ALCHEMY: an artists' cooperative was established November 6, 2015
Mission Statement: Alchemy promotes member artists and their artwork through a cooperative business model.
Vision Statement: The vision of ALCHEMY is to create original, quality, local, handmade fine arts and crafts to a regional market.
ALCHEMY is a retail shop where local artists offer their original art works for sale . At least one of Alchemy's artists will be available in the store to answer your questions.
January, February, March, April, October, November: Tuesday-Saturday. 12-5:00
May through September and December: Monday-Saturday 11-6:00
Left to right back: Laura Norman, Colleen Drury, Katie Weathers, , Noelle Weimann, Jaimie Warnick, Annette McDonnel, Joel Newquist, Middle: Rosie Ratigan, Lennie Poitras, Shawna Pickinpaugh, Gayle Barnett
Not Shown: Deborah Britt
ALCHEMY: a short history
Late in 2015, the Lander community was saddened by the news that Global Arts, a beloved outlet for local artists in Lander and the surrounding area, was closing its doors. In an effort to maintain a venue for local artists to show and sell their work, a small group of artists, including Lennie Poitras, Dannine Donaho, Mary Haper, Deborah Britt and Jeni VanderVoet began meeting to discuss the possibility of opening an artists’ cooperative.
We took a look at other Artist Cooperatives around the country and began to formulate our ideas around the ideal set up for a sustainable artist cooperative. On our side was the knowledge that the Lander Community and surrounding area has long supported the arts in our neighborhood. Through the encouragement of those individuals and of the support of Lander Art Center we forged ahead.
This group of makers soon discovered that Lander Art Center was planning to expand its operations to include studio space for rent in the back portion of 320 Main Street, a building recently vacated in Lander. The front of the building was a perfect fit for the fledgling art coop and a deal was struck to sublease that portion of the building for the new enterprise.
Venue acquired and research done, the next step before opening our doors was to decide upon a name. “Making the Ordinary Extraordinary” was our motto, and what better word to sum up the coming together of artists across styles and mediums than “Alchemy”, a seemingly magical process of transformation, creation or combinations.
The group began reaching out to other local artists who might be interested in becoming part of this emerging enterprise. Rosie Ratigan, Shawna Pickinpaugh, Melissa Strickler, Joel Newquist, Bill Yankee, Noelle Weimann VanDijk and Stephanie Harris were recruited to round out the team. We now had painters, woodworkers, fiber artists, potters, glass artists and jewelry makers to add to the mix.
This enthusiastic cadre of artists spent many hours developing bylaws and a business plan. They contributed not only financially, but also with sweat equity, updating the retail space, adding floors, paint, furnishings and lots of spit and polish.
Opening day was November 6, 2015. Our grand opening event was greeted with great enthusiasm throughout the community. We owe a great debt of gratitude to those who have supported us as we have celebrated each year since!
Not only do we celebrate each anniversary (our next anniversary party is scheduled for November 13, 14 and 15, 2020) we also host additional events throughout the year, including Madres & Margaritas for Mothers’ Day, A Valentine’s event along with numerous Art Walks to coincide with other art happenings locally.
Through the years, Alchemy has expanded not only its physical space, but also the number and variety of artists it has as members. Current members include:
Shawna Pickinpaugh : Ceramic Art and Painting
Scott Copeland: Photography
Gayle Barnett: Painting
Annette McDonnel: Painting
Jaimie Warnick: Jewelry
Joel Newquist: Woodworking
Laura Norman: Hand-dyed Fiber Arts
Lennie Poitras: Jewelry
Rosie Ratigan: Painting
Colleen Drury: Painting
Noelle Weimann: Painting
Katie Weathers: Stained Glass
Deborah Britt: Ceramic Art
Our visitors can enjoy a large variety of hand-made art—everything from an artist’s signature piece to carefully-crafted gift items.
Many thanks to all of our supporters as we celebrate our first five years as Alchemy. We hope you will join us as we continue to shape our ideas and expand our craft into a bright new future!
ALCHEMY artists value hand-made original arts and crafts, strength in numbers, working together, shopping locally and community involvement.