Wednesday Painters mark centennial



ELLSWORTH — When the Ellsworth Public Library signed on to be a centennial partner for Acadia National Park’s 100th birthday this year, it agreed to host a park-related program or presentation each month.

As it worked to fill that schedule, one group in particular was seen as a natural fit: the Wednesday Painters.

Meeting since 2009, when there were five or six members, the Wednesday Painters now number more than 20. They meet, as their name suggests, on Wednesdays at the Moore Community Center in Ellsworth in space managed by Friends in Action.

Sisters Anita TeHennepe and Trudie VanLente from Franklin founded the group. They and others had taken classes with Schoodic Arts for All’s executive director Mary Laury and then decided they wanted to go out on their own.

“There are no membership requirements,” the group explains in a statement, “just a desire to make art with others. We welcome anyone who wants a convivial and friendly atmosphere in which to work.”

Wednesday Painters meet from 9 a.m. to noon each Wednesday on the second floor of the Moore Center.

The group has done themed shows in the past, so when the library approached them this year about doing Acadia-inspired art they agreed.

The result is a show that went up in the River Room at the Ellsworth Public Library in August and will be on display through Friday, Sept. 2.

The 56 different pieces represent a range of both subjects and media. Acrylic, oil and watercolor paintings are hung alongside colored pencil and ink pieces. One work was created by double weaving on a metal frame.

Subjects include Acadia’s carriage roads, mountains, the seashore, animals and the ocean. Looking at the art one is reminded that the park means many things to many people.

John Burrill of Trenton is one of the Wednesday Painters — he believes he is the only man in the group — said he picked up painting after suffering a stroke years ago. He tried different styles but kept coming back to watercolors, the medium that remains his favorite.

“It is just so lovely for me,” he said.

Group members bring their own materials but offer each other advice and encouragement during their Wednesday morning sessions.

For Jo Cooper, executive director of Friends in Action, the Wednesday Painters group shows both the “hidden talent” of area residents as well as the kind of programs that are offered at the Moore Community Center.

“For me, it’s the epitome of what we’re all about because it’s a variety of people in a setting that’s open, welcoming and social with all this amazing ability,” she said at the reception at the library.

Their Acadia

What: Over 50 pieces of art by local artists

Where: Riverview Room, Ellsworth Public Library

When: Through Friday, Sept. 2

Steve Fuller

Steve Fuller

Reporter at The Ellsworth American,
Steve Fuller worked at The Ellsworth American from 2012 to early 2018. He covered the city of Ellsworth, including the Ellsworth School Department and the city police beat, as well as the towns of Amherst, Aurora, Eastbrook, Great Pond, Mariaville, Osborn, Otis and Waltham. A native of Waldo County, he served as editor of Belfast's Republican Journal prior to joining the American. He lives in Orland.
Steve Fuller

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