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Rive Gauche

Wellfleet’s Left Bank Gallery, located on the left bank of Duck Creek, celebrates a halfcentury of presenting art to a discerning and appreciative audience.

Jim Holland • Sunset Sonata • Oil on canvas • 24″ x 30″

Mise en scène: The year is 1972, a Saturday evening in August, commonly known as the “Gallery Night” of the week. Soft briny breezes from Duck Creek blow into the former American Legion building on Commercial Street in Wellfleet where a tony crowd of literary, artistic and otherwise successful summer residents gather to catch-up, quietly gossip, and impress with their erudite observations of meaning, technique and purpose found in the art that surrounds them at the newly opened Left Bank Gallery. The entrepreneurial muse behind the creative collective of fine art and crafts that certainly raised the bar on what was available in the quiet little beach town, was a twenty-one-year-old Audrey Sherwin. At that young age, Audrey a free-spirited, young woman who was smart and savvy beyond her years, only knew that she loved her hometown of Wellfleet, loved the spirit and landscape interpreted by the creative individuals she had encountered while working at what was previously the Wellfleet Art Gallery,in a town that has become known as “Wellfleet the Gallery Town,” and knew she had to find a way to make a living. 

“When the American Legion building came up for sale, my father suggested I buy it,” Audrey remembers. “I thought he was crazy. I was working for my parents at their real estate company, I was cleaning cottages on change-over weekends, I was working the night shift at the Sheraton in Eastham, how could I possibly buy a building?” Things worked out when her parents offered to loan her the down payment and Audrey proceeded to implement a plan to turn the building which had a colorful past (a community hall… 

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