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Lots Going On at Mena Art Gallery

BY BARBARA M. TOBIAS –

“Art Day” is on Tuesday—every Tuesday from about 11 am to 2 pm. You will find watercolorists working their magic on paper, pen, and ink, artists coming up with unbelievably detailed drawings, others creating with colored pencils, one or two making small sculptures with polymer clay. I like to drop by just to see what they are trying this week.

A photography club meets on the second Saturday of each month, helping each other to become even more skilled with their cameras. If you have been fortunate enough to see one of the gallery’s annual photography shows, you know they’re already pretty darned good.

A couple of Fridays a month, you will find a group of writers in the classroom honing their short stories, memoirs, poetry, plays, and novels. It’s fun just to sit in and get an idea about how your favorite writer might go about creating those books you enjoy so much.

The Fridays that are not devoted to writing find fiber artists working there: some are spinning, some weaving, some knitting, and almost any other skill that involves fiber.

One Saturday a month, an artist with lots of experience working with children shares her enthusiasm about art and helps those kids develop into tomorrow’s artists.

Once a month (at least through April), you can join a group of people watching a short DVD about the Impressionist period of art history. Afterward, you can join in a discussion to delve a little deeper into what you have just seen. This project is a joint endeavor with the Polk County Library.

Oh, yes, and there is always some fantastic art on the walls. Right now it is the stunning watercolors created by Susan Gibson; next up will be the annual Children’s art show. On average, there is a new show on the walls every month, and almost all of the work will be by artists from Arkansas. It is amazing how much talent is hidden in those Arkansas hills.

Once a month, one of the members of the gallery shares his or her expertise with the public as a preface to a very short business meeting. Yes, you can attend the art presentation and sneak out before the business stuff starts—or you would be welcome to stay and see what it takes to make all of this happen.

Drop by any time the gallery is open: Tuesdays, 11 to 2; Wednesdays through Saturdays, 10 to 3. If there is something in particular you want to know about, call 479-394-3880 to find out what is going on. Or, if there is something in particular you want to learn about, call and tell us that. We’ll see if we can find someone with the knowledge to teach about it.

And admission is always free.

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