Artists celebrate season, art with new show

Artists celebrate season, art with new show


The Artists of Northwest Arkansas is a volunteer organization serving the needs of the local artist community. One of its primary concerns is opportunities to showcase work, which can be particularly scarce around the holidays. In response, ANA has partnered with the Community Creative Center at the Nadine Baum Studios in Fayetteville to host a holiday show and sale through Jan. 8. Nearly 50 artists will display works in watercolor, oil, pastel, acrylic and more in the non-juried show.

“The other thing is as people start to think about holidays, they start to think about gift-giving,” muses Gary Johnson, artist and board chairman for ANA. “A nice piece of art given to a loved one is a really treasured gift. It isn’t a print or it isn’t something that you’d go to Hobby Lobby and buy in their store. These are original pieces done by artists.”

Johnson and fellow ANA member Diane Stinebaugh both work in watercolor and have paintings in the show. The two artists opened up about their work here ahead of the exhibition’s opening.

On chosen medium:

Stinebaugh: I started watercolors in the late ’90s. I was a silversmith then and wanted to try watercolors. I immediately took them outside to paint, especially to the local parks and beaches. Then I found out that working in watercolors was way easier (read cleaner) with a brand new baby. I have a practical side. Watercolors fit into my schedule as a working mom.

Johnson: I’ve loved watercolor all my life. I just liked the transparency of it and the vibrancy of it. When you see color on top of color, and you create a color that you cannot get out of a tube because you’ve created it with multiple washes, I think that’s what the intriguing part of it is for me. There’s a lot more to it than people think in terms of how creative you can be with watercolor.

On how ANA has enhanced their artistic experience:

Stinebaugh: It’s all about the people; I love the people. It’s great to hang out with people who understand me — my tribe, so to speak. We talk about art, how to sell art, where to see art, where to show art, learn about art, art, art, art! We talk about other stuff, too, but they all understand the art part of me. ANA provides ways to get your art out in front of the public. They bring in nationally known artists for workshops (I have taken many) and there is so much to learn at their gatherings. This past year I started giving back to the organization by hosting monthly sketch outings, and I will start leading classes and workshops for ANA in 2020.

Johnson: One of the things I complained about when I first moved here was the art organizations seemed to be mostly related to oil — there were a lot of oil painters, not a lot of watercolor painters. I asked about watercolor workshops, and I learned that there weren’t any. So they said to me, “If you want to have a watercolor workshop, then you have to chair it.” So I took the challenge. And I’d never run a workshop and I didn’t even know where to start. … Since then, I’ve run probably four or five others for other artists, and I’ve done four or five of my own workshops.

I was also involved in the first time we’ve ever run a national juried art exhibition here in Fayetteville, itself. As a result of all of my activities there, we were able to give away about $14,000 in prize money to the artists. So, I’ve been very involved in the ANA and the arts in general, just trying to get arts promoted in the city.



Artists of Northwest Arkansas

Holiday Show And Sale

WHEN — On display through Jan. 8

WHERE — Community Creative Center in Nadine Baum Studios, at 505 W. Spring St. in Fayetteville

COST — Most art for sale; free to view


FYI — For more on Stinebaugh and Johnson’s work, visit, and

Categories: Galleries