Thursday, May 29, 2008
Explore local original art expressions in every media.

Considering the relatively small size of Eureka Springs, this city has a wonderful number and variety of galleries.

Even if you never buy a thing, touring the galleries of Eureka Springs will provide visitors with many hours of pleasure. But we have a hunch that if you give yourself a chance, a one-of-a-kind artwork will speak to you.

Eureka Springs has earned recognition as an artists' colony for decades. Is it something in the water, or in the air? The creativity comes from somewhere, and so many talented artists reinforce each other here.

Where else would you find a display like The Artery, a revolving installation of 4'x8' panels. This open-air gallery, located just off North Main, continues to reinvent itself with new themes and new panels. Around town, you can still see some of the panels which have been on display at the Artery. They are instantly recognizable, not just because of their size, but their energy.

The art of Eureka Springs encompasses styles from primitive to post-modern, and includes every medium imaginable. So whether your tastes run to painting, fabrics, bronze, glass, or just about any other medium, you can find it here, and find it done well.

Although galleries can be found throughout the town, a group of them band together in an event called the Second Saturday Gallery Stroll. From April to December the group of galleries host special evenings from 6-9 p.m. Make plans to tour these galleries and enjoy refreshments, special exhibits, and even appearances by working artists. Most of the galleries participating in the Stroll are located along Spring Street, but be sure to check the full list for a memorable experience.

A lot of artistic energy has focused on North Main Street in recent years. EureKan Art, at 150 North Main, has emerged as a treasure trove of quality pieces, bringing together the work of several important local artists. Just a little farther out on North Main, the Art Colony is a bold experiment in providing visitors with an opportunity to watch artists at work. Be sure to take some time in this part of town.

Find treasures and trinkets to feed your soul at Eureka Springs' art galleries.

Oh, but don't forget White Street, or Eureka Springs West, or U.S. Highway 62, or any of the other areas of town which support the artistic spirit. No matter how talented the artists, they need patrons to complete the circle of creation, and you need a souvenir you can enjoy for years as a reminder of your visit to Eureka Springs.

* The Al Hooks Signature Gallery -- A fresh perspective is offered in the work of photo artist Al Hooks. With the gallery's opening last May, the artist has tucked himself into the vibrant downtown scene, filling the gallery with unique works shot in Eureka Springs as well as photos taken in trips back to the Gulf Coast -- Hooks' home until Katrina drove him inland.

"Life after Katrina was an opportunity to start anew," Hooks said of making his way to Eureka Springs. For someone who grew up in the French Quarter of New Orleans, the eclectic, colorful and artistic town fits his own personality like a glove. 7 Center St.

* The Art Colony -- A cure for "Been There, Done That." This wondrous hub of imagination is simmering and popping with ideas being born. A group of nine buildings house the studio-galleries of a varied assortment of off-beat, laughing, creative artists. Join us for our Art Fair every Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Situated in an idyllic outdoor Ozark setting in Mill Hollow at North Main Street, The Art Colony boasts sweeping iron architectural accents that dazzle the eye. This 'village' was conceived by sculptural artist J.D. Harris and his wife Cathy to provide studio space where artists come together to create a contagious, collective energy shared by everyone. Awaken your senses and refresh your spirit at 185 North Main Street next to Cafe Santa Fe. Free parking behind The Art Colony.

* Eureka Fine Art Company -- is the largest and best established art venue. You will find a wide variety of work by the finest local and regional artists, as well as a selection of work by artists from outside the area. Originals, giclees, and fine art reproductions are available in every conceivable size and price range, making it possible for everyone, from the serious collector to the tourist looking for the perfect memento of Eureka Springs, to carry home a piece of fine art. Many are already beautifully framed. Custom framing is also available. 78 Spring St.

* EureKan Art Studio & Shop -- features fine art and crafts by local and regional artists. More than 90 artists are represented in an eclectic mix of media -- oil, water and acrylic paintings, art glass, pottery, contemporary sculpture, photography wood boxes. 150 N. Main St.

* Gryphon's Roost Gallery -- hits contemporary art on many different levels, from vibrant and fun to subtle and profound. The gallery features atmospheric light boxes from Spain, pewter, pottery and jewelry created with semi-precious gems from all over the world, friendly personal service, French soaps, organic essential oils and floral waters, candles and inspirational notecards. 137 Spring St.

* Iris at the Basin Park -- offers art lovers an eclectic range of art and fine crafts, showcasing the fine works of many local, regional and national artists. Fine jewelry, hand-thrown pottery, art glass, contemporary metal sculpture. 8 Spring St.

* Paradise Pottery -- Visit artists Laura Waters and Jim Wallace in their working studio showroom where the couple create wheel-thrown, wood-fired stoneware that ranges from dinnerware to large jardinieres and outdoor water features. Located 1/4 mile off US62W on Blue Spring Rd.

* The Peacock Studio & Gallery -- Carol Saari and Carol Peacock, award winning local artists, are collaborating on the business of art at the Peacock Studio & Gallery. The two Carols have shared studio space before and have mutual respect and admiration for each others' work. The Peacock Studio & Gallery, located at 1 BasinSprings Avenue in downtown Eureka Springs, has hosted exhibitions for the internationally famed James Yale, nationally known artist Jack Miller, and of course, Carol Peacock. Business hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday through Sunday.

* Sacred Earth Gallery -- is one of Eureka Springs' newest galleries at 28 Spring St. in the heart of the historic district. The gallery features the fine-art landscape photography of Edward C. Robison III. Edward's photography expresses the natural beauty of the Midwest from the Ozarks to the Rocky Mountains. He wishes to inspire people to connect to the spirit of the land through his photography. The gallery also displays the mixed media paintings by Edward's wife, Janalee Robison, and photographs by his son Ethan.

* Serendipity at the Crescent -- Add a bit of the arts to your visit to the Crescent Hotel. While browsing through the collection of glass, pottery and wall art or picking out a favorite piece of handmade jewelry, be sure to let your eyes wander up to the collection of moons painted on the ceiling of the Bella Luna Room. 75 Prospect Ave.

* Wilson & Wilson Folk Art Co. -- features original paintings by folk artists Blakeley and Sylvia Wilson, hand-painted furnishings, limited edition prints and primitives. Blakeley's designs are now available in a full decorator line. Located in the Flat Iron building. 23 Spring St.

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