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Visual Art Entrepreneurship

Eau Claire’s 200 Main Art & Wine Gallery Gets New Owner

Sean Chambers felt instantly connected from the moment he stepped in the door. Now, he’s continuing that moment of magic.

Caitlin Boyle |

THE (200) MAIN MAN. Sean Chambers, center, is purchase 200 Main Art & Wine from Terry Meyer, left, and Jo Burke, right. (Submitted photo)
THE (200) MAIN MAN. Sean Chambers, center, is purchase 200 Main Art & Wine from Terry Meyer, left, and Jo Burke, right. (Submitted photo)

A unique downtown Eau Claire business that cultivates experiences to enjoy both art and wine is getting a new breath of life this summer.

200 Main Art & Wine Gallery has been offering visitors a place to come and relax while enjoying some fantastic art and wine since 2017.

Like countless businesspeople, owners Jo Ellen Burke and Terry Meyer faced tumultuous challenges last year when the pandemic hit. They had to shift their focus to staying afloat, even announcing in late February that they would permanently close the gallery.

That is, until a man visiting from New Jersey walked through the gallery’s doors, and a bond between the three formed. After a month of getting to know each other, Burke and Meyer decided to sell 200 Main to Sean Chambers, who has visited Eau Claire from New Jersey every summer since birth. He begins his transition to ownership in June.

I met Jo and Terry, and knew that I found my next adventure. The space has this magnetic aura to it, and I knew I needed to pursue the opportunity.

SEAN CHAMBERS

new owner, 200 main art & wine

When he traveled across the country in March, he found a post about an event at the gallery, only to discover the same gallery was for sale. It piqued his interest, and when he set foot in the gallery, he knew right away it was a special place, and that he wanted to take it over.

“I met Jo and Terry, and knew that I found my next adventure,” Chambers said. “The space has this magnetic aura to it, and I knew I needed to pursue the opportunity.”

And Burke couldn’t agree more. She said when Chambers stopped into the gallery, she and Meyer both felt like they had known him forever.“It was absolute serendipity that the stars aligned, and we agreed to sell the business to (Chambers),” Burke said. “He is clearly the perfect person to carry on our model of fine art, wine, and inspiring events.”

Chambers is excited to get the ball rolling when he officially becomes owner in June, though he plans to continue the gallery’s legacy as being a warm, welcoming environment for the community to interact, learn, and experience fine art and wine. That begins by keeping many of the current artists that are loved by the community in rotation, and also adding an array of other new, vibrant artists to showcase.

And then there’s the wine.

Chambers is excited to expand the wine in the gallery to a rotating selection of 100 different wines available by the bottle from across the world. He is also planning to host a wide range of events where people can learn, listen to live music, hear local authors, and much more.

Chambers will also lean on Burke and Meyer as this new adventure kicks off, he said, as the duo plan to stay on to help him with the transition as he becomes familiar with the business. Chambers said he is certain they will be friends for years to come, and their guidance will be appreciated.

“He has excellent skills in fine art, wine, and welcoming the public, so we have no doubt he will succeed in this exciting adventure,” Burke said.


Check out 200main.org for more information and also stop into the gallery in June to welcome Chambers to the Chippewa Valley. (Don’t forget to enjoy some art and wine while you’re there!)