The 2nd Friday ARTabout is a monthly event coordinated by the Chico Visual Arts Alliance (ChiVAA). This event rotates between three Chico neighborhoods—Uptown, Downtown, and South of the Post Office (SOPO). From 5 to 8 pm each 2nd Friday, artists will cluster around galleries, restaurants, and studios to welcome the public to a free evening of creative experiences.

PLEASE NOTE: Beginning in September 2014, 2nd Friday ARTabout hours year-round will be 4-7 pm!

Look for information about upcoming ARTabouts in the Chico Enterprise Record or email The maps are published in the E-R the Sunday and Thursday prior to the second Friday ARTabout.

Also, visit us ARTabout Chico  and Chico Visual Arts on Facebook. Don’t forget to tweet @IamChiVAA #artaboutchico.

Next Up – August 8, 2014 – SOPO!

2nd Friday ARTabout map for SOPO at the Junction, August 8, 2014, 5-8 pm

Shown above is the August 8 ARTabout map published in the Enterprise-Record Sunday August 3 and Thursday August 7.  For your convenience, click here ARTabout SOPOAug8-2014 to download for an easy-to-read printable version (with a white background). This month’s ARTabout neighborhood, SOPO (South of the Post Office) focuses on “The Junction,” a historic building at a historic crossroads in a historic neighborhood!

Tom Barrett, The Junction, photograph

Tom Barrett, The Junction, photograph

Participating in this month’s SOPO ARTabout are Chico All Fired Up, the 1078 Gallery, Iron Mountain Leather, and PFC Lighting.  PFC Lighting is a hugely popular artisan’s resource whose owner Robert O’Neal this month displays his own art alongside that of Dan Parks and the inimitable Claudia Howell.  Next door at Iron Mountain Leather, you’ll find a leather craft demonstration and locally made reproductions of Plains Indian artwork.

1078 Gallery, Annual Garage Sale Preview Party!

Then, next door at the 1078 Gallery, you’ll find a Preview Party in full swing where you can do a little early-bird shopping for the annual fundraising Garage Sale that takes place Saturdy August 9, from 8 to 2 pm.  Donations are accepted Thursday August 7, 1-6 pm, as well as the very day of the ARTabout, August 8, from 1 to 5!  If you get there early, you’ll be sure to get some treasures! Plus, there’ll be refreshments and live musical entertainment!

Next door and co-sponsored by the 1078, you won’t want to miss this super-special fundraiser celebration of art and community at Chico All Fired Up!  The “Dessert for a Cause” is a special way for you to support the arts. Attendees will purchase a handmade ceramic bowl, fill it with ice cream and toppings, and enjoy live music by Aaron Jaqua.

Dessert for a Cause, a fundraiser for Chico All Fired Up, co-sponsored by the WTC

The ice cream is provided by non other than Chico’s prize-winning Shubert’s Ice Cream.  Best of all, the bowls, priced $5.00 – $15.00, were made by the crew, staff, and members of Chico All Fired Up, the new Work Training Center, Inc, program which serves adults with developmental disabilities. Proceeds from sales directly support Chico All Fired Up, a unique training and work environment where participants learn and execute the artistic, technical, and commercial aspects of ceramic production and retail service.  Sculpture, yard art, and other pottery made by the Work Training Center crew and artist members of the clay studio will also be available for sale during the evening. Paint-Your-Own Pottery and retail store will be open for business.

 July 11, 2014 – Downtown!

Below is the July 11 ARTabout map.  Make sure you print it out (a printable version is here: Downtown July 2014-Printable) and create for yourselves a little itinerary to ensure you don’t miss anything.

This month, there are 5 venues participating and, as always, it’s sweet!  Starting at the Chico Art Center, there’ll be a final opportunity to view the fabulous “Sal Casa Retrospective.” Then visitors will have an opportunity to create small tile mosaics with the dedicated folks of the CAC.

Another amazing, not-to-miss opportunity, is to stop by the James Snidle Fine Arts Gallery, 254 E. 4th Street to pay tribute to the memory of a fine California funk artist, David Gilhooly.  The art on view and available is from his estate.

