The Grand Valley Arts Forum for artists which the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture sponsored at the Art Center on March 20, 2010 brought out 60 local artists and other participants and the discussion that ensued showed an overwhelming desire for more interaction among creative individuals (artists, performers, writers, other creative businesses) – networking opportunities, sharing ideas, building relationships, promoting individual art/creations/events and community creativeness. To a great extent the avenues to do this via the web already exist (and can be expanded) through the Arts Commission’s website – www.gjarts.org – and the Visitor & Convention Bureau’s website www.visitgrandjunction.com.
Secondly, there were many conversations about the desire for more activism, involvement, and advocacy by creative individuals (serving on community boards, attending non-arts related meetings, creating a task force to develop an arts district, promoting the arts together).
Thirdly, the group discussed the need to effectively and continually brand the Grand Valley as an arts destination to attract cultural tourists and arts buyers, and toward that end the need to do additional consumer research and then additional promotion (which ties back into the web-based individual promotion we can all do right away at gjarts.org and visitgrandjunction.com). The Grand Junction Visitor and Convention Bureau may be able to take the lead on this idea and work with artists and the Arts Commission, since branding the community to visitors is the VCB’s territory and expertise and they do it well.
The holidays are a magical time and in Grand Junction, Colorado that’s certainly true, especially with the ground still covered by the near record nine inch snowfall we had earlier in December. There are cultural events and activities everywhere, and plenty of places to find works of art for all types of gift-giving, from tiny handiwork to signature pieces.
Giving original artwork as a gift is easier than ever with many excellent paintings and pottery on display at The Art Center at 7th and Orchard, plus a huge array of items in the Center’s great gift shop, and several exhibits of smaller and very affordable works - at Hang-ups Gallery (2nd and Colorado), Frame Works & Gallery (3rd and Main), Off the Wall 2 (Main Street), Frame Depot (on Bogart Lane), The Great Frame-up (next to Albertsons on the Redlands), and The Blue Pig Gallery (in Palisade).
A wide assortment of outstanding and often inexpensive art is available and on display all over town in places other than stores - at the City Hall, Tiara Rado Golf Course clubhouse, Two Rivers Convention Center, in local restaurants and coffee shops, and Planet Wines on Main Street.
I’m sure that unique and interesting fine art is available in unlikely places - and likely places - all over the country, so support your local artists and buy art this holiday season! Treat yourself to something wonderful as well as one-of-a-kind!!
The Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture just presented the annual Champion of the Arts Awards to three outstanding local businesses and individuals: St. Mary’s Hospital & Medical Center, Pamela Blythe of Blythe Group + Co., and Krystyn Hartman (Grand Valley Magazine).
St. Mary’s Hospital was nominated by the Western Colorado Center for the Arts for their long-standing commitment to local and regional artists through the purchase and display of artists’ work for many years, and in particular their recent purchase of $375,000 in original and reproductive artwork by Colorado artists for the new Century Project.
Pamela Blythe, the designer behind much of St. Mary’s art collection including the Century Project, was nominated by the Western Colorado Center for the Arts and Christy Whitney, director of Hospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado for her 35 year career beautifying Grand Junction commercial buildings and always looking for ways to incorporate original and often local artwork into her projects.
And Krystyn Hartman and her publication Grand Valley Magazine were nominated by Deborah Snider, Mesa State College Assistant Professor of Art Education, for her contributions as executive director of the Grand Junction Musical Arts Association and the music scene and GV Magazine’s cultural arts focus. Congratulations to these three Champions!
Welcome to the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture’s brand new blog - which hasn’t gotten underway yet but I hope to have this up and running soon, so stay tuned! There’s so much outstanding and excellent art being done in our community - from visual to performing to literary - and we hope you will explore our website gjarts.org and find artists and art that interests you.