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Oregon Fringe Festival Announces 2022 Festival Dates!

The Oregon Fringe Festival Announces 2022 Festival Dates!


Mark your calendars! The Oregon Fringe Festival is thrilled to announce that next year’s festival will take place Wednesday, April 27 – Sunday, May 1, 2022.

After a long break from gathering in person to enjoy live performances, the Oregon Fringe Festival is excited to reintroduce live programming while continuing to offer online programming for festival-goers around. Last year, over 40 artists ranging from students to local artists, and even national/international artists participated, providing viewers with over 50 opportunities to engage and interact. As curating and planning begin to take place, the Oregon Fringe Festival is confident in being able to provide similar programming, if not more, for 2022.

“This year’s festival will be special in that we are able to provide content to our local community again that has always enjoyed our live performances, in addition to our not so local community that really flourished as a result of going mostly online last year. Especially for artists, this will be great in providing more accessibility when it comes to locating a platform to present their creative work,’ Paige Gerhard, Director of the Oregon Fringe Festival explains.

While applications to present at the festival haven’t been released quite yet, updates and more information can be found at oregonfringefestival.org.


About the Oregon Fringe Festival:


Each spring, the Oregon Center for the Arts produces the Oregon Fringe Festival (OFF), a multi-day event bringing together emerging creators and real-world artistic practitioners to share their respective experiences and to engage with each other’s work. The festival’s mission is simple: to provide a boundary-breaking platform for free expression and to celebrate unconventional art and unconventional spaces.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend our events. If you are a person with a disability who requires accommodation(s) in order to participate in this festival, then please contact Disability Resources at [email protected] in advance.

The OFF is committed to providing a boundary-breaking platform for free expression that amplifies the voices of those who are all too unrepresented in the creative arts industry. A lens focusing on equity, diversity, and inclusion will filter our selection process for all projects submitted.

About the Oregon Center for the Arts:

The Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University serves as a creative catalyst for the mixture of students, educators, and artists from the state, the nation and the world. The beautiful Southern Oregon mountain setting provides a special place to learn, explore and train in all of the arts disciplines.

Visit: oca.sou.edu

About Southern Oregon University:

Southern Oregon University is 175 acres of beautifully maintained campus with outstanding facilities, occupied by a committed and well-respected faculty and talented students. SOU’s vision is to be an inclusive, sustainable university for the future. Faculty, staff and leadership collaborate to achieve those ideals, and are united in their dedication to the students who will create lives of purpose and fulfill our region’s promise. SOU enhances the economic, cultural and social well-being of southern Oregon, and helps its students learn the skills to work both independently and collaboratively, be adaptable and embrace creativity. Its diversity gives SOU both texture and strength. Students’ thoughtfully shared points of view are valued and respected.

Visit: sou.edu

Southern Oregon University and the Oregon Fringe Festival are located within the ancestral homelands of the Shasta, Takelma, and Latgawa peoples who lived here since time immemorial. These Tribes were displaced during rapid Euro-American colonization, the Gold Rush, and armed conflict between 1851 and 1856. In the 1850s, the discovery of gold and settlement brought thousands of Euro-Americans to their lands, leading to warfare, epidemics, starvation, and villages being burned. In 1853 the first of several treaties were signed, confederating these Tribes and others together – who would then be referred to as the Rogue River Tribe. These treaties ceded most of their homelands to the United States, and in return, they were guaranteed a permanent homeland reserved for them. At the end of the Rogue River Wars in 1856, these Tribes and many other Tribes from western Oregon were removed to the Siletz Reservation and the Grand Ronde Reservation. Today, the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon (https://www.grandronde.org) and the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians (http://www.ctsi.nsn.us/) are living descendants of the Takelma, Shasta, and Latgawa peoples of this area. We encourage YOU to learn about the land you reside on, and to join us in advocating for the inherent sovereignty of Indigenous people.

Empty Bowls Event!

EMPTY BOWLS EVENT

Empty Bowls Event Featured Image_2014

WHEN: Online Silent Auction: October 8th-13th, 2021

WHERE: Virtually! Text ‘EmptyBowls2021’ to (406) 302-5086 to get a link to bid or visit https://go.eventgroovefundraising.com/joco-emptybowls-2021 directly.

FUNDRAISER BENEFICIARY: Options for Southern Oregon and Josephine County Food Bank. Proceeds will help food insecure adults, children and families in our community access food.

CONTACT PERSON: Sarah Small, Development and Integrated Health Coordinator at (541) 476-2373 or email at [email protected]

Empty Bowls is a grassroots effort led by Options for Southern Oregon in partnership with the Josephine County Food Bank that includes artists and restaurants in our community. This event raises funds to fight hunger in our community.

