Chester arts center expands programming

CHESTERTOWN-While the "Art in Chester" has focused on fine arts in its short history, it has now embarked on expanding its offerings to include music, performance art, poetry and essay readings, and craft demonstrations.

Opened last July as a venue for the North Country Arts Center, Art in Chestertown has primarily focused on painting, drawings and sculpture. The gallery was welcomed into the community not only as an outpost of culture, but as a big step in the resurrection of Chestertown's downtown, which has been economically depressed during the last 20 years or so.

Their new Saturday Scene series, however, represents an expansion of events and offerings.

The northern European art of chip carving, as demonstrated by Dennis and Barbara Wilson, has been scheduled at the gallery for 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday June 4.

Chip carving, an ancient woodcarving method, is a technique for incising decorative designs of many kinds into wood. Working by hand with only a single small carving knife, the Wilsons create decorative jewelry boxes, keepsake boxes, Christmas ornaments, hearth stools, candleholders, plaques and wall quilts. The public is invited to drop by, observe and chat.

The gallery is located at 6378 state Route 9 in the Village of Chestertown, New York. Admission is by donation.

North Country Arts Center is dedicated to serving emerging artists. The "Saturday Scene" programming promises to highlight some of the area's fine artists, songwriters and authors throughout the summer. Future Saturday Scene events taking place on Saturdays from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Chestertown gallery include authors, paper bead crafting, and a live guitar jam. Also, an off-site program of readings will be offered at the Chestertown Community Center auditorium in mid-summer by the Our Town Theater Group.

Check the Adirondack Journal for upcoming dates, or for details, contact Fred Holman, North Country Arts Center board president, at 803-4034.

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