Also on River Market Avenue: The Cox Creative Center, where the Arkansas League of Artists show continues. A new show — the Mid-Southern Watercolorists 43rd annual juried exhibition — opens at the the Butler Center main gallery in the Arkansas Studies Institute, 401 Clinton, where the Morange Trio will play. Austin Grimes is the featured artist in the retail gallery. The ArtGroup Maumelle will feature work by Lori Weeks and offer painting demonstrations and live music at the Courtyard at the Marriott, 521 Clinton.
Directly south of the museum, at Gallery 221 and Art Studios 221 in the Pyramid Place Building on 2nd Street, is "A Variety of Impressions," with work by Jennifer Cox Coleman.
Big night. You know, you don't have to wait until 5 p.m. to see the art, so get an early start to catch it all. You don't need wine before 5 p.m. anyway, do you?
Three hours, 10 galleries: That's the situation for tonight's 2nd Friday Art Night. Here's the rundown for the 5-8 p.m. event (rubber-wheeled trolleys will offer transport, as usual):
East of Cumberland in the River Market district:
The Butler Center Galleries (401 President Clinton) is featuring paintings by Sharon Franke, drawings by Jerry Phillips and youth chosen by Arkansas art educators. Ukelele Bill will provide musical entertainment. The Courtyard Marriott (521 Clinton) is showing work by the ArtGroup Maumelle; Vickie Siebenmorgan is the featured artist. The Cox Creative Center (120 Market Ave.) is showing the Arkansas League of Artists' "Signature Member Show." The Edge (301B Clinton) is showing paintings by Fernando Gomez (who paints as "Avila"), James Hayes, Eric Freeman, S. Joseph Thomason and Stephen Drive.
West of Cumberland and in SoMa:
Gallery 221 in the Pyramid Place building is featuring work by Sean LeCrone. The Historic Arkansas Museum has a new exhibit of paintings by Jason A. Smith. Geoffrey Robinson and David Gerstein will play chamber music pieces at 5:30 and 7 p.m. at the Old State House. Christ Episcopal Church is showing work of members of the Arkansas Artists League and Local Colour. Recreation Studios at 608 Main St. and StudioMain at 1423 Main St. will both be open for 2nd Friday; StudioMain will feature the Main Street design competition.
At the Old State House Museum, Geoffrey Robson and David Gerstein will perform duos by Kodaly and Handel for violin and cello. The Mosaic Templars Cultural Center opens its Juneteenth celebration with "Voices from the Front Porch," a theatrical performance by S. Juain Young.
And, as previously mentioned:
Butler Center Galleries, 401 Clinton: "Get a Simple Landscape," drawings by Jerry Phillips, along with the "Arkansas Art Educators Youth Art Show."
Hearne Fine Art, 1001 Wright Ave.: "Reflections in Silver: Silverpoint Drawings by Aj Smith and Marjorie Williams-Smith."
Gallery 221, Pyramid Place: Work by Gino Hollander, Jennifer Cox Coleman, EMILE and Mary Ann Stafford.
Historic Arkansas Museum, 200 E. Third: "Arkansas Made," “Reflected by Three: William Detmers, Scott Lykens and G. Tara-Casciano,” and “Painting in the Open Air: Day and Night,” work by Jason Sacran. Parkstone will provide music.
The Edge, 301 B Clinton: Work by "Avila," a.k.a. Fernando Gomez, Eric Freeman.
Silverpoint drawings by Aj Smith and Marjorie Williams-Smith, two of Arkansas's biggest talents, are on exhibit at Hearne Fine Art in a show called "Reflections in Silver." The gallery will be open for 2nd Friday Art Night tonight, 5-8 p.m.
The silverpoint technique, making the finest of lines with a silver or other metal stylus on reactive paper, allows the artist to create portraits (as Aj Smith does) or drawings of nature (as Marjorie Williams-Smith does) of diffuse, glowing light. They are quite beautiful.
Hearne Fine Art is celebrating its silver anniversary with this silverpoint show. The gallery opened 25 years ago in 800 square feet downtown, and today has the finest work by African-American artists in Arkansas, or even outside Arkansas.
Here's a great link to an online exhibition of in the show.
Now Phillips brings a collection of drawings, "Get a Simple Landscape," to the Butler Center Galleries, which opens with tonight's 2nd Friday Art Night reception from 5-8 p.m. As the gallery explains the exhibition, the drawings are both about landscape and "the metaphorical kind of 'scape,' as it reflects on the artist himself.'" As you can see from the image above, the work is ephemeral ... but then, so are we.
Phillips' work also appeared in last year's exhibition at the Historic Arkansas Museum, "Arkansas Contemporary: Selected Fellows from the Arkansas Arts Council." HAM was in good company: Phillips' has work in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. His most recent exhibition was in Geneva, in "Works on Paper" at Blondeau & Cie in March.
A sampler stitched in 1828 by a young Cherokee girl at Dwight Mission, a Presbyterian school on the banks of the Arkansas in the early 1800s, will be just one of the fine objects on exhibit tomorrow as the Historic Arkansas Museum opens its new Arkansas Made Gallery. There will be a reception as part of 2nd Friday Art Night, 5-8 p.m., with music by Parkstone.
The objects are both old and new: A painting by contemporary artist Sylvester McKissick hangs next to an early 20th century oil by Adrian Brewer (1891-1956), and Native American pots are juxtaposed with a basket by Arkansas Living Treasure Leon Niehaus.
