Forty years ago, the Newport Visual Arts Center was just a gleam in the eyes of a few community members. There wasn’t a public visual arts facility anywhere on the central Oregon coast.
The Yaquina Arts Association, a well-established artists’ coop, was flourishing in its headquarters in the old bathhouse at Newport’s Nye Beach Turnaround. Its members needed space to better display their creations and to hold classes. Additional artists in the community wanted a place to gather and celebrate the visual arts. The Newport Urban Renewal Agency had land and funding options.
That initial gleam became a concept and then a plan. The bid documents went out in October 1982 and construction proceeded quickly with the building opening in late 1983.
The new building was wonderful but those involved quickly realized that help was needed to operate the building. The Coastal Arts Guild was founded in 1985 as the volunteer core to staff the main gallery. It continues to pursue its mission: Provide opportunities for community involvement in the efforts to further the Arts on the Central Oregon Coast, emphasizing the Visual Arts.” As we emerge from the past two years of Covid, we welcome all as volunteers to help keep the Visual Arts Center lively.
This exhibit is one of those opportunities. We thank the 38 artists created these unique artworks to share with the community. The Coastal Arts Guild provided the materials and the artists paid an entry fee as their contribution towards the newly reopened Clay Studio. They contributed their ideas and skill to bring these walls alive.
It all began in 1982 with those dedicated people who had an idea and pursued it. This exhibit celebrates them and their inclusive concept of art and artists.
The VAC is open Wednesdays-Saturdays from 12-4pm. Opening reception will be Saturday March 5th from 1-3 in the Upstairs Gallery. Judges will be giving their remarks at 1:30.