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ArtsHound

Sniffing out what you shouldn’t miss in the arts this week

Purple pages: Storm Entertainment, a Portland-based comic and graphic novel company, has just released the comic book biography Tribute: Prince in honor of the late artist and his June 7 birthday. Michael Frizell wrote the 24-page comic and Ernesto Lovera and Vincenzo Sansone created the art. “His sound and lyrics defined the era for me in ways that Michael Jackson didn’t and, quite frankly, couldn’t,” Frizell says via press release. “The subjects of his songs spoke to me in ways I didn’t understand until I was older, but the dark poetry of them compelled me to keep listening.” Visit stormfrontpublishing.wordpress.com for details.

Local artist Charly Swing is spearheading a new visual arts effort, ArtCity Eugene, along with Oregon Arts Commission commissioner Libby Tower, painter Lillian Almeida, costume designer Jes Sokolowski and others.

The new organization, Swing says, spawned from the need for a studio community. The former chief preparator at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Swing recently returned to Eugene from a two-year stint at the New York Academy of Art, where she received a masters in fine art.

“When I came back I was like, ‘Where are the artists?’” she recalls. In New York, “artists actually have a place to go to work. They have warehouses there. We’re all isolated here.”

Swing wants to help form an arts district like that here, where artists can collaborate — she calls it “fire pits of energy.”

To get artists together, ArtCity Eugene has started hosting “Drink & Draw” events every third Monday at Sam Bond’s Brewery, 540 E. 8th Ave. The next session is 6 to 9 pm Monday, June 20; SLUG Queens will be the models. 

The next step is finding space, which Swing says has been challenging. “In our search for space, we found that it’s hard to find largely because of the marijuana industry,” she says. “We didn’t realize how that was going to effect our ability to find large spaces. Warehouses are great for artists and great for marijuana.”

Regardless, ArtCity is beginning to plan exhibits for late summer. “The ultimate goal is to get the artists together,” Swing says. For more info, visit artcityeugene.org.