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Desdemona’s Art Gallery has moved to historic Marblehead building

Desdemona’s Art Gallery is celebrating its grand re-opening on Friday, July 25, in downtown Marblehead as a roster of talented local artists brings a fresh look to the traditional galleries of the region.

Owner Bailey VanKirk and gallery founder Laura Brown Egan, both oil painters, feature their works at the gallery. Desdemona’s is also home to more than two dozen local artists who produce work that ranges from exciting nautical jewelry to photography, watercolors, stained glass and wood creations. 

The gallery at 806 W. Main St. will kick off its open house at 3 p.m. with a ribbon cutting and complimentary refreshments. There is a drawing to win a cast iron mermaid sculpture valued at $125. Brown Egan is noted for her paintings of mermaids, a continuing theme since Desdemona’s Art Gallery first opened seven years ago. 

“We’re very excited about our new space.  Our cool old building has so much character, it’s a fantastic backdrop to display art.” said VanKirk, whose husband, James Cagle, is a nurse at Firelands Hospital and has been instrumental in the building’s renovation. “Marblehead is home for me, and it’s so nice to be back. I grew up here, attending Danbury before getting my fine art degree at Kent State University.

“It’s been like a class reunion, coming back to such familiar haunts. And a reason my husband and I have poured our hearts into this 100-year-old building. I’ve enjoyed seeing so many old friends, and making new ones. It’s also a bonus that I’ve got so many nautical scenes to portray, from the Lake Erie Islands to the Marblehead Lighthouse.”

Egan, a former art teacher at the Genoa Schools, is married to D’Arcy Egan, a long-time sportswriter for The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio and a former television and radio show host. 

“I had always known there were some very good artists in the Lake Erie Island region, but I didn’t realize just how much talent was available to show off in our gallery,” said Egan. “There is a special mindset here, a love of Lake Erie and a driving desire to create art based on its natural splendor.”

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