Chautauqua Art Gallery holding opening reception Saturday

Submitted Photo Pictured is a watercolor by Leslie Calimeri.

LAKEWOOD — Chautauqua Art Gallery will open its doors for the first time on Jan. 27. This newly renovated space in the heart of Lakewood is currently showing fine art and artisan crafts by award winning regional artists. The public is invited to attend an opening reception on Saturday, Jan. 27 from noon to 8 p.m. A ribbon cutting will be held at noon and music will be provided by Infinity Visual and Performing Arts from 6 to 8 p.m.

Local proprietors Leslie and Joe Calimeri conceived of the gallery as a place to create and showcase Leslie’s original artwork and prints. After growing up in Cassadaga, Leslie received a degree in art from the Rochester Institute of Technology and worked in Northern Virginia as a print/web designer and freelance artist for six years. Upon returning to Chautauqua County she was fortunate to be employed as Chautauqua Institution’s Digital Communications manager for nearly seven years before opening Chautauqua Art Gallery.

“Over the past 13 years I have regularly shown my paintings at regional and national galleries and competitions. I am thrilled to open a gallery and studio space in Lakewood. My painting focuses mainly on regional landscapes that juxtapose shape and color to convey mood and a unique perspective in compositions. In addition to my own work, I am excited to showcase three other incredible artists, all of whom currently reside in, or have ties to Chautauqua County,” Leslie said.

In addition to Leslie’s paintings of local landscapes, the gallery will display prints by photojournalist David Munch. Munch is an independent, award winning photojournalist based in Chautauqua County. He previously worked for the Baltimore Sun Media Group and the Erie Times News. Dave attended Ohio University and received a bachelor’s degree in visual communications with a specialization in photojournalism. Munch’s work has been featured in publications across the country.

Handcrafted jewelry by Karen Schiavone and handmade, (with a purpose), knits by Lindsay Porter will also be on display. A portion of the proceeds from Porter’s knits are donated to the Michael J. Fox Foundation or the National Parkinson Foundation.

Beginning Jan. 27, regular winter hours are Monday and Thursday to Saturday, noon to 6 p.m., or by appointment.

More information about Chautauqua Art Gallery is available on its website at, by phone at 753-6296, or on Facebook at