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Eugene Wobblies greet the train with free speech

EUGENE, OR 2/16/11--Local artist Ellen Gabehart debuts her painting "free speech" at the Amtrak train station as the Industrial Workers of the World--Lane County Branch greet the train with song, art and soapbox speeches.


Keep reading to see Ellen Gabehart's "artist statement" prepared for this historic occasion.
(click photo to see a larger version of the painting titled "free speech")
"free speech" - artist Ellen Gabehart

Artist: Ellen Gabehart * * Creative Images Studio
 gabehart@efn.org * *  http://www.artisticmindonline.com/egabehart

I began drawing at three (before I knew what the word artist meant). My first professional art training began at the High School of Music and Art and the Art Student's League of New York City. I studied composition, perspective and figure drawing. In Los Angeles, I continued to study drawing and painting at Choinard Institute.

My active political awareness began at California University in Northridge, Calif., when I joined the Student Rights Movement. At a rally I got arrested for promoting free speech and the integration of African American students. Feeling totally outraged I began to create political paintings about intolerance.

Being a member of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and after reading several pamphlets about the sacrificial Free Speech Walk by the IWW members I felt compelled to paint "Free Speech" to celebrate the 100th anniversary of this event. I also have created paintings about saving the environment, prejudice, and the evil useless war promoted by George Bush, and "Hungry Hands" depicting the causes of world hunger.

I also create art work about my life in Mexico, and designs integrated with musicians. I am represented by the New Zone Art Gallery, Eugene, Emerald Art Gallery, Springfield, Mindpower Gallery, Reedsport, and Coos Art Museum in Coos Bay.

The Wobbly Free Speech Monument Campaign is a project of Southern Oregon Jobs with Justice  http://www.sojwj.org