Howard Center Arts Collective Presents: Connections

Burlington, VT— Howard Center Arts Collective presents a public art installation for the 2022 Burlington Arts Hop, Connections. Art is a way of connecting with other people, so the Arts Collective created an installation about these connections and the role the postal service has played in connecting people throughout history. Local artists painted 13 used mailboxes submitted by the community, each in their own unique style and color palette. The mailboxes spin on painted posts and reside next to colorful benches, inviting visitors to sit and reflect on the exhibit. The mailboxes will be unveiled promptly at 3 p.m. Saturday during the Burlington South End Art Hop, followed by a reception featuring the artists and jazz by Tom Cleary and Amber DeLaurentis.

Howard Center Arts Collective is an alternative arts program for people who have lived experience with mental health and/or substance use challenges. The Arts Collective promotes wellness, self-esteem, and dignity by creating a safe and nurturing space for artists to make art, exchange ideas and learn new techniques, experience a supportive connection with other artists, and exhibit their artwork in public galleries and spaces.

This year’s exhibit focuses on the historical importance of the United States Postal Service. Founded in 1775, the US mail service predates the US Constitution, and was the primary way that people corresponded for much of this nation’s history. This installation invites viewers to reflect on the benefits of old-fashioned mail delivery compared to modern methods of instant communication, and to consider whether mailboxes have become relics of the past.

This public arts exhibit is supported in part by the Vermont Arts Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, Vermont Psychiatric Survivors, and Sterling Hardwoods. The installation will be up from September 2022 through August 2024 on the front lawn of 300 Flynn Avenue. The unveiling and reception will be held at 300 Flynn Avenue during the 2022 Burlington Art Hop, Saturday September 10 at 3 p.m.

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ABOUT HOWARD CENTER: Howard Center has a long and rich history as a trusted provider in the community. With a legacy spanning more than 150 years, we have been providing progressive, compassionate, high-quality care and supports to those in need. Today, we offer an array of exemplary mental health, substance use, and developmental services across the lifespan. As Vermont’s largest social service organization, our 1,600 staff help more than 19,000 people each year in over 60 locations throughout Vermont in collaboration with hundreds of community partners. Howard Center’s 24/7/365 crisis service, First Call for Chittenden County, is available to meet the needs of Chittenden County children, adults, and families in crisis by calling 802-488-7777. Help is here. A United Way of Northwest Vermont Funded Agency.