BMAC, Retreat Farm invite entries for Artful Ice Shanties

BRATTLEBORO — The Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (BMAC) and Retreat Farm are now accepting entries for Artful Ice Shanties 2023. Registrations will be accepted until Friday, Dec. 16.

Artists, ice fishing enthusiasts, tiny house aficionados, designer-builders, and creative groups and individuals of all ages and experience levels are invited to enter.

The first 15 artists to register will receive a $200 stipend upon delivery of their shanty. Because stipends are limited, artists are encouraged to register early. There is no fee for entry. Registration forms and details are available at

“The Artful Ice Shanties outdoor exhibit is a place-based celebration of artistic talent, creative ingenuity, and the rich history of ice fishing” at the Retreat Meadows, said BMAC Director Danny Lichtenfeld in a news release. Last year, more than 1,700 people attended the exhibit.

This year, the shanties will be displayed on the Retreat Meadows ice across the road from Retreat Farm on Route 30 in Brattleboro from Saturday, Feb. 18, through Sunday, Feb. 26. Prizes will be awarded for notably artistic, inventive, fun, or silly shanties at an outdoor Awards Ceremony on Saturday, Feb. 25, at 2 p.m.

Eligible entries can be traditional or conceptual ice shanties, functional or wacky, permanent or temporary - as long as they can be moved and can withstand the wind, snow, and ice in mid-February, as well as exploration by the general public throughout the week - but they must be artful.

Past Artful Ice Shanties have included a glass box that used recycled lenses to simulate the experience of the northern lights; a shanty that displayed animals' winter survival strategies, by third and fourth graders; an enormous black die with moons as dots; a seascape with a three-dimensional octopus; a shanty shaped like Baba Yaga's house; and Namaskônek, a shanty inspired by the Algonquin ancestors of the region.

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