Although our interest in the De Smet area is centered around Laura and her family, there is a lot more history that happened there. Artist Harvey Dunn is related by marriage through Grace, but is a prominent artist in his own right. He is so well known he has his own stamp. He never forgot that he came from Manchester, South Dakota the next town down the line to De Smet. He returned every summer for years (while his wife toured Europe) and a showing in De Smet in the 1950s prompted him to donate a collection of his artwork to the state of South Dakota led to the founding of South Dakota Art Museum.
The August 14, 2013 issue of The De Smet News carries a report on the event. The three day event was from Aug. 9-11, 2013. Fifty people registered and 37 of those were out producing art around De Smet including the Laura Ingalls Wilder Memorial Society and the Ingalls Homestead. Participants came from 17 South Dakota communities, 14 from other states, and one from Milan, Italy. Harvey Dunn’s granddaughter Diana Rutherford, Ellen Larson Halter who shared memories of Dunn from her childhood, Bill Anderson and John Miller were honored guests. Find interviews with participants and photos of artists and their works in progress are scattered throughout the issue.
If you want to read the article for yourself, get a copy directly from The De Smet News and remember you can subscribe digitally now too.
Plan now to attend next year’s Plein Aire event August 8-10, 2014.