Welcome Hildegard Ojibway

February 25, 2019

The AVA community and Board of Directors are pleased to welcome Hildegard Ojibway as interim Executive Director to AVA Gallery and Art Center beginning February 25, 2019. Hilde is a long-time Upper Valley resident and has been Executive Director of LISTEN Community Services and the Good Neighbor Health Clinic & Red Logan Dental Clinic.

More recently, she identified a need for interim administrative services in the area and has specialized in this capacity, serving as interim Executive Director at Headrest, Good Neighbor Health Clinic, Vital Communities, and Hannah House.

Hilde also served as a State Representative in the Vermont House of Representatives from 2006-2008. She is a singer/songwriter and has appeared in AVA’s Mudroom as part of the band, “Never Too Late,” and most recently as a storyteller.

AVA is also pleased to welcome Bente Torjusen, who served for 30 years as AVA’s Executive Director until 2016, as Strategic Advisor in this interim period.

The search for a permanent Executive Director will begin immediately.

AVA is buzzing with activity! Hilde Ojibway notes, “I love the way AVA engages people of all ages and abilities. The current exhibit of art by area high school students is a great example of how AVA encourages creative development and provides ways to showcase that art throughout the community.”

We hope you will attend the High School Show now on display in the galleries through March 8, 2019. There are exciting educational opportunities for artists of all ages and levels of experience in our new spring and summer classes and camps brochure which can be found here. Finally, please join us for our Annual Silent Auction Party on Saturday, April 6 to celebrate art in our lives and enjoy the company of other members of the AVA community.

June 7 :: NH Day of Giving

NH Gives Logo


Click here to donate to AVA as part of the NH Gives campaign on June 7.

What is NH Gives Day?

NH Gives Day is a 24-hour online fundraising campaign, designed to raise awareness about how essential nonprofits are to our quality of life and to highlight the generous spirit of the citizens of our state. Our goal is to unite people around the causes they care about and help nonprofits connect to the larger community.

On June 7, New Hampshire’s nonprofit sector will come together to celebrate our impact and amplify the generosity of our community, and we would love for you to be a part of it. NH Gives Day is brought to you thanks to the generous sponsorship of the NH Charitable Foundation, St. Mary’s Bank, Grappone Automotive Group, the New Hampshire Union Leader, and Heartwood Media, and with support from NH Businesses for Social Responsibility, the Granite, Monadnock, Greater Nashua, Greater Seacoast, and Sullivan County United Ways.

Click here to donate to AVA as part of the NH Gives campaign on June 7.

Thank you donors to AVA’s 2016 Silent Auction


Our 2016 Silent Auction Exhibition looks fantastic. The display features donations of artworks as well as essential goods and services from local businesses.

Click here to see the entire suite of donors and then come see the show to place your bids!

Click here to purchase your tickets to the Silent Auction Party and Final Bidding, Saturday, April 2, 5:30-8pm.

Thank you!

AVA’s 2016 Silent Auction is generously sponsored by:

Coldwell Banker, Redpath & Co. Realtors

Geokon, Inc.

Tyler, Simms & St. Sauveur, PC

Personalized Greeting Cards to Support AVA’s Scholarship Fund

Get Personalized Greeting Cards

Following on the success of last year’s Greeting Cards Fundraiser, AVA is happy to announce that we will be offering community members the opportunity to have greeting cards made that feature their own original artwork!

Just in time for the holidays and great for kids!

A box of 20 greeting cards with your artwork on the cover, professionally printed on nice paper and with envelopes, can be yours for $20. A portion of the proceeds raised through this campaign will go to AVA’s Scholarship Fund.

It’s easy to participate. Stop by the AVA office to pick up the appropriate card template. Make your art directly on the paper provided. Return the card to AVA the first week in November. We’ll call you when your cards have been printed and are ready for pick-up!

If you have further questions, please give us a call: (603) 448-3117.

AVA is Branching Out, Deepening Roots — Update on the progress of our capital campaign plans

AVA Yellow House

October 15, 2015

We are excited to share with you some news about the progress on the plans that our capital campaign will make possible. As previously announced, we will construct a 3-D studies facility on our property adjacent to the parking lot on the rear of our Carter-Kelsey building. We have received approval from both the zoning and planning boards of the City of Lebanon to move forward on the construction.

