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From idea to realization

There's a new art venue to put on your "must see" list. Long time friends and Rogue Valley artists Joan Brown and Linda Curtis will host the grand opening of their new gallery and working studio from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, June 6, during the First Friday art walk in Ashland.

The Brown and Curtis Studio Gallery is filled with original, framed works of art by the artists, along with giclée prints and greeting cards, and is in the Claycomb Plaza Mall, 40 N. Main St., Ashland. As part of the opening celebration, a $100 gift certificate will be available at a drawing to be held at 7:30 p.m. Refreshments and music also will be offered during the celebration.

Brown's and Curtis' interests in fine art came after careers in other fields of work.

Brown was an instructor and counselor at community colleges in California for more than 20 years. She took art classes on evenings and weekends until she retired, and she now studies art and paints full-time. Brown's medium of choice became watercolor, and her early focus on figurative works have been exhibited around the world.

Brown has spent the last few years studying landscapes and experimenting with different mediums. While capturing the natural world in oil is her current endeavor, she still paints figures and florals. Her artwork can be viewed at joanlbrown.com on the Web.

Curtis' art career also evolved throughout the years. She held positions at Lithia Motors and Southern Oregon Subaru Volvo and Mitsubishi before she began taking drawing and watercolor classes. Since then, she joined the Artist's Workshop, studied with nationally known artists and was accepted into the Watercolor Society of Oregon. Her interest moved from figurative works to representational landscapes to abstracts. Today, Curtis uses oils and pastels in an interpretive style of landscape paintings. Her work can be viewed at lindacurtisstudio.com.

Both Brown and Curtis were members of Art and Soul Gallery for several years before spinning off to open their own space. One of the requirements of the challenge included the ability for the artists to be able to work on site as they would in their own studios. Visitors will see artwork as it progresses from conception to finish at the new venue.

The new gallery is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. everyday but Monday and Wednesday.

Call 482-9900.

'Headwaters,' oil painting by Linda Curtis.