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‘Fine Line’ celebrating 20 years

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The Fine Line Art Gallery here commemorated 20 years with an open house yesterday that allowed residents to revisit work by local artists, as well as check out new pieces.

Jean Richards, who spearheaded the gallery’s founding, said although it’s been rewarding, she’s worked hard over the years to keep it going.

“I wanted to call it the ‘Shoestring Gallery,’” she explained.

“It’s basically been run on a shoestring, payday to payday.”

The Mowat Avenue gallery offers a diverse selection of locally-crafted art, including fused glass, stained glass, pottery, photography, watercolours, acrylics, digital art, oils, jewellery, and metal sculpture.

It first opened on Nov. 5, 1995 in its initial location at 318 Scott St.

It has been at its current location at 529 Mowat Ave. for 15 years.

Richards said what makes her so proud is the number of visitors over the years who have praised her for the artwork in the gallery.

“People come from Minneapolis and they cannot believe that Fort Frances has something like this,” she remarked.

“It’s really hard to do something like this . . . it’s a struggle,” Richards admitted.

“I know that they tried to do something like this in Kenora and it didn’t work.

“You have to work together and that’s what we did,” she added.

“Everybody here does what they can.”

To continue the 20th-anniversary celebration, the gallery also plans to host a number of workshops until the middle of June.

These will feature local artists teaching members of the community a variety of artistic skills, including wire wrapping, painting on porcelain, and acrylic painting.

For more information, drop by the Fine Line Gallery or call it at 274-2242.

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