First Friday ArtWalk opens 2014 with bright colors and natural themes. Hosted by arts writer and photographer Bob Keefer, the walk starts at 5:30 pm at The New Zone Gallery, which is hosting Natural Connections featuring the mixed-media art of David Race and Kathleen Howard Piper. Then to Urban Lumber for Wood Turnings Inspired by Nature, with the exquisite wooden bowls and plates of Tom Borener from Muse Woodcraft. The next stop is EW’s top pick: Do not miss the acrylic and oil paintings of Philomath-based artist Carolee Clark at Out On A Limb. Her canvases mix the spirit of mid-century travel posters (think Pacific Northwest by way of the French Riviera) with the palette of the turn-of-the-19th-century Fauves done in stylized lines all her own. Off the beaten trail, see the Small Beauty exhibit with works by Sarah Sedwick at The Gallery at the Watershed, which is also hosting its annual Itty Bitty Show; all art will be no larger than 6 inches by 6 inches. Head back to Broadway for DIVA in Film at the Downtown Initiative for the Visual Arts, featuring original and printed movie posters including the work of local printmasters Blunt Graffix.
Granting wishes: In December, the Oregon Arts Commission awarded more than $280,000 for eight “World of Work” projects. According to OAC, the World of Work program (funded by House Bill 3232) is “designed to expose underserved students in grades six through 12 to arts-related industries.” Of the eight grants, Eugene received two. Lane Arts Council received $22,000 for its Arts Apprentice Program, which connects students, in grades six to eight, with artists and arts orgs. The OAC awarded the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art $27,325 for its ArtWorks internships, for “students grades nine-12 providing instruction in arts education, working collaboratively with museum educators and curators and assisting with teaching art lessons for younger students.”