MARCO ISLAND — Artists are traditionally a hard-living bunch, and this Thursday, over a score of them are planning to paint the town. Actually, it’s about doing good, not debauchery, as “Wet Paint Live” returns to the island for the fifth year.
A group of well-known Marco and Southwest Florida artists will fan out to locations all over the island with their easels, each creating a painting from start to finish on that day. The resulting works will be auctioned off that evening, many with the paint still wet – hence the name – in a charity fundraiser.
The Marco Island Wet Paint Live 2012 auction, sponsored by the Marco Island Area Chamber of Commerce, will be hosted at the Marco Island Center for the Arts gallery on Winterberry Drive. Artists participating run from Paul Arsenault to Susan Ward, with a dizzying variety of styles.
The painters are scheduled to paint starting at 9 a.m., and go to 3 p.m., although each individual can set his or her own timeframe, said Donna Niemczyk of the chamber, coordinator of the event.
“You can go around and watch the painters as they paint,” she said, getting an advance look at your favorite’s work, or making the rounds and comparing notes. Artists’ locations will range from Isles of Capri, where Malenda Trick and Karen Thiel will paint, to Goodland, where no fewer than seven artists will create their art.
Thursday evening, the Wet Paint action moves to the Art Center. From 5:30 to 6:45 p.m., the paintings will be available for viewing by ticket holders. Admission costs $35, and incudes a buffet, which is being catered by Kretch’s. There will be a cash beer/wine bar.
Starting at 7 p.m., auctioneer, raconteur, and attorney Chris Lombardo will wield the gavel, as the paintings are auctioned off. This is where the “doing good” part comes in.
“This money goes to the children,” said chamber executive director Sandi Riedemann. “The proceeds from the event help to fund scholarships for seniors at Lely High and the Marco Island Academy. This will help them be able to go to college.”
Last year, said Niemczyk, Wet Paint Live raised about $7,000 for the chamber’s scholarship fund. Listed as presenters of the event in addition to the chamber are Leadership Marco, the Marco Island Center for the Arts, and the Marco Island Foundation for the Arts.
Participating artists include Paul Arsenault, Carolyn Burger, Priscilla Coote, Cathy Demko, Sara Jane Foltz, Judy Harthorn, Lee Horton, Inez Hudson, William Ward Mosely, Betty Newman, Tara O’Neill, Phyllis Pransky, Gail Trent Risner, Jo-Ann Sanborn, Joan Scherer, Karen Swanker, Karen Theil, Malenda Trick, Victor-Hugo Vaca, Jr., Marilyn Wirth, and Susan Wold.
The chamber requests RSVPs for the auction by Tuesday, Feb. 7, to 239-394-7549.
On Feb. 14, the Art Center will open two more exhibits, the Naples Camera Club’s juried show, and in La Petite Galerie, the Tibetan Photo Project.