Committee on Art in Public Places at Middlebury College (CAPP)


CAPP has existed since the fall of 1994, when the president and Board of Trustees entrusted it with the exhibition, purchase, and placement of works of art on the campus, apart from the Middlebury College Museum of Art.

1.  Charge of the Committee

The Committee has been charged with achieving the following goals:

  • Establish a program of exhibition of art in public places to be administered jointly by the Middlebury College Museum of Art and CAPP.
  • Expand the educational mission of the Middlebury College Museum of Art, the Department of History of Art and Architecture, and the Program in Studio Art by providing interesting and challenging work of high quality, accompanied by an interpretive program to make works accessible to the non-specialist.
  • Elicit gifts and loans of works of art that can enhance the aesthetic and educational mission of the arts.
  • Involve a broad representation of the community in choosing, placing, and interpreting art in public places.
  • Designate the Center for the Arts and its grounds as a place for public art, as well as selected sites in other spaces on campus.
  • Provide funding for the purchase, installation, maintenance, and interpretation of works of art in public places.
  • Ensure the security and care of these objects.


2.  Mandate and Operating Procedures for CAPP

The College has established a policy of "One Percent for Art;" that is, one percent of the total budget of any renovation or new construction at the College would be earmarked for the purchase, installation, maintenance, and interpretation of works of art in the public places associated with the building being renovated or constructed.

The College will undertake a concerted effort to acquire gifts of works of art, as well as monetary gifts leading to the acquisition, care, and interpretation of works of art in public places.

The College will consider the audience for such works to be the entire College community and will take into account the mission of the institution, which will be reflected in the acquisition, siting, and interpretation process.  Works of art will be acquired for exhibition in public places following the guidelines established by the Middlebury Museum of Art for the acquisition of art for its collection.

Distinctive works of art chosen or created for the public spaces of the campus will represent a broad range of artistic styles and be of sufficiently high quality to merit their inclusion in the College's permanent collection.

All works will be reviewed for site specifications, function of site, primary users of the site, site-specific maintenance and safety questions, and appropriateness of a loan or permanent placement.

Loans of works to be exhibited in public places will be considered, especially as they allow for experimental and challenging works to be shown.

The College will be fiscally responsible in accepting works for loan exhibition, reviewing financial and legal obligations regarding the acquisition of works of art, including covering artist fees, travel costs, transportation of work, site preparation, signage, potential repair and restoration costs, insurance and security costs, and costs for an educational program designed around the work and for publicity to introduce the work to the community. A budget for exhibition of works of public art on loan will be established before loans are accepted.

Bearing in mind recent legal discussions about the rights of artists concerning the discussion, alteration, and placement of works of art, the College will take such ethical considerations into account when choosing and negotiating for works of art to be displayed in public places.

CAPP will have the right to deaccession works guided by the same standards used by the Collections Committee of the Museum.

3.  Policy for the temporary exhibition of works of art on the Middlebury campus

CAPP does not presume any authority over works of art, photographs, etc., that faculty and staff place on view in their offices, that departments choose to install in their offices and teaching spaces, that students place in their rooms, that Commons choose for their lounges.

CAPP welcomes temporary installations in public spaces organized by departments or individuals. There is no need for CAPP to monitor short exhibits (three weeks or less), but such presentations must always be clearly labeled to indicate their source and the educational purpose that lies behind them.

CAPP, or the on-campus subcommittee of CAPP, which has been authorized to make practical decisions that are too cumbersome to be managed by the Committee as a whole, must approve any work or works to be placed on view for a longer period. (This subcommittee consists of the chair of CAPP, the director and assistant director of the Museum, the director of the Program in Studio Art and the chair of the Department of the History of Art and Architecture.)

When a work or works are approved for temporary exhibition, the length of time it/they will be on view must be clearly indicated and stipulated in writing, indicating the agreement between the installer and the subcommittee. Normally, an academic year would be the longest time for such an exhibition. If the department or individual wishes, a request may be made at the end of the designated period to extend the exhibition, or to acquire the work or works for permanent installation. If CAPP does not approve the extension, the work or works must be removed.

rev. 8/16/13

The Program in Studio Art is dedicated to teaching liberal arts students to express themselves in the plastic arts through visual media. Our program welcomes all Middlebury students: from those who wish to sample small experiences in studio-art, as well as students making studio-art the central focus of their studies.Our faculty is comprised of distinguished artists devoted to the idea that creativity, imaginative thinking, and personal expression are vitally important in the lives of all people.

