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Guide to the Eau Claire Area Art League Records,​ 1944-​2013

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Overview of the Collection

Repository:
Special Collections & Archives
McIntyre Library
University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire
P.O. Box 4004
105 Garfield Ave.
Eau Claire, WI 54702 – 4004
(715) 836-2739
https://library.uwec.edu/archives/

Reference Code: USGZE UHC 345

Accession Number: 13-026

Collection Number: University Historical Collection 345

Creators: Eau Claire Area Art League

Title: Eau Claire Area Art League Records

Dates: 1944-2013

Quantity: 4 linear feet (5 archives boxes, 2 oversized boxes)

Location of Collection: A9/1c, A3/1f

Languages: Record materials are in English.

Summary: The Eau Claire Area Art League was the first established art association in the Chippewa Valley. The collection consists of financial records, activities, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, awards, photographs, and other general files from the inception of the League in 1944 until it disbanded in 2013.

Biographical / Historical Note

The Eau Claire Area Art League (ECAAL) was founded in July 1944 by Ruth G. Saxon under the name Eau Claire Art Club. The name was changed in 1946 to the Eau Claire Art League. In 1993, the name Eau Claire Area Art League was adopted to reflect the expanding membership from the surrounding communities of Altoona, Augusta, Cameron, Chippewa Falls, Colfax, Elk Mound, Fairchild, Menomonie, Mondovi and Osseo.

Over the years, the League rented apartments for studio space in various locations until a permanent rent-free location at the Eau Claire Parks and Recreation building on Oxford Avenue was obtained in 1970. In the 1990s, monthly meetings were held at Hope Lutheran Church and later in various area restaurants.

One of the League’s most popular events was the Silver Tea and Bazaar fund raiser. Held at the Elks Club Auditorium, art works by the members of the league would be displayed. With declining popularity, the Holiday Tea and Bazaar was reluctantly discontinued in 1959. In 1966 until 1981, the Art League painted Christmas scenes on the windows at the Mount Washington Nursing Home.

In 1955, the ECAAL hosted their first outdoor art fair at 2nd and Water Street studio. It was titled “Sidewalk Art Show.” The Sidewalk Art Show became their most popular fair. In following years, the group held annual shows outside the shops at Putnam Heights Shopping Center, Jaycette Park on State Street, and Owen Park. By 1967, each member was to prepare at least 10 paintings for the art fair. Art League members also displayed their work at various businesses in Eau Claire as well as churches, schools, and libraries. In 1975, the League cosponsored the first indoor art fair, held at London Square Mall. The last London Square Mall show was in 1995. The League moved its annual exhibit into Oakwood Mall in 1998, and then later at the Heyde Center for the Arts in Chippewa Falls.

Over the years, the ECAAL held public exhibitions of their artwork. In 1972, the League held a painting exhibit at the Sacred Heart Hospital. The League celebrated its 41st anniversary with an exhibit in the L.E. Phillips Public Library in 1985. The group has exhibited mostly at the L. E. Phillips Memorial Public Library and the Janet Carson Gallery in recent years.

Although the League had been open to men since its inception, the first men did not join until 1982. This was voted on in 1980 as well as the vote to include other works of art such as pottery, leather, wood, and photography.

In 1986, the first student merit awards were presented at the Art League Art Fair at London Square Mall. The Student Merit Awards highlighted promising student artists from local high schools. As other art associations and events were established, participation in the ECAAL diminished and the organization disbanded in May 2013.

Content Description

The records are divided into three series: Meeting records, activity records, and photographs.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information: Donated to the Special Collections & Archives, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire by Carol Gutsch in May 2013.

Access Restrictions: Records are open to the public.

Use Restrictions: Researchers are responsible for using in accordance with 17 U.S.C. Copyright owned by the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire.

Preferred Citation: Eau Claire Area Art League Records, 1944-2013. UHC 345. Special Collections & Archives. McIntyre Library. University of Wisconsin--Eau Claire. Eau Claire, WI.

Processing Note: Processed by Jacob N. Riehl in May 2013.

Arrangement: By series.

OCLC #: 859806820

Subjects

Personal Names:
Saxon, Ruth G.
Gutsch, Carol

Corporate Names:
Eau Claire Area Art League
ECAAL

Subject Terms:
Artwork--Wisconsin--Eau Claire region
Art Exhibitions--Wisconsin--Eau Claire region
Art Shows--Wisconsin--Eau Claire region
Paint the Park--Wisconsin--Eau Claire region

Geographical Terms: Eau Claire--Wisconsin

Detailed List of Contents

Series 1: Meeting Records

Meeting minutes, membership lists, income and expense reports, bylaws.

Dates: 1944-2013

Extent: .8 linear feet (2 archives boxes)

Container

Contents

Dates

Box/Folder

1/1

Meeting minutes

1948-1963

Box/Folder

1/2

Meeting minutes

1964-1975

Box/Folder

1/3

Meeting minutes

1975-1993

Box/Folder

1/4

Meeting minutes

1993-2003

Box/Folder

1/5

Meeting minutes

1993-2005

Box/Folder

2/1

Membership lists

1944-2013

Box/Folder

2/2

Income and expense reports

1946-1973

Box/Folder

2/3

Bylaws

2013

Series 2: Activity Records

Includes anniversary celebrations, guest books, art shows and exhibitions, purchase award recipients, student awards, Wisconsin Rural/Regional Art Association correspondence, scrapbooks, and historical timelines of the league.

Dates: 1944-2013

Extent: 2.8 linear feet (2 archives boxes and 2 oversized boxes)

Container

Contents

Dates

Box/Folder

3/1

41st Anniversary Exhibit

1985

Box/Folder

3/2

50th Anniversary Celebration, Logos, Brochures

1994

Box/Folder

3/3

60th Anniversary Celebration, DVD

2004

Box/Folder

3/4

Guest Book

1956-1958

Box/Folder

3/5

Guest Book

1985-1989, 2002-2006

Box/Folder

4/1

Art Shows

1969-1976, 2006

Box/Folder

4/2

Paint the Park

1998-2004

Box/Folder

4/3

Art Fair Advertising

1974-2004

Box/Folder

4/4

Misc. newspaper clippings

1962-1981

Box/Folder

4/5

Purchase Award Recipients

1972-1986

Box/Folder

4/6

Student Merit Awards

1986-2010

Box/Folder

4/7

Wisconsin Rural/Regional Art Association correspondence

1995

Box/Folder

4/8

Brainstorming sessions, historical timelines

1992-2013

Box 5 (Oversize)

Scrapbooks

1944-1991

Box 6 (Oversize)

Scrapbooks

1992-2002

Series 3: Photographs

Photographs include Christmas parties, Oakwood Mall exhibits, and miscellaneous photographs of ECAAL members.

Dates: 1950-2005

Extent: .4 linear feet (1 archives box)

Container

Contents

Dates

Box/Folder

7/1

Christmas Party Photos

1950-1951

Box/Folder

7/2

Oakwood Mall Exhibit Photos

1999

Box/Folder

7/3

Misc. Photographs

1962-2005

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