Things to Do in Martha's Vineyard

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Art Galleries of Vineyard Haven

BY VSH | 22 September 2009

Phil-LichtenhamOkay, art enthusiasts, now that we’ve exhausted Edgartown and Oak Bluffs, let’s move westward to Vineyard Haven, where we’ll find a different variety of galleries.  Main Street is definitely the place to be for Vineyard Haven art.  Please keep in mind that this post is the third in a series on Martha’s Vineyard art, and if you are interested in theEdgartown and Oak Bluff’s art districts you can find highlights in the previous articles.

Had I been a little more timely in getting this written, I would have started you off at #9 Main St., Vineyard Haven, where the Archeo Gallery spent the better part of the summer. Unfortunately, they have recently packed up and returned to their winter home in Florida. Should we be lucky enough to have them return in 2010, you will find that they are not what we generally think of when we think “art gallery.” Instead of walls lined with paintings, you’ll find a bountiful display of African rugs, furniture, art, masks, sculpture, and pottery. If you are looking for the truly unique piece for either yourself, or as a gift, this should not be missed.

Next, visit Kara Taylor Fine Art at #19 and take a deep, relaxing breath looking at her hauntingly serene, deep contrast paintings and photographs. It’s sort of like a slow walk in the woods on a beautiful fall day.

Now, stroll down the street and plan to spend more than a little time in the building that houses #s 54/56. On the street floor, you’ll find the Simon Gallery and Louisa Gould Gallery. What more can be said about Peter Simon’s incredible photography?  Everyone who buys his Vineyard Calendar every year raise your hand. I, myself, would be lost without it. Always breathtaking. Always a new vision and perspective of the island. And what adds a special dimension to this gallery is Peter’s lovely wife Ronni and her exquisite one-of-a-kind jewelry. You’ll have a hard time limiting your purchases.

Next door, the Louisa Gould Gallery is more traditional, but no less exciting. Here, you’ll find an eclectic display of landscapes, seascapes, still lifes, sculpture, jewelry, furniture, and Louisa’s lovely photography.

I know you’ll be a bit saturated with art by now, but it’s not time to get lazy. Climb the stairs and end your Vineyard Haven stroll at the Shaw Cramer Gallery. Here also is a collection of very unique contemporary fine crafts and paintings.

I’ll bet you think that I’ve exhausted the subject of Martha’s Vineyard galleries. Think again. Some of the best is yet to come. But the “stroll” is over. You’ll need to get out the bus tickets or the car keys. Coming soon: Destination art that’s worth the journey!

Image of metal nests by Phil Lichtenhan, available at Shaw Cramer Gallery