Scene and Heard

Abundance of talent at Springfield art walk

“Opal” by Uyen-Thi Nguyen, watercolor.

‘Lady Marigold” by Trish Krambeal, Black light interactive art.

“Sacrificial Lambs” by Ellen Furstner, mixed media.

Jean Scobie’s acrylic and ink outdoor scenes.

Warmer weather, convenient transportation, an anniversary celebration, and more business participation increased attendance during the Springfield Second Friday Art Walk. With the shuttle service ferrying art enthusiasts from the Emerald Art Center to Willamalane Adult Activity Center and back, people easily traveled between the two biggest art hubs.

At the Island Park Art Gallery reception, Steven Reiser played piano. He is well-known locally for playing inside PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at Riverbend hospital twice a week as well as various other locations in the community. 

During the month of June, Ellen Gabehart’s students will be showing their art at Willamalane’s Adult Activity Center. A talented watercolor artist in her own right, Gabehart is showcased at The Center of Spiritual Living in Eugene until August 29 and will be the featured artist at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Eugene until June 29.

A lifelong artist since the age of four, Gabehart received her first art training at High School of Music & Art and the Art Student’s League of New York. Gabehart says that over time, the creation of art has become more meaningful for her. “I become emotionally involved with my subjects and seek to extract its spiritual nature, color, design, and movement. For me where there is life, there is art, where there is art, there is life.”

Gabehart just finished up spring classes. For the summer, she will be teaching “en plein air,” the French term for painting outdoors. Gabehart has taught classes all over Oregon, though her current classes are at Willamalane’s Adult Activity Center.

 In the Island Park exhibit, Gabehart expressed the desire for students to find “their own voices” and “their individual style.” She starts students with a foundation of drawing and painting techniques and compositional elements. From there, students added materials such as watercolors, acrylics, pen and ink, or pastels. Artwork in the exhibit included close-ups, distance, figures, architecture, and natural elements such as flowers and landscapes.

 Tucked away in the back corners were treasures that art lovers don’t want to miss such as Maureen Laughlin’s impressive watercolors and Jean Scobie’s detailed acrylic and ink scenes of the outdoors.

 A short shuttle ride over to the other hub of the art walk, the Emerald Art Center celebrated its 20th anniversary. The Dorian May Trio played a selection of Jazz and Latin Jazz at the reception. 

 One of the highlights in the June show at EAC featured the art of Uyen-Thi Nguyen in the exhibit, “Garden of People, A Portrait of Cottage Grove.” The detailed paintings capture light and shadow, color, and texture in masterfully balanced compositions. Each piece captures the subject’s personality and character in a way that brings them to life.

Also featured at EAC is “ABUNDANCE” by Patti McNutt, a collection of still-life work painted “en plein air” in the Eugene-Springfield area. Mia Furstner’s “Retrospective of a Creative Life” showcases decades of paintings based on photographs of her world travels – as well as local ones. Trish Krambeal is displaying interactive black light acrylic pour paintings.

As always, there is an abundance of local talent displayed in the EAC. Board member Al Dobra was enthusiastic to discuss the increasing attendance and membership in 2022. Since January 2021, attendance has more than doubled. Says Dobra, for many members, this is the first art show they have ever had. “The delight we see on their faces and pride we see is incredible.”

He is quick to point out that EAC is more than a gallery. They host events like open studios and classes like the youth summer camp with scholarships available for low-income families. As a nonprofit, they rely on community members and volunteers in order to run.

Other notable art and music that was part of the art walk included Linda Devenow’s infrared photography at the City Hall Gallery. Outside the library, Deer and Antelope Band played music. Other attractions included the Springfield History Museum, Neu Real Estate, Hearts for Hospice, Remember the Moon, Hap-Hazard Creativity, Festival Boutique, and the Mercantile.