Our core curriculum centers on drawing, painting, photography, printmaking, and sculpture with a broad array of exciting materials and processes. From large-format photography, to welding steel and melting glass, our courses challenge you think in ways you never have. And, each year, we present cutting-edge courses offered by visiting artists-in-residence. But, whether digitally silk screening their own cloths or carving ice sculpture, studio students are guided to make art engaging contemporary aesthetic and cultural meaning... your world.

Many ask if "talent" is needed to study studio art at Middlebury. The answer is a clear "no." Over two-thirds taking a studio art course are non-majors. Students come from all areas of the College and we particularly welcome those who desire joint-majors with other subjects. Our faculty believes the brightest future belongs to students able to think and act creatively. In fact those who concentrate in Studio Art are as likely to become writers, entrepreneurs, or teachers as artists. One recent alumni who majored in the program is now an immigration lawyer.

Our faculty provides close, individualized instruction within spacious, well-equipped studio facilities. Experimentation and a spirit of invention are encouraged. Intense study and focused work is required... along with a sense of adventure. We thrive on innovative problem solving.

Please tour our website, meet our faculty, and view our facilities. The Program In Studio Art is where academics meet culture, and possibilities open.

Two students produce radio program on arts at Middlebury

Radio Arts Middlebury is a completely student-written and -produced radio program dedicated to reporting the events, people, and ideas that comprise the arts community at the College. In the fall of 2008, the show sprang fully-formed from the mind of Colin Foss ('10, LITS). Foss hosted RAM until the spring of 2009, when John Patrick Allen ('11, PSCI) took over during Foss's time abroad. RAM has interviewed Middlebury professors, visiting artists (including Girl Talk and Anaîs Mitchell), students, and staff -- people who find themselves creating or promoting art on campus. RAM's "Middlebury Story" is one of finding other stories.

Choral music in the air at Middlebury, and on tour of Northeast

The College Choir embarked on a highly successful tour of Connecticut, Boston and New York City over spring break, April 21-26, 2009. The tour included concerts at the phenomenal Trinity Church in the City of Boston, St. Michael's Church on 99th Street in Manhattan, and the New York Society for Ethical Culture on Central Park. The choir sang contemporary choral music, madrigals, and folk music, and a short choral drama featured several Middlebury student soloists. The trip also included a visit to an alum's high school chorus, and joint concerts with Saengerfest Men's Chorus in Boston, the United Nations International School Chamber Ensemble, and Philip Hamilton '82 and his a cappella project, Voices. The choir gave a home concert of the tour program on March 30 at Middlebury. 

2008-2009 marks the successful establishment of two new Music Department ensembles, the Men's and Women's Glee Clubs. The men's group offers a department ensemble singing group for men to learn vocal technique and a variety of repertoire, as well as ensemble singing. The women's group grew to 15 members this year and performed selections from "Gloria" by the 17th century master Antonio Vivaldi, with chamber orchestra, as well as several modern pieces and adaptations of international folk music. The Women's Glee Club is conducted by Jessica Allen. With the addition of the Glees, the Middlebury Music Department now has more students singing in ensembles than in the past several years, mostly students who have little or no contact with the department outside of those ensembles.

In May the College Choir performed five Ukrainian Romani songs, with several Middlebury student soloists and a student guitarist. The songs arrangements are the result of field research by Director of Choral Activities Jeffrey Buettner, who returns to Ukraine in June to share the recordings of the College Choir with Romani musicians there. Also on the program were three songs for chorus and piano by Johannes Brahms.

Seven graduating seniors served two or more years as museum assistants

Seven graduating seniors in the Class of 2009 – Alex Benepe, Mary Chiles, Sonia Epstein, Pujan Gandhi, Kelsey Nelson, Ramona Richards, and Jennifer Yamane – recently concluded either their second or third year of participation in the Museum Assistants Program (MAP) at the Middlebury College Museum of Art.

As museum assistants, they volunteered for several hours a week, learning about behind-the-scenes operations of the museum, leading school tours, and assisting with family programs. In addition to their volunteer work, five of the assistants were museum interns and one worked as a museum receptionist. We hope that each of them will take skills that they learned from teaching in the galleries and working in the office to new opportunities.

Local artists, including students and alumni, paint Adirondack chairs for charity

Local artists are accustomed to painting on canvas or paper, but a new fund-raiser for the Addison County Parent/Child Center has them embellishing a different medium—Adirondack chairs.

Eighteen artists including painter Woody Jackson ’70 and woodcarver Gary Starr have donated their talents to the “Chairity for Children” live benefit auction that will take place Sunday, Feb. 1, at 4 p.m. in the McCullough Social Space at Middlebury College.