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First Friday: From ceramics to sculpture to political art, September gallery crawl offers it all

It’s First Friday in Spokane, your chance to stroll the streets of downtown and beyond to attend free art openings, rub shoulders with exhibiting artists, and support local galleries and businesses.

Those keen on the kiln will want to hit the neighboring venues The Kolva-Sullivan Gallery and Trackside Studio on Friday. Kolva-Sullivan welcomes Beth Lo and Trey Hill, two ceramics sculptors and University of Montana professors making waves in the world of ceramics sculptures. Lo’s work revolves primarily around issues of family and her Asian-American background. Cultural marginality and blending, as well as tradition vs. Westernization are among the key elements in her work. She often uses the image of a child as a symbol of innocence, potential and vulnerability. Her colleague Hill’s work, on the other hand, employs anatomical fragments along with other recognizable images to reflect complex inquiries into attraction, seduction, and sensuality. The results are sculptures that will make you stop and think. The show launches from 5-8 p.m. at 115 S. Adams St.

Meanwhile, neighboring Trackside Studio exhibits the more traditional and functional pottery of Seattle artist Loren Lukens. For four decades Lukens has been a leader in representing his works in major juried festivals throughout the region and also in the professional, wholesale designer shows nationwide. The artist has created a body of work that is hand-formed and also cast, then made unique with his original approach to airbrushing glazes and then applying artistic brush strokes and droplets of added color. Lukens calls his glazing technique “Squirt Bottle Art Marks.” Stay tuned for an upcoming workshop and glazing demonstration that Lukens will give on Sept. 23, from 10 a.m to 4 p.m. in the Trackside Studio. Friday he will present more than 50 of his beautiful and functional wheel thrown and cast ceramic forms at 115 S. Adams St.

Go south on Adams Street to the end of the block to Iron Goat Brewing Co. to take in the works of award-winning watercolorist Stan Miller. This local artist’s paintings have shown nationally and beyond, including on the recent cover of the April/May issue of International Artist Magazine. And you can meet Miller from 5-8 p.m. at the artist’s reception at 1302 W. Second Ave.

If you are still thirsty, backtrack north on Adams to the railroad tracks and go west up the alley to Barrister Winery to enjoy a pour along with watercolorist Jeannine Marx Fruci’s varied collection of colorful and distinctive paintings. From 5-10 p.m. at 1213 W. Railroad Ave.

Kendall Yards is a must-visit destination this Friday.

After seeing painter Alfredo Arreguin at Marmot Art Gallery (1202 W. Summit Parkway), stretch your legs down the street and drop by William Grant Gallery and Framing to catch Bari Federspiel’s “Funky Chickens,” and yes, you can guess which barn animal her watercolors depict. Visit 1188 W. Summit Parkway.

Another block down is Core Pilates and Wellness where Amy Jennings’ canvas prints will shine a light on the hidden icons of Spokane. From 4 to 8 p.m. at 1230 W. Summit Parkway.

Craftsman Cellars is a good place to stop in Kendall Yards for a sip and to sample the contemporary photography of Mike DeCesare. His work was selected for the 2017 edition of International Contemporary Artists, a book being distributed this month to art galleries around the world. From 2 to 9 p.m. at 1194 W. Summit Parkway.

After leaving Kendall Yards, drive across Monroe Street to stop in at Avenue West Gallery, where Robert Karr will be on hand to discuss his newest medium, scratchboard art. His show, “On the Wild Sides,” was a challenge for the artist, especially perfecting the “muscles, contours, and eyes of animals” when using this form of direct engraving. Karr is president of Evergreen Art Association in Newport, where he also owns an iris farm. From 5 to 8 p.m. at 907 W. Boone Ave., Suite B.

Friday is the last chance to see Julie Gautier-Downes’s mixed media installation at the Chase Gallery. “Dislocated Memories” explores abandoned lives, childhood memories and the remnants of hasty departures, a poignant exhibit as Harvey continues to force East Texans from their homes. Gautier-Downes and Spokane Arts will host the show’s closing reception from 5-8 p.m. at 808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

You can walk from there across the street to the Kress Gallery in River Park Square to see a group show by four artists – Joy Gruenewald, Kim Gardell, Greg Prichett and Jan Lytle. The show, “A Brush With Watercolors,” will kick off with a meet and greet from 5-8 p.m. at 808 W. Main Ave, second floor.

Photography lovers will have some stops to make, starting at the Philanthropy Center, which will host the art of Robert (Bob) Charlo. A member of the Kalispel Tribe, Charlo is an award-winning photographer with more than 85 exhibits spanning over a dozen years, including tours and showings in four countries. From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1020 W. Riverside Ave.

Steelhead Bar and Grille will feature the work of another photographer, Nick Nelson, at 218 N. Howard St.

LeftBank Wine Bar will show works by two artists, photographer Chad Ramsey and batik artist Nicholas Sironka. 108 N. Washington St.

Missing Piece Tattoo will show Grace June’s photography at 410 W. Sprague Ave.

Nectar Catering and Events will exhibit lively acrylic paintings by E.L. Stewart from 5-10 p.m. at 120 N. Stevens St.

Pottery Place Plus will display the handmade furniture and woodworks of David Wermuth from 5-9 p.m. at 203 N. Washington St.

Nearby Scout Real Estate will feature Seattle-based painter Jorden Heidal’s work at the firm’s open house office party from 5-8 p.m. at 429 W. First Ave.

Further east downtown, Megan Perkins appears to have put her sketchbook down long enough to paint several canvases for her show at Robert Karl Cellars. Try the venue’s new Gunselman Bench Cabernet Sauvignon during the show. From 5-9 p.m at 115 W. Pacific Ave.

Across the street to Robert Karl Cellars is 1900 House and Home, where Robert LaMonte shows off his steampunk-inspired creations from found and reclaimed items. Megan Holden brings to the table her jewelry made from vintage pieces and found objects, each with a unique history. Her intricate ink drawings are pop surrealist and layered with symbolism and references. From 5-8 p.m. at 114 W. Pacific Ave.

Further east on Sprague is Object Space, which is putting on a socially and politically charged group exhibition called “Connecting the Dots.” The reception is from 5 to 10 p.m. at 1818 E. Sprague Ave.

Also on Sprague, Community Pint will exhibit the upcycled iron sculptures created by welder Nick Bradley of Iron Sharpens Iron Studio. From noon to midnight at 120 E. Sprague Ave.


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