I got a peek today at the sampler, stitched in silk on linen in 1828 by Nancy Graves. Deputy Director and Chief Curator Swannee Bennett provided the following information on the sampler:
This rare example of Arkansas Made needlework is the earliest documented Native American-made sampler known to exist anywhere in the United States. Nancy Grave’s Cherokee name was Ku-To-Yi, and she was 11 years old when she made this sampler. She was one of dozens of young Cherokee girls who attended the Presbyterian school known as Dwight Mission, located on the banks of the Arkansas River near present-day Russellville. There they learned the three “R’s” and the various aspects of domestic economy, which included needlework, and the making of samplers. Most samplers are constructed with three major components — the alphabet, numbers and verse. As a result, the student was taught to sew, spell, read and count.
The school was established in 1820 by the Reverend Cephas Washburn. One of its stated purposes was to serve as a school to educate and Christianize the Cherokee moving west with their families from their homes in Tennessee and Georgia. Ultimately, the “Americanization” of Native Americans in this country resulted in the wholesale loss of language and culture for tens of thousands of American Indians.
Alice Walton has nothing on Bennett. Walton famously bid on a painting at auction at Sotheby's while on horseback during a competition. Bennett bid on the sampler in January from a duck blind, ducks quacking in the background all the time, a fact Sotheby's revealed to the auction audience after HAM secured the bid.
Bennett and Director Bill Worthen have authored a couple of books, "Arkansas Made," vols. 1 and 2, about objects the HAM staff has identified over many years as being Arkansan in origin and which reveal what life was like in 19th century Arkansas. They prove Arkansas was not, as Louise Loughborough is quoted as saying on one wall of the exhibit, not just a place with fiddles and leaky roofs.
The Edge, opened recently by Fernando Gomez at 301B President Clinton Ave., has joined the 2nd Friday Art Night lineup and will be open 5-8 p.m. tomorrow for what it calls a "Sangria Blitz."
Most of the contemporary art gallery is devoted to Gomez' own work, but other Arkansas artists are represented as well, including Eric Freeman.
Gomez invitation to 2nd Friday says the gallery "will be ready to show you something new ... and that is no bull" (see above).
Tonight's 2nd Friday Art Night downtown art troll — on foot or by trolley — from 5-8 p.m. features art exhibits, demonstrations, music and jewelry-making at nine venues. So much to do and see, so little time, as usual.
Historic Arkansas Museum, 200 E. Third, opens two exhibitions, "Reflected by Three: William Detmers, Scott Lykens and G. Tara-Casciano" and "Painting in the Air: Day and Night," work by Jason Sacran. There will be music by the Rolling Blackouts to go with Detmer's photos, Tara-Casciano's sculpture and Lykens' and Sacran's paintings.
The Butler Center Galleries in the Arkansas Studies Institute, 401 Clinton, opens "Arkansas Art Educators Youth Art Show," juried student work, and "Creative Expressions," work by persons served by the State Hospital. Raku artist Kelly Edwards will give a demonstration and the band Mockingbird will perform (singing, no doubt). Michael Jukes' “No I'm Not, He Is: A ‘Flying Snake’ and ‘Oyyo’ Comic Retrospective" is also on exhibit.
Around the corner, the Cox Center at 120 River Market is exhibiting the "Spring Members Show" of the Arkansas League of Artists, and down Clinton at the Courtyard at the Marriott is work by Holly Tilley and other members of the ArtGroup Maumelle.
Christ Church, 509 Scott, is showing "Dream Weavers," work by Sandra Marson. Gallery 221 at 2nd and Center continues the show "Spring Celebration," paintings by Gino Hollander. The jewelry making — making bracelets from found objects — is the event at the Old State House Museum, 300 W. Markham.
Farther afield from downtown but not to be missed: "Beautiful Uprising," woodcuts by LaToya Hobbs at Hearne Fine Art, 1001 Wright Ave., and "From Bauhaus to Your Haus" at StudioMain, 1423 Main. If you don't want to drive, take the trolley. If you don't make it to Hearne this week, you've got to go May 17 and 18, for Friday's reception and Saturday's discussion, "Relevance of Hair."
Second Friday Art Night, from 5-8 p.m. tonight, will be unusually festive: The Historic Arkansas Museum, which is showing photographs by 11 members of the Blue Eyed Knocker Photo Club and “Phenomena of Change: Lee Cowan, Mary Ann Stafford and Maria Botti Villegas,” will distract gallery-goers with lessons in how to make a mint julep from David Burnette, bartender at the Capital Hotel Bar and Grill. Jazz musician Tim Anthony will be in concert at the Old State House. Printmaker and Hendrix College assistant professor Melissa Gill will talk about her work, "Prayer for Love," and there will be live music at the Butler Center Galleries of the Arkansas Studies Institute. Marsha Hinson will be the featured artist for the ArtGroup Maumelle at the Courtyard Marriott. Hearne Fine Art is throwing a birthday party for artist Frank Frazier, whose work is on exhibit there. The show “Bridging the Burden: In Their Shoes" continues at the Cox Creative Center and studioMAIN is honoring the late architect Rick Redden.
studioMAIN and AMR Architects will host a celebration of the life of the late architect and downtown devotee Rick Redden tonight from 5-9 p.m. The 2nd Friday Art Night event inaugurates studioMAIN's Local Designer Spotlight.
The architectural collaborative space is at 1423 S. Main St.
Redden, 63, died March 27 of cancer. He was a founding member of AMR Architects Inc., designers of Heritage East, Heritage West, Little Rock's Fletcher Library, Little Rock River Market, War Memorial Fitness Center, the Museum of Discovery, the Arkansas Capital Commerce Center, 300 Third Tower and River Market Tower with developer, Moses Tucker.
Redden worked on the ground floor of the Heritage West building, where the Arkansas Times is located, and was always helpful to reporters wanting to know about upcoming projects in the River Market district.
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