Falling for wine country arts

Yamhill County kicks into fall with a bevy of gallery shows, a four-night festival of ancient Greek drama, an unsolved mystery, and more

It’s time to roll out the phrase we’ve all been waiting for: Fall Arts Season. In Yamhill County, it’s clearly arrived, it’s busy, and there’s a lot to get through. New visual art exhibitions, live theater, a lecture, live music and an author reading. And that’s all before we even get to the Art Harvest Studio Tour the first week of October. For a preview of that 2-weekend art celebration, be sure to drop by the free show at the Chehalem Cultural Center, where the work of all this year’s artists is on display.

Here’s the balance of September for you, taking it in chronological order, starting with exhibits that opened earlier this month.

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One of 50 woven fabric drawings by Deb Perry-Guetti in a new exhibit at
the Marilyn Affolter Fine Art Gallery in McMinnville.

MARILYN AFFOLTER GALLERY: For the last two years, Deb Perry-Guetti has worked on a series of 50 woven fabric drawings that explore “our interconnectedness and the beauty in our flaws.” The pen and ink drawings are rendered on Kitakata rice paper and suspended in custom frames by clothespins, allowing the light to embrace the organic fragility of the paper.

You’ll find Perry-Guetti’s series, Every Line Breathes, on display at the Marilyn Affolter Gallery in downtown McMinnville through Sept. 28. I asked the artist about the origin of the series, which she is supporting in part through a Kickstarter campaign, and here’s what she had to say:

“I had been drawing fiber for awhile when I found myself in London walking through Agnes Martin’s retrospective,” she said. “Her lifetime of striving for the perfect grid led me to a deeper understanding of why I had been working in a grid format for over a decade. I was filled with emotion at the beauty of her art, the similarities in our artistic journey and the culmination of her life’s work, and I sat down in the Tate and cried for a while, staring at one of her paintings.

“When I left, I was filled with a renewed dedication to continue with my fiber series, not in search of the perfect grid, but of something quite different: the beautiful imperfect grid.  My journey lay in the weave that binds us together and the flaws we share.  Where Agnes Martin spent years striving for perfection, I could not wait to return home and explore the wrinkles and the snags.  It is within these wrinkles that I think the wonder of human interactions exists.

“I grew up during desegregation, have traveled to several continents, worked in international trade and now spend my days with international students.  I have friends from various socio-economic backgrounds, gender identities and religious affiliations.  I have friends that look like me and friends that don’t.  One thing I have learned is that it is our differences as much as our similarities that enrich our lives.”

A reception for Perry-Guetti will be held 4-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20 for McMinnville’s Art & Wine Walk.

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GALLERY AT TEN OAKS: I’ve never been to this McMinnville gallery and not found something enchanting or mysterious to linger over. Work by more than 40 artists is available here, and the featured artists for September and October are local painter Terry Peasley and digital photographer Fred Hartson. You’ll find them at 801 SW Baker Street (which may show up on your map app as Highway 99W) and hours are Tuesday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

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Mary Volm, Oasis, 2019, kiln-formed glass, 13 x 18 inches.

MCMINNVILLE CENTER FOR THE ARTS: MECA opened earlier this year, making it the newest gallery on the local arts scene, and it’s always worth exploring. This month’s featured artists are Carlton’s Mary Volm, who works in kiln-formed glass, photography, monotypes, acrylic painting and collage, and Portland watercolorist Kate Nilan, who produces images that look like photographs. Find them at 636 NE Baker Street (Highway 99W) on Thursday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Also open by appointment.

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THREE EXHIBITIONS, ONE BIG BUILDING: The Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg had a busy Monday, installing three new exhibitions that open Tuesday, Sept. 17. I’ll have plenty more to say in the coming weeks about all three, but for now know that the exhibitions Finn Builds a Galaxy, Cosmos Marinas and Roko-Mute City are all open and free to the public. You’ll find them at 415 East Sheridan Street just north of the Newberg city library. Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.

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Carlos Barberena, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse – After Dürer, linocut. Barberena’s work is at the Minthorne Gallery at George Fox University in Newberg.

