Wednesday Painters Emerge From Cocoons

The group was started by Frank Sofo and Gene Samuelson early in 2010
They can be found at Gerard Drive in the spring, Mulford Farm in the summer, or anywhere else from May to October. If it is a sunny Wednesday (or Friday, for that matter), the Wednesday Group is drawing and painting en plein air somewhere on the South Fork. Durell Godfrey Photo

   Members of the Wednesday Group, plein-air painters, don’t take up a lot of room when they set up their canvases, which they do at least once or twice a week for six months a year, depending on the weather, at any number of spots, some near the water and some not.
    Most of the painters in the group, which was started by Frank Sofo and Gene Samuelson early in 2010 (“Let’s have a drawing class”), are also members of the Artists Alliance of East Hampton; Mr. Sofo and Mr. Samuelson are on the alliance’s board. Since not everyone in the alliance works outdoors, forming a group that could meet outside and critique each other’s work seemed both practical and salubrious. At present about 10 to 12 members meet regularly,  with 8 or 9 others joining in from time to time. All of them have been showing on the East End for years.
    Mr. Samuelson and his wife moved to Amagansett full time in 2003 after years of weekending there. He is the treasurer of the Artists Alliance and works with RSVP, the Retired Seniors Volunteer program.  Mr. Sofo, who lives in East Hampton, moved here full time in the late 1990s. He has illustrated several children’s books.
    The Wednesday Group had its first exhibit and sale,  at the Water Mill Museum, last year, curated by Alyce Peifer. Their second show opens there today, with a reception on June 2. The group has also shown at Ashawagh Hall in Springs.
    The painters whose work can be seen at the museum are Cynthia Loewen, Deborah Palmer, Ms. Peifer, Bobbie Braun, Christine Chew Smith, Anna Franklin, Andrea Hufstader, Neville Lewis, Al Marino, Mr. Samuelson, Cynthia Sobel, Mr. Sofo, Mary Van Deusen, and Callie Velmachos.