April 2019
Spring has sprung! The doldrums of winter are over. It's April, National Poetry Month, and there's a lot to celebrate. Plus there's so much going on in our local arts community. Read on!

ARTS brief is designed to intrigue you while sharing useful information, events, happenings, and current news related to arts growth in our region. If you love what you see here, please forward this to your friends and encourage them to join our email list and subscribe.
Poetry Moves celebrates its fourth year of poetry on C-Tran buses

Join in a celebration of poetry with readings from local and regional poets plus music and an interpretive dance performance. The free event is Sunday, April 28 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Light refreshments provided.

Columbia Room
Vancouver Community Library
901 C Street, Vancouver

More about this event

Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna
Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna at Vancouver Community Library

Printed Matter Vancouver, Clark County Poet Laureate Gwendolyn Morgan, Clark County Arts Commission, and ArtsWA are presenting this month's Ghost Town Poetry Open Mic at the Vancouver Community Library on Thursday, April 11 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

The featured poet will be Washington State Poet Laureate Claudia Castro Luna. Open mic sign up begins at 6 p.m. and closes at 6:30 p.m. Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Lumbrazo Luna of Printed Matter Vancouver.

Claudia Castro Luna will be signing books at Niche Wine Bar, 1013 Main Street from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. There will also be an after party at Niche at 8:30 p.m.

Columbia Room
Vancouver Community Library
901 C Street, Vancouver

Clark County Poet Laureate Gwendolyn Morgan. Photo credit: Kim Campbell/Campbell Salgado Studio.
Gwendolyn Morgan's vision as Clark County's newest Poet Laureate is to continue to lift up unheard voices

In artist and poet talks, Gwendolyn Morgan, Clark County's newest Poet Laureate (2018-2020) often invites each person to consider: How are you sharing your gifts in the world?

After the "passing of the pen" from Clark County's Inaugural Poet Laureate Christopher Luna (2013-2017) to Morgan last fall at a public celebration, the poet and visual artist's vision is to continue to lift up the poetic voices in our community from diverse socio-economic backgrounds that have not been heard. Through community outreach, she hopes to find more poets and writers who are quietly writing in their own homes and said she would like to see poetry in various languages presented in community venues. Continue reading
Poet Shaindel Beers
Shaindel Beers at Barnes & Noble Vancouver Open Mic

Barnes & Noble Vancouver hosts poet Shaindel Beers Tuesday, April 30 at 7 p.m. She will read from her book Secure Your Own Mask. Open mic pieces need not be related to the featured writer or any of her themes.

Barnes & Noble
Vancouver Plaza
7700 NE Fourth Plain Blvd, Vancouver
Call for student poets!
Poetry Moves Season 8 seeks student poems to be showcased on C-Tran buses beginning July 2019. Entries must be from K-12 students living in Clark County and/or currently enrolled in a public, private, or home school in Clark County. A maximum of two poems may be submitted, each of which must not exceed seven lines and must be the student's own original work. Deadline is May 1, 2019.

Artist opportunities
Calling Clark County artists!

WHO: Visual artists and artisans in Clark County working in all mediums

WHAT: Clark County Open Studios is a juried art event offering a unique opportunity for you to gain further recognition as an artist, open your studio doors to the public, and to show and sell your work. For the community, Open Studios is a free self-guided tour that will enhance awareness of talented local artists while enriching the cultural life of Clark County neighborhoods.

WHEN: Open Studios Tour: Sat-Sun, November 2-3, 2019, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Washougal Art Festival: Call for Artists

The Washougal Art Festival is open to visual artists working in all media and is intended for professional artists who are actively producing and exhibiting their work to sell. All entries will be juried based on originality, creativity, craftsmanship, and professionalism. Judging will also consider the expression of a unique vision and style, and the mastery over the artist's chosen medium. Application deadline is May 1, 2019.

First Friday picks
KC Madsen, Light Blues (left), Noah Matteucci, 1,598 Squares in CMYK - #1 (right)
KC Madsen and Noah Matteucci
Anstine Sixth Floor Gallery

Finding Order: Line, Shape, and Form, a study in contrasts, an art exhibit featuring the work of KC Madsen and Noah Matteucci will be on display at the Anstine Sixth Floor Gallery Monday, April 1 through Friday, June 29. The First Friday artists' reception, sponsored by the Clark County Arts Commission, is free and open to the public. The Anstine Gallery is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Opening artists' reception: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., First Friday, April 5.

Anstine Sixth Floor Gallery
Public Service Center
1300 Franklin St., Vancouver
Chuck Moffit presents his work at Art at the CAVE gallery.
Chuck Moffit at the CAVE
Art at the CAVE welcomes Chuck Moffit to Vancouver during a month-long exhibit this April. A designer from Mount Baldy, California, Moffit challenges conventional assumptions of gender, history, and materials. The exhibit kicks off with an opening reception on April 5. On April 10 at 4 p.m., the CAVE is hosting an Open House as part of Design Week Portland. Moffit will conduct a demonstration followed by a talk and Q&A session. Both the opening and gallery talk are free events.

Opening reception: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., First Friday, April 5.  

108 E. Evergreen Blvd., Vancouver
Tracy Leagjeld, Language of Spirit
Steve Hill, Tracy Leagjeld, Romona Youngquist, and Yong Hong Zhong
Art on the Boulevard

Art on the Boulevard presents 4 Seasons, a group show featuring Lopez Island, Washington pastel artist Steve Hill, Portland monotype artist Tracy Leagjeld, Dundee, Oregon oil painter Romona Youngquist, and Lake Oswego, Oregon watercolorist Yong Hong Zhong. All four are accomplished artists who paint en plein air (on location) as well as in their studios.

