Category Archives: FEATURED ARTIST

Karen Nichols & 6×6 * September’s Featured Artists

“Take Wing” featured with “6×6 Challenge” at Backstreet Gallery

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We are thrilled to have as our Featured Artist for September, the multi-faceted, award winning artist, Karen Nichols. A reception will be held onSeptember 13th, 3-5PM where you will also enjoy the works of community artists invited to the 6×6 Challenge of taking ordinary wooden boxes and transforming them into marvelous art pieces.

 While Nichols paints in oils and acrylics, this show, entitled “Take Wing”, encompasses a variety of local birds and winged creatures created in her signature medium – paper painting collage. Her distinctive watercolors will also be included.

 The collages are her original process where she gathers all kinds of rice paper, which contain fibers. She then paints the paper in a variety of colors. When torn, the effect is a feathery piece that can be fitted together to form various subject matter.  This soft-edged quality makes the paper ideal for creating her many fowl feathered friends.

 You’ll also have a chance to get a signed copy of her brand new book, Second Chance Heart. How often does one experience a miracle? Other books available – The Unexpected Gift:  an inspirational story of a Marine who reclaims his life through the love and redemption. Thornton House: a mysterious love that transcends time and opens death’s door. These books are also available on

 Stacked, hung and otherwise displayed will be the wooden box creations that make up the 6×6 Challenge. Artists were invited to think inside or outside the box as they interpreted their assignment.

Come to the reception, Sept. 13th 3-5pm where you can meet the artists and find out about their work while you enjoy scrumptious refreshments.


Landrum & Rincon * August Featured Artists

Talented watercolorists, Jan Landrum and Jane Rincon, liven up August with their special show.

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Long time Florence resident Jan Landrum entered into Florence’s art world in the ‘70s, working in oils and collages. She displayed her work in Florence’s first artists’ co-op, Gallery of Local Artists.

Fostering her lifetime love of art, Jan took watercolor classes from Bob Kutch and Susan Weathers. It was instant love with the first splash of water, which describes many of her pieces that depict luminous ocean and water scenes.

Her work includes varied subject matter, from florals and ocean scenes to still lifes and portraits.  Some paintings are as soft as a summer breeze. Others exhibit a dramatic flair.

She’s a member of Figure Eights. Twice a month they gather to work using live models as their subjects. This activity has fine-tuned her drawing skills and challenges her watercolor abilities. She looks forward to trying acrylic painting.

Jan’s work has been shown in the Peace Harbor Hospital, Siuslaw Library, various restaurants, and has been a member of Backstreet for nine years.

When Jan steps out on her deck overlooking her 4 acres, she is greeted with burst of pansies and colorful flowers she tends with a green thumb. She may be accompanied by her beloved terrier named Speedy,  and Chihuahua named Suzie.

President of Backstreet Gallery, Jane Rincon was an original member whose hard work, ambition, organizational skills and creativity have contributed to Backstreet’s success. Jane is an award-winning artist garnering the coveted Best of Show in Celebrate Arts 2012.

Jane’s studio, The Crows Nest, sits high overlooking the ocean. Her masterful watercolors illustrate windswept beaches and shorebirds that capture her attention on beach strolls with her three labs, Coco, Rosie, and newcomer Daisy.

In addition, Jane has broadened her work to include unique watercolors and acrylics on Yupo paper.  This summer show called, “Colors”, presents a range from realism to the abstract.

Jane takes advantage of her beachside residence not only for subject matter, but also for the beautiful array of seashells that she weaves into striking wreaths.

She looks forward to advancing her skills through Chinese Brush painting and through a study of trees with her friend Susan Weathers, teacher and fellow Backstreet member.

Jane’s energy is spread through of a variety of activities that she enjoys. Swimming, biking and kayaking trips have left her bronzed by the Oregon sun.

Her creativity is not confined to her studio. It oozes out into her outstanding garden and her kitchen. She has a cookie obsession so she loves to bake and cook.

Celebrate their art at their reception, August 9th 3-5pm.






Allen & Smoley * July Featured Artists

by Donna Fay Allen

by Donna Fay Allen

Abundant creativity fills Donna Fay Allen’s display with works of alternative process photography, jewelry, altered objects and art dolls capture your attention.

In July, Donna’s work includes 12-15 innovative 3D art dolls, themed in black and white. Music and words individualize each piece. Many of the dolls incorporate altered porcelain heads, arms and legs. Sculptured heads top other dolls. Body parts include found objects like birdcages, old tins and lamp parts. These dolls are an extension of her Paper Art Doll kits of fairies and mermaids.  “I always liked to play with dolls, and this work is just an excuse to be a kid again!”

by Donna Fay Allen

by Donna Fay Allen

Her one-of-a-kind jewelry exhibits Allen’s talent of combining materials in a unique way. ”Much of my jewelry is designed to feel more like personal talismans or magical objects. I have also begun to venture into the “fine art” jewelry arena using both sterling silver and fine silver in addition to bronze, copper and brass.”

 Donna’s knowledge of archaic photographic processes has led to the creation of distinctive photographs and prints.


by Jayne Smoley

by Jayne Smoley

 “Summer Brights” is the theme for Jayne Smoley’s  jewel of a glass show.

Whether it’s utilitarian or decorative, each of Jayne Smoley’s glass pieces is unlike any other piece. Layering glass and firing the pieces at very high temperatures fuses vibrant colored glass into her geometric-shaped art, line, color and shape being key elements.  You’ll find a medley of hanging designs, plates, bowls, plates, sculptures, trays and starfish.  Her glowing pendants are dichroic eye-catching jewelry. As the light touches her creations, they come alive.

Illuminate your world with a variety of wall-sconce lamps and night lights that may create subtlety or brilliance, in addition to being a sculpted art piece. Ask about her custom work.  All of her gorgeous work goes through a process of layering and firing at high temperatures up to 1500 degrees Fahrenheit. The art may be removed from the kiln, cold worked, powered then returned to the kiln, taking several days to complete.

by Jayne Smoley

by Jayne Smoley

 Jayne is a member of the Oregon Glass guild. Her work is found in many private collections  throughout the US, Australia, Canada and has been exhibited in Bend, Portland and  Eugene as well as in Florence.


Help us celebrate their art during their reception, July 12, 3-5pm.










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