Go ahead and put on a blindfold, grab the nearest globe and spin it. Then stop the globe’s rotation with with a finger and hold it there.
When the blindfold comes off and if the finger didn’t land on an ocean, chances are local artist Ivette Kjelsrud has either been there or lived there.
The well-traveled Kjelsrud has settled in Huson with her husband Matt, but getting there has been quite a journey.
She was born in Colombia and moved at the age of 3 to Guatemala. Five years later, Kjelsrud lived in Israel, where she entered the military at 17 before moving to England and Italy before finally settling in Montana.
“When I was 17 and lived in Israel I volunteered for the USO,” said Kjelsrud, now 39. “I kind of met this guy and visited him when I was 17. But then we lost contact, I went into the Israeli military and he did his stuff. Somewhere along my backpacking trip through Central America we reconnected on Facebook. Then he asked me to visit him and after going back and forth I decided to go and we fell in love and got married.”
That’s what landed Kjelsrud, whose mother has a B.A. in art, in western Montana in 2010 where she began painting again after dropping it in college.
Two years later, the self-taught Kjelsrud will show somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 of her contemporary abstract works through the month of August at the Artists’ Shop on North Higgins Avenue in Missoula, beginning with a First Friday exhibition and artist’s reception this Friday from 5-8 p.m.
“Every month we have a different artist, usually someone from western Montana and it changes very month,” said Artists’ Shop show publicity coordinator Ann Franke. “So it’s a pretty neat opportunity for up and coming artists to show their work. Mostly the 13 of us in the co-op look at the work and if we think it’s something that people will come into our shop and enjoy then we offer the artist the gallery space for the month.”
The majority of Kjelsrud’s work deals with landscapes, many of which were inspired by the trials of a self-described, warm-weather girl suffering through a Montana winter.
“I guess the art I’ve created helped me deal and cope with the winter weather here,” Kjelsrud said. “Many of my paintings are of butterflies and beaches and a lot of those were created in the winter. It’s me dreaming of a place and creating it in a painting.”
Not only is Kjelsrud extremely dedicated and passionate about her artwork, she’s also an animal lover. So much so, that Kjelsrud will be donating a portion of the proceeds from the show to AniMeals, a Missoula nonprofit no-kill adoption center and animal food bank.
She credits her female Labrador/husky cross named Blondie for the idea to benefit AniMeals.
“I love animals and especially my dog,” she said. “I think of her as my assistant when I’m painting because she’s always by my side when I work. I just got to thinking how lucky she is and how some unlucky other dogs are and I wanted to help.”
Though it’s her paintings that will be on display, as well as one hand-crafted cedar bench that was a joint effort between Kjelsrud and her husband, she’s sees herself as a multi-platform artist.
“I don’t only do paintings,” Kjelsrud said. “I do a lot of stuff, but I’ve been concentrating on painting more recently. I don’t limit myself to it and I think that comes with all the moving around and always being surrounded by a variety of life.”
Arlee/Jocko Valley Museum, corner of Bouch and Fyant streets, Arlee, 726-3167: Featured: “Contemporary American Indians in Montana” and “Immigrants from Around the World” plus a video “I’ll Ride that Horse,” about Montana women bronc riders. Other displays include a tribute to people who served in the armed forces along with old timers picture gallery and more. Artists’ reception, Aug. 10, 5-7 p.m. Hours: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Bigfork Museum of Art and History, 525 Electric Ave., Bigfork, (406) 837-6927: Featured Aug. 10-Sept. 29: Lael and Darrell Gray along with fellow artist Julie Wulf will show their recent works in “Metal, Silk, Canvas and Beyond.” Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, noon-5 p.m.
Ravalli County Museum, 205 Bedford St., Hamilton, 363-3338: “Science in Wonderland.” Plus Civil War display featuring artifacts from the military collections housed at Ravalli County Museum and on loan from local history buffs. See Civil War-era swords, uniforms, photos and more.
Missoula Art Museum, 335 N. Pattee St., 728-0447. Featured exhibitions: “Montana Triennial: 2012.” “Purple: Selections from MAM Collections” through Sept. 9. Raku ceramics exhibition featuring works from both the collections of MAM and the Clay Studio of Missoula through Aug. 12. Dwayne Wilcox, “Above the Fruited Plains” through Oct. 21. First Friday reception, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m. Museum hours Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Friday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Historical Museum at Fort Missoula, Building 322, 728-3476: Featured exhibits: “United We Will Win: World War II Posters that Mobilized a Nation,” “The Road to Today: 250 Years of Missoula County History,” and “Where Art and Army Met: Uniforms of the U.S. Army.” Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sundays, noon-5 p.m.
