Two-Day #PleinAir Workshop with Award-Winning Artist, John P. Lasater IV, Coming September 2020

MUSEUM NEWS: Plein Air Painting Workshop with John Lasater IV, September 2 & 3, 2020

August 7, 2020

Join award-winning representational painter, John P. Lasater IV, for a 2-day Plein air painting workshop this September, hosted by the Harlin Museum.

Workshop activities begin Tuesday evening, September 1st, with an Artist Meet & Greet at Harlin Museum of West Plains (participants will be notified of event time upon registration confirmation) at which participants will view a presentation given by the artist. Students will then meet the artist on location at Mammoth Spring State Park, Mammoth Springs, Arkansas, for the Plein air instructional workshop sessions on Wednesday & Thursday, September 2 &3, 2020, from 9 am – 4 pm each day.

The cost to attend the workshop is $300.00 total for both days. Payment must be made in full to Harlin Museum by the first day of the workshop. Students are responsible for bringing their own art supplies to the workshop, as well as a bag lunch or any other desired refreshments. The general supply list for John’s workshops can be found on his website at https://www.lasaterart.com/page/17524/workshop-supply-list.

All questions may be directed to the Harlin Museum via email at info@harlinmuseum.com or you may phone/text the workshop’s coordinator, Vicki Warren-Martin, at 870-706-7863.  Registration to reserve a seat may be completed online by clicking the link HERE and completing the Bookings instructions at the bottom of the page.


WORKSHOP VENUE/LOCATION: Mammoth Spring State Park, 17 US HWY 63, Mammoth Springs, AR 72554

LUNCH/REFRESHMENTS: Students will need to bring their own drinking water, bag lunch, and/or other refreshments

INSTRUCTOR: John P. Lasater IV

WORKSHOP HOURS: 9 am to 4 pm both days

SUBJECT: Plein air painting instruction

COST: $300.00 per person, total, for both days

REQUIRED SUPPLIES: View the basic supply list for John’s workshops on his website HERE.

POINTS OF CONTACT:
Museum Desk, (417) 256-7801, info@harlinmuseum.com
Vicki Warren-Martin, (870) 706-7863,  v.martin@harlinmuseum.com 

Before the Catron, there was the Grand #OperaHouse…..

Original Opening Ball Invitation; Grand Opera House, West Plains, MO, November 1885

DISCOVER YOUR OZARKS: West Plains Grand Opera House

August 3, 2020

Written & Photographed by V. Warren-Martin

In its illustrious history, West Plains, Missouri has seen many of its citizens come and go—and with every departure, tokens of this notorious Ozarks town have gone along for the journey. As luck would have it, one extremely rare such token found its way back to where it’s origin story began.

It showed up in the museum’s mailbox with a postmark from San Bernadino, CA, where it had ended up in the hands of the Needles Regional Museum in Needles, California, a mere 1,452 miles away from its’ Southern Missouri home. Inside, tucked between two vintage postcards, was an original invitation to an Opening Ball at the Grand Opera House, West Plains, Missouri, dated Friday Evening, November 6, 1885.


In 1885, West Plains was well on its way to becoming one of the storied boomtowns that developed out of the transcontinental US railroad construction of the late 19th Century. The Kansas City, Fort Scott and Memphis Railway Company arrived in West Plains in 1883 and brought with it, over the next several years, a deluge of people looking for opportunity and community in the now more readily-accessible midwest.

While many of us who grew up in West Plains are aware of the beautifully restored building widely known as the Catron Opera House, built in 1893 for O.H.P. Catron & Thomas Johnson, there is little knowledge to be found regarding the Grand Opera House.

