The Pasco Arts Council's current exhibit, "Viewpoints," features work by students of Jo Baughman in a variety of media: watercolors, pastels, oils. The exhibit will be at the art center through Dec. 11, and a reception for the artists and teacher will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Dec. 4.
But anyone visiting the art center could consider the title "Viewpoints" to also mean how much the view has changed inside the historic Charles B. Anderson House, which serves as home to the works, workshops and classes sponsored by the council.
There was once a tiny gift shop in one end of the kitchen, a medium-sized office in a sunroom and three spacious exhibit spaces in former bedrooms and living room. But the first floor of the center has been transformed into something altogether new and different.
The tiny gift shop has been converted into a showcase for work by the center's art instructors and a sign-up space for classes. Prospective students can see an instructor's style, and instructors can let prospective students know at what level the class will be taught: beginning, intermediate or advanced.
The front gallery has been converted into a spacious gift shop, with a wide array of art-themed and whimsical items for sale.
There's wearable art such as Diane Prekup's woven ribbon blouses, wraps and scarves, as well as artsy handbags with the label "Bohemiannie!" The shelves are filled with jigsaw puzzles using photos of classic artworks, artistic computer mouse pads, note cards, calendars and shopping list notebooks, quirky glass and ceramic yard ornaments, pots and vases by the pottery classes, and scores of other art-themed gifts.
One whole wall of shelves is devoted to children's art-themed gifts: Shakespeare and Frida Kahlo sticky notes, art playing cards, face painting kits, games, fingerpaint bubble bath and other items.
The newest room is the Artists' Attic, housed in the sunroom that once served as the art council executive director's office.
"This is probably our most popular feature right now," said Laura Knox, assistant director of the council. It was established after the annual one-day sale of leftover and donated art items proved such a success.
The room is packed with "gently used" art items and supplies at bargain prices: artist's brushes, gardening and art books, past issues of a magazine for quilters, matted prints ($3 and $15), framed original art and art prints, needlepoint canvasses from Germany ($1 to $10), a grow-light kit for herbs, and a couple of objects from The Art of Recycling show for atmosphere (but not for sale), to mention just a few of the room's wares.
"People are always coming in here looking for a bargain," Ms. Knox said. "And they usually find something." (Note: donations of art-themed objects are always welcomed.)
The "Viewpoint" show itself includes about 25 artworks by 14 students. A few are for sale at prices up to $500, but most for just enjoying.
"The instructor is using (this show) to educate her students on how to prepare and exhibit a gallery opening," Ms. Knox said. The students are taught how to write a proper "art biography," prepare a piece for presentation (matting and framing), create appealing invitations and fliers, furnish refreshments and be prepared (and present) to answer questions about their work.
Every third Saturday through May, the center's art and pottery instructors will be on hand from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to demonstrate their teaching techniques and explain their subject matter to those who may be interested in taking a class or two.