Be ready for the big thaw because downtown venues are on fire with art tonight. Participating galleries, shops and breweries on First Friday’s Art Walk are free to attend, and many are just a snowball’s throw from each other.
For a complete list of all the local spots offering art shows to enjoy this evening and for the rest of the month, see Page 6 or visit www.downtownspokane.org. Here are a few highlights:
Perhaps start on downtown’s west side, at Iron Goat Brewery, where Spokane’s Ildikó Kalapács will exhibit drawings and lithographs of friends new and old. The Hungarian-born artist is known for her embrace of other cultures and of those who struggle with displacement. This exhibition reveals another side of her humanity and proof of such in others. The opening is from 5 to 8 p.m. at 1302 W. Second Ave.
Walk north one block to Trackside Studio Ceramic Art Gallery to see potter Mark Moore’s wheel works. If you are familiar with the ceramicist’s fat, quirky forms, then this exhibit will fascinate. Moore’s highly textured wall- and pedestal-mounted pieces began on the potter’s wheel, but evolve as he removes and manipulates them before drying. He achieves perfect imperfection with a surreal twist. From 5 to 8 p.m., with added hours Saturday from noon until 4 p.m. 115 S. Adams St.
Next door to Trackside is the Kolva-Sullivan Gallery, hosting a show called “Wood Work” by painter Erika Osborne. Currently an associate professor at Colorado State University, Osborne is in town as a Kreielsheimer Visiting Artist at Gonzaga University. She will exhibit works centering around the vital, utilitarian role wood plays in our existence while at the same time, paying homage to the lives and stories of the trees. The rings of a 3,000-year-old giant sequoia tell the tales of earthquakes, pestilence and human consumption. There are examinations of bullet holes and fire-thinning scars. Osborne’s artwork deals with cultural connections to place and environment. Represented by the prestigious Robischon Art Gallery in Denver, an exhibition by this log lady is one to see. Open from 5 to 8 p.m. 115 S. Adams St. Or try to hit the gallery at 2 p.m. to hear Osborne give a talk.
A two-block walk east is First Avenue Coffee where Alice and Chuck Harmon’s paintings are set to bring a smile and a flood of color into your life. Alice’s piece “First Friday Shoppers” was chosen by the Downtown Spokane Partnership as this month’s official Art Walk poster. From 5 to 8 p.m. 1011 W. First Ave.
The Chase Gallery will be bustling with collegiate creatives tonight when the venue hosts an artists’ reception for the biennial group exhibition of works by local art students. The artists were nominated by faculty from Eastern Washington University, Gonzaga University, North Idaho College, Spokane Falls Community College and Whitworth University. Exhibiting students include Madeline Hanson (EWU); Timothy III (EWU); Tayler Parkin (EWU); Celeste Hatfield (Gonzaga); Alex Lee (Gonzaga); Melina Palomba (Gonzaga); Sydney Croteau (NIC); Daniel Siemens (NIC); Brandon Johnson (SFCC); Olivia Reit (SFCC); Lydia Wallace (SFCC); Melissa Jones (Whitworth); Hannah Pomante (Whitworth); and Kathleen Smith (Whitworth). The closing reception for “Explorations XVI: Student Invitational” will run from 4 to 7 p.m., with an ekphrastic poetry reading at 6 p.m.
Just around the corner is Spokane’s Downtown Public Library, continuing its trend toward new and interesting First Friday happenings. The library will hold an open mic night co-hosted by local musicians Don Hawkins and Dirk Lind. The duo will focus discussion around the craft of songwriting followed by a live performance by Hawkins. First come, first serve on taking a turn at the mic. From 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 906 W. Main Ave.
Twin sisters Julie and Kristen Gautier-Downes are showing together again, this time at the Saranac Art Projects. Arriving in Spokane in 2015, Julie has made a name for herself mounting exhibitions all over town of her photography and her installations exploring painful places and moments of broken childhood nostalgia. Her sister Kristen, who works in the Women in Science and Engineering program at the University of Arizona, is an accomplished painter in her own right. The duo’s current show, “Forged by Fire: Natural Disasters in Painting and Sculpting,” looks to land another emotional wallop, perhaps inspired by the traumatic house fire they suffered as children. Delivering a double, double-whammy to Saranac Art Projects are local artists Mariah Boyle and Lisa Soranaka. Boyle will show drawings in large scale as the nature she depicts no doubt intended. Lisa Soranaka will bend minds with mixed media and ceramic sculptural forms. From 5 to 8 p.m. at 25 W. Main Ave.
Terrain Gallery will also feature two shows combined this month: “Midnight Sun” by painter Todd Mires and “Re-lationship” by Aleeta Renee Jones. Mires is known for his spare landscapes produced by rich layers. Jones will show a large scale mixed media sculpture exploring the theme of relationship: to self, others, and the environment. After nearly a decade since her last exhibit, it will be interesting to see what she has to say. From 5 to 8 p.m. at 304 W. Pacific Ave.
Head to Marmot Art Space for a party to celebrate the gallery’s fourth year of bringing quality art to Kendall Yards. Contemplate Jim Dhillon’s latest 15-foot abstraction while there. From 5 to 8 p.m. 1202 W. Summit Parkway.
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