It is recalled to have been located on the 200 Block of E. Main St., approximately in the current location of the Historic Post Office’s eastside parking lot. During its time, it is said that the building was occupied by a machine shop on the first floor, with the theater-like Opera House space upstairs—later, McFarland’s Undertaking would occupy space in the same building. While it’s highly unlikely that the Grand ever hosted an actual opera performance, as the term opera house was a common name in those days for any large theater-like space where the citizens could gather, it is likely that with the population hub West Plains became in that era, such a space would have been the setting for many a community event, performance, dance, meeting, and celebration as the first such space of its kind in West Plains, MO.


The front cover of the once folded 4 ¾” x 3 ½” ivory invitation, now in two separate pages that both still feature the finest line of gold-gilded splendor along the outside edges of the paper, announces in a red and black mixture of plain font and occasionally elaborate script,

Front Cover of Grand Opera House Opening Ball Invitation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Closeup of front cover shows the printer’s mark for Gazette Steam Print

Below the decorative typeface, in the bottom lefthand corner of the invitation’s cover page in tiny, plain type is the faded printer’s mark:

Gazette Steam Print

 

 

 

 

 


Inside Front Cover of Grand Opera House Opening Ball Invitation

The inside pages of the invitation feature, on one side, the names of the multiple committee members who played a part in organizing the ball that November night. Many prominent and long-standing Howell County family names appear on the function’s Committee List of those who came together to provide their neighbors, family, and friends with a night of music, dancing, and merriment:

R.G. Green, J.W. Arbogast, J.W. Simms, J.H. Chandler, J.H. McFarland, J.P. Harlin, J.B. Tillman, W.K.Davis, O.A. Shuttee, T. F. Drew, W.T. Smith, J. Hirsh, JNO. Smith, F.G. Whitney, JAS Lewis, G. Humphreys, Bert Cremeens, W.B. Green, W.T. Harlin, M.B. Chandler, T.P. Woodworth, C.H. Humphreys, F.E. Parker, & J.H. Fredrick.

 

 

 


Inside Back Page of Grand Opera House Opening Ball Invitation

Also included, on the facing inside page, can be found the order in which the many different types of dances planned for the evening would be played:

  1. Quadrille
  2.  Schottische
  3. Quadrille
  4. Varsovienne
  5. Quadrille
  6. Waltz
  7. Schottische
  8. Quadrille
  9. Polka
  10. Quadrille
  11. Waltz
  12. Quadrille
  13. Schottische
  14. Quadrille
  15. Opera Reel
  16. Quadrille
  17. Waltz
  18. Polka
  19. Waltz
  20. Quadrille
  21. Waltz
  22. Quadrille
  23. Schottische
  24. Varsovienne
  25. Quadrille
  26. Home Waltz

A truly intriguing artifact whose overall good condition certainly belies the many years that have passed between the time it was originally printed and now!  And, while we have yet to find any additional records pertaining to the era of activity regarding the Grand Opera House of West Plains, we know there are likely some out there—and we encourage you to let us know what you find!!.

We are certainly grateful for this long-kept and well-preserved piece of history that gives us a glimpse into our town during one of its most abundant periods of growth, promise, and hope. May the West Plains spirit of community that those citizens celebrated 135 years ago remain alive in our hearts, today and always.

 

Post-publication note:

With the assistance of Sarah Wittenauer over at FGS-Surveyors / Riggs & Associates, Inc., we have found the location of the Grand Opera House platted on a June 1893 map of downtown West Plains, MO, located in the University of Missouri’s Digital Library archive. It shows the building to be located due east of the spring (now located beneath the Historic Post Office building) with a machine shop on the 1st floor and the opera house on the 2nd, across the street, and up from the Commercial Hotel.

 

Youth Art Camp Session Dates Announced for Summer 2020

As public spaces reopen and we all begin the transition to our new normal, we have decided to dip our toes in the proverbial waters by announcing dates for our upcoming 2020 Youth Summer Art Camp sessions with Ginny Thomason. This will be an ideal opportunity for us to start small as we work towards reopening for public events and gallery shows.

