Gary Starr to share his carving life

Gary Starr is a world-class, self-taught carver whose decorative decoys and birds are coveted by some collectors, and appreciated by lovers of art and nature. On Wednesday, June 27, at noon, the Weybridge artist will present the illustrated talk “A Life Among Birds: Carved and Flying” at the Sheldon Museum in downtown Middlebury.
Starr’s sculptures are on display at the Sheldon Museum through Nov. 11. In the talk, he will discuss his childhood amidst a premier decoy collection, his introduction to carving, his change of careers, and a birding passion, shared by his wife, Kathy. The talk is free with museum admission.
A PUFFIN BY Gary Starr
Following an education at the Cornell University School of Hotel Management, Gary Starr first worked for ITT Sheraton Corporation, including an assignment at Universal Studios in Hollywood. A position as Director of Food Services at Middlebury College lured him to Vermont. While growing up in Duxbury, Mass., Starr had been exposed to the world-class antique decoy collection of his father, Dr. George R. Starr, who was also a wood carver and hunter. Dr. Starr introduced Gary to carving, but not until Gary had spent 20 years at Middlebury College did he decide to leave food services to reinvent himself and take on wood carving as a career.
He has become a world-class carver whose decorative decoys and birds are on display at the Sheldon: from three magnificent oversized shore birds — one standing, a second running and a third feeding — to a variety of life-sized colorful birds including a puffin, American oyster catcher, belted king fisher, Baltimore oriole, wood duck, and lilac breasted roller. Gary and Kathy Starr travel the world seeking inspirational birds that become stunning carved replicas when Gary returns to his Vermont studio.
A WOOD DUCK by Gary Starr
The Henry Sheldon Museum offers a diverse, in-depth look at the history and art of the Mid-Lake Champlain region of Vermont.  The museum is located at 1 Park St. in Middlebury across from the Ilsley Library.  Museum hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday 1-5 p.m. Admission is $5 adults; $3 youth (6-18); $4.50 seniors; $12 family; $5 research center. For more information call 802-388-2117 or visit HenrySheldonMuseum.org.

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