Artist Thea Nordling painting at her studio during the 2012 Moab Artists Studio Tour. The decade old event held Labor Day weekend will showcase a preview of studio tour artists' work at the Big Horn Gallery at Dead Horse Point State Park beginning July 4.

The Moab Artists Studio Tour will celebrate its first decade with a special group show at the Bighorn Gallery at Dead Horse Point State Park from July 4 through Aug. 24.

The opening reception for the exhibit is 2 to 5 p.m., July 4.

“The community is invited to join the party and help celebrate our community of creativity,” said Bruce Hucko, one of the artists organizing the showcase.

The show at Big Horn Gallery is a preview of the annual Moab Studio Tour that allows art lovers to see artists at work in their own studios in the Moab-area during Labor Day weekend.

The Bighorn Gallery exhibit will include all 23 of the 2013 Studio Tour artists.

Participating Moab artists are Robin Straub and Phil Wagner, Sarah Hamingson, Helen Becker, Nick Eason, Jacci Weller, Bruce Hucko, Bob Ridges, Jonathan and North Frank, Gail Darcey, Eleanor Inksip, Scott Anderson, Tim Morse and James McKew.

The Moab Pastel Guild will also have work from members Larry Thomas, Mary Collar, Peggy Harty, Thea Nordling, Margie Lopez-Read, and Marsha Modine.

The tour continues with Castle Valley artists Michael Ford Dunton and Yrma van der Steenstraeten.

The exhibit will include a diverse array of media including watercolor, pastel painting, oil and acrylic painting, stained glass, fabric creations, photography, sculpture (wood, stone and steel) and gourds.

“If we show it, you should come,” Hucko said. “This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to see all of our work in one place. You can use the exhibit as a live mini tour and decide which artists you want to visit on a more lengthy and personal basis during our main event.”

The original three-artist, three-site event has steadily grown and now includes 23 artists at 15 different sites. These sites are home and professional studios that the public is invited to visit during the annual studio tour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 31 and Sept. 1.

The Studio Tour also has an educational focus. Participating artists have work in progress and visitors are encouraged to enter the process by observing and asking questions. “There are many, many people making art in Moab,” Hucko said. “While the working artists of the tour may be some of the most visible, I’d venture to say that everyone in Moab has an artist on their block or in their family.”

The Studio Tour artists are a persistent lot, Hucko said.

While sales are certainly gratifying there are other reasons why the tour continues to grow.

“I started out attending the Studio Tour in its early days, ” said artist Sarah Hamingson. “Then I exhibited with the Moab Pastel Guild, and now, I’ll be showing at my home studio. You just never know where the studio tour might lead you. It’s a lot of fun however you’re involved.”

Hamingson is now the Artist in Residence for Canyonlands and Arches national parks.

“Of all the events in Moab, the artist’s Studio Tour is my favorite – it provides an opportunity for me to share and sell my paintings where I live and work,” said Robin Straub. “What could be better than that?”

What: Moab Artists Studio Tour

When: July 4 through August 24

Opening reception: 2 to 5 p.m., Thursday, July 4

Where: Big Horn Gallery, Dead Horse Point State Park

Cost: $10 entrance to state park

Directions: Head north nine miles on Hwy 191, turn left on State Route 313 and drive 23 miles.

You can use the exhibit as a live mini tour and decide which artists you want to visit on a more lengthy and personal basis during our main event.”