Spring Has Sprung on Dog Mountain

Dog Mountain's Dog Chapel

Dog Mountain’s Dog Chapel

If you have been following my blog then you know what a harsh winter we have had here in Vermont. I am happy to report that we are finally thawing out, and so Nina and I, and of course Conan, have also been venturing further than the woodshed to grad yet another piece of firewood for the fire.

I would like to tell you just a little bit about one of my favorite places here in Vermont, a place called Dog Mountain. Located on 150 acres of privately owned land in St. Johnsbury, Dog Mountain is always open, and welcomes, visitors and their dogs. Stephen and Gwen Huneck purchased the property in 1995, and transformed the barn that was there into an artist’s studio. After a rare and almost fatal illness in which Stephen came dangerously close to dying, he created a lovely space called the Dog Chapel, which opened on Memorial Day in the year 2000.

Dog Mountain has no leash law, and dogs and their owners are welcome to wander about enjoying the beautiful views, wildflowers, and special feelings the place conjures about. I recommend that you learn more about this amazing and unique place.

Unfortunately both Stephen and Gwen have passed away, Stephen in 2010 and Gwen just last year. However, the mission of Dog Mountain is being kept alive, and the store still stocks the lovely artwork of Stephen, who was a prolific sculptor and painter. At Dog Mountain “Dogs are not just welcome, they are cherished.”

Needless to say, but I will anyway, Conan absolutely loves our trips to Dog Mountain.

Terra Cotta Pottery with Garry Childs

I recently read an interesting interview with artist Garry Childs who works in terra cotta. His work is beautiful and it’s always fun to get some insights from an artist about his process.

Here is one interesting thing that he said, “They’ve gotten considerably more complex in terms of the carved patterns. I’ve evolved my own technique over the years. Most potters are glazing pots in a process where you throw the pot, dry them, fire them, bisque fire them then glaze them. I always try to get them as close to finished coming off the wheel as I can. I glaze them when they are in a state called “leather hard,” when the clay has dried enough to handle, but not completely dried. By putting the glaze on, I can carve out of the glaze and develop the various patterns that you see.”

Read his whole interview here.