The popular event is back for its fourth annual year, including the Mayor’s Art Show
City of Eugene Cultural Services, Lane Arts Council and Maude Kerns Art Center have partnered once again to host the fourth annual Visual Arts Week from Aug. 5-12 at various locations in downtown Eugene.
Visual Arts Week celebrates the visual arts and provides a platform for experimentation, creativity and dialogue. This year’s offerings include a mix of in-person and virtual experiences for participation at all levels, including the return of the popular Mayor’s Art Show.
The Mayor’s Art Show celebrates local artists and art production by recognizing the accomplishments of those who are committed to enriching their communities through visual arts. The juried show is intended to cultivate diversity, equity and access to the visual arts in Eugene. Works by 46 artists are included in this year’s show, and a virtual gallery will also be available online, allowing users to vote for their favorite entry for the People’s Choice Award. Other awards will be granted for categories of Mayor’s Choice, Juror’s Choice and Curator’s Choice, each with a $500 prize for the winning artists. MAS will be on display on the second floor of the downtown Eugene Public Library from Aug. 5-Sept. 5.
During Visual Arts Week, New Zone Gallery will host Salon des Refusés to feature artists who were not accepted into MAS, and the Eugene Biennial returns to the Karin Clarke Gallery to showcase works by emerging artists in our region. Several other galleries in downtown Eugene will also hold special exhibits during this time, including White Lotus Gallery, Art with Alejandro, ArtCity Studios and Karin Clarke at the Gordon. In addition, Maude Kerns Art Center is offering a series of creative workshops, both in-person and online, to cater to artistic education and participation at all levels.
An eclectic variety of new public art installations can be found throughout the city at this time. Adults and kids alike will enjoy “Multiplicity,” Cari Ingrassi’s interactive building block installation at the 5th Street Market Alley (only on display Aug. 5). Jud Turner’s new sculpture, “Naseem, the Great Blue Heron,” and Matthew Olmo’s audio exhibit, “Whilamut (Decolonized River),” will both be accessible at the new Downtown Riverfront Park. Visitors to the Farmers Market Pavilion can see Erin Langley’s paper sculpture, “Big One,” as well as Jean Bradbury’s new mural, “Centuries of Harvest.” A new Windowfront Exhibition on the north side of the downtown library, titled “StoryHelix,” offers users an interactive experience of listening to stories about the theme of belonging. Many other Windowfront Exhibitions and iconic city murals can also be viewed on self-guided tours.
Community members can enjoy these unique free events throughout the week:
- 5:30-8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5 at Farmers Market Pavilion and Plaza: Visual Arts Week and MAS officially begin with a kickoff celebration at the Lane Arts Council’s First Friday Artwalk. Start your evening at the new Farmers Market Pavilion for opening remarks, awards, an artist marketplace, musical performances, a virtual reality experience and entertainment by Lane Arts Council Artist Grant recipients.
- 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5 at Farmers Market Pavilion and Plaza: Join us for an Artist Highlight with Michael Boonstra as he speaks about the creation of Willamette River Contours, a new public art piece recently installed in the brand-new Farmers Market Pavilion. Learn more about the initial call and design, the installation process and how the art changed over time.
- 5:30-7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10 at WildCraft Cider Works: The Muralist Meet and Greet offers an opportunity for community members to connect with some of Eugene’s most prolific muralists, including Esteban Camacho Steffensen, Jessilyn Brinkerhoff, Kari Johnson and Ila Rose. Learn about the artists’ methods and engage in discussions about some of their iconic public art projects. Sponsored by WildCraft Cider Works and Oregon Cultural Trust.
- Various times, online: Tune in for a series of livestream happy hours to learn more about Lane Arts Council’s 2021-22 Artist Grant recipients.
More information, including a walking map and a complete listing of installations, events and participating galleries, can be found online at eugene-or.gov/vaw.
Visual Arts Week is sponsored by Lane Arts Council, Maude Kerns Art Center and the City of Eugene Cultural Services division. Cultural Services provides year-around programming to promote public art and cultural events throughout Eugene. The team utilizes responsible and catalytic leadership to support the public’s vision for a thriving arts and cultural sector that contributes to the community’s social and economic well-being.