Tillamook County artist Christine Harrison will exhibit pastel drawings and acrylic and oil paintings in the Coastal Oregon Visual Artists Showcase on second floor of the Newport Visual Arts Center through October 26. A video about the artist will accompany the exhibit. Oregon Coast Council for the Arts (OCCA) will host an opening reception for the artist on Friday, September 6, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Harrison, a visual artist living and working in Tillamook County, is a painter and sculptor. Her most recent sculpture project, three large cement cow sculptures, was a joint venture with artist Heidi Clemens and the 2010 Ford Family Foundation Tillamook Leadership Candidates. The cow sculptures are prominently displayed at three sites in Tillamook County.
Born in Oakland, Calif., and raised in a semi rural area east of Berkeley, Harrison received her BA in Fine Arts from San Francisco State University and an MFA with Distinction from College of the Arts in Oakland. After finishing her MFA, she received seven California Art Council Artist-in-Resident Grants that allowed her time to work in her studio while she created a highly successful intergenerational art program for underserved populations of senior citizens and inner city public school children.
She moved to Tillamook in 1998 and commuted for two years to finish her grants. She currently teaches at Tillamook Bay Community College and Lesley University.
Harrison presents a body of work with a power of nature theme. She says, “Having almost drowned in my mid-twenties, I have often found myself attracted to and afraid of large bodies water. While visiting Maui, I watched a stream leap 400 feet down a mountain wall and continue to cascade over two miles down to the sea. I kept thinking about what a powerful and graceful force I was witnessing. It also made me think of what one of my students told me when she turned twenty, ‘It’s all downhill from here!’ If this waterfall is the metaphor of...human life, what a powerful life!”
Her works have been shown in one-person and group exhibitions in many places in the United States. She was a member of the artist co-operative, Nanny Goat Hill Gallery in San Francisco and the SFMOMA Artist’s Galley. Most recently she was part of group shows at 114 Gallery, Portland, OR, Umpqua Valley Artist Association, Roseburg, OR and Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN.
Harrison will be the featured speaker at the September Exhibition Coffee for Docents and Volunteers and anyone interested in volunteering at the Visual Arts Center at 11am on September 12 at the VAC in Room 302.