GEORGE FOX UNIVERSITY: I haven’t seen the show yet, but a quick peek at Chicago-based printmaker Carlos Barberena’s resume makes clear that his Graphic Resistance exhibit of relief prints at George Fox University’s Minthorne Gallery is a must-see.  Barberena, a native of Nicaragua who runs two printmaking projects (Bandolero Press and La Calaca Press) is known for incorporating images from pop culture in addition to those depicting political and cultural tragedies. He has exhibited in Costa Rica, Estonia, France, Mexico, Nicaragua, Spain and the U.S. His work will be on display at the private Christian school’s Roger and Mildred Minthorne Gallery in the Hoover Academic Building. Hours 9 a.m.-5 p.m., through Oct. 25.

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LIVE MUSIC IN NEWBERG: The Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg will kick off the monthly Boxed Show Series of live music on Friday, Sept. 20, with Opera on Tap Portland. Single tickets for $15, available here.

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Students at Linfield College in McMinnville preparing the set for an evening of classic Greek plays this fall. Photo courtesy Linfield College Theater

GREEKFEST AT LINFIELD COLLEGE: What better way to kick off a private college’s 100th theater season than to mount not one, not two, but three Greek plays, all staged on one night? Three adaptations from the Golden Age of Greek drama will be staged, including: The Trojan Women, adapted and directed by Lindsey Mantoan; The Eumenides, which is the final play in Aeschylus’ trilogy The Oresteia, adapted and directed by Janet Gupton; and finally, adjunct professor Douglas Soderberg and recent Linfield graduate Melory Mirashrafi’s presentation of Aristophanes’ “sex-strike” comedy Lysistrata, appropriately updated and set in Afghanistan. So you’ve got war, justice, matricide, gender, social protest and power. The Trojan Women begins in the Marshall Theater but then moves outdoors, The Eumenides is entirely in the Marshall, and Lysistrata will be held outdoors in the courtyard of Ford Hall, so dress appropriately for the weather. Each “act” runs 45-60 minutes. GreekFest runs Sept. 20-22. Tickets may be purchased online. And while we’re talking Linfield Theater, it’s worth noting that in November it’ll mount Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play Sweat, with guest director Adleane Hunter. I saw the 2015 premiere at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. It’s an extraordinary play, and possibly the only one I’ve seen there where the final, beautiful line of dialogue still lingers in mind.

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TALKING OKLAHOMA! AND HAMILTON: Lindsey Mantoan, who teaches theater at Linfield College, will present a lecture titled Reimagining Early American History: The Casting Practices of Hamilton and OSF’s Oklahoma! at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, in Riley Hall on the McMinnville campus. “Both productions make visible people who have been erased by the dominant histories of early Americans, including people of color and queer people,” a press statement states. “By replacing the white bodies of the founding fathers and the white characters in the most iconic American musical with actors of color, these productions argue that the United States has always been a place of rich diversity.” The lecture is free and open to the public.

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UNSOLVED MYSTERY: I am not a fan of true crime, but I didn’t have to get very far into Portland writer J.B. Fisher’s new book Echo of Distant Water: The 1958 Disappearance of Portland’s Martin Family before I was hooked. I’ll have a feature next week based on reading the book and corresponding with Fisher. But for now, mark your calendar: He’ll read and take questions on Thursday, Sept. 26 at Third Street Books in McMinnville. It’s an absorbing, confounding tale; don’t miss this chance to hear about it from a guy who spent six years investigating it.

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ARTS JOURNAL: On Saturday I attended the opening of an ambitious new exhibit at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in Salem on the Willamette University campus: What Needs To Be Said: Hallie Ford Fellows in the Visual Arts. Will report in depth in the coming weeks. Also: Read Sweat in anticipation of seeing it in November, and listened to Cappella Romana’s 2012 album Angelic Light: Music From Eastern Cathedrals for no other reason than that their music is beautiful. 

2 Responses.

  1. Beth Rankin says:

    I help organize the McMinnville Recycled Arts Festival. We’re forming up our date (in April near Earth Day). Can I submit a calendar event for it?

  2. Bob Hicks says:

    Hi Beth, yes. You can send information to: yamhill@orartswatch.org. All of our contact information is listed under “CONTACT” at the top of the ArtsWatch home page.

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