Jennifer Mercede uses bright color and words in her paintings. She also decided to make up her own rules, like — use your fingers and you don’t have to care what anyone thinks. Mercede got started in her art career selling her paintings on Alberta Street’s last Thursday street fair. Then shops in the area began to take an interest in selling her art which gave her the confidence to approach a gallery about showing her work. OREGON ART BEAT follows Mercede’s journey from outside to inside on Thursday, March 25 at 8pm on the stations of Oregon Public Broadcasting.

You may find him sewing, painting, working with wax or making tiles that are not tiles at all. Kanaan Kanaan’s colorful art exudes a cultural pride and carries a purpose: to encourage different cultures to open up and talk. His art crosses many styles and is influenced by his Muslim culture and the turbulent circumstances of his youth. Kanaan grew up in the Palestinian refugee camps of Jordan. In the midst of chaos, he chose art instead of radicalism. His teachers recognized his talent and he was awarded a scholarship to study art in Iraq. Now an American citizen who has also studied his craft in Ireland and Oregon, he says his art represents not only a passion but a mission to encourage intercultural dialog and help return the kindness that the Iraqi people showed him.

Next, an update on the Oregon Shakespeare Festival as it celebrates its 75th anniversary. We visit with the festival’s Executive Director Paul Nicholson and look at how the new season is shaping up.
ART BEAT repeats Sundays at 1am and 6pm. You can watch entire ART BEAT broadcasts at Video of the stories featured on ART BEAT can be viewed online immediately following the broadcast at

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OREGON ART BEAT, Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Emmy-Award winning local arts series, is in its 11th season. ART BEAT profiles Northwest artists, musicians and artisans — from an operatic baritone to a bit-and-spur craftsman to everything in between. The program airs Thursdays at 8pm and Sundays at 1am and 6pm. In the Mountain Time Zone of Eastern Oregon, the program airs at 9pm Thursdays and repeats at 7pm on Sundays. Funding for OREGON ART BEAT is provided in part by James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation and the Kinsman Foundation. More information is available online at

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