The camp will have two sessions, Tuesday through Thursday, 10 am – 12 pm, on June 30th – July 2nd, 2020 and then again on July 21st – 23rd, 2020. The cost to attend is $10 / camper per day (snack and supplies included) and pre-registration is required; please register for the first session by June 29th.

To register your camper or for more information, please contact our Art Camp instructor, Ginny Thomason, at 417-257-3987 or email her at grace2u@centurylink.net.

Due to the current ongoing public health issue with Coronavirus, extra safety precautions will be taken to protect all attendees in accordance with the guidelines given by health authorities and #westplainsmo officials. We encourage all patrons to approach us with any concerns so that we may serve you better and make your experience a positive one.

We look forward to seeing you all again!!

COVID 19 Quarantine Delays Harlin’s Spring Art Show

Due to the current guidelines in effect for public safety during the coronavirus/COVID 19 quarantine, we are temporarily postponing the Harlin Museum’s 2020 Spring Art Show until we are safely able to open to the public. As soon as safety protocol allows for public gatherings, we will return to our calendar of shows & exhibits as planned. This means that we will NOT be accepting entries for the SPring ARt Show today.

Please watch our website and social media pages for further announcements regarding rescheduled entry dates and show dates—and also be sure to sign up for our informational emails regarding future museum events!  To sign up, simply send an email to info@harlinmuseum.com with the subject line “Add Me” to receive future notifications about museum events, exhibits, and workshops.

We ask that everyone stay safe and please look after one another during this difficult time for our community–and continue to allow art to inspire you.  We look forward to seeing what you’ve been working on while you’ve been at home!

The Lost Arts Workshop Series Debuts at the Harlin with Basket-Weaving Workshop by Michelle Werther

       

The Lost Arts Workshop Series, a new series of workshops sponsored by the Harlin Museum that focus on artisan skills and crafts from simpler times, debuted this weekend on Saturday, February 22nd in the Harlin’s lower-level classroom area. The workshop, taught by instructor Michelle Werther from Protem, MO, was a limited-seating workshop.

Five area ladies came to learn how to use rattan and oak to create a small market basket with a typical basket-weave method. The workshop, which cost $40 and included all the supplies for the price, began at 10 am and ended with five happy participants that leFt with lovely market baskets that they created themselves.

The Lost Arts Series will continue with other planned workshops, including Canning From Your Garden, Leather Working, Black-Smithing, Broom-making, etc, plus additional basket-weaving workshops. Watch our social media and website for future workshop announcements and let us know what kinds of workshops you’d like to see in this series!

Upcoming Entry Dates for Annual High School Art Show Competition & Young Artist Showcase

The Harlin Museum Board of Directors announces the upcoming entry dates for their 2020 High School Art Show Competition as being this Friday, February 7th (12 pm – 6 pm) and Saturday, February 8th (12 pm – 4 pm). In addition to these regular entry dates, the board will be allowing late entries on Sunday, February 9th (12 pm – 4 pm) for an additional entry fee of $5.00 per entry piece.

The competition, which is open to all public, private, and home-schooled high school students of the Southern Missouri & Northern Arkansas Ozarks region, limits 2 pieces of artwork per artist with an entry fee of $5.00 per entry. Prizes for Best of Show and 1st, 2nd, & 3rd places, plus Honorable Mentions, will be awarded in each category, along with prize money amounts; categories will be determined by the types of entries received. An Artists’ Reception will be held on February 29 from 5 pm-7 pm with food, drinks, and music during which awards will be handed out. All friends, family, and the public at large are invited to attend.

Artists can find guidelines for the competition at HERE or at the museum. All entries will need to be brought to the museum on one of the entry dates and artists will need to fill out an entry form in order to be eligible for prizes.

In conjunction with the High School Show, the museum board will also be hosting the Young Artist Showcase for artists younger than high school age. Parents/teachers/guardians may bring their young artist’s work to the museum for the display on any of the High School Show entry dates. There are no content/size guidelines or framing requirements for the showcase; these pieces will not be part of the competition portion of the show and will not be awarded prizes, however, certain pieces may be chosen for the honor of becoming fundraising postcards for the museum’s gift shop (with permission of the artist/artist’s guardian).

