The email took me by surprise. Steampunk? What the heck was that?
Nagging in the periphery was a vision of DIY vinyl dolls with fur on them, absurd and grotesque clowns. Nah, that was Circus Punk. This was something else entirely, a new "trend," the very word being specious.

Fortunately the gallery owner provided us a link to Steampunk, albeit WikiPedia, which defines it as a "sub-genre of science fiction and speculative fiction, frequently featuring elements of fantasy, that came into prominence in the 1980s and early 1990s."

It reminded of Flash Gordon and the newest movie version of Sherlock Holmes. Retro-future? Like the Jake Van Slott image (above left). Deliberately contrived, artfully so. A nudge and a wink to both future and past.

Exhibitors/participants: Abney Park, Aimee Stewart (illustration, at right), Gemma, Jerry Ringling, Pat Gallagher, Mac McGowan, Kristina Hoagland, Dmitri, Veronique Chevallier, Shamus Tinplate, Ivan Drugostrov, Rischa Leinweber, Renee Gorman, Vela Gyertya, Cecile Charles, Nienke Crick, Shanda Woodward.

Gallery of THUM
159 South Lincoln, Suite 151
Spokane WA 99201
(509) 294-9234

First Friday July 2, 2010

I missed the opening by a day for the first ArtWalk but got to see a bit of work when up in Sandpoint recently and hope to finally get into the POAC show in the PowerHouse, too. Called "Rescued and Redeemed" and probably a lot of assemblage, which I like.

Got to stop by Woods Wheatcroft's gallery (he does a themed show, this one being Light & Yellow). No idea how he does at curating art but I love, love, love his photography.

Saw Catherine Earle's work at Coldwater. You'll want to check that out if you missed it at Redtail.

Others on the list include the collages and paintings of Ana Monfort, Julie Hutslar's watercolors and then just discovering the work of artists I don't already know.

Multi-Sensory Approach of Ted Apel

June 14, 2010

Media Contact: Karen Hunt, University Communications, (208) 885-7251,

Prichard Art Gallery Opens Artwalk with Ted Apel's Coilings Exhibit

MOSCOW, Idaho – The Prichard Art Gallery will join in the City of Moscow's annual Artwalk event with Ted Apel's Coilings exhibit. The exhibit will open on June 18, with a reception beginning at 5 p.m., and the exhibit will run until Aug. 7.

Apel’s sculptures and installations focus on an audio transducing element as the source of visual and sonic material. The exhibit will feature six sculptures and installation pieces, including one that has never been seen before.

“Ted does an amazing job of combining challenging auditory elements with significant sculptural forms,” said Roger Rowley, director of the Prichard Art Gallery.

The Bell Synchresis produces sound through two loudspeakers. One speaker is electromagnetically shaken to cause two bells to sound inside the second speaker. Two doll house loudspeakers serve as the source of the recorded bell sounds.

The Trochilics is comprised of 10 freestanding sculptures, each consisting of a small motor resting on the floor. A metal panel is attached to each motor and acts as a sounding board for an audio signal. Audio amplifiers and a computer control the input signals. The Trochilics emphasizes the movement of the metal panels to unite sound with visual art.

The Jump Start features a car battery that is connected to a loudspeaker via jumper cables. The sound of a car starting is periodically produced by the speaker.

In the sound Trialogue, Apel uses three organ pipes that are modified with speakers to produce resonant frequencies of each pipe.

Portrait of Malleus is a sound sculpture that produces quiet and constantly changing music. A bronze plate is hung from the wall with electronics mounted behind it. The sculpture relies on the listener to focus their attention on the plate as both the producer of sound and the visual object.

“Each element on its own is very interesting, and then together they really make for a unique gallery experience,” said Rowley.

Apel was raised in Pasadena, Calif. He earned his bachelor’s degree in physics from Pomona College and a master’s in electroacoustic music from Dartmouth College. His sound installations and sculptures have been featured in numerous festivals and galleries nationally and internationally. He currently teaches computer music and new media art at Boise State University.

The Prichard Art Gallery summer hours are Tuesday-Friday, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m and Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Gallery is closed Sunday and Monday. The gallery, an outreach facility of the University of Idaho, is located at 414/416 S. Main St. on the corner of Fifth and Main streets in downtown Moscow.

