January in the Bear Gallery

Opening Day: January 7, 2022, 127 pm
Exhibition on view: January 7–29, 2021
Gallery hours: Monday–Saturday, 12–6 pm

Bear Gallery visitors please note:

COVID-19 mitigation measures: Fairbanks Arts’ board of directors has approved COVID-19 mitigation measures that include (but are not limited to):

  • Visitors to the Bear Gallery must wear a mask. We ask that visitors bring their own masks, but should a visitor be without one, we have a limited supply we can give out. 
  • Social distancing of no less than 6 ft apart must be observed within the Bear Gallery.  
  • The current limit of visitors in the gallery at one time is 15 individuals.
  • Our COVID-19 mitigation plan involves the frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces to ensure the safety of our guests, volunteers, and staff.

We appreciate your understanding and cooperation in this effort to stay open while supporting artists and arts supporters safely and responsibly.

Contemplating Time: Arctic Mountains
by Lynn Larsen

“Posing for Portraits near Atigun River” by Lynn Larsen

Fairbanks based artist Lynn Larsen has traveled to the Brooks Range every year since 1988 to experience the Arctic’s spirit of place. Her paintings of the Arctic, which she sees as brief glimpses of the land’s transformation, combine the mountain’s feel at the present moment with a desire to stay true to each mountain’s geological story. Contemplating Time: Arctic Mountains will consist primarily of areas in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Born and raised in Arcata, a small town of 5,000 in northern California, Lynn was able to wander in the woods, play in rivers, and deer hunt with her dad. Wanting to see more of the world than a small town, after high school she went to college at the other end of the state, San Diego State University, to study nursing. Two years into that major, Lynn changed her major to art, an interest of hers since childhood. After graduation, she again moved north and in 1973 headed to Alaska to attend the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. During her college years, printmaking was her emphasis, and most of her imagery was of the figure or abstract.

In 1988, Lynn made her first trip into the Brooks Range, the Wind River in the Arctic Refuge, and has returned to Alaska’s arctic every year since. In 1998, she bought a lot at Wild Lake on the south side of the Brooks and now has a 12 by 12 foot cabin there. These wilderness experiences completely changed the direction of her art. She now is a landscape painter, something that she did not even conceive of as a possibility when she was young. Then she assumed most of her work would be abstract, but of course, those thoughts on her work were before she encountered the raw power of Alaska’s land.

Lynn presently lives in Fairbanks with her partner, Ron Yarnell, and their lab dog. They travel as often as they can to Alaska’s arctic—their favorite places are on the north side of the Brooks Range in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. 

Sharing the Enchantment of the Alaskan Passage 
by Marji Huffman-Plessinger

“Pipeline Gold” by Marji Huffman-Plessinger

Marji was born in Kodiak and grew up mostly in Anchorage. She now lives and creates in Fairbanks. Experiencing Alaska as a child and young person kindled a fire to experience and share the beauty and enchantment that is the state. Part of her experience of Alaska is the conviction that there is always something unseen, under that leaf, behind that tree, living inside that little hole. Who or what might it be? She would like to believe in elves and fairies, but certainly doesn’t disbelieve—it’s just too much fun to imagine! 

Marji is fascinated by Nature, Creation, all the mysteries seen and unseen, real and imagined. Her life and imaginings are completely eclectic, and her art reflects that. Many of Marji’s paintings have been inspired by scenes from right around her house. Different lighting and different seasons completely change the message and impact. For Marji, the most important element in any scene is the emotion it evokes, whatever it might be, that leads the spirit.