About Yarmouth Arts

The History of Yarmouth Arts

Established in 1999 as an informal group of people interested in finding ways to provide more enrichment opportunities for our community, Yarmouth Arts flourished over the following decade. In 2011 Yarmouth Arts began searching for ways to generate new and different initiatives. During that year, Yarmouth Arts held several public meetings at the Town Hall. As a result the Artisans Collective was formed and established a non-profit corporation dedicated to supporting and nurturing the artisans in the greater Yarmouth area by providing opportunities to develop, exhibit and sell their work, increasing the awareness and appreciation of the visual arts, and building community.

Following the founding of the Artisans Collective, a second organization was formed in Firehouse Arts, whose mission was to connect artist educators with the regional communities of Southern and Mid-coast Maine, while providing high quality art experiences to both reflect and expand the communities' interest. Firehouse Arts aimed to serve the greater Yarmouth community by providing affordable and free classes, workshops, lectures, special events and collaborative and interdisciplinary projects with other local organizations designed to enrich individual lives and foster stronger community bonds.

In 2013 the Yarmouth Village Improvement Society requested that Yarmouth Arts hold a panel discussion to discuss the impact of the arts on the creative economy of Yarmouth. The following organizations held a panel discussion on the subject: Yarmouth Arts, Firehouse Arts, KISMET, Yarmouth History Center, Yarmouth Community Services, and North Yarmouth Academy. It was during this panel discussion that Yarmouth Arts along with the other organizations began to understand how each of these organizations were impacting the arts in the Yarmouth community. It also became apparent that combining efforts was the way to bring more of an awareness to the arts in Yarmouth.

In 2015 Yarmouth Arts seized the opportunity to celebrate the work, life and spirit of "Alfred C. Chadbourn," internationally recognized painter who lived and worked in Yarmouth for decades. Over a span of two months from September through October, working with all of the non-profits Yarmouth Arts produced art exhibits, lectures, workshops, plein air painting event, and dinners incorporating Chadbourn's favorite recipes. A community collaborate portrait. The exhibits and events brought attention to the arts on a much larger scale than ever before.

In 2016 Yarmouth Arts formed a new board of directors, which includes a member from each of the other nonprofits with an art component. The economic development study committee has suggested that the arts will play a key factor in future economic development in the town of Yarmouth. Working with Denise Clavette, the director of economic development and Alex Jaegerman, the town planner, Yarmouth Arts will direct its energy towards the formation of a coalition made up of individuals who make their living from the arts, businesses who play a key role in the arts, and nonprofits who have an art component. In doing so the expectation is that the organization can bring a greater awareness of the vitality of the arts in Yarmouth and be a factor in how the arts can have a positive impact in our community.

Yarmouth Arts' current projects include writing grants for new initiatives, building a community calendar for the arts, broadening the online arts directory, developing the next community-wide event, and having a key voice in suggesting artistic ways to enhance the new Main Street bridge when it is built in 2017.

Linda Horstmann, President
Yarmouth Arts

View officers and board of directors.