a Dream With Art Auction
By Melissa Fruge 8/31/09
A vibrant arts community is growing along the shores of Lake Charlevoix, and though it may have happened by chance, all can agree it was destiny. Youve never heard of the Boyne Arts Collective? Well pay attention, because youre in for a pleasant surprise. What started as an informal gathering of local artists in the Boyne City area two years ago has exploded into a community-wide organization with more than 100 members.
Organizer and artist Martina Hahn has lived in the area for more than 15 years and says she had heard about all the fabulously talented local artists, but had yet to meet any. So in the fall of 2007 she began circulating a flyer asking anyone interested in the arts to attend a small informal gathering to discuss how to strengthen their presence in Boyne City. Hahn says about a dozen people showed up to the initial meeting and the numbers and organization have grown from there. However, providing artists an outlet to showcase and sell their work is not the main mission of the Boyne Arts Collective (B.A.C.) Their goal is to encourage local artists and promote art education and appreciation in the community.
Whats great about the Boyne Art Collective is that not only do artists now have a place to display their work, but now we have a place to gather and can learn from each other and share resources, says artist Jerry Douglas.
Its also been a plus for the community. Jim Baumann, executive director of the Boyne City Chamber of Commerce, believes it gives the town a real sense of pride and hopes the arts and culture can become an economic contributor to the area.
Were not just some strip town on the highway, people have to want to come to Boyne City and I think this gives them an extra reason, says Baumann.
GALLERY & HQ
Located in what has become known as SoBo, the Boyne Arts Collective gallery and headquarters can be found at the south end of Lake Street. Glenn Catt is allowing the organization to use the 210 building for the next three years rent-free, with the stipulation that they are responsible for the maintenance and any repairs or upgrades that need to be done. A tall order for the fledgling non-profit (the B.A.C. is in the final stages of applying for non-profit status).
This building was a disaster, laments board member and artist June Storm.
There is currently no working plumbing (running water, bathrooms) electrical upgrades are needed, and the back of the building is a maze of little rooms and hallways. Volunteers worked to open the space up in front but much more needs to be done. The board has grand visions for the future of B.A.C.
Were not just an art gallery emphasizes board member Scott McKenzie.
They hope to set up a working studio for artists and they would like to hold small art classes for people interested in learning more and expanding their perspective of the art world. There has even been talk about someday clearing out the back of the surprisingly long building and creating a dance studio. But the B.A.C. currently lacks the funds or notoriety to undertake a project of that magnitude. According to their online wish list they would be thrilled to just get some chairs and tables, a few hours of an electricians time, or even a three-hole punch!
In order to accomplish some of these lofty aspirations (like running water) the Boyne Arts Collective is hosting its first fine arts auction this Labor Day Weekend.
The auction begins at 7 p.m. Friday night, September 4, at the B.A.C. gallery, 210 Lake Street. It promises to be an exciting event with live entertainment, hors devours and wine and beer tasting, courtesy of Sammich n Sudz. Local artists are displaying original works in a myriad of media: textiles, oils, watercolors, and more. Also on the auction block are creative services. Some artists will donate their time and skills to teach small classes in how to create and appreciate art. Douglas, who has created many works on display in the gallery and outdoor murals around downtown, is offering to paint a 120-square-foot mural for the highest bidder. Another member, Sandra Cook, would like to auction off her services and create an art appreciation experience.
To find out more about the Boyne Arts Collective or become a member, you can check out their website, boynearts.org. Membership is not limited to artists.