It took a lot of draggin' to move the dragon out of the Pioneer Welding building and load it into a moving van. But Richard Prazen, his brother John and several other able-bodied men succeeded without upsetting the dragon. Hopefully by now, the 500-pound dragon has arrived at its destination - the Atrium, a Chinese restaurant in Irvine, Calif.

Before the restaurant's grand opening on Nov. 15, the sculpture will be suspended above the food buffet bar.Rick LaSalle of General Display subcontracted Richard to create this 18-foot monster.

Although he was given a rough drawing of the dragon, Richard said, "I pretty much designed it myself. Then I did all of the wire sculpture using mild steel."

To provide contrast, Richard made every third spine out of steel. Each has a metal spray edge applied with a flame torch. The smaller scales in between are of copper.

"My brother John helped me to add the copper and coloring," Richard said. "And for texture, we added a diamond-cut finish."

The Prazen brothers (all three of them) are professional sculptors - Richard is known for his welded metal sculptures of birds and wire animals; John, for his welded sculptures of Indian subjects and wildlife; and Gary, for his cast bronze sculptures of Western themes and mining subjects.

- A public meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, to discuss issues related to the inclusion of public art in the Redevelopment Agency's plan for Block 56 in downtown Salt Lake City. Artists, architects and others interested in this subject are invited to attend.

Hosted by the Salt Lake City Arts Council, the meeting will be held at the Art Barn, 54 Finch Lane. Conducting will be Betty Drake, a member of the Babcock Pace & Associates design consulting team for Block 57. For more information, call 596-5000.

- Tom Clark, lead artist for Cairn Studio, will demonstrate his sculpting skills Friday, Nov. 16, at Clair's Hallmark in the Crossroads Plaza. At 3:30 p.m., he will lecture. He will remain at the store until 6:30 sculpting woodspirits, mountaineers or gnomes from bits of clay. There will be refreshments as well as a drawing for prizes.

- Bountiful/Davis Art Center will hold its annual special preview soiree Saturday, Nov. 17, at 6 p.m. The cost of $20 per person includes a gourmet buffet as well as first-choice selection of original art by many of Utah's prominent contemporary artists. A number of prizes will be given away. Reservations must be made no later than Tuesday, Nov. 13. Please call 292-0367.

- Lectures, workshops, classes.

Monday, Nov. 12, Utah State University, Department of Art: 9:30 a.m. - One-day color woodcut printing workshop taught by Karen Kunc, associate professor of art at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. At 7:30 p.m., slide lecture by Kunc in the Laval S. Morris Auditorium, Fine Arts Visual 150.

Wednesday, Nov. 14, Salt Lake Art Center, noon - Free gallery talk by Dolores Chase in connection with exhibit, "New Portraits."

Wednesday, Nov. 14, Weber State College, Browning Center, Parry Choral Room, 8 p.m. - Free lecture by New York artist Alison Saar. Her collages, drawings and sculptures focus on iconic totems, fetishes and other manifestations of magic and mysticism.

Saturday, Nov. 17, Art Barn, 54 Finch Lane, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. - One-day class on silkscreening holiday cards taught by Jen Shurtliff. Call 596-5000.

Sunday, Nov. 18, Utah Museum of Fine Arts, University of Utah, 3 p.m. Free lecture on "Inventing the West: The West of the Artists and the West of Actuality," by Floyd O'Neill, director of the American West Center at the U.