Area residents can check out the return of Arts in the Alley and the grand opening of the Gahanna Area Arts Council's gallery, Momentum, in the new arts center at 116 Mill St. from 4 to 8 p.m. June 8.

Gallery director Megan Adams said the arts center debut will feature the exhibition "46 Wavelengths of Blue: The Look of Sound in Color."

The show will feature the works of Kevin McGinn and Patrick Wayner of Gahanna; Thom Glick of Columbus; Zoe Fox, a student at Columbus College of Art & Design; and Joshua Grieco, a youth artist from Gahanna Middle School West.

"The reason for drawing in youth is that Kevin and Thom are (employed) at CCAD, and mentorship is part of Momentum," Adams said.

Glick is an adjunct instructor in the illustration department and McGinn is an adjunct instructor in the illustration department.

She said the arts center is a gallery and a space for programming and workshops.

Adams said the building serving as the arts center's new home was built in 1904.

"Many of the challenges we have faced in renovating the house have stemmed from its age," she said. "From electrical work to tackling plaster and lath, we've had our fill of surprises."

Preserving its early-20th-century charm has been a priority, according to Adams.

"We couldn't be more excited and grateful for the space that we have and to share it with the community," she said.

Adams said the arts council hopes everybody with a talent and interest in art will bring what they have to offer.

"Momentum is a space that will slingshot artists and art in all their varied forms into Gahanna, into Columbus and beyond," she said. "Whether they're emerging artists, learning how to be professionals, or young artists who are just learning what their style is and their potential, or whether they're professional artists looking to expand on what they already know, this is the space."

Adams said the gallery is a remarkable opportunity.

"Art is an essential foundation to building who we are as individuals and who we are as a diverse community," she said. "It's a driving force behind creativity that reaches far beyond paint on paper. Confidence, ingenuity, a sense of belonging -- they all stem from involvement in the arts."

Adams said Momentum is a dream come to life.

"Art is for everyone and GAAC is here to make it happen," she said.

Rebekah McBride-Smith, communications chairwoman for the arts council, said June 8 is a big Arts in the Alley celebration day.

"Arts in the Alley is only part of our bigger Second Saturdays," she said. "We're partnering with area nonprofits and businesses and civic organizations like Visit Gahanna and Gahanna parks and rec to bring even more interactive activities that have to do with the arts. We'll have some surprise experiences."

McBride-Smith said the event would be bigger and better with more connectivity.

The arts council puts on Arts in the Alley, and other organizations do their own thing on Second Saturdays, she said.

Cait Masarik, an arts council member, said the group is a volunteer effort.

"We would love the community to come and help put on the (Second Saturdays) festival through the summer," she said.

Second Saturdays will be held through August and will include music, with a blues-inspired band June 8.

Anyone who wants to volunteer should email volunteer@gahannaarts.org or info@gahannaarts.org.

At the art center, Adams said, residents will have a space where they can sit and talk about a new project, innovations and anything pertaining to art or the community.

She said people can look forward to curated exhibitions; sensory-inclusive and interpreter-guided receptions for those with developmental differences and non-English speaking families through partnership with Gahanna Inclusion for Teens and Young Adults; workshops hosted by artists of all talents; art history; professional-artist development; mentorship-internship programs; backyard performances; and children's enrichment with Kids Days.

"We are looking forward to sharing all of these possibilities with Gahanna," she said.

mkuhlman@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekMarla