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Needham Artists Show Off Creative Process This Weekend

Don't miss Needham Open Studios, a chance to visit artists behind the scenes.

More than 40 local artists will be participating this weekend in Needham Open Studios, a forum that provides the public with the opportunity not only to view artistic creations but to see the artists at work in their homes and studios and to purchase unique handmade gifts.

Needham Open Studios will be held on from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sunday from 12:00-4:00 p.m.

Now in its 13th year, Needham Open Studios was founded by local artists who wanted to meet one another and raise people’s awareness of the art being made right in the community.

“So many people say, ‘I had no idea there were so many artists in Needham,’” said Anne Nydam, a former art teacher who organized this year’s event. Nydam, who makes block prints from wood and rubber and writes and illustrates children’s books, said people don’t have to leave Needham to see interesting artwork.

Participants also feel the event is important because it gives them a chance to demonstrate their working process and allows members of the community to ask questions. This atmosphere is different from that of a shop or museum in that people who stop in can meet and talk to the artists.

“We love sharing,” Nydam said.

Nan Daly, who used to be an English teacher, enjoys the opportunity to engage with people. One of the goals of the event, she said, is “to show people how art happens.” Daly’s work ranges from abstract landscapes to realistic flowers and includes watercolors as well as collages made from vintage materials.

Patrons of this year’s Needham Open Studios will also have the opportunity to win prizes from local businesses. Get a brochure from the library, or any of various local businesses, and have it stamped at any of the event’s locations. A brochure with four stamps lets you enter the prize drawing, with results to be announced the week of May 15.

Debbie Winnick, a potter who works and teaches classes at the Potter’s Shop, part of , said that ceramics is one of the best mediums to facilitate behind-the-scenes interactions. The creation of pottery can be seen from start to finish before an audience’s eyes.

“I love it,” she said, citing the importance of sharing a skill with others. “It’s one of the reasons I teach as well.”

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