2nd Friday Art Walk to include Lights for Liberty vigil

Brent Smith looks at art at Whispering Willows Art Gallery during 2nd Friday Art Walk, Friday, Dec. 8, 2017, in Downtown Norman. Art Walk will be going on for a second night this evening after the Christmas parade. (Kyle Phillips / The Transcript)

This month’s 2nd Friday Art Walk will still contain the spirited celebration of art it’s known for, but brushstrokes painting a more somber picture will grace Main Street as well.

The Norman Arts Council’s monthly art walk will take place Friday from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Walker Arts District of downtown Norman and will coincide with a Lights for Liberty vigil held until 9:30 p.m. at STASH, 412 E. Main St.

“My main goal is to provide a moment for the community to come together to show our support for the cause of ending detention camps in the United States,” STASH co-owner Rebecca Bean said. “We’ve been so moved by the recent events on our border, that we at STASH felt like we … have a moral obligation to do what we can to shine our lights on this situation.”

Lights for Liberty vigils will take place Friday at over 500 locations nationwide to protest the conditions immigrants face in migrant detention centers.

“So many of us in our community have felt powerless, helpless … and just don’t know how to help,” Bean said. “So, when an event like this comes up, it’s such an answer to our heart’s desire to do something meaningful.”

Bean said she was most inspired by Lights for Liberty’s potential to place power in the hands of ordinary people.

“What I love about this particular event is … the way that it empowers regular people to do something,” Bean said. “If enough people do something and take action in a peaceful way, we know that change will come about.”

At 9 p.m., vigil guests will light lanterns and stand together to form the word "LOVE" with their lights. Drones flying overhead will capture the moment.

“We have all kinds of ordinary people from all walks of life wanting to do something,” Bean said. “It’s really beautiful to be a small part of providing a platform for regular folks to do extraordinary things.”

STASH will also have bands playing 6 to 8:30 p.m., materials to make protest posters and an auction with art pieces donated by two dozen local artists to raise money for Border Angels and other organizations supporting immigrants.

Donated artwork will include a limited edition skateboard deck by Steven Paul Judd and pottery by Christy Phelps.

Other Main Street studios including, The Depot Gallery, Whispering Willows Art Gallery, Gallery 123, MAINSITE Contemporary Art, Resonator Institute and Bigfoot Creative will have their own exhibits.

MAINSITE Contemporary Art studio will hold a reception celebrating the close of David Holland’s ‘The Skies Have It’ exhibition. STASH will feature vibrant works by its featured artist Natalie Miller, and The Depot Gallery will host an opening reception for its "Remembering Regina Murphy" exhibit.

Additionally, the Resonator Institute will showcase local artist Craig Swan’s "Part of a Part of a Story" collection.

“[It] is informed by heavy metal, religious altar pieces, ancient civilizations and mythological artifacts,” said Cher Duncan, 2nd Friday Art Walk programs manager. “The show will have pieces on paper, paintings, sculptures, prints and more.”

In continuation of its commitment to presenting work by female artists this year, Bigfoot Creative will feature its youngest artist yet: 9-year-old Brooklyn Thorpe.

“We just wanted to focus on different female artists of all ages and give them an opportunity to show here,” Bigfoot Creative owner Brad Webb said.

For a complete list of participating galleries and shops, visit https://www.2ndfridaynorman.com/.