Yamhill County calendar: From tea to ‘Tightrope’

Gallery shows focus on glasswork, the Rogue River Wars, and tea service; Linfield hosts a one-night play reading; and a native son is coming to town

Yamhill County’s lively gallery scene continues to intrigue this week with a couple of new openings, and we’ve also got a one-night theatrical affair at Linfield Theatre. Finally: Have you read Nicholas Kristof’s new book? There’s still time before he comes to town.

Let’s get to it:

“Ancient Cedars at Fort Orford Site,” by Rich Bergeman. The U.S. Army fort housed more than 200 men and more than 1,000 Indigenous prisoners during the peak of the Rogue River Wars in 1855-56. Nothing of the fort remains.

CHEHALEM CULTURAL Center has several shows ready for your viewing pleasure. Hanging River, an installation of glasswork by Takahiro Yamamoto and Andy Paiko, occupies the Parrish Gallery, visible to visitors as they enter the Newberg center. You’ll marvel at both the glass pieces themselves and the exquisite care it must have taken to install them. In the Founder’s Gallery at the rear of the building is a collection of Fretta Cravens’ stunning botanical photography, titled Intimate Conversations.

Down the hall to the right is a new exhibit that’s been traveling around Oregon: Rich Bergeman’s collection of photographs documenting the landscape of the mid-19th-century Rogue River Wars of Southern Oregon. The Land Remembers is both an exhibit and a handsome book (available for sale). Bergeman used infrared light for the images, which are mostly void of any sign of human presence. “I felt that the haunting quality of infrared would help transport viewers to another time,” he writes in the introduction to his book. “And because the infrared spectrum is invisible to the human eye, it seemed especially appropriate for photographs that follow in the footsteps of ghosts.” The show runs through Feb. 28. Highly recommended.

Tea is the theme of a show by ceramicist Jonathan Steele in George Fox University’s Minthorne Gallery. Photo courtesy: George Fox University

A FEW BLOCKS AWAY at George Fox University, we find … tea! I haven’t seen this one yet, but it looks inviting: In the Service of Tea features ceramic work by Jonathan Steele in  the university’s Minthorne Gallery in the Hoover Academic Building. A reception for the show, which opened last week, will be from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27, in the gallery. Steele will perform a Chinese tea service at the free event. An artist’s talk follows from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Chehalem Cultural Center.

“Tea is a quiet joy – art is a fervid one,” Steele said of his exhibit in the press materials. “I make the tea to be still, to observe the present moment, to watch slowly unfurling leaves, feel the weight of the warm cup pressing against my fingertips, steam rising through my nostrils, the sweet, light astringency of the perfect steep welling on my tongue. I make the teapot, the cup, the tray and boat, the floral arrangement, the interior décor, the room and the house itself – all to the same end.”

Minthorne Gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. The show runs through Feb. 28.

Erin Leddy and Damon Kupper appear in a staged reading of “The Berlin Diaries” Jan. 27 at Linfield College. Photo by Owen Carey, courtesy of Linfield College.

LINFIELD COLLEGE THEATRE in McMinnville will offer a staged reading of The Berlin Diaries, by award-winning playwright Andrea Stolowitz. Sponsored by the Lacroute Arts Series and the theater department, this is a one-night-only affair in the Marshall Theater at 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27 — International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The performance is free and seating is first-come, first served. For more information call 503-883-2802 or visit the website.

YAMHILL COUNTY NATIVE Nicholas D. Kristof and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, will visit McMinnville early in February to discuss their new book, Tightrope: Americans Reaching for Hope. Both Third Street Books and the McMinnville Public Library have loads of copies available for those who want to read it before the authors’ Feb. 7 visit to the McMinnville Community Center. I’m reading it now. Plenty of deep reporting, but very personal: For much of the book, Kristof (a New York Times columnist) is writing about former classmates from the tiny town of Yamhill, situated just a few miles from where I write this.

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This story is supported in part by a grant from the Yamhill County Cultural Coalition, Oregon Cultural Trust, and Oregon Community Foundation.

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