The Arts:Alive and well and living in Blaine

Published on Thu, Jul 19, 2001 by Jack Kintner

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The Arts:
Alive and well and living in Blaine

By Jack Kintner

The Blaine Open Studio held its inaugural celebration on Friday, July 13, as an estimated 600 enthusiastic art lovers jammed the new studio on Martin Street for an artists’ reception, complete with live music. Forty-six exhibitors showed 225 paintings and drew people from as far away as Calgary, Alberta, and southern Oregon.

“It was a good, good party,” said Delores Jordan, a prime mover in the effort to create a working space for local artists. “We were especially pleased at the number of children who were there, asking about classes and wanting to get involved,” adding that involving children is a primary focus of the Open Gallery.

To put together this remarkable evening takes courage, hope and a lot of hard work, all provided by Jordan and studio director Joanne Murphy. The two were quick to point out the contribution of those volunteers marshalled from among their family and friends. Throughout the warm evening the appreciative crowd circulated through the packed and noisy gallery, spilling out the front door and onto the sidewalk, chatting and listening to music provided by a quartet consisting of Roger Quiggle, piano, Kemper Righter, bass, Chuck Stanford, drums, and Weldon Richardson, flugelhorn.

The term, open studio, means that it’s intended to be a work space for anyone who needs it, and all that one must do to exhibit up to five pieces is to join the center, now open Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m until 5 p.m. “When artists work together they teach and encourage each other. It takes a lot of courage to paint something on a blank piece of paper and hang it on the wall,” Jordan said.

The studio is a project of the Drayton Harbor Art Center, which also sponsors weekly art classes on Mondays at the Unitarian Church.

The studio is located at 808 Martin Street in several connecting rooms on the ground floor of the Blaine Trade Center, and has been provided at no charge by the Kenneth L. Kellar Foundation. The ground-floor deli, opened for refreshments, was always full and bustling that evening, said Jordan. “We lost track of the actual number who attended, but we went through five cases of wine.”

Toward the end of the evening a Joe Mosher painting, “Hurricane Alert” was presented in recognition of Kellar’s on-going support of the Open Studio. His executive assistant Linda Summers accepted on his behalf.
Future events sponsored by the Drayton Harbor Arts Center include five-day cruises on Nick Bartlett’s Tahoma with artist and art teacher Alan Wylie. For more information contact Murphy at 332-8208 or Jordan at 332-7074. .