Art shows to continue in new venue
By Brian L. Gray
While the Mandan Community Center is no longer available to the community, that has not stopped one Mandan organization from continuing on without it.
The Mandan Art Association has taken critical steps to work around its dependency on the Community Center for its annual art show, which has been held in the spring in Mandan for the last 50-plus years.
Now that the school district has taken ownership of the Community Center, the MAA was one of a few organizations that were forced to figure out a way to work around the loss of the facility.
Creating a new niche for MAA has involved scaling down its annual spring arts show, said MAA gallery director Rose Heiser.
“We will continue to hold the annual art show, it simply won’t be as large as it’s been in the last few years,” she said.
Changes will also include holding several more events throughout the year to offset the organization’s spring art show.
“I remain optimistic about the organization. Now we won’t have to put all of our attention on just one event each year. Now we’ll be able to focus on smaller events all the time. And this way we will have something new at the gallery all year round,” Heiser said.
“This will allow people to enjoy several smaller, more intimate shows at the gallery,” added Cat McClintock, assistant gallery director.
MAA also moved to a different office inside the Heritage Plaza, where the organization has been since 2008. It plans to use the new home to host all of its art shows in the future.
To kick off the new era in its new home, the MAA began its first annual Miniature Art Show on Dec. 1, which will run all month long.
As part of the month-long art show, the MAA has teamed up with the Mandan Progress Organization to host an evening of wine, cheese and art at Heritage Plaza, located at 411 W. Main St. The event takes place tonight from 5 to 7 p.m.
Those who attend will be offered featured wines from Captain Jack’s Liquor Land, Gallo Family Vineyards and Northwest Beverages. Appetizers will also be served and outdoor fire pits will be set up for anyone wishing to relax outside. Prices to attend are $8 for one person or $15 for a couple.
The MAA also received donated artwork from local artists, which will be sold in a silent auction at the evening of wine, cheese and art. Door prizes will be given away at the event as well.
Akin to the annual spring show, artist submissions will not only be available for purchase, but will also be judged by a panel, including those that attend. Individuals will vote for the People’s Choice award, while others in the categories of Best of Show, Gallery and Creativity will also be awarded.
Over 24 local artists, MAA members and non-members alike, submitted works to the month long art show. Some of the items on display include pottery, jewelry, ceramics and paintings. The public is invited to view the gallery anytime from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
“We’re really pleased with how much community participation we received for this art show,” Heiser said. “We’re hoping that it continues.”