Elaine Jenne Eckels Landacre, 93, of San Diego, more recently contacted Hagstrom after reading about “Art through The Generations” in The San Diego Union-Tribune’s March 3, 2013, Arts & Culture section. Before Landacre’s telephone call, Hagstrom thought that Munckton might be the only retired teacher alive who knew her grandmother as a colleague.
On May 1, 2013, Suzy Hagstrom took Landacre to Coronado to meet Munckton in person. Landacre brought a 1944 photograph of Coronado Elementary School’s student body and teaching staff. The two teachers spent an hour talking about their work in Coronado, Esther Painter Hagstrom and art. Then Suzy Hagstrom took Landacre to the Coronado Public Library to see “Art through the Generations.”
Besides arranging a meeting between the two retired teachers, Hagstrom organized a reception for her grandmother’s students. The event took place April 6, 2013, in the Coronado Public Library’s Winn Room.
Some classmates of the nine artists participating in “Art through the Generations” -- as well as the general public -- attended. Munckton went to meet the students because some of these visual artists are also musicians who had taken lessons from Munckton.
“The reception was like a mini-Coronado High School reunion,” said Christian Esquevin, director of library services for the Coronado Public Library. “Some of these artists hadn’t seen each other for more than 50 years.”
The artists are: John Clampitt of Coronado, Coronado High School class of 1954; Sarah Mott Durand of Ashland, Oregon, class of 1948; Lois Drake Ferguson of San Diego, class of 1953; Patty Murphy Jepson of Coronado, class of 1948; John “Jack” Minchin of Encinitas, class of 1948; Dolores Bridges Mote of El Cajon, class of 1945; Doris Klindt Naccarato of Coronado, class of 1951; Hildegarde Jaeger Stubbs of Encinitas, who finished high school in Santa Monica; and Celeste Walkup Usler, of Puyallup, Washington, class of 1951.
When the “Art through the Generations” exhibit is dismantled on May 31, 2013, the paintings and other works of the artists will return to their respective homes. However, the works of Esther Painter Hagstrom will remain at the Coronado Public Library to be part of its permanent collection.
The library accepted Suzy Hagstrom’s donation of her grandmother’s art, Esquevin said, because of Esther Painter Hagstrom’s ties to Coronado, contributions to the town’s art community, her influence on several generations of students in Coronado’s public schools and the beauty of her local landscapes. Her depictions of the Hotel del Coronado’s “rainbow fleet” of small sailboats rented to guests during the 1940s, he noted, are of special local historical significance.
Mary Ellen, left, talks with Elaine.
(at Mary Ellen's home in Coronado)