Don McIvor created this wooden wall sculpture. Photo by Marcy Stamper

Don McIvor created this wooden wall sculpture. Photo by Marcy Stamper

By Marcy Stamper

Rivers are an essential element of life, providing nutrients for fish, water for humans and animals, and moisture for plants. In its new exhibit, “Our River,” opening Saturday (June 7), Confluence Gallery invited artists to ponder how rivers nourish our creative life as well.

Curators Jennifer Molesworth and Rich Davis asked artists to consider what the river means to them, and how it connects us to the sky, the sea and each other. Artists were also urged to reflect on the significance of salmon and on the cycle of life, death and connection.

Three dozen local and regional artists responded to the call. Some created landscape paintings or abstract interpretations of the effect of movement on the water. Others used the glint of mosaic to convey the effects of light, or wood and metal to celebrate the arc of a fish’s body.

“It’s a broad theme—it became whatever someone’s river is,” said Davis, who said artists drew on their personal attachments to water.

In addition to nurturing an aesthetic take on waterways, the gallery has teamed up with the Methow Valley Interpretive Center and local groups working on salmon recovery for a discussion about the effects of the river on people’s lives and about the river as creative muse.

“Our River” is at Confluence Gallery through July 26, with an opening from 4 to 8 p.m. as part of the Twisp Art Walk on Saturday.

The gallery is also launching a new exhibit in The Loovre, its crimson bathroom. The show, called “Undercurrents,” features paintings, sculpture and multi-media work by local artist Vblast that focus on the body of war as seen through microbiology, among other filters.