Provided by Becky Miller
This Labor Day weekend, September 1, 2, and 3, Toledo’s arts community will be hosting its 19th annual Art Walk, which is sponsored by the Yaquina River Museum of Art. Because most of the participating artists live and work full time in Toledo and several open their studios to the public, Art Walk has truly become an annual celebration of the community.
Toledo’s Art Walk began as a one-time event in October, 1993 as an open-studio for Michael Gibbons, a Mentor Artist for the Corvallis based Vistas & Vineyards program. Artists Douglas Haga and Ivan Kelly, recent arrivals to Toledo and neighbors of Gibbons, were invited to open their doors during the festivities. Springhill Winery from Albany set up a tasting table and local musician Mike O’Donnell supplied music in Gibbons’ studio. Several hundred visitors came for the event, and in 1994 and 1995 the trio of Toledo artists staged a repeat. Each artist invited a guest artist, swelling the number to six showing art. In 1996, prompted by the challenges of October weather, the Art Walk event date was changed to the three days of Labor Day weekend, where it remains to this day.
This year, Toledo artists Michael Gibbons, Ivan Kelly, Douglas Haga, Caroll Loomis, Becky Miller, and Karen Fitzgibbon will each host individual shows throughout the weekend. Additionally, three group shows will highlight local artists, including an Art Walk Founder’s Show, a group show at SolaLuna including Sarah Gayle, Alice Haga, and Berta Sergeant, and a Student Show hosted by Jim and Sandy Bruster in their home at The Gallery on Main Street. Generous contributions from the Siletz Tribal Charitable Contribution Fund, LaRue Hart, Maxine Moodie, and Ace Hardware have made many of these shows possible.
Several of Toledo’s artists have invited guest artists to show with them. Michael Gibbons has invited Steve and Sue Bennett to show at JP Studio and the Yaquina River Museum of Art has asked Marion Moir to show at the Schoolhouse exhibit space. Caroll Loomis has invited Katy LaReau and Rick Anicker to show with her at the old Firehouse. And Becky Miller has invited Kathi Borrego to show with her at her studio.
For more information about Art Walk, including biographies and photos of work on each participating artist, see the Art Walk website, http://www.toledoarts.info/. Signage will guide visitors to the Art Walk locations. Additionally, maps for the self-guided tour may be picked up at any of the participating galleries.