PRAIRIE CITY – Owning an art gallery has long been a goal for Grant County native Laurie Hueckman, who recently opened Copper Horse Art Center & Gallery at 152 Front St.

“It’s a place for artists to display their artwork, not just paintings and drawings,” she said.

Her first passion is horses, and there are plenty of horse paintings currently on the wall, as well as wildlife and landscapes; however, Hueckman said she would like to display all styles of artwork for a reasonable commission.

She said the gallery also will offer art classes, including pottery, and arts and crafts.

Hueckman’s history with artistic pursuits started when her three children, now grown, were young. First she purchased a 35mm camera with proceed from a yard sale and took a couple photography classes. Then she took drawing classes from Bill Lewis, who taught her the basics.

“Bill Lewis showed me you do not have to be born with artistic ability to do well,” she said.

She also took every painting course offered by Janet Long.

Hueckman went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in illustration from Boise State University in Idaho, and a master’s in teaching and education from Eastern Oregon University in La Grande.

Before her recent move back to the family ranch on Pine Creek, between Prairie City and John Day, she taught art classes to K-12 students in the Enterprise schools for four years.

Besides running the gallery, creating her own art and teaching classes, she keeps busy teaching high school art appreciation, art history, middle school art and digital photography online at Aventa Learning K12.com.

Hueckman does commissioned paintings of horses, other animals and their owners.

She would soon like to offer the service of quality prints of artwork so artists can sell affordable reproductions of their work. Online marketing for her work as well as other artists’ work is another avenue she plans to explore.

“One step at a time,” she said. “I would like to help other artists display and sell their work – that’s what it’s all about.”

“This is where I want to be, and the community has been really supportive,” she added. “It feels great to be back.”

FYI

Copper Horse Art Center & Gallery

    Summer hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and noon-4 p.m. Sundays.

    Hueckman may be reached at 541-263-8701 or by email:

laurie@copperhorse.com

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