The existing building, a small one-family home from 1890, will be demolished in order to provide the necessary space for the new construction, scheduled to begin in April 2016. The re-useable parts of the house have been salvaged, including flooring, windows, doors and cabinets. While the lovely crabapple tree on the east side of the house could not be saved—it was just taken down by AVA artist and board member Michael Kraatz, ably assisted by Justin O’Rourke (see photo)—the wood from the tree is being stored for use in the 3-D center’s new woodworking studio.

Before demolition of the remainder of the house takes place later this month, the Lebanon Fire Department will undertake a training session at the site. They will not burn the building down, but will practice access and rescue operations from the roof.

We continue to make progress on our $3.5 million capital campaign. A $200,000 grant this month from the Timken Foundation of Canton helped push us beyond the half-way point toward our goal. We also recently met the challenge from the Byrne Foundation by successfully raising $25,000 in new or increased campaign gifts, and those have been matched dollar-for-dollar by Byrne. In addition, our efforts to eliminate the mortgage on the Carter-Kelsey Building have been extremely successful—in just this past year, the mortgage has been reduced from $410,000 to $130,000. With the pledges we have received, the mortgage will be completely eradicated by October 2016. In addition, we continue to develop our plans for the new artist members’ gallery. We are looking forward to providing a beautiful space for our artists to share their work with both the community and other artists, including a frequently rotating show space, promotional opportunities through digital archives, and gallery store possibilities.

Please stay tuned for more progress reports!


A One-Day Bus Trip to the New York Botanical Garden In Conjunction with the Exhibition Frida Kahlo: Art – Garden – Life


NY Botanical Garden Frida Kahlo


Wednesday, June 17

$95 /AVA-members; $125 /non-members


AVA is pleased to announce a one-day bus trip to the New York Botanical Garden on Wednesday, June 17 in conjunction with the exhibition Frida Kahlo: Art – Garden – Life. The cost is $95 for AVA members; $125 for non-members.

This heavily discounted tour is made possible thanks to the generous support of Jane and Peter McLaughlin, and includes transportation, light refreshments on the bus, admission fee to the botanical garden, and film showings during the bus trip.

The chartered bus, which will leave AVA at 6:30am on June 17, is scheduled to arrive at the New York Botanical Garden at 11:30am. It will depart at 5pm, with an estimated 10pm return time to AVA.

Frida Kahlo: Art – Garden – Life (on display through November 1, 2015) will feature fourteen of Kahlo’s paintings and works on paper-many borrowed from private collections-highlighting the artist’s use of botanical imagery in her work. The exhibition will include some of her lesser-known yet spectacular still life paintings, as well as works that engage nature in unusually symbolic ways, including Self-Portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird (1940); Flower of Life (1944); Still Life with Parrot and Flag (1951) and Self-Portrait Inside a Sunflower (1954).

The New York Botanical Garden’s Haupt Conservatory will be filled with the colors of Kahlo’s Mexico, greeting visitors with an evocation of the artist’s garden at the Casa Azul (Blue House), her lifelong home in Mexico City. A scale version of the pyramid she created to display pre-Hispanic art collected by her husband, muralist Diego Rivera, will feature traditional terra-cotta pots containing desert plants found in her garden. The exhibition also includes a reimagining of Kahlo’s studio overlooking the garden, as well as the organ pipe cactus fence located at Rivera’s studio in nearby San Ángel.

Among the films to be shown during the bus trip is Bone Wind Fire, a 30-minute visual meditation on the work and inner lives of Georgia O’Keeffe, Emily Carr and Frida Kahlo. Directed by the Canadian painter Jill Sharpe, the film reveals each artist’s distinct creative concerns and processes through their letters and diaries. Sharpe presented this film at AVA in fall 2013, in connection with the film series Focus on Film – As Art, On Art.

Click here to purchase your $95 ticket as an AVA member.

Click here to purchase your $125 ticket as a non-member.