Empty Bowls has historically been held at the Parkway Christian Center in Grants Pass. Due to the pandemic, last year’s event was held virtually. While we had hoped to return to an in-person event in 2021, unfortunately, our region is experiencing a surge in cases. Because the safety of our community is paramount, we have decided to once again shift to a virtual event to respond to the ever-changing nature of the pandemic.

Our virtual Empty Bowls event will feature an online silent auction featuring unique ceramic bowls and art pieces. Individuals will also have the option to purchase one of the beautifully crafted event bowls, much like our usual Empty Bowl experience. We wanted to bring a bit more of our in-person event to the virtual space, so included with each bowl purchase is a $5 coupon that can be used at one of our participating restaurants.

The auction will begin on Friday, October 8th, and will close on Wednesday, October 13th. Participation in the silent auction will be free and open to all, but individuals will need to register to participate. We will end the virtual experience by hosting a drive-through event at the Josephine County Food Bank (3658 Upper River Rd, Grants Pass, OR 97526) on Friday, October 15th, where individuals will be able to pick up their silent auction items and event bowls.

We want to extend a special thank you to this year’s restaurant sponsors, including Casa Amiga, Climate City Brewing Company, Ma Mosa’s, Taprock Northwest Grill, The Laughing Clam, The Train Depot, The Twisted Cork, The Vine, and Wild River Brewing & Pizza. In the past, these amazing restaurants have donated soup and gift cards to our event. This year, they are partnering with us to provide an opportunity for Empty Bowls supporters who purchase event bowls to get soup. Clayfolk potters and other local artists have generously donated their time and talent to make more than 150 beautifully handcrafted bowls for this year’s event.

Thank you to our generous event sponsors AllCare CCO, AIG Retirement Services, Banner Bank, Clayfolk, Evergreen Federal Bank, and J.D. Fulwiler! These organizations have been supporting Empty Bowls for many years, and their generous donations help make this event a success!

More information can be found at optionsonline.org and the Josephine County Empty Bowls Facebook page (www.facebook.com/emptybowlsjoco)

Southern Oregon Artists Show and Sale TODAY!!

Enjoy original art works at the Southern Oregon Artists Show and Sale invitational art show and Sale Oct 1-3, 2021 at the First Christian Church, 1900 Crater Lake Ave, Medford, OR 97504
Hours  Friday 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday 12:00 noon to 4 p.m.

Peace Like That

 

I’m a metaphorical girl—I see connections everywhere. This year, I learned the word apophenia: the tendency to look for connections among unrelated things. I’m pretty sure I have a not-so-mild case of it. Whether through simile or metaphor, I am constantly comparing unlike things to better understand abstractions. 

 

In fact, here’s a metaphor: our marriage is a fascinating case of apophenia!

 

Which brings me to rivers. I spend A LOT of time on rivers since I married a man who loves them. And this spring, I’ve wondered about that metaphorical comparison of “peace like a river” in Scripture (Isaiah 48:18, 66:12).  Spend time on even a single river, and you realize that rivers are varied: once section might be placid as a pond. The next might be a white-water “boulder garden” your husband inexplicably wants to kayak through. 

 

Peace like which part of the river?

 

Like all of it. Like: peace in all the river sections, from frog water to Class V rapids. 

 

And peace in the snags—the fallen trees and root masses that accumulate along a shore. They can impede progress. But they can also create little eddies of stillness out of the fast current and give you a place to pause before you continue your journey. I kid you not, I had that snag realization by a river one morning, and that same afternoon, Jared and I got into a massive snag-fight. We got caught on the jagged edges of stuff we’d let accumulate along our shore, but once we pressed through, we found a pool of peace. Someday, we may even remember that there can be peace in the snags, too. 

 

I have an old hymn stuck on repeat in my heart: “When Peace, Like a River.” That song has always held power for me. It was originally titled, “It Is Well With My Soul” for its famous refrain: “It is well, it is well, with my soul.” But I didn’t learn why it was so powerful until last fall, when our friend came for dinner and played us the song on his guitar, telling the back story. 

 

Horatio G. Spafford wrote the hymn in the nineteenth century. He was a prosperous businessman in Chicago. He and his wife had a son and four daughters. Things were going well—until they weren’t. They lost their son to scarlet fever. Then, the Great Chicago Fire destroyed all of Horatio’s real estate, wiping out his life savings. He decided to take his family to England to try and start over. Right before he planned to leave, a business deal arose that could help his family, so he decided to send his wife ahead of him with their daughters. 

