Art Association Members: A Community that Grows Together

Art Association Members: A Community that Grows Together

May 04, 2023

Susan Marsh, Blacktail Ponds

Strong communities are vital. When people come together in shared purpose and joy, they not only feel their best, but also enrich the greater whole. Vibrant communities foster a social connection that improves mental health and inspires a mindset of growth and support. The Art Association of Jackson Hole is the oldest community in the valley for visual artists to gather and share, sell, and create art. During the month of May, we are celebrating our community of Art Association members that play a critical role in supporting our efforts to continue to bring art education to Jackson. Each member of our community brings their own unique talents and knowledge that adds to the richness of our collective whole. We had the opportunity to speak to a few special members that chose to weave themselves into our continuously growing story. Their special words speak to the power of gathering in shared passions.

Susan Marsh

Writer, musician, and visual artist Susan Marsh came to Jackson in 1988 and, like many of us, fell in love with the spectacular beauty of the forests and mountains. She worked for the Forest Service for many years before retiring and diving into more creative pursuits. Over the years, she has taken various classes in watercolor, acrylic, and oil painting. Marsh says that she is proud to be a member and sponsor of the Art Association. Marsh joined the partner of the Art Association, the Teton Plein Air Painters, in 2012, and finds great pleasure in gathering every week in the summer to paint. The community of artists is what Marsh values the most, and the encouragement of her peers and teachers. 

Teton Plein Air Painters Susan Marsh, June Nystrom and Sue Tyler
Patricia Griffin painting

Wildlife painter Patricia Griffin has been finding inspiration in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem for 30 years. Griffin has found immense pleasure and purpose in depicting wildlife in her paintings. “Wildlife art touches people on a spiritual level,” she says. She hopes that her art inspires people to care more about animals and see them in an individual way, worthy of not only our admiration, but consideration. Griffin became a member at the Art Association in 2021, and participated in many events prior. She is a strong believer that people should try all kinds of art, which is quite possible to do at the Art Association. Griffin loves to take ceramics, and appreciates the challenge of trying something new. As a strong proponent of Art Education and a teacher of art for over 30 years, she believes that learning about art “opens doors to the inner you and paves the path for self-realization and growth.”

Anne Newcomb, watercolor painting

Retired professional potter and current painter Anne Newcomb has been involved with the Art Association of Jackson Hole since we first began in 1963. She fondly remembers selling handmade plastic ornaments at some of the earliest art fairs where proceeds helped many artists get through tough winters in a Jackson that looked very different from today. Newcomb says that the Art Association has always been so supportive, and it is a community that depends on each other. “I wouldn’t still be doing art if not for the Art Association,” Newcomb says. She loves the watercolor classes here, and often joins the Plein Air Painters. When asked about the value of art education, Newcomb energetically explains that it is critical.

Anne Newcomb ceramic sculpture

She goes on to say that all forms of art draw attention to the world and give one the opportunity to express what may be difficult to say with words. Newcomb says that she loves beauty, and art gives you the opportunity to thoroughly appreciate the beauty of the world. Newcomb always contributes to the Member’s Show. This show takes place every Spring as an opportunity for our members to showcase and sell their work. This show is open right now and will be available for viewing until May 25th.

Here at the Art Association, we are incredibly thankful for our members who help to support us. In return, we aim to support them as well by creating a community and providing opportunities to enrich their artistic endeavors. Whether you call yourself an artist or not, the label does not affect art’s ability to heal and inspire. We encourage folks to join us by becoming a member this May. If you are already a member, thank you! We appreciate your support, and encourage you to inspire your friends to join. This month, all new members and anyone who gets a friend to join will receive a handmade spring-themed card created by artists who work here at the Art Association.

All are welcome to come view the Member’s Show, “Making Art Makes Us Whole” which will be on display until May 25th. Also, be sure to come to the Member’s Event on May 18th from 5-7pm. We hope to see you there!