Pequot Lakes Area Historical Society: Folk art tells town's story
An artistic representation shows Pequot Lakes of the past
Hanging on a wall in the Pequot Lakes Area Historical Society Museum is a relief map of Pequot Lakes as remembered by Les Tweed.
Les made the map in 1999 on a 4x4 piece of plywood and cut small blocks of wood to represent the various buildings in the 1937 town. He painted them and glued them in place and listed the names of all the businesses they represented.
It’s a work of folk art. It has all the places he remembers, and because of that, some places might be missing. But basically, he gives you the town. It’s a work of folk art because of that, and because it’s not precisely to scale. It lacks finesse. It lacks a trained artist; Mr. Tweed wouldn’t argue with that.
But he had a history to tell about a place he loved, and that comes through, if you can believe it, in that 4x4 piece of plywood. You can see love there, in the different colored bits of wood lined up along hand drawn streets, with hand lettered notes and names to help us understand.
His telling of Pequot’s history is a heroic effort by an ordinary person about an ordinary town. His work is achingly touching for those reasons. It's truly a work of folk art.
Karen Bye is president of the Pequot Lakes Area Historical Society.