 

The boat carrying his family shipwrecked. His wife survived, but all of their daughters died. As soon as he received the news, Horatio took the next ship to be with his wife. At one point on the voyage, the captain told him they had reached the spot where his children had drown. And there—in the place of deep loss and sorrow—he wrote a hymn of peace. Here are the first lines:

 

When peace like a river, attendeth my way,

When sorrows like sea billows roll;

Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to know

It is well, it is well, with my soul.

 

Refrain

It is well, (it is well),

With my soul, (with my soul)

It is well, it is well, with my soul.

 

That man’s understanding of grace takes my breath away. It makes me game to learn the currents of peace like a river. 

 

I want peace like that. 

Flower it Forward

 

The thoughtful Del Rio Vineyards offers our little valley a big gift: rows of U-pick zinnias below their hillsides of vines. 

The only catch? For each bouquet you pick for yourself, you pick two for others. “Flower it forward.” 

I like this double-happiness approach to “pay it forward.” Not just singly, but doubly. 

Thank you, Del Rio, for reminding us to give more than we get. I’m excited to deliver these bright gifts. 

All of the Above


On one of the rare weekends this summer we weren’t camping, my husband and I attended our church’s outdoor service. We sat beneath an umbrella on a beautiful morning, the sky broad above us. Our friend, Niesje was leading worship. Before beginning a song about bringing Heaven to Earth, she reminded the congregation that, with God, anything can happen. 


God often speaks to me in wordplay (I like to call Him the Wordsmith). As Niesje spoke, I heard in my heart the phrase “all of the above.” Such words and phrases usually arrive simultaneously with layers of meaning, and it can take me a moment to unfurl them. One layer to “all of the above” was Heaven, as in: all of what is higher, all of what is possible. At that moment, beneath the expansive sky, I was reminded of the vastness of possibility. 


But “all of the above” also referred to that pesky option on multiple-choice tests. 


I was never a good test taker. I could study, and I did—hard. But because I didn’t have the knack of knowing what test makers expected, I spent way too much time trying to memorize things instead of learning their context and how they worked together. 


When required to answer essay questions, I could “show” my work and explain nuances, which helped. But for multiple choice tests, there is just one right answer. Pretty black and white. Unless there is the shades-of-gray option D: All of the above. 


In school, I loved and hated “all of the above.” It meant there was more than one correct answer (which I secretly believed about most everything). But it also meant I’d have to know the subject well enough to know that A, B, and C were all correct, too. 


That Sunday beneath the Heavens, I recognized that I’d been slipping back into old patterns of limited, either/or thinking—of believing I’d have to choose just A, B, or C. I was reminded that God is big enough to be both/and—even big enough to offer an alphabet-length set of options and for all of them to be possible! He is big enough to offer all of the above.


I was recently reading about dialectics, which is basically a fancy way to say “both/and” thinking. It’s the paradox of seemingly contradictory things being true, like feeling sad and hopeful at the same time. In other words, there is usually more than one “correct” answer—or at least more than one way to arrive at it. 


Life will throw tests at us—both essay and multiple choice. But it helps to remember that God offers more answers than any test key. It also helps to remember that He is not sitting around in Heaven with a big red pen, waiting to tally our mistakes and write a low score across our lives. In fact, I have a feeling God isn’t really into tests. Humans? For some reason, we seem to like them. So here’s a test on subject matter I’m trying not to memorize but to learn, to embody: 


A. God is not a test maker, waiting to fail us


B. God is love, and love is BIG: bigger than our closed either/or thinking and bigger than our most open and noble imaginings


C. He invites us to dream with Him and Heaven—to get to know Him well and to embrace the mystery of what we do not know


D. All of the above

 

 

Brief Beauty

So brief, these.

So long from seed to blossom

then so quick to drop their petals.

But worth the pink while.

AGA June Spotlight Artists

Art & Soul Gallery

Following the Circuitous Thread: Mixed Media Paintings by Eve Margo Withrow

I take great delight in creating one-of-a-kind paintings using mixed media and collage materials. My paintings are magical, surrealistic, impressions reflecting the essential feeling ingredients of an experience or place. Many of my favorite and most exciting works are the result of finding creative solutions to things run amok a few times over. I play and adventure with my expressions, following threads here and there, thus entering the flow of my creative process; head and heart awake and in balance. – Eve Margo Withrow

Eve Margo Withrow, Moonlit Grove, Mixed Media

A reception will be held from 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on June 4 during First Friday.

Hours:
Thursday and Sunday 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Friday and Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and by appointment.

Address and Contact Information:
247 East Main, Ashland, OR 97520
541-488-9006
www.artandsoulgallery.com

Jay Gordon Art Studio

After extensive forays into music as a professional acoustic and electric bassist, and medicine as a pediatrician, Jay decided in 2014 to devote herself to learning how to draw and paint, and since then has been constantly experimenting with all kinds of art, including portraiture, still life, figure drawing, illustration and printmaking. She is affiliated as a painter and illustrator with Enclave Studios and Gallery in Ashland.

