Its past, present and future as the historic Martha’s Vineyard Art Association’s Old Sculpin Gallery in Edgartown opens this weekend with its group members show and selections from its permanent collection by Vineyard artists.
As demonstration of the diverse work of its over 40 members, the show will include the work of watercolor painter Paul Beebe, mixed media artist Camilla Westby, and artist Sharon McCann Daly, who creates scenes in pastel and oil.
Award-winning artist Paul Beebe, after researching naval history and historic schooners, renders detailed images of the schooners, yachts, and whaling ships that have been part of the Vineyard seascape.
Mixed media artist Camilla Westby, a graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, claims inspiration from nature and her desire to nurture and preserve it to create her unique images.
Sharon McCann Daly worked as a commercial artist for more than 20 years, and captures the views of the Island’s sea and landscapes from her Chappaquiddick home.
The Old Sculpin Gallery creates a singularly dramatic and rustic setting for viewing art. The 240-year-old former sail loft, whale oil factory, old grain store, then boat builder’s shed, is a landmark on Edgartown’s harbor across from Memorial Wharf. Cat boat builder Manuel Swartz Roberts, known as “Old Sculpin,” bought the structure in 1904, and spent 50 years building boats there, sanding, scraping, and wearing out a deep groove in the old floor boards that can still be seen today in the floor of the main gallery. Manuel sold the building to the Martha’s Vineyard Art Association in 1954.
Founded by Ruth Mead, the nonprofit Martha’s Vineyard Art Association, in existence since 1934, states its mission as being: “to increase facilities for art education, create interest in the arts, foster appreciation of the arts, make an art center for the whole island, establish a permanent collection, and preserve an old landmark.”
Over the years, through fundraising events, the Art Association has been able to maintain the Old Sculpin building, hold summer art classes for children and adults, and provide scholarships to art students from the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School who plan to continue to study art.
Each week during the season the gallery presents a show of three or four different artist-members. All of the art, except pieces from the permanent collection, are available for purchase.
To apply for membership in the Martha’s Vineyard Art Association, visit its website (oldsculpingallery.org) for an application. 508-627-4881.
Group Members and Permanent Collection Show, Old Sculpin Gallery, runs through Friday, June 18. June hours: Thursdays through Sundays, 9 am–6 pm. 58 Dock Street across Memorial Wharf. 508-627-4881.