‘Mermaid’ art show in the works

An art show is being organized to showcase the mermaid of Rainy Lake, with artists—and anyone else with ideas—welcome to attend a meeting Tuesday at 7 p.m. at St. Jude’s Coffee House here.
“The more ideas we can get, the bigger the scope of the art show,” organizer Mark Kowalchuk said.
The show, slated to be held Aug. 8-15 in conjunction with the 70th anniversary of the Rainy Lake mermaid, is intended to “raise the profile of the beauty of Rainy Lake,” Kowalchuk noted.
“People know what Rainy Lake means as far as fishing and hunting goes,” he said. “But if we do this, tourists will want to bring a painting of Rainy Lake home with them and share that with others, bringing more people back to the area.”
A boat tour to the mermaid for prospective artists is planned June 15. “Artists will be able to choose sight lines and what time of the day they want to do their paintings at,” noted Kowalchuk.
Still in the early planning stages, Kowalchuk admitted several details—such as registration forms, the size of the venue that will be needed, and whether or not the event could spill out onto local streets with sidewalk paintings of the mermaid—are still up in the air.
“We want to promote it across Northwestern Ontario and Minnesota. But who knows, we might even get national exposure through the art magazines?” he remarked.
Kowalchuk said he hopes the art show, which will continue with a focus on Rainy Lake and the surrounding area, becomes an annual event.
“Because it’s the 70th anniversary of the mermaid, we’re sticking with that theme this year,” he noted. “In subsequent years, artists will be able to travel anywhere on Rainy Lake and choose what aspect they would like to portray.”