Admission is free. Additional information is available at

Interesting Idea: Paul McKee Reflections at Chase Gallery

June 18, 2010

                        Contact: Karen Mobley
                        Arts Director
                        City of Spokane Arts Department
                        (509) 625-6050


“Spokane Reflections”
At the Chase Gallery
June 29th – August 27th, 2010

The artwork of Paul McKee will be featured at the Chase Gallery, June 29 through August 27, 2010.  The Chase Gallery is located in City Hall at 808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. in Spokane.  An artist reception will be held in conjunction with First Friday, on Friday, August 6, 5pm to 8pm. Gallery hours are Monday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Paul McKee
will present “Spokane Reflections,” a portrait of Spokane in paintings and sculpture based on reflections in downtown windows.  Since 2003, McKee’s work has based upon the reflections he sees in urban buildings.  He is attracted to how the strict grid of a window’s panes contrasts with a flowing, reflected world. “My art finds transcendence in the ordinary experiences of contemporary life. A glass box skyscraper seems ordinary, but it is really exotic when approached as if I’m outside of the culture that builds them.  I combine the sense of awe a newcomer might feel with the prolonged study only possible by a long-time resident. When I closely examine reflections in windows, I see the world anew, as if for the first time.”

 “This is an opportunity for Spokane to see itself in a fresh light,” says McKee, “Spokane offers a variety of architectural styles.  There are ornate masonry buildings such as the Davenport Hotel which reflect nicely in the mirrored windows of buildings like the Bank of America Building.”

Paul McKee holds a BA from Evergreen State College and has exhibited his work at the New York Fashion Academy, Seattle Academy of Fine Art, Blue Door Gallery, and North Seattle Community College Gallery.  His work “Sight (Collecting),” a painting on 18 canvases of a reflection in the Tacoma Art Museum is part of the permanent collection of the City of Kent.

Karen R. Mobley
Arts Director
City of Spokane
Spokane Arts Commission
808 W. Spokane Falls Boulevard
Spokane, WA 99201-3333
(509) 625-6079 <>

Future Artists: So this is why we teach...

Congratulations, Emma (and Javan for even entering the contest!). Click here for the link to the CdaPress article.

Opening JUNE 18 TO JULY 24, 2010

516 Oak Street, Sandpoint, Idaho
Hours: M-F 10:00 - 5:30 / Saturday 10:00 - 5:00

Moscow ArtWalk


ArtWalk 2010 features 67 businesses and more than 110 artists from the beautiful Moscow, Idaho community and surrounding area.  

The opening receptions are Friday, June 18 beginning at 5pm. 

Friendship Square events start at noon, where there will be art and craft demonstrations, children’s chalk art, live music, and food. 

Live music in Friendship Square will feature: Friendship Square UI Native American Drum Group performing from 4:30 to 6pm, Groovehaus performing from 6 to 8pm, and the Mullan Road Band performing from 8 to 10pm.

Also: Idaho Historic Statehouse Murals will be unveiled Friday, June 18 at 2:30pm in the Idaho Commons at the University of Idaho.

There might still be time to sign up. Click here for more information.


JUNE 1, 2010

Currently showing at the Entree Gallery during June is “Botanicals and Animals”, an exhibit of contemporary and rustic accents for home and garden. On display at both the Reeder Bay and Coolin Bay galleries, this diverse selection of regionally-crafted work includes pottery, fountains, bird baths, framed mirrors, forged iron pieces, garden sculptures, Amish furnishings, and unique reclaimed lumber beverage coolers.

As a special 2-day exhibit on June 18-19th, from 11am-5pm, the Reeder Bay gallery will also present “Earthen Song”, highlighting the Americana-style garden benches and furnishings of “American Maids” Hanna Moreland and Mandy Matlock. The two artists, whose country roots are reflected in their country-style accents and furnishings, use and reuse found wood and other items in their designs, using something old to create something new.

“This is a ‘must-see’ show, providing a wonderful opportunity to spruce up a sunroom, patio and yard with unique pieces not readily available elsewhere,” said gallery owner Pam Martin. “Although these pieces are specially created for the yard and garden in mind, many of are perfect for bringing the outside indoors”. 

The Entree Gallery, now at two locations, invites the public to view the work of over 150 regional artists. The gallery at Reeder Bay is located just 2 miles east of Nordman at 1755 Reeder Bay Rd, and can be contacted at 208 443-2001.

June hours are Sunday-Thursday 10am-4pm, and Friday-Saturday 10am to 5pm. For hours at the Coolin Bay gallery, located two doors from the Leonard Paul Store, call 208 443-2002.

A local art gallery director and I have a friendly disagreement about art that involves the form of expression an artist takes. I see it as a continuum, a wide spectrum of ways in which artists express themselves...from the vase-of-flowers painter to the person whose work is so conceptual it tends to speak to only a narrow audience. My friend tends to regard the spectrum in levels, which I sort of do too, but I struggle at the idea that one form of expression is better than another.

Take this story, for example, about a local North Idaho artist who is completing a mural honoring Vets. How awesome is that?! Will this artist's work ever be in the Frye Gallery or the Met? No, but a whole lotta people are going to see this, get something from it and relate to it in a way that the typical gallery viewers are not. This is public art at its finest, expressive, illustrative and of the people.