Opening artists' reception: 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., First Friday, April 5.

210 W. Evergreen Blvd. Suite 300, Vancouver
Marie Murphy-Wolfe, Let's Talk...Please!
Surface Design Association exhibit at Aurora Gallery

The Vancouver Branch of the Surface Design Association invites the community to enjoy a diverse range of fiber-based art at Aurora Art Gallery. Members showing their work include Mary Arnold, Bonnie Bucknam, Maris Cavanagh, Donna Joslyn, Sally Sellers, Sharon Svec, Karen Turner, and Marie Murphy Wolfe. The Surface Design Association (SDA) is a national organization dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of textile-inspired art and design. This is the premiere exhibition of works from SDA's Vancouver Branch.

Opening reception: 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., First Friday April 5.

1004 Main St., Vancouver
For other Vancouver First Friday listings, see VDA's Hot Sheet
Couve Couture
Fashion show at the Artillery Barracks

Beigeblond Salon and Most Everything Vintage present Couve Couture, the spring fashion show at the Historic Fort Vancouver Artillery Barracks on Saturday, April 13. Six designers from right here in Washington State, ranging in age from 14 to 67, will present their collections in two shows: a matinee at 3:30 p.m. and an evening show at 7:30 p.m.

Evan Adent as British Intelligence officer Mr. Stewart, spotting the Krogers played by Tim Klein and K.C. Cooper. Photo credit: Stephanie Roberts/Fetching Photos.
Magenta presents "Pack of Lies"

Magenta's Second Mainstage Production of the 2019 Season: Pack of Lies runs through April 13. This riveting drama written by Hugh Whitemore and directed by Magenta's Artistic Director, Jaynie Roberts, is sure to leave you on the edge of your seat, asking, What difference does it make who tells the lie? And if we trust our neighbors, is it ever right to betray them? Based on true events that happened during the Cold War in 1960s London.

Magenta Theater
1108 Main St., Vancouver
Lon Chaney and Mary Philbin in the silent film, Phantom of the Opera (1925). Image courtesy of IMDb.
VSO Chamber Music Series accompanies The Phantom of the Opera silent film at the Kiggins

Sunday April 7 at 3 p.m. the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra's Chamber Music Series presents the beloved drama The Phantom of the Opera in its original 1925 silent film adaptation starring American stage and film actor Lon Chaney as the phantom. The VSO's "Back to the Movies" series delights music and film fans alike with live musical accompaniment arranged by Rodney Sauer.

More info and tickets

Kiggins Theatre
1011 Main St., Vancouver
Columbia Dance Presents! features excerpts from "Swan Lake"

Columbia Dance Company performs their signature concert, Columbia Dance Presents! on April 19 and 20, featuring excerpts from Swan Lake, plus exciting choreographic works by Shaun Keylock, David Justin, Suzanne Haag, and Jan Hurst.

Royal Durst Theater
Vancouver School of Arts and Academics
3101 Main St., Vancouver
Arts workshop spotlight
Jazz singer Mitzi Zilka
Polish your pipes: springtime means sing time!

Step out of your comfort zone, get ready to have fun, and tap the opportunity to sing with professional jazz singer Mitzi Zilka at her Jazz Singers Workshop happening at Clark College 10 consecutive Saturdays April 13 to June 15 from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The program is part of the Explorations Continuing Education Class Schedule. Mitzi has taught the Jazz Singers Workshop for more than 10 years at Portland Community College along with voice, piano, and guitar. A new resident of Clark County, she is now offering the workshop in Vancouver.

"Years ago after living abroad for a time," said Zilka in a statement, "I returned to ... Continue reading

Our all-volunteer organization works toward building greater arts awareness, rewarding creative excellence, and expanding arts accessibility. We are working to facilitate long-term arts development for Southwest Washington. We envision a stronger arts infrastructure that includes an art center and a community-focused performing arts facility. 

Your support will help to make this vision a reality. Artstra's current programs include our annual Clark County Open Studios tour and Poetry Moves, a collaborative effort that features the words of local poets on C-Tran buses. Both of these programs have already demonstrated the power of art in our lives to connect us, transform us, and fuel the economy.
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ARTS brief team

Cam Suttles, editor,  designer 
Jackie Genis, contributing writer
Editorial Policy and submission guidelines
ARTS brief is intended to be useful to readers by offering a curated selection of stories and announcements related to the growth of arts in our region. Submitted items should be newsworthy. This means that arts-related items for content consideration must perform well in at least two of the following five areas: timing, significance, proximity, prominence, and human interest. Please submit materials to [email protected], no later than the 25th of each month. Note that submission does not guarantee publication. We evaluate each submission to determine how it fits our goals for ARTS brief and whether the item under consideration aligns with the mission and vision of Artstra. We do not accept materials that primarily have a commercial objective.
About Artstra
Artstra, formerly "Arts of Clark County," is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization advocating for the arts in Clark County and southwest Washington. We envision a vibrant arts economy in our region, north of the Columbia River, with public/private investments and facilities that sustain artists and enrich community. Our mission is to elevate the arts, build greater arts awareness, reward creative excellence, and expand arts accessibility.