Woodstock guitar sculptures up for auction

Rennie Cantine

A live auction will present for sale 50 colorful guitar sculptures that have been on display throughout the town this past summer, 4 p.m.-6 p.m. Sunday, October 13 at the Kleinert/James Center for the Arts, 34 Tinker Street, Woodstock. 

Family of Woodstock’s Text Me Back crisis hotline will receive 50 percent of the proceeds, while the John Herald Fund will get 10 percent. Participating artists will receive the remaining 40 percent.

This year’s Woodstock Guitar Sculpture Exhibition coincided with the 50th anniversary of the Woodstock Music Festival and featured a design by Rennie Cantine that is part Stratocaster and Les Paul fused into one piece.


Cantine, who has coordinated the outdoor exhibition since 2002 as part of the 100th anniversary celebration of Woodstock as an arts colony, said it not only brings residents together, but makes a bold statement about the community’s artistic bent.

“No matter where you go on the weekend, there are people lined up, taking photos of the sculptures,” Cantine said. “I do this every year because I love Woodstock. It has given me everything, and it’s just a great community. This is something that’s an artistic outlet for me, and it’s really rewarding.”

The guitar sculptures run the gamut of creativity from Cantine’s husky axe guitar outside of H Houst and Son hardware store at 4 Mill Hill Road to a funky psychedelic one called “Fierce” by artist Jeffrey Fulvimari in front of Woodsock at 97 Tinker St.

Included for sale is Guitar No. 113, which has been on display at Levon Helm’s barn and has collected signatures on it from artists who have performed there, including Graham Nash, David Crosby, Jon Anderson and Robbie Dupree. 

Artists who designed guitars in this year’s show include Steve Heller, a Boiceville sculptor and owner of Fabulous Furniture; Joe Veillette, a luthier and owner of the Woodstock-based Veillette Guitars; Michael DuBois, a rock artist known for his Grateful Dead work; Bruce Ackerman; Agon Mizelle; Kate Jellinghaus and Sabrina Miller.

Prior to the live bidding, Sabrina and the Gems, featuring Cantine on guitar, will perform during the auction preview from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

Woodstock author and radio host Martha Frankel will serve as the guest auctioneer

The Family of Woodstock’s 24-hour Text Me Back program is a confidential crisis hotline that helps those struggling with substance abuse or contemplating suicide find immediate help.

The John Herald Fund was established for musicians and artists in need and helps with such things as emergency medical care, car repairs and fuel bills.

Tamara Cooper, the program director at Family of Woodstock, said she has especially enjoyed this year’s exhibition and appreciates all it does to help local residents.

“I think the guitars are really creative and beautiful and timely,” she said. “It’s really important to support the musicians and artists that make Woodstock the town that it is.”