The Harlin’s Annual High School Art Show Competition & Young Artist Showcase will be on display in the Hathcock Gallery from February 13 – March 1st.

For more information, please contact the Museum Desk at (417) 256-7801 or follow the link above to the competition guideline page for Points of Contact info (at the bottom of the guideline page).

2020 Quilting & Textile Art Competition Show on display until February 9th

The 2020 Quilting and Textile Arts Competition Show is now underway at the Harlin Museum. The exhibit, which is open to the public with free admission, is a gallery show featuring both the competition quilts and textile art pieces entered by contestants from all around the Ozarks. The display also includes historic textile pieces from the museum’s permanent collection and a few new pieces on loan from private quilt & textile collectors of the area.

Textiles have long been an important part of history in the Ozarks, from raising animals for their fiber to carding, spinning, and weaving those fibers into beautiful pieces of wearable art, household bedding, and other miscellaneous textile items. Each piece tells a story of the heritage, history, accomplishment, and relationships of the maker while also serving many useful and practical purposes.

Historic textile pieces exhibited in this year’s show include a friendship quilt made by the employees of the International Shoe Company that was gifted to a co-worker on the occasion of her retirement, two quilts made by groups that met at Grimmett School on the old Siloam Springs route near Pomona, MO., as well as several quilts completed by various local church groups over the years and donated to the museum’s permanent collection, and even one quilt that made it all the way home from the front lines of the Civil War.

The competition portion of the Harlin’s annual show was expanded this year from the existing adult division to include a youth division for textile artists age 17 and younger. This decision was prompted both by a recent change in leadership at the museum and by the donation of a memorial award to the museum by the Mark Warren Family of Pomona, Missouri.  The Carrie A. Warren-Gentry Talent in Textile Arts Memorial Award recognizes excellence in youth who show talent in the textile arts, a life-long passion of the award’s namesake who passed away in 2010. This award, which includes a one-hundred-dollar prize to the top winner of the youth division, is now a permanent addition to the museum’s textile show.


Out of the 14 entrants to the competition this year, there were 12 entries to the Adult Division and 12 entries to the youth division. The award for Best of Show went to Alma Pruett of Cabool, MO for her Blue Stack & Wack quilt entry. In the Adult Division, Quilting Category, 1st place went to Dee Graham of Pomona, MO for her purple Heart entry; 2nd place to Kaye Huff of West Plains, MO for her entry named Tranquility; 3rd place also went to Alma Pruett for her quilt, Light & Dark Christmas; and a Special Merit Award was given to Gena Stout of West Plains, MO for her entry, Shibori Indigo Quilt, whose quilt squares were embellished using the Shibori method, a unique Japanese dyeing technique. In the Textile Arts Category, 1st place went to Gena Stout of West Plains, MO for her knitted garment, Transformational Wrap; 2nd place went to Geraldine Richardson of Houston, MO for her embellished wall hanging, Butterfly Spring; 3rd place went to Gena Stout for her handwoven tunic, Purple Passion; and an Honorable Mention also went to Mrs. Stout for her handwoven rug entry, Sentimental Memories, a rug woven from men’s neckties that the artist collected from her grandfather, father, husband, and son. A second Honorable Mention was awarded to Angela Bullard of West Plains, MO for her felted wool landscape, Fuchsia Sky.

