Picture Alaska to go out of business; First Friday shows look at remote landscapes, boreal forest

Picture Alaska, a constant presence on Pioneer Avenue for First Friday art openings, announced this week that after 24 years the store will be closing. The Upstairs Boutique, a clothing store upstairs in the gallery, also closes, owners Lynda and Howard Reed announced. Homer Art & Frame, a companion store that sells art supplies and does custom framing, will remain open. Starting First Friday, Picture Alaska holds a going-out-of-business sale.

“It was a hard and emotional decision, but I realized it was time to slow down a little and make some choices,” Lynda Reed said.

Elsewhere at other Pioneer Avenue and Old Town galleries, artists explore how Alaska’s setting and light inspire them. At the Art Shop Gallery, Homer photographer Taz Tally exhibits a new black-and-white piece, “Sadie’s Cloud,” that highlights the contrast between mountain, sea and sky. Biologist John Lince-Hopkins goes “Beyond the Roads,” as he calls his exhibit, and paints the landscapes illuminated by Alaska’s amazing light. Alaska and Arizona artist Sue Dranchak looks at the boreal forest she lived in while working on a bachelor of fine arts at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

In “Spaces Within,” opening at Bunnell Street Arts Center, Yu’pik and Inupiaq mask carver and installation artist Drew Michael uses his art to examine his identity as a twin survivor of premature birth, foster care and adoption. In her show, “Roots,” glass artist Nancy Wise honors the inspiration she gets from Alaska Native culture. 

Michael Armstrong can be reached at michael.armstrong@homernews.com.