Art Gallery opens in Slayton Public LibrarySLAYTON — Two years ago, a project began at the Slayton Public Library. A room that was used for playing pool was turned into a meeting room and added to the library, which also tied the public bathrooms and senior dining to the library.
SLAYTON — Two years ago, a project began at the Slayton Public Library. A room that was used for playing pool was turned into a meeting room and added to the library, which also tied the public bathrooms and senior dining to the library.
“The room is used for meetings, exercise classes and reading programs,” said librarian Sharyl Larson. “But Becky (Hudson) and I were just wracking our brains trying to come up with an idea to get it used even more.”
Then they hit upon a delightfully artistic idea. Why not showcase the talents of local artists? Thus the idea of the Slayton Art Gallery was born.
“And it just kind of grew,” Larson said. “It got off the ground very quickly. We can feature local artists from southwest Minnesota.”
Hudson and Larson went in search of funding to hang works of art, and received one through the Minnesota Library Foundation.
They called in a few people and formed an art gallery committee.
“There are four people on the committee, and they each knew someone who was an artist,” Larson explained.
The opening in November went well, she said, with approximately 100 people in attendance.
Gallery guests were very enthusiastic about the display, she added.
“We’ll leave this up for a while, then rotate the display — every two to three months,” Larson said.
The committee is making plans to expand into different art media — sculpture, textiles, photography.
With such a wide variety of talented people in the area, Larson said it won’t be tough to come up with artists willing to show their work.
One of the artists featured in the first show is Mona Westera.
Originally from Edgerton, she has lived in Slayton for 40 years and has been painting for a long time.
Several of her paintings are hanging on the walls in the Slayton Art Gallery.
Larson said watching the plans grow and develop into a gallery has been a fun experience, and she is looking forward to seeing what kind of art goes up on the walls next.
“We really like to see things grow and go forward,” Hudson commented. “The public seems to appreciate it as well.”
Currently, the gallery features work from Peggy Rachuy of Fulda, MCC graduate Laura Veenhuis, Westera, Mercedes Vortherms of Ruthton, Slayton High School graduate Susan Southwick, MCC graduate Robert Andert, Ruth Green of Slayton, Lucille Vogelaar of Slayton and Judy Busman of Chandler.
The gallery is open during regular library hours — from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.
Any southwest Minnesota artist interested in being part of an upcoming show can contact Hudson or Larson at the Slayton Public Library at 507-836-8778.