The Bear Gallery

An Art Gallery & Gift Shop in Fairbanks 

The Fairbanks Arts Association in partnership with Fairbanks North Star Borough Parks and Recreation offer a free admission fine art gallery & gift shop located in the heart of Pioneer Park. The Bear Gallery is on the third floor of the Alaska Centennial Center for the Arts in Pioneer Park at 2300 Airport Road.

Summer hours (June, July, and August): Noon to 8 pm, Daily.

Winter hours: Noon to 6 pm, Tuesday through Saturday.

Scroll through to see what we have in the Bear Gallery & Gift Shop this month.

See a list of upcoming Bear Gallery exhibits.


JUNE 2017 EXHIBITION

K N Goodrich and Adam Owen

K N Goodrich, Mixed Media
Gallery Exhibition: Selected Groupings

Springs Eternal_KN_Goodrich_web-size

Headshot_KN Goodrich_web-size

My work is contemporary, experimental, mixed media painting. I create artwork in a search for peace, clarity and order from my own experience of the world as a place of disorder, chaos and uncertainty. My work investigates the journey to acceptance of trauma, loss, fracture, imperfection, alienation, margin-alisation and impermanence: my journey.

I combine representation, figuration and symbolism with varying degrees of abstraction to create compositions that evoke an ambiguous narrative of past trauma and the beauty to be found in the evidence of survival. Layering, especially between media, is a key element in my work, creating the sense of time passed, with traces visibly remaining of what was there before.

I want to make work that is relevant to a wider public by using contemporary experimental approaches within the traditional format of painting. Over the years, my contemporary approach and experimentation with new technologies, different materials and wide-ranging techniques has led me to create some very interesting and innovative work. One approach I’ve been working on is the use of digital photo processing and printing technologies in combination with traditional painting materials, especially pastel and watermedia.


Adam Owen, Pyrographer/Photographer
Gallery Exhibition: Nature’s Burn

Lonely Bull_Adam Owen_web-size

Adam Owen PhotoAdam Owen is a self-taught artist whose passion for wildlife and nature are captured in his wood burning art (pyrography) and nature photographs. Pyrography is all about applying varying degrees of heat that produce monochromatic, sepia-like hues in subtle values and tones. Executing with accuracy, style, and imagination is key in producing unique and evocative works of art. Since 2001 Adam has developed and evolved a body of work that represents the best of who he is. Adam is passionate about this medium and attempts to portray the natural world in fresh and interesting ways to express his appreciation of animals and nature. As he “paints with heat,” he feels a certain parallel between the wild and natural spirits that embody his subjects and the organic and distinctively unforgiving nature of his medium which includes wood, antler, and paper. As an outdoor enthusiast living in Fairbanks his inspiration can be found in the everyday beauty of Alaska.

This show, titled “Nature’s Burn,” hopes to communicate Adam’s passion for pyrography and photography as well as the idea that wood burning is more than just a craft. It is a fine art and deserves recognition and respect as such.


JULY 2017 EXHIBITION

Wayne Jex and Cynthia West

Wayne Jex: Photographer

Gallery Exhibition: Contemplations of Alaska, and a Few of Asia

“Make visible what, without you, might perhaps never have been seen.”
Robert Bresson, French film director.

postcard_WinterSunsetbehindAspen_Jex_web-size

publicity_headshot_jex_cropped_web-sizeWayne Jex says this quote embodies what he is trying to do in a very small way with his photography. “I want to make something visible in a way that may be different from the way others see the same thing; at a slightly different perspective from the way that they may see it; or of a subject that they may have not been in the presence of. I’m not very good with words, which is one reason I try to communicate with images. A long-time friend who has seen a lot of my photography told me that I “do serenity well.” I hope that is one thing that comes through in most of my images – at least a momentary respite from these troubled times.

Wayne has been taking photographs since he was old enough to hold an old box camera loaded with roll film and discovered what pressing the shutter can produce. There have been a lot of changes since then in the technology used to produce a photograph. With digital photography, his principle is to not “Photoshop” my images in ways that he could not have done in the darkroom, but which would have been more difficult and time consuming there.

