art exhibit

Vt. Hayfield-Turned-Art Gallery a ‘Breath of Fresh Air' During Pandemic

A drive-by art experience popped up in a roadside field in Pawlet

NBC Universal, Inc.

A new roadside attraction in a rural stretch of Vermont's Rutland County is getting drivers to slow down and check out the sights—while following physical distancing guidelines.

"It's been really rewarding and fun," photographer Steve Schaub said of the drive-by art exhibit he and his writer wife, Eve, established in a hayfield on River Road in Pawlet.

With so many traditional places to see art closed because of the pandemic, the couple wanted their co-creations—one is 32 feet long—to offer an easy way for folks to pause and reflect on the world.

"For me, the works all have a common underlying thread of hope during times of uncertainty," Eve Schaub told NECN and NBC10 Boston.

"All of the pieces are about hope," Steve Schaub added. "We've tried to keep a very positive message in all these pieces. We think people need to hear more of that right now."

The display is just temporary. The works are expected to last about six months outside in the elements, the Schaubs said.

One artwork reads, "I keep happiness in a jar by the side of my bed."

Another says, "My heart is very big — sometimes I wonder if it is big enough."

A mowed walking path winds its way through the field, so you can get right up near the art, but most people seem to check it out from the road.

"It's just a breath of fresh air during this uncertain time," said Beth Moser-Duquette, who drove past the artwork Thursday. "There's so much anger and there's so much hate. This is saying, 'Let's get together and make something positive happen in this community.'"

The Schaubs said they're not done growing their exhibit. They're now planning their fifth and largest piece for July, the couple said.

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