Hockaday Museum of Art, 302 Second Ave. E., Kalispell, (406) 755-5268: “Larry Blackwood: Elevations” through Sept. 1.
Montana Museum of Art and Culture, Meloy and Paxson galleries, PAR/TV Center, University of Montana, 243-2019. Featured through Aug. 25: “Cultural Homesteaders: Montana Institute of the Arts from the MMAC Permanent Collection” and “Edith Freeman: Montana Seasons.” Featured Sept. 6-Jan. 5: “Labor & Leisure: Impressionist and Realist Masterpieces from a Private Collection” and “Impressionism: Masterpieces on Paper.” Opening reception, Sept. 6, 5-7 p.m. Hours: Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, noon-3 p.m.; Friday, noon-6 p.m.
Art City, 407 W. Main St., Hamilton, 363-4764: Showing through Sept. 29, journal drawings and paintings by Meghan Hanson. Artist reception, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m. Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday or by appointment.
The Artists Shop, 304 N. Higgins Ave., 543-6393: In August: “Daydreaming in Color,” paintings by Ivette Kjelsrud. Artist reception, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m. Hours: Monday-Friday, 10 am.-6 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Brunswick Gallery, 223 W. Railroad St.: Featured Pattee Canyon Ladies Salon, a local group of artists, annual art exhibit, “2012 Studies from the Figure” Aug. 3, 2-8 p.m. (with opening reception at 5 p.m.); Aug. 4, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Aug. 6, noon-5 p.m. Exhibiting artists include Nancy Erickson, Stephanie Frostad, Kristi Hagar, Becki Johnson, Beth Lo, Leslie Millar, Shari Montana, Linda Tawny and Janet Whaley.
The Clay Studio of Missoula, 1106 Hawthorne St., 543-0509: In August: “Not Your Everyday Ritual,” works by Seth Green. Opening reception, Aug. 3, 5:30-9 p.m.
Dana Gallery, 248 N. Higgins Ave., 721-3154: Through Sept. 30: Second annual “Icons of the West: National Exhibition.” Artists include Robert Moore, Tom Gilleon, Theodore Waddell, Kevin Red Star, Oleg Stavrosky, Craig Tennant, David Hettinger, Brent Cotton, Wesley James Drake, Linda St. Clair, Steven Oiestad, Jeff Walker, Caleb Meyer, David Mensing, Michele Usibelli, Carol Spielman, Frank Hagel, R. David Wilson and A.M. Stockhill. July 12-Aug. 31: 10th annual “Paint Out!” exhibition featuring 20 of the West’s most acclaimed artists. Opening reception, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m. danagallery.com.
Hangin’ Art Gallery & Cafe, Highway 93 N., Arlee, 726-5005. Featured through Aug. 17: Killdeer Artisans Summer Show. Featured artist, Bonnie Tarses, “Talking Threads.”
Montana Art and Framing, 709 Ronan St., 541-7100: In August: sculpture in porcelain by Lisa Autio and animal portraits in oil by Joyce Koskenmaki. Opening First Friday, Aug. 3.
Monte Dolack Gallery, 139 W. Front St., 549-3248: First Friday, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m., the Monte Dolack Gallery and the Montana Music Educators Association premieres the newly commissioned fine art poster “Montana Music” by Dolack. Open weekdays 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Murphy-Jubb Fine Art, 210 N. Higgins Ave., 728-7050: In August: Kendahl Jan Jubb’s watercolor workshop show featuring paintings by Kendahl’s watercolor students. First Friday, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m. Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Ohrmann Museum and Gallery, two miles south of Drummond on Highway 1. Featuring paintings and sculptures by Bill Ohrmann.
Ponderosa Art Gallery, 944 Springhill Road, Hamilton, 375-1212: Featured Aug. 11-12: Fall Classics Show. Reception, Aug. 11, 1-5 p.m.
Purple Pomegranate, 222 Central Ave., Whitefish: In August: works by Louise Barker.
