Sometimes serving as mayor can seem like a pretty dull job, but at least once a year things get colorful for these public servants when Lincoln County mayors get to look at work made by local artists, and honor some of them by selecting them for a special annual show the Newport Visual Arts Center.

A First Saturday opening reception on Saturday, Jan. 4 from 2 to 5 pm, with a speaking presentation at 3 pm, will help introduce the eleven artists chosen for this 2020 Mayor’s Show, which will continue through Sunday, Jan. 26 in the Runyan Gallery.

The artists were selected from 120 Lincoln County artists who participated in the 2019 PushPin Show in December. Final selections were made in consultation with Newport Mayor Dean Sawyer, Yachats Mayor John Moore and OCCA VAC Director Tom Webb.

The featured artists include Linda Aguirre (miniature dioramas), Haley Dean (watercolor still lifes), Denise DeMarie (fibre wall sculptures), Graece Gabriel (photography), Sallie Inman (acrylic on wood panels), Susan Jones (woven reed sculptures), Herb Kateley (photography), Bill Posner (photography), Ben Soeby (mixed media on wood), Emy Syrop (gouache and acrylic on paper and canvas) and Jeff Syrop (watercolor and gouache on paper).

“Being selected for the Mayors’ Show highlights the VAC’s ability to inspire artists,” says Jeff Syrop. “The inclusiveness of the PushPin Show really jump-starts artists’ creativity and the Mayors’ Show is an extension of that energy. It’s definitely an honor to be included.”

The 2020 exhibition marks the fifth year for The Mayors’ Show at the VAC. The project was started in 2016 by former Newport Mayor Sandra Roumagoux and the Oregon Council for the Arts. The exhibit’s intent is to give more exposure to participating PushPin Show artists and to build connections between municipal employees and elected officials with the arts community.

“The talent in our local arts community is amazing and gets better with every new PushPin Show,” says Newport Mayor Dean Sawyer.

selected artist Susan Jones saw the Mayors’ Show last winter and considered the possibility of being selected for a future year.

“That singular thought strengthened my commitment to art and inspired the choices I made while weaving my sculptures over the past year,” she said. “I am excited and encouraged to be honored in this way by my community. We are fortunate to have this kind of support.”

The Runyan Gallery is open Tuesday through Sunday from 11 am to 5 pm.

For more information call 541-265-6569 or email

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