Jay Gordon, Botanicals, Acrylic

Hours: Appointment Only

Address and Contact Information:
1661 Siskiyou Blvd #3
Ashland, OR 97520
http://www.jaygordonart.com/contact

Hanson Howard Gallery

John/Robin Gumaelius & Robert Koch

Robin and John Gumaelius, collaborating artists and husband and wife, create articulated human and birdlike sculptures. They combine ceramic, steel, and wood as they form highly inventive sculptures that are often comical or bizarre. Elements of children’s stories, religious icons, reliquaries, Medieval and Renaissance history, African skin decoration, and holy relics from Germany can be seen in their work.

Gestural strokes and spontaneous marks collide with color blocks in Robert Koch’s narrative vignettes. Often prompted by found photographs, Koch takes the liberty to make his subjects humans or creatures inhabiting the same world. Having the appearance of quickness and even naiveté, Koch’s deft drawing skills mean each mark is playful and intentional at the same time.

Robert Koch, Runaway, Acrylic on Panel

Hours:
Thursday – Saturday from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and by appointment.

Address and Contact Information:
89 Oak Street
Ashland, OR 97520
541-488-2562
http://www.hansonhowardgallery.com/

Fiber Arts Collective

In July 2020, Tanya Bemis gathered a group of fiber artists in Lithia Park to discuss the possibility of starting a Fiber Arts Collective in an available building in downtown Ashland. Out of that meeting, in the middle of a pandemic, an amazing community resource was born. In a short time it has become a creative inspiration to fiber and textile artists throughout the area, offering a fabric store and an art gallery space for fiber artisans in its Ashland location. Once the pandemic is over, the Fiber Arts Collective will offer classes and resources for the community. Meanwhile, it supports local social justice issues and encourages efforts to recycle and upcycle fiber resources.

The work of approximately 30 artisans is featured. From sewing, dyeing, knitting, crocheting, embroidering, and felting to binding, collaging, painting, printing, stenciling, beading, and creating assemblage pieces, their artisans are hard at work adding beauty to the world.

Julie Simon, Untitled, Fiber

Hours:
Wednesday – Saturday from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Address and Contact Information:
37 N 3rd Street
Ashland, OR 97520
541-708-6966
https://fiberartscollective.com

The Ashland Gallery Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of the visual arts in our communities.

Of literature & Landscaping

 

I am being lazy on the literary front by not writing something fresh for this post, but all my spring creativity has been going toward landscaping!

So for this month, I’ll just say: I am delighted to have won an Oregon Book Award for my poetry collection, Hope of Stones. It was far more rewarding than making my own mulch! Immense gratitude to everyone at Literary Arts for honoring these poems and to dear Press 53 for publishing them. 

Here’s to words and wheelbarrows and wonder,

Anna 

The Poet Wonders

Nationally, it has been poetry month, but personally, it has been gardening month (with plenty of gravel schlepping!). In the realm of poetry, my collection Hope of Stones was nominated as a finalist for the Oregon Book Awards. I wait to hear the results. In the realm of gardening, I planted seeds. I wait to see the results. 

 

I’ve always honored the timeless metaphor of a garden, but it’s one thing to write about it. It’s another to prepare the soil and plant the physical seeds. 

 

Since I’ve spent far more time with a shovel than a pen this month, I thought I’d pull out a poem from Hope of Stones. Unlike the opening line, it is still the “month of April & maybes.” So much waiting. And even more than the results of the book awards, I am excited to see what this coming harvest season will bring. 

 

The Poet Wonders

Oregon, October

 

The more I wonder, the more I love.—Alice Walker

 

It is no longer the month of April & maybes. 

It’s October & root vegetables—the soil-

pulled concretions of harvest. What we seeded 

in spring has grown up & down & waits 

for us to lift it from the skin of earth. 

 

How silent prayer was revelation & heresy.

 

The clouds roll in. The leaves redden. 

The cat’s coat thickens. We gather 

the tangible close & prepare for cold. 

 

How physics is the science of prayer.

 

One friend is dying. Another is trying to love 

someone who doesn’t love her back. 

 

I visit the first friend, & we sit on his deck 

watching tractors in the adjacent forest dig 

foundations for new houses he will never see. 

 

I visit the other friend & notice the old 

potatoes she keeps on a shelf. They’ve 

shriveled a bit but have new eyes—new shoots 

already looking for somewhere else to grow.  

 

How a perennial can inspire prayer.