River’s Mist Gallery of Fine Art, 317 Main St., Stevensville, 777-0520: Featured through Sept. 4, acrylics, beadwork and painted furniture by mother/daughter duo Patricia Don Diego and GiGi Don Diego. Artists’ reception Friday, 6-9 p.m. Hours are 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Rocky Mountain School of Photography, 216 N. Higgins Ave., 543-0171: Through Oct. 31: “Lost & Found Montana” a multi-media exhibit by Jeremy Lurgio. Opening reception, Aug. 3, 5-8 p.m.
Upcycled, 517 S. Higgins Ave., 239-2538: Featured: local artist Tabitha Beard, who incorporates wood burning, painting and found wood. First Friday, Aug. 3, 5 p.m.
Art on view
Betty’s Divine, 521 S. Higgins Ave., 721-4777: First Friday, Aug. 3, featuring the artwork of both Courtney Blazon and Statriot Designs. Blazon makes drawings on paper (courtneyblazon.com). Statriot Designs announces, exclusively at Betty’s, a new shirt designed by Missoula artist and UM Fine Arts graduate Kari Workman.
Bridge Pizza, 600 S. Higgins Ave., 542-0002: Jay Rummel’s trilogy of prints, “Lady from Missoula County,” “Road to the Buffalo” and “When First Unto Came to this Country.” Monte Dolack’s original movie posters circa 1973.
Brooks and Browns, Holiday Inn Parkside: More than 30 pieces of trout art by Joe Jindrich and Christy Lynn Greene on display and for sale, 5 p.m. until closing. Live music by John Floridis and complimentary wine.
Butterfly Herbs, 232 N. Higgins Ave.,728-8780: Featured through August: “Bones and Skin,” nudes by photographer Jennifer Johnson. Reception, Aug. 3 beginning at 5 p.m.
Clark Fork Valley Hospital, Plains, 544-6654: Featured through Sept. 25: “Art on the Walls.” Original art by new and returning artists including Charlotte Beaudry, Valerie Curtiss, Andrew Gonzalez, Rachel Gonzalez, Sherrie Johnson, Joe Sheppard, Karen Thorson, and Douglas Wilks.
Daly Mansion, 251 Eastside Highway, Hamilton, 363-6004: Featured through September: “Montana Portraits” exhibit.
Downtown Dance Collective, 121 W. Main St., 541-7240: In August: exhibit of about 35 instructors of Downtown Dance Collective including headshots by local photographers. Aug. 3, 5-7 p.m.
Families First Children’s Museum, 225 W. Front St., 541-7529: First Friday, Aug. 3, 5-7 p.m., featuring artwork by Dale Beckman and interactive art displays provided by the ZACC.
Garden Mother Herbs, 345 W. Front St.: First Friday, Aug. 3, 5-9 p.m. Featuring Rachel Hauser, acrylics, mixed media, surreal, colorful, Darrin art; Julie Hoffman, abstract monoprint finger paints on manila paper; Eugene Heavy Runner with Karen Kapi (Coffee), Native American beadwork, traditional dress and bone work; Tom Goddard, rubber band art; Emma Albers, knitted art necklaces and headbands, and Bill Ries, fantasy art. Music by Angela Chaney and Hippie Family Jam.
Montana Natural History Center, 120 Hickory St., 327-0405: First Friday, Aug. 3, 4:30-6:30 p.m., featuring “Mirrors on Wood” works by Sam Case.
One Eleven Boutique, 111 N. Higgins Ave., 541-7376: First Friday, Aug. 3, featuring Jeff Pernell’s latest series of gunpowder artwork.
Russell Smith Federal Courthouse Public Gallery, 201 E. Broadway, second floor: Through Aug. 31: “Color on the Landscape,” new acrylics by Nancy Seiler. Gallery hours: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
VonCommon Studio: Radio Central Building, Suite 316, 127 E Main St., Missoula: Gallery opening First Friday, Aug. 3, and Wednesday, Aug. 15. “The Super Show at VonCommon,” featuring super-hero inspired artwork by Marlo Crocifisso, Courtney Blazon, Jack Metcalf, Adam Lynn, Acton Douglas, Jonathan Marquis, David Turley, Lauren Norby, Lady Pajama, Chase McBride, Adelaide Every, B Jean S, Gretel Stoudt, Jeremiah Goldson, Tim Carpenter, Elisha Thomas, Terah Hibbard and Jess Abell. Gallery hours: 5-10 p.m.
Zootown Arts Community Center, 235 N. First St. W., 549-7555: Second Friday Gallery opening, Aug. 10, 5:30-8:30 p.m., featuring Anneke Ayers with special guest Tom Dewer.