The Ithaca Art Trail features the studios of 30 local artists.
The studios are free to visit, and engaging with the artists is encouraged.
Two of the artists on the trail are Dede Hatch, and Barbara Mink.
Dede Hatch was introduced to photography by her father, who was in the military. He used photography to document his travels. Living in Hawaii for a few years was another catalyst for her photography.
Hatch enjoys taking pictures of all kinds of subjects, and she finds it difficult to categorize herself as one type of photographer.
“I’m just drawn to things that I see that might have interesting light, just sort of everyday ordinary whats in front of me events,” says Hatch who works out of her studio in an old factory building on Dey Street in Ithaca.
Nature, streams of light, and her dog are all frequently portrayed in her pictures.
As a supplement to her photography, Hatch began creating earrings out of rocks she finds in Cayuga Lake. Sometimes she even creates jewelry that is inspired by color palettes found in her pictures.
The Art Trail
Hatch is one of the 30 artists featured in the Greater Ithaca Art Trail. The Art Trail takes place the first and second weekends in October (7-8 and 14-15). The trail, one of the programs created by The Community Arts Partnership, was pioneered by four artists about 25 years ago.
Robin Schwartz, program director of the Community Arts Partnership, describes the trail as “a self-guided tour, meaning that people can choose where to go, of 30 artist studios that are all across Tompkins county.”
The trail is also meant to showcase the picturesque fall foliage along the country roads in Ithaca.
“My only regret about it (The Art Trail) is that because I’m here, I can’t go out on the Art Trail,” said Hatch, as she commented about the unique experience the trail provides visitors.
Barbara Mink is an artist who for nearly 15 years has been opening her studio doors along the trail. Mink works out of a garage-turned-studio, that is a work of art itself.
A stone path leads visitors to a beige-garage with a small sign on it that reads, “The Mink Gallery”. When you step inside, you are surrounded by clean gray walls that emphasize the colorful art.
Mink started by painting landscapes, and more realistic-looking figures.
“As you can see, I live in the world of abstraction. I don’t start with an idea in mind, it’s more improvisational,” Mink explained.
Her work is filled with color, lines, and texture. She says she starts off with a line, and just lets her imagination flow from there. Sometimes she starts to see a landscape in her work, and will then adjust her direction to fit that scene and make an “abstract landscape.”
Mink enjoys talking technique with other painters and discussing her work with those who are first-time visitors to her studio.
“It’s just a very gratifying experience overall,” Mink says smiling.