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Medford artists open their doors

Posted by Alix Roy  May 7, 2010 08:04 AM

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Seventy West Medford artists have spent the past few weeks preparing for the city's annual open studios event, which kicks off on Saturday in 29 locations around town.

For many, the two-day event is an excuse to organize their portfolio, create new pieces, and maybe do a little spring cleaning around the house. Over 20 artists will open their homes to the public from noon until 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and talk with friends, neighbors, and fellow artists.

“It's a nice small very neighborly kind of open studios,” said local photographer Will Tenney, who became involved with the event nine years ago. “For me, it's an opportunity to talk to people about my work, to describe what I'm doing and bounce some ideas off them.”

In past years, Tenney has shown his travel photography in some of the public spaces included on the tour, including Brooks Elementary School. This year, he'll be hosted by a friend at a more central location on Monument Street. As always, the weekend has been healthy motivation for Tenney, who tries to produce a new collection of work every year.
 
“It's been an interesting thing for me because I've been developing more by doing this,” he said. “Each spring there's a rush to get ready for the open studios.”

Collage artist and professional organizer Jennifer Hunter, who is gearing up for her second year on the Medford Open Studio circuit, said she's hoping for a good turnout this weekend and has put up collage signs to guide visitors to her residence on Circuit Street.
 
“It helps me in many ways,” Hunter said of the event. “It encourages me to make more art plus I get to meet more of my neighbors.”

This year, Hunter has invited local jewelers Loren and Deanne Wherry to share her space, and plans to set up a collage station for the public to experiment with the medium.
 
“I love getting compliments on my art and having people talk about it and tell me how they feel about it,” she said.

The West Medford Open Studios runs from noon until 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 8 and Sunday, May 9. For a map of artist locations click here or visit the Medford Public Library, City Hall, or local retail stores.

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