birds to help museum restoration effort
By Stephanie Choate
A flock of multi-colored birds of all different species have settled on the walls of the Birds of Vermont museum, all created by Williston Central School third and fourth grade students.
Students in MC Baker’s art classes have made approximately 250 ceramic ornaments of native birds in a project that combines art, science and literature. The art exhibit, called “Wings of Clay,” opens May 11 at the Birds of Vermont Museum in Huntington.
“It’s absolutely amazing, especially for the age, that they’ve done these pieces of art,” said Erin Talmage, executive director at the Birds of Vermont Museum. “The museum is all about where natural history meets art, and this is a wonderful exhibit that portrays that.”
Ornaments will be for sale as part of the museum’s “Bridges to Birds” fundraising effort, a project intended make the outdoors accessible to all for environmental education, aid bird conservation and stimulate the appreciation of nature, according to Talmage.
The fundraiser is also needed to repair major damage after a flash flood swept through the area last July, creating a ravine and destroying the main access to the museum’s entrance.
The museum’s goal is to build a tree house, demonstration gardens for people to learn about native birds and butterflies and how to attract them and to rebuild the museum’s entrance walkway and paths.
“Students can come out and check out the walkway and garden and tree house and know they were part of making it happen,” Talmage said.
The exhibit is part of the museum’s special programming for “Why Birds Matter,” this year’s International Migratory Bird Day theme.
The ceramic birds will be on display alongside the museum’s nearly 500 wooden carvings of native Vermont birds, created over a lifetime by self-taught carver and naturalist Bob Spear.
The opening reception for the “Wings of Clay” exhibit is set for May 11 from noon to 4 p.m. Donations are accepted.
For more information about the fundraising effort or exhibit, call 434-2167 or visit www.birdsofvermont.org.