Daniel Gauss, “TAKE BACK VERMONT! Zieher Smith & Horton Gallery”, Artefuse, January 23, 2015
Justin Sanders, “L’Homme Blessé (Self-Portrait)”, Pulse, January 9, 2015
In the late summer of 2000, simple black and white signs with the words “TAKE BACK VERMONT” began to appear along the state’s winding country roads. The campaign was triggered by the state legislature’s passage of the first law of its kind, which established civil unions for same-sex couples. Years later the signs still dangled from trees, fence posts, and barnsides as symbols of the wider class struggle and culture war between the “woodchucks” and the “flatlanders” – the former professing to represent working-class native Vermonters, with the later being characterized as affluent liberal-minded transplants. For the exhibition Take Back Vermont, the gallery has assembled paintings, sculptures, and works on paper by Peter Gallo, Ellen Lesperance, and Aaron Spangler that mine the ideas surrounding ruralness and protest.