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Crawl Around Downtown

Jocelyn Durston,
The Downtown Gallery Art Crawl features everything from oil paintings to sculptures.

The Downtown Gallery Art Crawl is Thursday, Feb 1 in Downtown Monroe and Antique Alley.

The Downtown Art Alliance is continuing their celebration of its 10th Anniversary with new exhibits from artists both local and out of state. The Crawl showcases art from the Northeast Louisiana region, as well as Texas and Missouri.

The Outside Gallery, which features works on the outside wall of a building at the north end of Art Alley next to the railroad tracks, is showing work by Lindy Chambers. Chambers' works have a surreal, retro feel and play on the idea of the American Dream. "Each painting has strong elements of abstract and impressionist techniques, as well as drawn forms that are cartoon-like in character," says Chambers. "The blend of the two adds dimension to the flat surface and provides visual anchors in the midst of the cacophony of color." 

Louisiana Tech University art students are presenting their work in both the Upstairs Gallery and The Big Room. "We Learned From This," an exhibit compiled of nine Louisiana Tech School of Design Master's of Fine Arts students, is on display in the Upstairs Gallery. The Big Room is hosting MYRIAD, an exhibit showcasing the work of seniors pursuing a Bachelor's of Fine Arts in Studio Art. Mediums include ceramics, photography, painting, sculpture, and illustration. The gallery is hosting an Artist Talk at 7 p.m.

The Garrett House will hold large-scale work from Molly Engan, an artist originally from  West Monroe. Her acrylic and oil paintings are "abstract portraiture depicting the disconnection of today" and explore how social networking has affected the nature of physical interactions. Engan is graduating from Louisiana Tech in May with a bachelor's degree in Studio Art. Live music is provided by "Wood & Brass," a jazz duo composed of Tyler Schweinefus on stand-up bass and Mason Howard on saxophone. Free golf cart rides will be available to and from Art Alley.

The resident artists at Sugar Gallery are presenting "Revels and Hearts," which ties in works celebrating Mardi Gras, the Super Bowl, and Valentine's Day. Leah Reitzell's exhibit "Carnival and Cranes" is composed of Louisiana cranes wrapped up in the moonlight and bright colorful characters which invoke the feeling of Louisiana in the carnival season. Scott Stone will present his nature photography, decorative guitars, and paintings. Landscapes and local imagery are in focus with the Burg Ransom's photos, Melanie Douthit's ink and watercolor pieces, and Doug Breckenridge's oil paintings. Harp Strings Jewelry will showcase antique cherub and angel button rings, and Chris D. Cox will have unique lamps on display. The Sugar Gallery will also feature artists painting during the crawl.

The Palace is featuring the artwork of Adrienne Brown-David from Missouri. Her artwork started off as "doodles" of tiny neighborhoods and has since expanded into larger pieces. Each composition is created entirely freehand using a single Sharpie until it runs out of ink.

RUMO'S will display the works of Amanda Roe, curator of the Outside Gallery and the Instructor of the University of Louisiana Monroe's School of Visual and Performing Arts. Her works are created using latex paint, paint pens, and oil pastels on wood panels. "My work usually deals with my relationship with society through a mixture of sometimes horrific and other times brightly colored scenes," says Roe. "It's a way for me to balance the noise within both my heart and mind when dealing with exterior forces beyond my control."

The Downtown Gallery Art Crawl is Thursday, February 1. For more information on the art crawl, visit the Downtown Arts Alliance website.