Tuesday, February 26, 2013

History of the Left Bank Art Gallery

Many decades ago, four St. Simons Island artists and friends, Mildred Nix Huie, Stella Morton, Selma Shelander, and Marja Albright, agreed that they needed an outlet to sell their art.  Thus, in 1965, the women gathered in the living room of the Huie home on East Beach and founded the Left Bank Art Gallery.
Clipping from local newspaper showing "Left Bank Artists" at 3511 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island, Georgia, ca. 1965.

Mildred Huie agreed to run the Gallery, but after a few years she found that she was so busy with the business that she had no time to paint.  In 1967 Mrs. Huie’s world-traveled daughter, Mildred Huie Wilcox and husband Robert Goodall Wilcox stepped-in.  Mildred or "Millie" had moved to New York City in 1950 upon graduating from University of Georgia.  She begun work in Estonian Couturier Madame Eleanora Garnett's Fashion House, at first in the fabrics department selecting fabric for the designer's creations.  It was here that Millie's long and continuing career in aesthetics truly began.  Before long, Millie traveled with Madame Garnett to her House's base in Rome, Italy, Via Villa Sacchetti, where she began modeling the exquisite fashions.  
Mildred "Millie" Huie (later Wilcox), Via Villa Sacchetti, Rome, Italy, 1964.

Upon returning state-side and coming to her mother's home on St. Simons Island around 1966, Millie met Robert Wilcox, a hotelier working on St. Simons Island.  Having been raised in France, Robert was the perfect person to develop the connections with French artists that still last to this day.  Mildred and Robert would travel to many locations in France up to five times per year to meet artists and select works directly from their ateliers.  They expanded the concept of the Left Bank Art Gallery to, not only showcase local painters, but also to include national and international artists with an emphasis on French Impressionism.  This enviable roster of artists has created a selection possessing a quality of work that rivals that of leading galleries in metropolitan markets.
Robert and Mildred "Millie" Wilcox. 

Mildred Wilcox has always been the marketing force in the Gallery.  She has written articles about art and history for local and regional magazines for many years and strongly believes that owning a business incurs certain community responsibilities.  Her long-standing involvement in numerous civic organizations is something about which she is very serious and has allowed her to share the joy of art and the humanities throughout the Golden Isles of Georgia.
The Left Bank Art Gallery today at 3600 Frederica Road, Suite 13, St. Simons Island, Georgia.
The Left Bank Art Gallery has also had strong ties with the Cloister Resort and the Jones Family. The Gallery exhibits in the Cloister Hotel where “Ms. Millie’s” painting classes are a favorite activity of guests.  This relationship continues as the Gallery prepares new and exciting Cloister exhibits each year.


3600 Frederica Road, Suite 13
St. Simons Island, Georgia 31522
912-638-3017 or 800-336-9469