For the next month, art lovers will be able to flock to the Wyoming County Courthouse to see some original works from area artists.

Through Sept. 27, the Kitson Arts Alliance will present the North Branch Art Soup exhibit in the first floor hallway of the courthouse. Twenty-five unique paintings from 25 different artists throughout Susquehanna and Wyoming County will be on display.

On Friday afternoon, a opening reception was held at the courthouse, so the artists could officially meet if they haven’t already, and admire one another’s work.
Many different types of paintings were featured, from oil, to watercolor, to acrylic paintings. Of the paintings hanging in the hallway, many of the designs featured scenes unique to Wyoming and Susquehanna Counties.

Susan Jayne, of Laceyville, titled her watercolor painting ‘Founder’s Day’ after the famous day held in Tunkhannock every June.

“When I attended Founder’s Day, I saw a plane fly overhead and took a crowd shot of downtown Tunkhannock,” Jayne said. “I love painting big events, it’s why I try to get to as many as possible and capture what I see.”

Capturing a moment in time was an inspiration for many of the painters, just ask Walter Ball, of Montrose. One day he was looking outside in the winter and saw a deer prancing around in the snow. It was a moment he thought was beautiful. He called the painting ‘Snowflake.’

“I had seen that deer prancing through my yard multiple times before,” Ball said. “One time I was able to get it to look right at me so I could get the perfect picture. My mind was spinning, because I knew I could get a good painting out of this.”

Not everyone has a specific inspiration when creating their paintings however. Sue Palackas, of Meshoppen, featured her creation ‘Cityscape.’ There was no specific reason for the painting, just something that came to her mind when she picked up the brush.

“I’m into a very abstract form of painting,” Palackas said. “Whatever comes to mind at the start of the painting is what you’re gonna get. I like painting better that way, rather than having to stick to one project.”

Each painter featured has created their own path in the art world. Some just picked it up as a hobby when they were younger, others didn’t start until their retirement years when they wanted to start some new activities.

“More than 50 years ago, my mother said I should pursue being an artist,” Jayne said. “At first I wasn’t sure, so I went to my art teacher in high school and he was amazed by my work. I’ve been taking it seriously ever since.”

The main reason many of the artists have kept up with painting is because of one reason: creativity. Palackas said she thinks creativity is great for the mind, and can help with many other things in life.

“Art is a perfect place for your mind to wander, it’s why I love it so much,” Palackas said. “I always say creativity is one of the best qualities that a person can have and I truly believe that.”

The North Branch Art Soup Gallery will be on display through Sept. 27 inside the Wyoming County Courthouse. The display will be available for public viewing Monday-Friday from 8:30a.m. to 4p.m.