Art Center Happenings

Needle-felted gnomes peer into the Art Center gallery. Needle-felting is one of the fiber arts classes held at the Art Center during the Winter Fair.

Photo courtesy of LAC

We’re back. The Lewistown Art Center would like to thank Lewistown, again, for your patience as we get ourselves up and running in the new year. We have a newly reorganized Hands on Art classroom, Ken Edwards Ceramic Studio, a freshly painted gallery (underneath all of those quilts), and a newly catalogued permanent collection. Stop by and take a look around. We worked hard to create a creative space for you, your little ones and our community. We can’t wait to welcome you back for Hands on Art, Social Night, Clay Club or another event.


Quilt and fiber art

exhibitions, classes

If this weather isn’t enough to remind you, the Montana Winter Fair is this weekend, and the LAC is hosting the Quilt and Fiber Art Exhibitions. Stop by before 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 27, to see us absolutely covered with quilts, blankets, sweater vests and socks from talented Montana makers. This exhibition is brief, so be sure not to miss it.

In addition to showcasing the best in textile art, the Montana Winter Fair is an excellent opportunity to try your hand at some quilting or fiber arts yourself. Class schedules are listed below and space is still available. Call the Lewistown Art Center at 535-8278 to reserve your spot now.

On Friday, Jan. 26, we’ll host an all-day Beginning Tatting workshop with Cherilee Martin from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and a Paper Piecing class for quilters with Shawna Crawford and Gerri Campbell from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. On Saturday, Jan. 27, try Needle Felting (these cute gnomes) with Jane Lund (10 a.m.-5 p.m.), make Greeting Cards with Julie Norman from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. (noon), or try Beginning Drop Spindle Spinning (also with Julie Norman) from 1-5 p.m.


Central Montana woodworker’s exhibition, February

This winter is a celebration of craft at the Lewistown Art Center. Following this fabulous display of quilts and fiber art, the Margie Wilkins Gallery will showcase some of the West’s finest woodworking in the form of furniture and functional art from Harry Felton and Jesse Ferguson. The exhibition will open on Friday, Feb. 1, at 5:30 p.m. Join us for the opening reception until 7:30 p.m. for complementary wine and cheese, and to hear the makers speak about their work and process.


Hands on Art, 

Adult Clay Club resuming soon

We know it’s not February yet, but we are so excited to have our artists back at the Lewistown Art Center. We always work on our educational initiatives (keep your eyes peeled for more adult classes this spring), and we’re delighted to reintroduce our growing artists to a new classroom. Hands on Art is for artists in kindergarten–sixth-grade, and runs on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:30-5 p.m. There is a small fee for classes, and punch cards available for an extra bargain.

Thursday nights at 6:30 p.m., beginning Feb. 8, are Adult Clay Club meetings in the Ken Edwards Ceramic Studio. This casual club is perfect for folks looking to try clay for the first time, or experienced ceramicists looking for a space to create. We have equipment for hand building, pinch pots, wheel throwing and so much more. Experienced makers will be on hand to help you troubleshoot, and Clay Club attendees are welcome to bring beverages and snacks to share. Call the LAC or email us at to ask about fees, facilities or other questions.


Director’s note

Anyone who knows me will tell you that craft is particularly close to my heart. After my undergraduate degree in ceramics, I pursued a master’s in art history, emphasizing in craft. Ask me about “craftivism” (activist craft) and my face will light up. I’m delighted to host the craft of Central Montana for the next few months in the LAC.

One of my favorite things about craft is its ability to pull “double duty.” Craft fulfills a functional need in our lives, the way a bowl holds food, a blanket keeps us warm, or furniture stands upright, but it also fulfills a communicative need. Craft has the ability to do and say something, at the same time.

Take, for example, one of the antique quilts on display here at the LAC, brought to the Winter Fair by Bill Steele, whose grandmother finished it around 1902. In addition to looking warm and cozy (functional), this stitched quilt contains entire narratives, symbols and meaning. Stitched objects like bottles, keys, glasses, and a bow and arrow rest on different patches of fabric, between names and dates creating a record of a young family in the West at the turn of the century. Far more than just “functional,” this piece of art reflects themes of family, time, memory and experience for viewers more than 100 years later.


The Lewistown Art Center promotes art, art education and art appreciation in Central Montana. Regular hours are Tuesday – Friday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission is always free. Join the “ArtWorks” volunteer group on the second Tuesday of each month, at 9 a.m. to support the Art Center in accomplishing its mission. New members and volunteers are always welcome; for information call 535-8278.


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