The 2014 Chester County Studio Tour

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By Catherine Quillman, Quillman Publications

Spring is here and so is the art collector’s most favorite event – the Chester County Studio Tour, a two-day art extravaganza that brings together 77 artists in 34 studios this Saturday, May 17th and Sunday, May 18th.

The tour has been described as the region’s first and only annual tour designed to showcase the diverse art work found in “Andrew Wyeth’s country.” Considering the event’s popularity – it’s not only free but requires no tickets – the tour’s founder, the artist Jeff Schaller tends to prepare the participating artists with advice such as the importance of posting signs.

Chester Springs“It’s like a yard-sale mentality,” Schaller said, “People may be driving by, but if they see the sign, they have to stop.” Chester County Studio Tour invites friends, families, art enthusiasts and the curious to experience and meet a variety of astonishing artists as they exhibit their work during a two-day event May 17th and 18th. Pictured here to the left is a studio in Chester Springs.

erica brownTo push the analogies further, you could say that the Chester County Studio Tour is much like a home & garden tour in that it appeals to people who enjoy exploring beautiful properties and discovering the lives of artistic people.

Pictured on the right is Artist Erica Brown works in the centuries-old medium, encaustic, or hot wax with pigment. The Chester County Studio Tour is free and open to the public, and features art demonstrations, food and drink at different students.

To take a tour, you can simply download a map from the group’s web site and head for the studio closest to you. The West Grove studio of John Baker, pictured below, is one of 34 studios open to the public for a free event this weekend.

However, for those collectors looking for a specific kind of art or who want to take the scenic route from studio to studio, the web site offers links to specific routes such as the sculpture / ceramic and the landscape/ Plein Air(outdoor painting) tours.

baker studioVisit the website to learn more or read a short excerpt here to get an idea of what you can expect:

The Chester County Studio Tour has charted courses that will guide your travels across the county. While the final destination is the art, these routes are designed with the journey in mind. The experience is where appreciation flourishes.

Our country roads follow creeks and border fields of emerging crops, leading to undiscovered corners of the county. Whether you choose to visit a few artists or see them all, we can get you there while exploring the back roads. We promise the journey will pique your curiosity and satisfy your senses.

cirafesi studioWho knows? Maybe that studio destination captures your joyful journey in a work of art. Bring the day full circle when you hang that art in your home, remembering the experience, and the day art was everywhere.

(Pictured right: The painting table of West Chester mixed media artist Diane Cirafesi, whose studio is one of 34 studios open to the public this weekend.)

To find out more, visit the event’s web site at

Meghan Kelly

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