The Ebell a Big Part of Women Painters West 100-Year History

from Phyllis Hansen, Club Historian

December 2, 2021

The Women Painters West (WPW) organization is celebrating its centennial very grandly with A Century of Women Artists exhibition and retrospective at the Brand Library & Art Center in Glendale. When attending the opening event on November 13, it was a thrill to see The Ebell so well represented in the displays and learn that the organization’s Silver Anniversary 75 years ago took place at The Ebell. An invitation and images from this 25th anniversary celebration were on view.

Our two organizations have enjoyed a long partnership. Most recently, we hosted a Women Painters West exhibition in our Art Salon in January of 2018 featuring works by current members. WPW art exhibitions at The Ebell date to the 1940s and 1950s, and many paintings by the early women artists are part of The Ebell art collection today. These include works by notables Marion Wachtel, Martha Wheeler Baxter, Gertrude Orde and Orpha Klinker.

The current show at the Brand includes display cases with many newspaper clippings, scrapbooks and other ephemera featuring The Ebell, as noted in captions. A slide show loops historic photographs, many taken at our club. The exhibition includes a gallery room filled with retrospective paintings by early members on loan from other art institutions and private collections.

The feature attraction is 100 new works by contemporary members who created pieces inspired by a WPW member of the past. Each artist explains her painting’s inspiration in a statement mounted next to her work, and the early Ebell shows are occasionally mentioned.

A Century of Women Artists continues through January 8, 2022. The Library & Art Center is situated in the striking white Moorish style building in Brand Park, with mountains as its backdrop—a vision in itself. There are other attractions to explore within the park. The Ebell is planning a field trip to see this exhibition in early January. Watch for the announcement.