The Gibbs Library in Washington is displaying an art show, “Legends and Legacies,” by Connie Bellet. “Hold On” is three-foot high by four-foot wide oil on masonite. Submitted photo

WASHINGTON — The Gibbs Library is displaying an art show, “Legends and Legacies,” by Connie Bellet of Palermo at the 40 Old Union Road library.

The art show will be on view through February.

Many of the paintings have songs that go with them, which were recorded by singer-songwriter Phil White Hawk and were part of a touring multimedia performance, according to a news release from Patti Forster at the library.

Bellet has been drawing and painting since she could walk, mainly focusing on her animal friends at the St. Louis Zoo. She had a double major in Art and Biology at Grinnell College and the University of Minnesota. Upon moving to Spokane, Washington, she accepted a job as public relations director of the Walk in the Wild Zoo and was assistant manager of the Vanishing Species Pavilion at Expo ‘74, where she and her teacher, Rainbow Touraine, also hung a showing of their wildlife paintings.

“Arthur” is wood burned on cedar and colored with oil pencil. Submitted photo

Shortly after that, Bellet teamed up with Hawk, and she painted the Native legends and songs that White Hawk composed for their touring live multimedia concerts, collectively called Inspirada Americana.

Bellet is also a modern master of the ancient art of scrimshaw, which will also be on display. She has carved designs on everything from elk teeth to walrus tusks and legal elephant ivory. Her wildlife scenes have gained an intercontinental audience and won prizes in international scrimshaw shows.


“My art is my legacy,” says Bellet. “I want to bring beauty and an appreciation of nature to people through my art.”

Library hours are 4-7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m. to noon and 4-7 p.m. Tuesdays, 3-6 p.m. Wednesdays, 9 a.m. to noon Thursdays and Saturdays.

For more information, call 207-845-2663.

“Between the Future and the Past” is oil on canvas with a velvet frame. Submitted photo



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