Brown's - Public Art Tour - Low-fi In Store - Foxtrot 

Masters at Brown's

In journalism speak, we'd call what Brown's Gallery is doing this First Thursday a scoop. Treasure Valley art collectors will have a chance to beat Big Apple buyers to the punch tonight when "The Collector's Show" opens at the gallery with work by Rembrandt, Norman Rockwell, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Marc Chagall and George Ahgupuk. It may sound too good to be true, but truly, it's an opportunity not to be missed.

According to gallery owner Randall Brown, the woman who owns the collection lived in Alaska most of her life and has recently relocated to Boise, where her children live. Due to the space constrictions of her new home, she has chosen to sell part of her collection, which is worth enough that Christie's, the renowned art auction house, insures the pieces.

"It's a huge opportunity to purchase something that's historically important but it's also an incredible educational opportunity," says Brown. "Even just a student printmaker would want to see a Rembrandt."

In addition to the notable artists whose work is included in the collection, Brown says the collection is impressive simply for its range.

click to enlarge 1stThursday_BrownsPicasso.jpg

"A lot of people don't have an eclectic view like this collector. Her range is broad, from American realism to post-impressionism. It's like an art history student's collection."

According to Brown, all the pieces up for sale are prints with the exception of a Ahgupuk's, which is ink on caribou skin, a piece that Brown says generally sells for several thousand dollars. Brown, who has a degree in appraisal studies and fine arts purchases, says that in pricing the work, he referenced previous appraisals as well as past sales prices to come up with what he says is a more precise, uninflated price.

One of the pieces in the collection is a serigraph Picasso print numbered 6/50 and signed by the artist. The two Rembrandts in the collection are re-strikes, which is a print done from the artist's plate but one that could have been done after his death. Even so, Brown says that for him, the most impressive pieces in the collection are the Rembrandts simply because of their age.

"[It's] a print that sells in the $3,000-$5,000 range, even though there are records of them going much higher," says Brown. "If I had to pick one for my personal collection, I'd pick one of the Rembrandts."

An opening reception for "The Collector's Show" will be held First Thursday, Jan. 3, 5-9 p.m. Brown's Gallery, 1022 Main St., 208-342-6661.

The Sitting Public Art Tour

Take a tour of Boise's public art from the comfort of your own backside with a cup of hot cocoa in your hands. The City of Boise hosts a public art walking tour year round through the city that serves as a behind-the-scenes look at the art and artists who create Boise's public art, as well as to provide information to artists hoping to make their own contributions. This month, however, because the weather is icky (yep, that's a technical term), the city has put together a PowerPoint presentation for a digital walking tour of Boise's collection. Learn about Amy Westover's Grove Street Illuminated and Marilyn Lysohir's Spring Run, among many, and if you've ever wondered just what was the inspiration for Alison Sky's steaming neon River Sculpture, now is your chance to ask.

Guests artists will be present to talk about their work, the concept, how it was created and how it was funded. In addition, there will be plenty of information on how artists can get involved in a project of their own by learning about the city's application process, funding opportunities and the general selection process.

The hour-long presentation is from 6-7 p.m. at Boise City Hall, 150 N. Capital Blvd., For more information, visit CityOfBoise.org.

Low-fi In store

Since releasing their debut album, Where Are You, earlier this year, Low-Fi has been getting rave reviews from BW's own Amy Atkins, as well as making appearances all over town. Their brand of Northwest indie-rock has them on the shelves at Tully's as the coffee shop's local guest artists, and Urban Outfitters will be hosting the band as part of their big-box approach to supporting the local community. Low-Fi takes the stage at 6:30 p.m. First Thursday to put on a free in-house performance at the clothing store.

Urban Outfitters, 328 S. Eighth St., 208-344-9900.

Trot on over

Just a hop, skip and a jump away from downtown proper is the Linen District's newest addition, Foxtrot Style For Living. After last month's pre-holiday grand opening, it's time for Foxtrot to get into the swing of First Thursday, despite being just beyond the formal boundaries of downtown. In addition to some pretty fabulous duds and accessories (this writer coveted no less than four pairs of shoes in her first four minutes in the store), local artists are displaying work on the walls, the racks and a random table or two. Litsa Manolis has work on canvas, as well as knitted creations for sale. Tyler Bush's fantastical clay sculptures and pop-art prints will be on display. And both Gretchen Fitzgerald and Chelsea Durham are also featured artists. Stop in for a shop around the store and an artist's reception tonight.

Foxtrot Style For Living, 1419 W. Grove St., 208-344-0979.

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