Olalla Center

Coast calendar: Cultural Festival, mosaic art, writing contest

The Olalla Center's event and a Chessman gallery tour are virtual, but Siletz Bay Music Festival is hoping to welcome live audiences next summer

Despite surging COVID numbers in some coastal communities — Lincoln County could be moving into the extreme-risk category — people continue to find ways to keep the arts alive.

The Olalla Center is hoping to spread some cheer with a virtual Cultural Festival to be aired 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12.

“We want to highlight some of the local artists, but also it is about going into the community to have a break from all that is going on, give them a little entertainment to enjoy for a little while,” said Alex LLumiquinga, outreach program coordinator for the center.

Huehca Omeyocan is among the groups that will participate in the Olalla Center's Cultural Festival.
Huehca Omeyocan is among performers scheduled for the Olalla Center’s Cultural Festival.

The lineup includes music, dance, food, history, and art from El Salvador, Guatemala, Ireland, Mexico, Ecuador, and Oregon. The OSU Extension Service will make a presentation before the fiesta at 5:30 p.m.

The fest will be prerecorded and broadcast through the Lincoln City Cultural Center Facebook and YouTube channels.

“Our lives have changed so much in the past few months, we miss the ones that have left us, we remember them, we think about them, and we want to dedicate this event to them because they are still here in our hearts,” said LLumiquinga.

There is no charge for the event, but donations are welcome and will be shared between the Lincoln County Cultural Center and Olalla Center. The Toledo-based nonprofit provides mental health treatment and services for children and their families in Lincoln County.

“Activate the Midline” by Lynn Adamo is among mosaic work featured in a show in the Lincoln City Cultural Center. Adamo will walk viewers through a virtual tour of the exhibit.
Mosaic work including “Activate the Midline” by Lynn Adamo is featured in a show in the Lincoln City Cultural Center. Adamo will walk viewers through a virtual tour of the exhibit.

THE PJ CHESSMAN GALLERY in the Lincoln City Cultural Center is hosting a live virtual gallery tour of the latest exhibit, Tradition, Transgression, Transformation. The exhibit showcases mosaic artists from Oregon and Washington “who seek new paths to meaning as they absorb, reinterpret, and reinvent the mosaic tradition.” The virtual galley tour will be posted at 4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11, on the center’s Facebook page and will be available for viewing any time after. Gallery Director Krista Eddy and mosaic artists Joanne Daschel and Lynn Adamo will walk visitors through the exhibit.

The exhibit will be on display Thursdays through Sundays through Jan. 3 and by appointment. Masks and social distancing are required in the building.

SILETZ BAY MUSIC FESTIVAL is moving forward for 2021, with plans for nine events from June 26 through July 4, including appearances by Ken Peplowski, award-winning jazz clarinetist and tenor saxophonist. But the festival needs to raise money.

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Coast calendar: Long-lost drawings and celebrating the nude

A fundraiser auctions a Rick Bartow sketch, the 14th annual "Au Naturel" show opens in Astoria, plus play and author readings, and cranky old men in Cannon Beach

Newport artist Rick Bartow died nearly four years ago, but his work is the gift that keeps giving, in some cases, surprisingly so. Last year, staff at the Olalla Center, a nonprofit in Toledo that provides mental health care for children, set out to do some spring cleaning. In the process, they discovered seven line drawings by Bartow stashed away and gathering dust.

They’ve set aside one of those drawings to be auctioned off at a Valentine’s Day fundraiser, Sea of Love, at the Oregon Coast Aquarium. The framed drawing will be revealed the evening of the auction.

A Rick Bartow sketch similar to these, found in storage at the Olalla Center, will be auctioned during a Valentine’s Day fundraiser. Bartow created the drawings as part of an Earth Day exercise for children.

“We were literally clearing out a storage room of old games and toys and random items, sort of typical rummage sale items, and we found Rick’s pieces all at once,” said Diane Teem, executive director at the center. “We were so happy to find them. It was like a treasure. Our staff had changed since they were created, and we didn’t realize they existed. I don’t know how they came to be in storage, but we’re super happy we discovered them and can now honor Rick’s memory and contribution to the children of the Olalla Center. Rick was all about the children.”

The pieces, which Bartow called “eco art,” were created in 2010 as an Earth Day classroom exercise Bartow participated in. The drawing to be auctioned is 2.5 feet wide by 2 feet tall, framed in metal and signed. Teem is working to have the artwork appraised.

The other drawings have the children’s names on them, and on the back, a bio and picture of Bartow along with an Earth Day poem and the answers to a classroom assignment.

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Vision 2020: Rachel Barreras-Kleemann

The Newport dance teacher says her goals are small: “To keep kids motivated to dance and to help kids that are lower income have a place they can go”

Editor’s note: This story begins a series of twenty interviews in twenty days with arts and cultural figures around Oregon, creating a group portrait of the state of the arts in the state. It looks at where we’ve been, where we are, and what might or should happen culturally in the 2020s.

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Rachel Barreras-Kleemann grew up in Newport and began studying dance at the age of 11. After moving to  Portland for college, she grew interested in African-American and Afro-Brazilian dance, and signed on with the marching samba ensemble Lions of Batucada. She later moved to Brazil, where she pursued a technical degree in dance.


VISION 2020: TWENTY VIEWS ON OREGON ARTS


Barreras-Kleemann, who is of Mexican and Native American descent, left the South American country after being mugged numerous times and realizing she had become frightened of the children who roved in gangs. “I thought, I want to be able to go home and help the kids I see, not fear them,” Barreras-Kleemann said. The mother of a baby girl, Barreras-Kleemann teaches dance to children and adults, many of whom are minorities and of low income.

Rachel Barreras-Kleemann says she wants to bring joy and encouragement to people who are fearful of doing arts. “People are tentative about celebrating themselves and about feeling good… I want to remind people it is good to feel joy and it’s still OK to be happy, even in these times that we’re living in.”
Rachel Barreras-Kleemann says she wants to bring joy and encouragement to people who are fearful of doing arts. “People are tentative about celebrating themselves and about feeling good… I want to remind people it is good to feel joy and it’s still OK to be happy, even in these times that we’re living in.”

What, good or bad, has had the biggest impact on arts and culture in your area in the past few years?

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