2018 Lab Artist: Gowri Savoor
Gowri Savoor is a visual teaching artist whose practice includes sculpture, drawing and the Indian art of Rangoli. Born in Manchester, UK, Gowri was educated in Manchester and Leeds, UK and now resides in Vermont. She is the founder of A River of Light, an organization committed to bringing art to the community through participatory art events, parades and installations. Gowri has been a teaching artist for over 18 years with experience in arts integration and community building, while continuing to exhibit both nationally and internationally.
Through her artistic practice, Gowri explores our understanding of a sense of place. She sees that our relationship with water is of paramount importance, but often overlooked when living in a landlocked state like Vermont that is abundant with rainfall, lakes, rivers and streams. One can forget the extent to which water feeds us, provides a life-support system, and connects every one of us in deep and profound ways; it has no concept of barriers, and little regard to boundaries.
Gowri recently wrote, “for centuries, we have been mapping, charting and documenting our environment to better understand our planet and define geographic and cultural identities. Our endeavors to comprehend the unique spatial relationships that we have to the land, the ocean, and to one another have led us to create boundaries. Some of these walls exist on paper only, others are physical; some partitions are unspoken and many are invisible.”
As part of her residency with VPL, Gowri was in residence in the Guilford community working with students in the 6th grade class to further their connections to waterways and watersheds through collaborative art-making and community celebrations. Gowri also offered three lantern making workshops for the community, culminating in an interactive visual light community parade along the Broad Brook with Guilford’s 6th grade class and a free public lantern lit paddle at the confluence of the West and the Connecticut Rivers in Brattleboro, VT.