A week from Friday, downtown art galleries will hold the first 2nd Friday Art Night for trolley-riding gallery-goers. The River Rail will offer rides to seven galleries in the River Market and its rubber-wheeled cousin will ferry folks to Oval Art Gallery at Capitol and Louisiana. The inaugural Art Night will run from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. March 11; each venue will offer light refreshments to shoppers and art lovers.
Participating shops, as the trolley travels, include:
Amy Howard Richmond Fine Art Gallery, 201 E. Markham St.: Richmond represents Arkansas artists Arden Boyce, Virginia McKimmey, Robyn Horn, Mark Blaney, Michael Warrick and others, as well as large selection of contemporary blown glass pieces.
River Market Artspace, 301 President Clinton Ave.: The gallery offers work in all media, currently including watercolors by Selma Blackburn, sculpture by Colin Heath and John Eric Richardson, paintings by Sherna Cockrill and works in wood, glass and jewelry. Singer Maria Preston will entertain.
AfrJaMex, 305 President Clinton Ave.: Artisanal work from Africa, Jamaica and Mexico, including carved wood, dolls, pottery, jewelry and more, are offered here; Art Night will feature 10 percent to 15 percent discounts.
Hearne Fine Art, 500 President Clinton Ave.: Dean Mitchell, the nationally known watercolorist whose exhibit, “From the Palette,” is currently on view here, will be the guest of honor of a reception at 5:30 p.m. on Art Night.
Clinton Museum Store, 610 President Clinton Ave.: Political memorabilia as well as books, games, music and national and international artwork, including new posters of Todd Crockett’s portrait of the former president, are on tap.
Cox Creative Center, 120 Commerce St.: Art Night will feature a sneak preview of an exhibit opening March 12, “A Century Apart,” photographs by turn of the century photographer Harry Miller and contemporary photographer Laura Harden.
Historic Arkansas Museum, 200 E. Third St.: Current exhibits include paintings by contemporary artist Darrell Loy Scott, “Books and Papers” (writings about Arkansas), a Smithsonian Institute traveling exhibit on the Maroon cultures in the Americas, and Arkansas-made furniture and fine art.
Oval Art Gallery, 201 W. Capitol: Accessible on Art Night by rubber trolley, Oval is currently showing “Illumination,” an exhibit of work inspired by or using light, as well as photographs by John Watson and works by Oval artists Gary Bolyer, Lisa Claas, Debbie Carl Freeman, Pat Hames, Judy Henderson, Charlie James, Tonya McNair, Liz Stephano and Rob Wellborn.
Friday night, March 4, Hot Springs galleries along Central Avenue and nearby will be open late for the city’s monthly Gallery Walk, which has for years done, and done well, what Little Rock’s downtown galleries will try to do the following week: Get people out to enjoy, and maybe buy, fine art. Artists working in a variety of media will be showcased, including Lynette Cox (abstract paintings, Gallery Central), Wendeline Matson (figurative paintings, Blue Mood Gallery), Millie Steveken (watercolors, Fine Arts Center) and Marilyn Andrews (ceramics, Taylor’s Contemporanea). A full listing is available in the calendar under Galleries.
Cantrell Gallery reopens after a remodeling with “Up On the Roof,” abstract works on tarpaper by Rhonda Hicks of El Dorado. Hicks is a self-taught artist who, according to a press release, has had a “lifelong fascination for all types of black paper.” The show opens with a reception from 6 p.m to 8 p.m. Friday, March 4. For more information, call the gallery at 224-1335.
Doodles for food: That’s what the Ozark Food Bank at Rogers has in mind for its first Doodle Art Auction, to be held at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, March 12, at the Embassy Suites in Rogers. Among the items to be auctioned: A doodle of a football play by Houston Nutt; self-portraits by Jay Leno, Rosanna Arquette, Sally Field and Kirk Douglas (a real artist, it turns out); and a poem signed by Maya Angelou. More than 80 drawings and autographed photos will be sold to benefit the Food Bank’s work to distribute food to more than 100 agencies serving 90,000 people in Northwest Arkansas.
Tickets are $35 and include dinner, beer and wine. Dick Trammel of Arvest Bank will emcee.
For more information, call Catherine Fletcher at 479-872-8774, ext. 204, or e-mail her at cfletcher@ozarkfoodbank.org.