Cynthia West: Painter

Gallery Exhibition: Secret Garden

Lotus on Blue_Cynthia West

Cynthia West is a life long Alaskan and part of 5 generations who have called Fairbanks home. She thrives outdoors surrounded by nature. This is where she is able to replenish her creative spirit and find inspiration for her art. Cynthia is fascinated with organic, natural shapes and is delighted by the endless beauty and inspiration found outdoors.


Gift Shop Artist of the Month:
June

M’fanwy Dean

Mfanwy_Dean_Breaching_Whale+copy

M'fanwy Dean_photo_web-sizeBorn in 1992 in Spruce Pine, North Carolina, M’fanwy grew up surrounded by art and animals in a family of Artists, Gardeners, and Sculptors.

Aside from 7 months in the summer of ’16 spent in Portland, OR, she has spent the last 17 years living on a farmstead in Homer, Alaska. Her work has been on display at local galleries and gift shops across the state. Most recently her piece “Breaching Whale” was selected for publication in the international juried art annual: “Infected by Art: volume 5.”

She currently lives in a small cabin in Homer, more than half of which is taken up by studio space with a clear view of the Mountains and Kachemak Bay. You can stay updated on her process and new works by visiting her website www.mfanwydean.com or following her on instagram @mfanwy.


Gift Shop Artist of the Month:
July

Brianna Reagan

Aurora Chaser_copy_Brianna_Reagan_web-sizeBriannaReagan2017Brianna Reagan obtained her Bachelor of Fine Art degree from the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2008, and has exhibited her work in numerous art shows throughout Alaska. Her paintings are multi-media works of art, where she applies acrylic paint on wood with layers of inks and color pencils. She currently lives and works in Fairbanks, Alaska with her husband, daughter, and two giant dogs, Cooper & Greta.

Visit www.briannareaganart.com to see more of Brianna’s artwork.


Watercolor Corner Artists

June

Judy Gottschalk and Lolita Valcq

Judy Gottschalk

Judy Gottschalk photoI was born and grew up in Boston, Massachusetts. Then I relocated to Alaska, UAF, and never looked back.

I didnt begin painting until after retiring. Tom Nixon started me out. He got me hooked and excited. From then on I took any class offered in Fairbanks by visiting artists. I joined the Fairbanks Watercolor Society and  met other local artists. Recently Ive been taking classes with Vladimir Zhikhartsev, who is showing me the infinite possibilities of watercolor.

This medium has always fascinated me because of the combination of spontaneity and control. I love the way art makes me really look at what Im painting: the colors, the lines and the relationships.

Abstract_IMG_2705_Judy Gottschalk_corrected


Lolita Valcq

Lolita_Valcq_watercolor corner_20170522_135053_web-sizeLolita Valcq lives 20 miles north of Denali Park. She has been a watercolor artist for twenty-five years. She enjoys painting flowers, landscapes, and this last year started doing abstract paintings. Her home is surrounded by mountains so she does a lot of hiking with her dog to get a lot of her inspiration.

“Life is always a journey when you are an artist. When we open ourselves to creativity we create quality time with the beauty of nature.”


Watercolor Corner Artist

July

Gael Murakami

Mid-Summer Trees and the size is 6”x9”, watercolor_Gael_Murakami

Gael Murakami paintingGael Murakami maintains a studio in Fairbanks, Alaska. She was born in Seattle, Washington, and received her degree at the University of Washington. She divides her time between painting landscapes on location, experimenting with various water media in her studio, and conducting workshops. The landscape of Alaska inspires her work. Watercolor and acrylics allow her to paint on location and also achieve effects of atmosphere and space. Painting while on hiking and climbing trips resulted in her developing a distinctive and recognizable style. She has been able to build a reputation and a demand for her work by exhibiting at local galleries and entering local and national competitions. Gael is a founding member of the Fairbanks Watercolor Society.


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