A tribute to the career of artist Helen West will be held in the the 501 Building of the Yachats Commons, May 12-14. Featured in the show is an exhibit of nine never displayed pastel works, recently discovered in storage. This exhibit is comprised of art from Helen West’s collection, plus works from private collectors. The nine accomplished and never shown pastels were created between 2001 and 2010.
You will find Helen’s work in the collections of the Poindexter Museum in Helena, the State Art Museum West.PR.1in Cheyenne and the Wyoming Congressional Office. Her work was included in the book, A Gallery of Marine Art, by Jerry McClish, published by Rockport Publishers.
How does one present an artist’s career with what remains in her studio after her passing? This was the challenge for Yachats artist Michael Guerriero. Guerriero, a painter and printmaker, who organized the tribute said , ”Helen West, our next door neighbor, was coy about her production. She only gave me hints of her work by what I might occasionally peak at on her easel from the window on her porch. She had some pieces hanging in the hall and dining room, but she never disclosed what was more recent work.” During the few years that Michael and Rose Valentine knew her, she was friendly and quick with advice. During tea, she would describe her life in the Rockies with a smile, yet end the conversation pragmatically saying,”well, it won’t be long now and I’ll be dead”.
There will be a display of documents and artifacts from her studio and household. The opening will be on Friday, May 12, 6-9 PM in the 501 Building at the Yachats Commons on Highway 101. The showing will continue on Saturday and Sunday, 10AM - 5PM. Free admission. The pastels and painting from her studio, have been framed, and will be available for sale. Sets of beautiful pastels that she collected and a set of note cards of her work will be available. Profits from sales at the show will fund community arts education and projects through the non-profit Polly Plumb Productions, the show’s sponsor. For information e-mail email@example.com or call 541 547-5024.
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