At Art Etcetera, there’s the fine photography of Richard Verkuyl in the window and inside, all manner of art including some by Carol Preble-Miles and of course the signature arts-and-crafts-era-inspired prints and tiles by Dave Simcox.

Last but not least, upstairs at 142 W. 2nd Street (between Broadway and Main, almost above the Beach Hut), there’s two studios. In Suite D, you’ll find new ChiVAA member Jim Williams (recently moved back to Chico). Jim is a painter and draughtsman who relishes distorting perspective and spaces of everyday objects and exploits the use of light in his work.

In Suite C, Maria Phillips will be joined by Candy Matthews and 5 grandchildren who will be there making art. They’re calling this “Come Play with Us!” and they welcome children of all ages to join in the activities.

All these places offer refreshments and it’s all free to visitors. Downtown is always fun!

ARTabout DowntownJuly2014

Would you like to participate in the ARTabout and have your venue added to the 2nd Friday Map?

Email and provide the following information: Business/ Organization/ Artist Name, Contact Name, Contact Phone, Contact Email, Address of Event, and a few lines about what you are doing that night and what you or your organization is all about.

Below are some examples of previous neighborhood maps (Downtown and SOPO):

 Friday, April 11, 2014, Summer Hours: 5-8 pm

Downtown ARTabout map, April 11, 2014

Downtown ARTabout map, April 11, 2014

Here’s the map, hot off the presses!  It will also be published in the Sunday April 6 in the  E-R and will also be in the Thursday April 10 edition. Participants this time include the Chico Art Center where you can enjoy a beautiful exhibit showing 4 artists in the new Discovery Series: Phil Dynan and Ana Nelson (painters), Jim Woronow (sculptor), and Marianne Werner (photographer).  In addition to this, in Classroom 1, they are having their first ever PAINTabout where people can get a canvas and paint to their heart’s content!  If it’s high school or junior high students doing the painting, they get to put their art in the upcoming “Creative Fusion” show.  If not, then they can pay $5 and get to take their work home.  At the Turner Gallery on the Chico State Campus, there’s a spectacular exhibit commemorating the centennial of Janet Turner’s birth.  It’s “Angles and Planes: Janet Turner and the Built Environment.” Down the way, there’s the Bidwell Presbyterian Church giving a docent-led tour of work by seldom-seen Japanese Christian folk-artist Sadao Watanabe (1913-1996).  A book of his work is being carried by Lyon Books, the next participant on the tour across the way on Main Street where James Kuiper’s drawings are displayed.  Add to that, the welcoming atmosphere at the Second Street Studio (Sue Matheson, masterful printmaker, is being joined by Dolores Mitchell, well-loved painter of local scenes), the rich assortment of art by favorites Carol Preble-Miles, Lee Wright, and as always, Dave Simcox.  And who would miss the unique opportunity this month of seeing Mabrie Ormes’ terrific figure drawings.  Why unique?  Because this artist now lives in Ashland, Oregon, and we don’t get to see her work as often as we used to.

For a downloadable map you can print, please click ARTabout_Downtown_Apr_2014-Print.

Downtown is always fun! A great way to celebrate Spring!

Uptown ARTabout Map March 14, 2014

Uptown ARTabout Map March 14, 2014

February 14 ARTabout map, SOPO neighborhood

February 14 ARTabout map, SOPO neighborhood

You may not know that the very first ChiVAA ARTabout was is November of 2011 in the SOPO neighborhood. This was an idea waiting to happen – a new, improved, revised, reinvented monthly art tour that was tailored to fit Chico’s unique identity.  That’s when we invented the term ARTabout (a reference to the Australian aboriginal “walkabouts”) for a Chico version of an art walk. That’s also when we dreamed up the term SOPO (South of the Post Office) to demarcate an up-and-coming neighborhood, south of 5th Street, that has since been thriving and has already lived up to its quirky and cosmopolitan artsy reputation-in-the making. Uptown’s ARTabout too, encompassing the Chico vecino area and the Avenues between Mangrove and the Esplanade and parts North, has grown and is thriving, rich as it is with individual artist studios as well as art gallery and business spaces.

Read about past ARTabouts:

ARTabout Inspires Patrons” Juan Mejia The Orion, November 14, 2011