First Friday Review: December

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With a piece of downtown missing, and in the aftermath of road closures and some temporary business closings, a rescheduled First Friday hoped to draw people back to the area, spread cheer, as well as raise funds for the families affected by the building collapse.

Countless times over the last week people have commented how Sioux Falls is like a small town community in a big city. I can definitely attest to that, as someone who grew up in a town of 1000. The way people show up for each other, give to those in need, and work together is pretty fantastic; living downtown feels like home.

The art community seems to reflect that in ways, as well. So many creative minds work hard to make opportunities for each other, and work together to advocate for local art. It is really growing and developing into an amazing and unique scene. It is exciting to be around, and watch happen.

Seriously. Get out and experience a First Friday, attend some of the excellent events we have year round, and really see the beautiful things that come out of where we live. And as someone who hates winter more than you, don’t let the weather be an excuse.

Support small businesses, support local, support art.



Over 90 pieces of art hung in the main and back gallery of Exposure for it’s second annual $100 Art Show. Every piece on the wall was for sale, and under $100.  An excellent way for new artists to get their name out, and for shy, art appreciators to purchase at a comfortable price.

Being an open show, it was fascinating to see such a wide array of different styles all in one place. While there were quite a few familiar names, there were even more that I didn’t know, which just goes to show the depth of artistic talent that Sioux Falls possesses. It is impressive the amount of artists we have in this community.

This time of year, I avoid buying for myself. However, there so many pieces I wanted to take home, including a particular little, stitched textile ditty of aluminum can silhouettes that would have been perfect for my kitchen. I’m now wishing I would have been selfish.

Exposure spread extra cheer with cupcakes and beer, and attendees were encouraged to come decked in their finest ugly sweater attire. Do yourself a favor, and don’t miss it next year.





8×8 Holiday Show

Rehfeld’s hosted an 8 x 8 Holiday Show, which featured multiple, brand-new, original 8×8 pieces for only $88. Some of the participating artists were Jenny Braig, Gary Hartenhoff, Karen Kinder, Tara Barney, Pam King, Paul Schiller, Idali Hall, Angie Gillespie, Jerry Cook, Kelly Tadlock, Julie Kittelsrud, and Sharon Wegner-Larsen. They were the perfect size for gifting…or keeping.

We were met at the door with a glass of wine and holiday treats.  Half-Baked was there selling cupcakes, too. They look to open their shop back up on Tuesday.

There are so many wonderful works to take in at Rehfeld’s, and many of the artists were there to talk about their art. I always enjoy seeing Angie Gillespie and Chad Nelson‘s work in person. There were multiple exposure pieces of buffalo by Bonny Fleming, also, that had me captivated for an indefinite amount of time. The metal with a gloss finish gave them an extra dimension and vibrancy.

Rehfeld’s were donating 10% of all of their sales that night to the McMahon and Fodness families.


The 8×8’s went quickly.
Chad Nelson explaining what distance his vanishing points needed to be to get the right perspective for the print of the Flatiron Building.
Works by Bonny Fleming.

With some First Friday events being canceled or rescheduled on different days, that was pretty much all we had to hit up art wise. So, we wandered a little and ended the evening with a couple cocktails, supper and live folk music at Paramount.


Art Collective 12 

If you feel like you’ve been missing out on all of the great chances to support local artists, and knock out your gift list this season (i.e. Artmart, First Friday, $100 Art show), do not fear. Get down to Lucky’s TONIGHT (December 12) for their annual Art Collective. From 6 to 12 p.m., over 60 local artists will be there displaying their work for purchase, with 100% of the profit going back to the artists. It is a 21 and over event. There will be $1 off rum drinks, as well as fun raffle opportunities. Need to know more? Here are three, quick Art Collective facts that you might not know, courtesy of the event’s mastermind, Em Nguyen.

1. It’s a completely free show for artists and supporters.
2. It’s on its 6th year.
3. Anyone can display! There is never a theme or a box artists need to fit in. Everyone is welcome. The idea is to give inexperienced artists the chance to display, and not have to bear the pressures of a solo show. It also gives people a chance to meet lots of local artists.

[Photos by Brenda Zwart.]


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