Conversion of the old East Bethany General Store into an art gallery is a work in progress for owner Terry Manning Weber, but she still opened her doors for Saturday’s Artist Road Show.
She ran the general store, 5769 Route 63 in the hamlet, from 1988 to 2005. Her art studio was on the second floor.
“It’s taken me a good three years, I would say, to move my studio down here,” she said.
Weber’s place was one of 13 sites in Genesee County that comprised the 2012 Artist Road Show, organized by the Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council.
“It’s been busy all morning,” Weber said early Saturday afternoon.
She joked that about 30 people stopped in, “and I wasn’t related to all of them.”
Paintings done on canvas, silk and “yupo” paper adorned the general store’s walls. Yupo is paper covered with a thin coat of clear polypropylene, much like a restaurant menu is coated in plastic.
The paint stays on top of the polypropylene and gives the piece more of a three dimensional effect.
“The nice thing about it is you can wipe it off if you don’t like it,” Weber said.
Handmade items displayed on counters and shelves in the general store included dyed silk scarves, needles, felt wall hangings and felt purses.
This year was Weber’s first time participating in the road show. The previous four years she helped out artist Bernice Yunker’s open house at her Farmer’s Wife Studio in Elba.
“I think it’s great,” Weber said of Saturday’s event.
“Anything to get people out and motivated on a beautiful fall day.”
Agnes Larsen, a friend of Weber’s, stopped in to check out the new gallery. “I’m partial to white birch,” Larsen said.
Weber had several white birch watercolors on display.
Two other visitors from Pavilion walked shortly after Larsen. Mary Eisenhard and Debbie Slusser belong to a women’s group with Weber and showed up to support her gallery.
“Wow, you really fixed it up,” Eisenhard said.
“I like it,” Slusser said.
She picked up a blank sheet of yupo paper, which she’d never seen before.
“I’m buying some of that. The fact that you can wash it off, for the grandkids,” she said.
The goal of the fifth annual Artist Road Show was to encourage visits to artists and crafters at their places of work. It also provides an opportunity for people to view, purchase or order works, raise awareness of culture in the community and increase tourism in Genesee and Orleans counties.
An artist who helped inspire the creation of the Artist Road Show had her works on display Saturday at GO ART’s Bank of Castile Main Gallery, Seymour Place, 201 East Main St., Batavia.
Kim Martillotta said former GO ART! executive director Linda Blanchet visited her several years ago. Blanchet was so impressed with Martillotta’s Marti’s on Main, a European-style gallery in Albion, that she thought the public should be encouraged to visit it.
“It inspired her to ask other artists,” Martillotta said.
The result was the Open Studio Tour. The name was later changed to Genesee & Orleans Art Trails, then again to Artist Road Show.
Martillotta’s GO ART show features sculptures, collages, photographs, box art and paintings.
Some of the 20 works in the exhibit are very mainstream, photos of horse and geese in a pasture, another of a honey bee inside the blossom of a squash plant. Other pieces would make Salvador Dali proud.
“Zebras” is an abstract painting of a pair of zebras. The animals’ heads are together it appears there is only one zebra three eyes.
“I tend to be a little out there,” Martillotta said.
She said her exhibit did not have any visitors Saturday morning but she expected people to show up for her artist reception at 1:30 p.m.
Robin Upson, administrative assistant, said participation and attendance at the Artist Road Show turned into a successful initiative.
“I think it’s gone up every year.”
On Net: www.GOart.org