This Easton artist reaches well beyond her easel
By Tracey F. Johns
Photos By Maire McArdle and Stephen Walker
Betty Huang in her Studio B Gallery with her painting "Blackwater Sunset"
Betty Huang’s passion for beauty and art fills the air in her Studio B Gallery on Goldsborough Street in Easton as she warmly welcomes a couple dropping in before dinner during a recent First Friday Gallery Walk. Huang’s gallery is one of the event’s featured venues and includes the works of award-winning national and international artists, including those of master painter Jove Wang.
The couple chats with Huang while taking in the gallery’s beautiful paintings and sculptures. Then they continue their downtown Easton walk after purchasing an original painting by Hiu Lai Chong, a Plein Air Easton grand-prize winner. Soft music plays in the gallery as Huang smiles enthusiastically each time visitors arrive, trailing a gentle breeze amid the sound of Canada geese honking as they fly by.
Huang says her enthusiasm is driven by the joy she derives from art. She’s also very passionate about supporting a growing community of organizations and artists working together and has served in leadership positions of the Working Artists Forum and Discover Easton to help promote the local arts scene.
Learning of Huang’s 36-year career with the International Monetary Fund may impress those who meet her. But her superpower lies in how she translates her love and art using those diverse cultural experiences to influence every brushstroke and color palette created on her canvases.
“Now is my time to pursue my passion,” says Huang, who retired from IMF’s Washington, D.C., headquarters in 2006. She then moved to Easton in 2008 with her husband after spending time with family in Taiwan. She and her husband have now been married for more than 51 years.
Huang says her love of art began as a very young child and was influenced by her mother’s passion for art. Huang developed her painting techniques at the Academy Art Museum shortly after arriving on the Shore. One of her Academy Art Museum teachers, Bobbie Seger, later sponsored her as a member of the juried Working Artists Forum, which she says she was very eager to join.
Today the Working Artists Forum includes more than 100 juried artists from throughout the Delmarva Peninsula as well as Annapolis and Virginia. Forum artists will be exhibiting at this year’s Waterfowl Festival, which will be held from Nov.12-14, following a successful “Local Color” Plein Air Easton exhibition in July.
Huang says she quickly became involved in the local art community after moving to Easton and began exhibiting with a group of other artists in a small location on Harrison Street. She housed her gallery and artwork in a few different downtown Easton storefronts before landing at her current Goldsborough Street location eight years ago.
Now Huang paints daily in her upstairs studio as light filters in from the skylights and throws shadows on every object and tool, stopping only when visitors arrive at the gallery. A note posted outside of Studio B Gallery’s front door downstairs kindly asks visitors to ring the doorbell when the door is locked.
“I like to capture the light and emotion found in nature and pristine landscapes,” Huang says. “Every place has a different light and its own beauty, which is represented by the works of art in my gallery and through that of the Working Artists Forum.”
Huang says Working Artists Forum artists will be exhibiting at “A Small Gift of Art” at the Talbot County Free Library’s Easton branch from Dec. 1 through 30. Small, framed original paintings will be for sale and proceeds will help support the library. Other upcoming exhibition locations include Annapolis’s Quiet Waters Park, The Art League of Ocean City, and the “Local Color” exhibition of Plein Air Easton. More information is available at workingartistsforum.com.
Studio B Gallery
Betty Huang 7B Goldsborough St. Easton, Md. studioBartgallery.com betty@studioBartgallery.com
In October 2013, the Trippe-Hilderbrandt Gallery opened in Easton but when partner watercolorist Don Hilderbrandt moved to the West coast, it became simply The Trippe Gallery in 2015.
Nanny Trippe represents 48 award- winning artists from Vancouver to Dublin to Easton, displaying all mediums from oils, watercolors, etching, printmaking, sculpture, and fine art photography.
During the Waterfowl Festival, there will be a book signing at the gallery for photographer Jay Fleming's new book “Island Life," and an exhibition of his photographs, plus “For the Birds” featuring avian paintings by Paula Waterman and Kevin Garber.
For the holidays, Nanny features exceptional small works of art that are perfect gifts and offers extended hours for convenience with a festive First Friday holiday party.
"My vision is to exhibit art that will appeal to all tastes and price points. I am discerning when it comes to the artists that I invite to exhibit in the gallery. Recently, I have launched a home/office curation service and I bring the art to you so you can see it in your space. I assist not only in art selection but the placement and professional hanging."
23 N. Harrison St., Easton, Md.
Monday-Thursday: 12 to 4:30 p.m.;
Friday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday: 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays by chance or appointment. Open "First Fridays" in April to December. until 7pm.
The original "troika," which is the Russian word for a group of three people working together, were artists Laura Era, her mom, Dorothy Newland, and Jennifer Wharton. They opened their art space in the Talbottown shopping center in 1997. The moniker has stuck even though Laura is now the sole proprietor. "I am not going to change the name to 'Uno!'" she quips. Troika Gallery represents 35 classically-based artists in all mediums from watercolors to bronze sculptures. A lifelong painter and portrait artist, Laura is approached by inquiring artists multiple times a month to join her cadre of creatives. With the help of her gallery manager and collaborator, Peg Fitzgerald, Laura will ask new artists, "Do you think your work fits? Is your work better than the best work we have on display?" Laura's high standards are as clear as her gallery's tagline: "the finest of fine art."
9 S. Harrison St.
11 a.m. to 6 p.m., or by appointment