Gallery Walk is by no means limited to art galleries: local businesses of every description join in the festivities, often inviting artists to adorn their spaces for the weekend, or the season.
This year, the well-known route includes a few new and unusual non-gallery spots worth pointing out.
• Local artist MK MacNaughton will be setting up her exhibit in an empty storefront at 209 Seward St., on the block between Subway and the Canvas. Though she has her own gallery, Sketch, she needed more room for this show, which includes several large-scale paintings.
The show, “Art in the Wilderness” is based on MacNaughton’s participation in an artist-in-residency program in the Noatak National Preserve this past September. She has created a series of 20 paintings based on that trip, as well as several drawings, field sketches and photos.
The Voices of the Wilderness artist residency program was begun several years ago by Barbara Lydon, a former Juneau resident, who took an existing model and adapted it for Alaskans by providing more hands-on work experiences. Artists travel and work with an active ranger on their trip, helping out when needed. (For more, see www.voicesofthewilderness.blogspot.com). In MacNaughton’s case, her duties included doing surveillance to keep track of who was in the area to be sure local hunters’ rights were being protected. The ranger, Marci Johnson, also accompanied MacNaughton on many hikes undertaken for the sole purpose of artistic exploration.
Later this weekend, MacNaughton’s temporary gallery will host two 45-mintue presentations by park officials from the Noatak: Chief Park Ranger Dan Stevenson, and Chief of Interpretation Linda Jeschke. The two speakers and MacNaughton will show slides and share information about the Western Arctic National Parklands and about the Voices of the Wilderness Program. Each one will talk for about 10 minutes, on Saturday and Sunday from 4-5 p.m.
Her exhibit opens early on Friday, at noon, and will also be open noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
• Local artist Alana Ballam-Schwan’s show “Follow Me...” will be featured at Vanity, a new skin care boutique celebrating its grand opening on First Friday. It’s located at 204A North Franklin St., upstairs from High Tide Tattoo and B’s Bakery. Ballam-Schwan, who recently closed her shop, Figment in the Senate building, will show new illustrations and art dolls.
• Clarissa Rizal, a well-known Chilkat weaver, will show a variety of artistic works at the recently opened Aurora Healing Arts on North Franklin Street, located a half-block up from Hearthside Books. Rizal’s work will include beaded wool felt Russian-style 1800s Navy hats, shrink-wrapped giclée prints, hand-cast paper feathers made from recycled paper and cedar bark, gumboot earrings, greeting cards, original charcoals, cell phone covers and Chilkat robe pattern board paintings on canvas.
• The Glory Hole will be welcoming Gallery Walkers at their First Friday celebration from 4-6 p.m. Festivities will include live music from Aaron Bender, artwork from artists in residence and refreshments, provided by the Glory Hole kitchen.
Other events on Friday include a showing of short art films at the Gold Town Nickelodeon from 4-6:45 p.m; an open house at the Capital City Weekly from 4-8 p.m.; free First Friday yoga at rainforest Studio from 5:15-6:15 p.m.; and free samples of Alaskan Imperial Red at the Depot on Franklin Street.