First Friday is really First Weekend for arts

With First Friday in July falling on Independence Day, some Homer galleries have chosen to hold art openings on Saturday so as not to conflict with the Pioneer Avenue parade, making it a First Weekend full of art. Art lovers can split their weekend. Bunnell Street Arts Center in Old Town and the Homer Council on the Arts and Ptarmigan Arts on Pioneer Avenue hold opening receptions on Friday. The Art Shop Gallery, Fireweed Gallery and Picture Alaska hold opening receptions on Saturday. Visitors to Pioneer Avenue Friday openings should park and plan their visits around the Fourth of July parade starting at 6 p.m.

Opening at the Homer Council on the Arts is a collaborative exhibit with the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies, or CACS. For the past 10 years as part of its annual CoastWalk beach cleanup and monitoring, CACS has been incorporating art projects as a way to creatively increase awareness of marine debris. Its Washed Ashore workshops have resulted in large marine debris sculptures, such as a murre made of fly swatters.

That theme continues with “Ocean’s Lament,” an open invitation show encouraging artists to make work from marine debris. Opening Friday at HCOA, the show continues into August. At Fireweed Gallery, Homer artist Deb Lowney also explores environmental themes with “Canary in a Coal Mine,” a show that looks at the issue of climate change. Her exhibit opens Saturday.

Other shows include Antoinette Walker’s encaustic paintings and Lisa Beck Wood’s pottery, both at Bunnell, Ed Hutchinson’s arctic wildlife paintings at Ptarmigan Arts, and jewelry by Dawn and Doug Horner at the Art Shop Gallery.

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