In the Youth Division, the top winner of the Warren-Gentry Memorial Award went to Alexis McGhee of West Plains, MO for her quilt entry, Cats; 1st place in the Quilting Category went to Olivia Wood of Willow Springs, MO for her quilt, Rosebud; and 2nd place went to Myles McGhee of West Plains, MO for his entry, The Farm Quilt. In the Youth Division, Textile Arts Category, 1st place was awarded to Jackson Hufstedler of West Plains, MO for his crocheted entry, Americana Infant Blanket; 2nd place went to Clark Martin of West Plains, MO for his entry, Patchwork Pillow; 3rd place went to Lily Dixon of West Plains, MO for her embroidered handmade garment, Flower Apron; an Honorable Mention went to Rylee Brown of West Plains, MO for her crocheted Hat #1 and a second Honorable Mention went to Gabby Voshell of West Plains, MO for her entry, Rag Skirt.

Prizes will be awarded to the winners of the competition at the artist’s reception during Gala Night at the Museum from 5 pm-7 pm on Saturday, February 8, 2020. Gala Night will feature food, drinks, live music by Sean McCormick, and a wool spinning demonstration by the Harlin’s featured Artist of the Month, Mary Palmer-Scott of Mary’s Little Lambs. All are encouraged to attend.

The Harlin Museum’s 2020 Quilting & Textile Arts Competition Show is on display in the museum’s Hathcock Gallery until Sunday, February 9th.

The Harlin Museum Board of Directors Announces the Election of New Officers

The Harlin Museum is pleased to announce the addition of two new officers to its board of directors following their officer elections at the December board meeting.

To the office of President of the Board of Directors, board members elected West Plains resident and former board Vice President, Vicki Warren-Martin.  Ms. Martin, a board member since 2018, operates her own freelance media marketing service and is also the museum’s IT Manager and PR Coordinator. Her interests include art, photography, regional & world history, and philanthropy.

To the office of Vice President of the Board of Directors, members elected West Plains resident Cleo Cockrum, Ed.D. Ms. Cockrum, a board member since 2018, has a doctorate in Developmental Education Administration and also serves as the museum’s Gallery Manager. Her interests include quilting and textile arts, local history, personal genealogical study, and spending time with her friends & family.

The offices of Board Secretary and Board Treasurer continue to be occupied by Ms. Septembre (Temi) Lasater, a board member since 2018. Ms. Lasater is a life-long Ozarks resident and a graduate of SMSU-WP with a cow-calf operation in Howell County. Her interests include local/regional history, folkways, and genealogical research. She is also an active member of the Ozarks Chapter of the Missouri Archaeological Society.

Please join us in congratulating these ladies on their newly-elected positions!  

If you are interested in volunteering at the museum or in joining the Harlin Museum Board, please send an email to the board with “VOLUNTEER REQUEST” in the subject line and send it to the following email address: info@harlinmuseum.com.

Or you may contact the museum at (417) 256-7801; please leave a message with your name and contact information regarding your request.

 

Entry Dates Announced for Harlin Museum’s 44th Annual Fall Art Show Competition

The Harlin Museum is pleased to announce that the entry dates for the 2019 Annual Fall Art Show Competition will be Friday & Saturday, September 13th & 14th, from 12 pm – 4 pm in the museum’s Hathcock Gallery (upper level). Please see the entry guidelines to ensure that all entries adhere to the show’s standard. The museum also announces that the minimum required age to enter has been dropped to 16 years old and older this year, opening this more professional art show to a younger age group than ever before,

 

 

Friday Night Is For Downtown Stroll On The Square

The Harlin Museum will be open special hours this Friday evening, July 12th, from 12 pm until 8 pm, as a part of the Downtown Stroll On the Square. This is an event sponsored by West Plains Downtown Revitalization, a non-profit effort whose mission is to encourage patronage of businesses located in West Plains’ downtown district around the town’s historic Courthouse Square. Visitors will have the opportunity to take in Hathcock Gallery’s current art exhibit, “Harlin Museum presents: The Permanent Collection,” while enjoying complimentary drinks & hors d’oeuvres. This event is free and open to the public. Come peruse the selection of the specialty stores on the square, take in the eclectic Permanent Collection at the museum, and end your evening over a cup of joe and a pastry at 10/40 Coffee. We’ll see you there!