Sneak peek at Burlington architect's art exhibit - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Sneak peek at Burlington architect's art exhibit

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

They are always unique, they always stand out, and you can always spot a John Anderson design. The touch of the architect can be seen in over 50 homes and buildings across Vermont.

"Things are a bit conventional around here and it took a long time to find the clients who are interested in the same things I was," Anderson said.

These aren't just buildings to him. He wants each client's personality to shine, asking questions like what books people read, what music people listen to.

He's most proud of the KSV advertising agency building in Burlington. He took it from four cement walls and turned it into a unique space, filling it with chalk lines and lumber crayons, a playful wink to the tools of architects and carpenters.

"It represents me being able to knit my art and architecture together," he said.

After he finished the building 11 years ago, Anderson realized he wanted to be more artistic. During all his jobs he would always go home at night and create art, so he decided to make it his full-time job.

"It didn't occur to me when designing the space that I'd be showing something in it, but I kind of had it in the back of mind that someday," Anderson said.

Anderson's two- and three-dimensional drawings and sculptures are on exhibit in a building he designed, Burlington City Arts on Church Street.

Everything in the show is made of paper, including a wall of what Anderson calls paper studies. Each one created with two pieces of paper and a pencil-- his favorite tools as an architect-- and made with different techniques.

"These are spit wads," he said, pointing to one study.

Although buildings are bigger and can evoke bigger and more powerful reactions, Anderson says he can be more expressive and radical through art.

"I'm just as happy and just as satisfied if someone sees my art and likes it as I was having a building appreciated," he said.

An artist and an architect still putting his signature on Vermont.

Anderson's show opens up Friday at 5 p.m. at the BCA Center in Burlington. It runs through January.

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