Burlington Community Arts Organizations Co-Locate: Big Heavy World Moves to SEABA in the South End Arts District

Press Release by Big Heavy World & SEABA. Photo by James Lockridge.

Two of Burlington’s community-building arts organizations will begin working from a shared space on Pine Street in January. Big Heavy World has relocated from North Avenue to a studio inside the South End Arts & Business Association (SEABA).

Both nonprofit organizations have long histories of serving Burlington’s arts community. SEABA was founded in 1986 as a trade association, serving the fused interests of arts and commerce in the South End of Burlington. Big Heavy World was established in 1996 as an independent, volunteer-staffed music office with a mission of promoting and preserving music originating in Vermont.

SEABA is located at 404 Pine Street, in the heart of the South End Arts District, a light industrial zone with the largest concentration of incubator businesses per square mile in the State of Vermont. Many of the district’s occupants share a gritty and entrepreneurial zeal for creativity: Neighbors include Arts Riot, a restaurant and performing arts center; Accelerator, a collaborative maker space; The Box, a music recording studio; the Burlington Music Dojo, a collective of music instructors; and the studios of artists working in diverse media including glass, wood, metal, video, literature and fine arts.

James Lockridge, Executive Director of Big Heavy World, said, “Burlington has a community-minded, collaborative spirit that has been evolving for decades. When organizations share a vision for bringing people and resources together, we achieve more and reinforce our civic fabric.”

Big Heavy World’s programs include a web site about Vermont’s music industry; a Vermont music archive holding thousands of recordings; a tour van that is loaned to local musicians; and a community radio station, 105.9FM ‘The Radiator,’ that hosts a weekly local music radio program and podcast, ‘Rocket Shop.’

Adam Brooks, Executive Director of SEABA, said, “SEABA recognizes the investment that Big Heavy World has made in serving local music. Their mission complements SEABA’s and the benefits of sharing a working environment are obvious. We’ll introduce our mutual audiences to each other and leverage shared resources; Burlington and a larger circle of regional artists and businesses will benefit.”

SEABA is a member-based association that promotes the community and economic vitality of the South End of Burlington, matching the interests of commerce with those of the arts. Programs include the annual South End Art Hop, a three-day event attracting 30,000+ visitors to explore sculpture, fashion, music, live demos, artist markets, and a juried art show. Art Hop is presented throughout the many studios and refitted business spaces of the arts district.

“Burlington is highly regarded as an arts community that respects and supports one another. By working together, our organizations will amplify that very special local instinct. Our diverse artists will have strong supporters in SEABA and Big Heavy World as this community grows in scope and strength,” said Lockridge. The relocation was made possible with a grant from the Vermont Community Foundation.

Contact: Adam Brooks, Executive Director, SEABA, director@seaba.com, (802) 859-9222, seaba.org James Lockridge, Executive Director, Big Heavy World, jim@bigheavyworld.com, (802) 865-1140, bigheavyworld.com