Check out this link to a recent Cda Press article about Linda Fabrizius' mural at City Hall.

Last year they celebrated the anniversary of the Wizard of Oz with Ozvitational, an Oz-themed art show that had quite an array of work by many regular contributors, as well as a few that owner Sue Bradley invited especially for the show. The exhibition coincided with the Garland Street Fair, which was also Oz-themed. I missed it but heard it was quite the party. 

This year, Tinman will pause for a reflection in the magic looking glass of inevitable change, but will reopen with an expanded view of itself. Check out the following advance press info from Sue Bradley, owner (shown at right): 

"The Ruby Slipper at 809 West Garland will be closed starting Saturday, May 29th for redecorating and refurbishing.  It will reopen in early July as Tinman Too, a store whose mission is to provide the creative experience in literature and art for children.  We will be moving and expanding our current children's section to include more books for babies, more read-to-me and interactive books, even more fabulous children's illustrated books, and exceptional books for early readers.
Tinman Too will also offer regular storytelling times, dress up and puppet theater, and a wide variety of art activities and classes for children.  These activities will range from one-day workshops (collage, painting) and seasonal projects (Halloween pumpkin painting, birdhouses)  to regular classes in different art media such as printmaking, painting and drawing.  Our teachers are drawn from former Spokane Art School staff, local school district staff and area professional artists.  By fall, we plan to have a different children's activity every day for a full week of learning and playing.

The Tinman Gallery will close for remodelling on Monday, June 26th and reopen for the Artist's Reception for the Alice in Wonderland Invitational on Friday, July 30th.  Over 30 artists will be exhibiting including Kay O'Rourke, Harold Balazs, Dick Ibach and Mel McCuddin."

KYRS Benefit Art Auction: July at Auntie's

KYRS Benefit Art Auction

First Friday July at Auntie's Book
Silent Auction: Friday, July 2nd from 5:30-8:30PM (food, drinks and live music by 6-Foot Swing)
Live Auction: Saturday, July 3rd from 2-4PM (food & drinks)
At Auntie's Books (402 W. Main, Spokane).

All proceeds benefit KYRS!

For more information:

Summer at the Jacklin Arts & Cultural Center

Ongoing through June 11th
The Post Falls Artists Multimedia Show
Free admission; for more information call (208) 457-8959.
Jacklin Arts & Cultural Center, 405 N William Street, Post Falls, ID,

Friday, June 18th; 5:30-7:30 pm
Artist’s Reception and Opening for Photography and Sculpture Show featuring Terry Lee, Steve Gevurtz and Kevin Kirking (above right).

Free admission; show runs from 6/18-7/9; for more information call (208) 457-8959.
Jacklin Arts & Cultural Center, 405 N William Street, Post Falls, ID,

There is something tender and haunting about the work of Claudia Pettis. She paints the sheep for whom she has tremendous fondness, eliciting something of their animal soul in her work, revealing in turn something of her own soul, maybe even that of us all.

She writes:
Realist, allegorical, narrative—all describe the painting style I do. There is a story in the works that the viewer and I share. Narrative illustration however is quite a different thing from this as I begin with feelings, and feeling alone guides me throughout the entire work. The ideas and words come later, as the feelings take forms, and those forms have relationships that stories grow out of.  I agree with Corot, “Reality is one part of Art; feeling completes it…abandon yourself to your first impression. If you have really been touched, you will convey to others the sincerity of your emotion.” 

The materials I use are important to me—they have textures and smells and origins and histories. I use Belgium linen and elegant materials—fine ground pigments, Italian earths, ambers, chemically complex glazes. I take great joy in the process of mixing and discovering, of putting on paint and taking it away. I seldom frame and think it is unimportant. Yes, when in a private room and home a painting can be enhanced, but I like the viewer to see a work the way I see it, and in doing so they can take part in the process by discovering the way I got there. There are drips and clues in the exposed piece—the canvas texture, the edges, the wood stretchers. I put together each piece thoughtfully.

I am a shepherd and I serve my sheep flock daily. They in turn become my subjects. I also do Vipassana meditation, which is at the very heart of everything I do. This gives me some degree of balance and acceptance.

When a work is complete enough to view, it is my hope that the story and conviction in the piece will captivate and inspire, or as Corot puts it, that you will be “touched”.
I thank The Art Spirit Gallery and Steve Gibbs for giving me this setting and opportunity.
There are few galleries that care so much about how work is displayed and know how to do this as well and sensitively as it is done here. –Claudia Pettis

Catch her exhibit at The Art Spirit Gallery, 415 Sherman Avenue, Coeur d'Alene: Painting and Sculpture from a Shepherd’s View.  

The opening reception is on Friday, June 11 from 5-8 in conjunction with the 2nd Friday Downtown ArtWalk.  Everyone is welcome.  This show runs from June 11 through July 3.