Burlington City Arts

City Hall Gallery

The City Hall Gallery is located on the main level and features Vermont artists from BCA’s external exhibitions program on a rotating basis



Erika Lawlor Schmidt

June - August 2019

Being in Mystery, monotype, 20x20


If we are listening, every day we are reminded that the earth is in peril, animals in the wild are in peril and human existence itself is in peril. The endless stream of grim statistics about the loss of animal habitat, over harvesting and senseless poaching and cruelty gives rise to melancholy and outrage.

Every spring I wait for the sights and sounds of birds, frogs, bees and animals returning to our surrounding hills and forests. This relationship to the natural world and understanding its delicate balance is integral to my very being, a link to my youth and a real hope for the sustenance and wellness for my children and grandchildren. A reasonable route and motivation for my work as an artist is now compelled by and linked to forms of activism in support of efforts and legislation to protect wild places and wildlife.

I have for a long time, been focused on making work about the interconnectedness and interdependence of all things, a kindred spirit to Eastern philosophies. This recent series of monotypes is celebratory yet elegiac not exactly different from earlier work, except that I have created this primarily for children. Playful, imaginary in color and scale, the images are meant to prompt inquiry and invite children to identify the mammals, birds, reptiles and insects and to then perhaps to write about them, a poem or story that comes from what they know, what they are curious about or what they imagine. A child’s creative process is important, sharing what we create is important and the discussion about our fragile relationship with all living creatures on this miraculous planet is important. The role of artists today is to create awareness and platforms for action.


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