Artist Saskia Reinholt of Phillips touches up an 8-foot compass star barn quilt. This picture was taken in 2019 at Phillips Elementary School. Saskia Reinholt photo

KINGFIELD — In Kingfield two standout projects are the High Peaks Artisan Guild (HPAG) and the Maine Barn Quilt Trail. Founded by artist Saskia Reinholt, they celebrate the area’s artistic legacy, nurture local talent, and involve the community.

Reinholt, a colorist, multi-media artist, and teacher, is committed to the HPAG and the Maine Barn Quilt Trail. Reinholt specializes in oils and acrylics. She’s created 70+ barn quilt murals. She said she is inspired by nature’s geometry. Her color palettes are meant to mirror sunsets, sunrises, and landscapes. Reinholt co-founded the High Peaks Creative Council, Kingfield Artwalk and established the High Peaks Artisan Guild.

Alana Ranney has been with the guild for over 12 years selling her photographs of Maine images from across Maine. Ranney captures wildlife, nature, landscapes, abandoned places, old vehicles, barns, and both famous and obscure locations. She sells wall art sized prints, photo mugs, mouse pads, metal prints and more. Her studio is in Strong.

Ranney said, “We have different types of memberships that include working and non-working members. The more you work, the less you pay. Since it’s a coop, we rely on our members and makers to help with all of the things needed to make the guild a success.”

“We work together as a group of small business owners and artists to keep the guild open offering a place for local artists to show and sell their work,” Ranney explained. The guild offers First Friday night art walks, and some members offer events for the community.

The guild’s members contribute a diverse array of handcrafted items and fine artwork, each with its own unique story. Ranney said, “We have a wonderful variety of local handmade and crafted items and fine artwork.”


Some of the items included are paintings in oil, watercolors, acrylics, pen and ink, block prints, pottery, jewelry, photography, metal, canvas prints, gift items, felting, furniture, Woodworking Woodcuts cribbage boards, a “backroom” which is filled with books and antiques and collectables, and more.

Alana Ranney is a guild member and photographer. These are some of her photographs on display in Kingfield. Courtesy photo/Alana Ranney

Artists are responsible for changing their display, so the artists are always bringing in new items and rearranging.

In addition to showcasing local talent, the guild hosts community events like Paint Nite, offering attendees the chance to paint under the guidance of local artists. Reinholt said, “Paint Nite is a wonderful opportunity for people to come together, express themselves, and support local artists. It’s a testament to the power of art to bring people together and create lasting memories.”

For those interested in joining the HPAG, the process involves a juried selection, with members granted space to showcase and sell their artwork.

The Maine Barn Quilt Trail, led by Reinholt, celebrates rural traditions and fosters creative education alongside the HPAG’s efforts. Since 2018, over 900 participants, including 600 local students, have helped create the Maine Barn Quilt Trail across Franklin and Somerset Counties. The trail is part of the National American Barn Quilt Trail. The trail has over 70 quilts in places like barns, Grange halls, businesses, and municipal buildings across western Maine.

“The Maine Barn Quilt Trail is a community-made public art trail, intended to enrich creative education in schools, celebrate rural traditions, and encourage tourists to move through a rural, mountain landscape,” Reinholt explained. She said this collaborative project was organized by the High Peaks Creative Council with the goal of furthering the visibility of the Maine High Peaks Region as an art, cultural, and recreational destination.


Reinholt’s Maine Barn Quilt Trail Book “Legacy: The Barn Quilt Trail in Maine’s High Peaks” showcases the project’s story through text and photography. Reinholt said it highlights each barn quilt’s pattern, explores the history of the related building or business, and acknowledges the communities involved in creating these vibrant public artworks.

“Barn quilts are meaningful because most people have someone in their families who quilts. Quilts are often heirlooms passed down through generations,” Reinholt noted. “Celebrating this art form by displaying painted murals of quilt blocks honors this rural tradition. Having community members and children paint the quilt blocks connects the community to the artwork.”

Reinholt said the quilts have boosted cultural tourism, increased community pride, sense of place, and weave beauty into everyday life.

“Cynthia Orcutt is the president of the High Peaks Creative Council, and I am the executive director,” Reinholt explained. “The purpose of the book is to raise an endowment for the non-profit HPCC and to raise the visibility of the project.”

Reinholt said they asked Gov. Mills to contribute a foreword to the book. “Janet Mills kindly wrote the foreword for the book. Being from Franklin County, the project is meaningful to her,” Reinholt said.

Reinholt recently held a book talk at the Weld Free Public Library. Weld Free Public Library is upgrading with a Barn Quilt and is seeking donations for the project. The community is invited to the Community Project at Weld Town Hall on May 4 to work on the Library Barn Quilt. Anyone can participate, and suggestions for the quilt’s design are welcome.

Looking ahead, events like Alana Ranney’s upcoming photowalks and the guild’s ongoing exhibitions offer opportunities for artists and the community to come together.

Check out the website for more details on all the other artists and upcoming events here.

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