Over twenty years ago, Art’s Alive was created by the Women’s Caucus for Art. The organization and festival evolved out of a series of open studios, group shows, and community art conferences that took place in the 1980’s.
Over the years the organization has evolved. Most people know Art’s Alive as the presenters of the annual Festival of Fine Art that brings art into the windows on Church Street in Burlington each June. Art’s Alive also operates an art gallery at Union Station on the Waterfront and maintains an active program to place art in local businesses.
Art’s Alive is a Vermont 501c3 non-profit organization governed by the South End Arts District and their board of directors.
Sarah Drexler, Art’s Alive Director, Associate Director SEABA, Curator
Jeremy Gates, Board President
Chris Webster, Vice President
Seth Mobley, Treasurer
Lynn Vallee, Secretary
Magda Van Dusen
The Galleries @ Main Street Landing’s Union Station & Wing Building
In 1984 Main Street Landing purchased the Green Mountain Power Building at the foot of Main Street in Burlington, Vermont from Green Mountain Power. The building was originally built in 1916 as the Train Station for Burlington. In 1950 it was stripped of its grandeur and turned into an office building by GMP. In 1950 the last passenger train traveled into the Queen City. The building was transformed by GMP into small offices, so there were many small little spaces throughout the building. Main Street Landing cleaned up the building and decided to take the little offices and turn them into artist studios. The basement housed a big oil furnace and some larger spaces. Vermont Tent got its start in the building as did The Spirit of Ethan Allen. Main Street Landing rented the other 1/2 of the basement to the Committee on Temporary Shelter for their Day Station for the homeless. Every day folks came down to get medical care, job training, and counseling. This continued for 10 years until COTS built a new building for their day services. The rest of Union Station was leased to artists and non profit organizations, a sound studio, massage, and other local start up small businesses. Ed Ohr who headed up UVM’s art department asked Main Street Landing if he could put a studio off the back of the building where the train ramp was located. They agreed, and Ed turned the front lobby into his own gallery. As the strongmen from Vermont Tent came to work in the morning, Melinda Moulton and Lisa Steele, noticed how interested these young men were in the art and it was the defining moment when Main Street Landing decided to become a company predicated and devoted to bringing art inside and outside of their doors. When Ed moved out of the building Main Street Landing talked to Arts Alive about taking a free office in the building and hanging monthly exhibits of local art at Union Station. This was back around 1987. To this day, Arts Alive has had a little office and has managed the Union Station Gallery. They have also taken on the Wing Gallery at One Steele Street. Main Street Landing is hoping to work with Arts Alive on their new Gallery at Lake & College. It’s been a long, fruitful, and dynamic relationship between Arts Alive and Main Street Landing. Today Main Street Landing has two buildings filled with permanent art and two buildings with a monthly rotating exhibit managed by Arts Alive. It’s been said that Main Street Landing has the largest and most impressive Vermont Contemporary Art collection of anyone in the State. Main Street Landing wants to thank and give enormous credit to Arts Alive for a long, loving, and supportive relationship of bringing local art to the forefront of this very public and diverse neighborhood on Burlington’s Waterfront. Art is what defines a civilization, and therefore, it deserves a front and center place in all of our lives.
Melinda Moulton, CEO
Main Street Landing