Spruce Peak Arts hosted a panel on the unique challenges faced by BIPOC artists in Vermont.
Jennifer Herrera Condry and Will Kasso are the owners of Juniper Creative Arts. They facilitate community mural projects with colleges and universities.
“I prefer to use spray paint to paint large,” Kasso said. “I love painting large period, but outdoors spray painting because it’s faster, you don’t have to think about it too much.”
But during the pandemic Kasso used pen and ink for inspiration.
“If anything it is teaching me more about patience because pen and ink requires a lot of patience to get through from start to finish,” Kasso said.
Now his art is even seen on craft beer.
“Because doing labels for craft beer is not different from doing album covers and I have a history of doing album covers so I was like oh this is fun,” Kasso said.
He is from New Jersey, but met Jennifer while she was working at Middlebury College.
“I decided that I was going to give Vermont a shot because my appreciation grew as Jennifer and our relationship grew,” Kasso said.
Jennifer is the creative director for Juniper Creative Arts.
“A lot of the work that I do helps facilitate these brainstorming sessions and really get people to talk and share their ideas,” Jennifer Condry said.
Even though they both aren’t originally from Vermont, they now call it their home.
“Black people love Vermont the same reason why white people love Vermont, because it’s beautiful here,” Kasso said. “I can go in my backyard and see trees for miles. Do you know how good that is for your mental health.”