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June Art Walk to showcase arty chairs for charity

The Rockin Auction at the Fine Arts Blount ArtSpace Gallery will be the place to bid on art while benefiting two worthy charities, FAB and the Adult Education Foundation, at the June 25 Last Friday Art Walk.

Area artists transformed 18 donated chairs into works of art that will be auctioned off to help raise funds to battle illiteracy and to assist area artists. From 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, June 25, the chairs will be on display at the ArtSpace Gallery during Last Friday Art Walk.

“On the 25th for the Art Walk, all these chairs will be on display back together at the FAB gallery on Broadway in downtown from 5 to a little before 8 p.m.,” said Bob Lash with Adult Education Foundation. “People will be able to come by and see them together and put in a silent auction bid. Then, at 8, we are going to start the live auction for each chair. The bidding starts with the highest offer in the silent auction.”

Lash said that if no one makes a higher bid in the live auction than the highest bid in the silent auction, then that silent auction bidder wins the piece.

Awards will be given out to the participating artists. Lash is hoping for a Mayor’s Choice Award, with input from the county and two city mayors. Area merchants will be asked to choose a Merchant’s Choice Award, and there will be a People’s Choice Award voted on by those who come see the chairs at Art Walk.

Since January of 2008 the Last Friday Art Walk has drawn people to downtown businesses where area artists are hosted and people can enjoy and purchase the art work and also patronize downtown businesses.

The Art Walk runs from 5 to 9 p.m. Artists committed to area businesses at press time included:

• Boyd-Thomas Clothing, 227 W. Broadway Ave., will feature work from three Maryville High School art students;

• All-Natural Health Shoppe, 219 E. Broadway Ave., will showcase Gail Kornoupakis;

• Southland Books and Southern Studios Stained Glass, 801 E. Broadway Ave., will host a fundraiser for Wendy Pitts-Reeves featuring the work of RaRa Schlitt, Karen Brackett, Catherine Frye and Steve Russell;

• Studio 212, 212 E. Harper Ave., will feature the work of Stacey Austin;

• Tomato Head restaurant, 211 W. Broadway Ave., will showcase work by Diana Rogers and Kelly Cofey;

• Capitol Theater, 127 W. Broadway Ave., will feature the debut of The Atomic Horns, a 10-piece big band jazz and swing act;

• Clear’s Silat, 113 E. Broadway Ave., will feature Tai Chi demonstrations

• Village Tinker, 417 W. Broadway Ave., will showcase Maryville Odds and Ends Basket Group

• Ta Dye 4 Ink!, 113 W. Harper Ave., will feature work by Julie Costner and Nancy Booth with Guylaine Bessette presenting tie dye demonstrations.

Melissa Nance, Art Walk coordinator for the Maryville Arts Coalition, said the monthly event draws people downtown where they shop in businesses and eat in restaurants they might not normally visit. “It also helps local artists. Some are new and don’t have experience showing their work,” she said. “It gives them exposure to people in the community.”

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