Dark Visions

Peering into the void

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The babies up for adoption at Bean Shanine’s Twisted Bean Stalk Nursery are the stuff nightmares are made of.

Since 2010, the painter has been creating her carefully constructed “reborns” to startling effect, making pint-sized zombies, vampires and creepy clowns that are so lifelike those holding the infants will likely be afraid to come close enough for a smooch for fear of having their souls snatched (or their jugulars severed).

To check out Shanine’s adorably atrocious baby dolls, you’ll want to attend the Night Gallery taking place from 5-10pm Fri., Oct. 27 at Forest Street’s Eagles Hall, where the canny creator will be joined by a lineup of more than 20 artists and vendors at the official kickoff for the three-day “Bleedingham” Film Festival, which continues Saturday and Sunday at both Pickford Film Center venues.

Among the artists who’ll also be sharing their weird-but-wonderful works are mythologically minded painter Nathan James Lough, designer Nick the Hat, Creepy Cult (who boast of being “purveyors of all that is strange since 1911”), the printers of Monster Island Studios, a “battered and bruised” booth by Mo’s Parlor, Kissing Corpses (featuring a duo of artists who enjoy repurposing dead pets into “romantic pieces with a Victorian flare”), Coffin Crafts, and more.

And because the art-heavy event is also tied to the fearsome flicks that will follow during the weekend, filmmaking and horror panels will also be open for all who enter the macabre-minded mashup. Horror trivia hosted by Jackie Kersten, gothic tunes by DJ Cold/love, a freaky fashion show hosted by Ragfinery, a special Halloween performance by the Bellingham-based burlesque troupe known as the Hustle Bustlers, and a “deliciously dark” performance by the Drag Militia will round out the evening’s entertainment.

For even more art that speaks to spookiness of the season, be sure and check out the multi-artist “Illuminating Darkness” exhibit currently on display at the Allery Fine Art, found tucked away in the alley behind Kids Northwest and Dragon River restaurant.

Owned by husband-and-wife artist team Kat Houseman and Corey Urlacher, the one-year-old gallery is full of works of art that will astound and, in some cases, cause you to step back in fear. Examples include an “adult male skull with jaw” created by bronze artist Jason Soles and “Lips,” another skull in the form of a painting by Christopher Thompson (with a playful take on vampire teeth).

“Inner Working,” a ceramic sculpture brought to life by Skylar Fleming, is also sure to startle. The three pieces of the part goat/part glassy-eyed child are white on the outside but red—and more than mildly gory—on the inside. Paintings by Chris Sheridan, “dark” jewelry by Alexis Babcock, and intricate (and spookily beautiful) large-scale sculptures with fearsome features by Urlacher add to chill-inducing allure of the group exhibit, which also features pieces by Brian Tichelaar, Jethaniel Peterka, Stevie Floyd, Jef Whitehead, John Warren, and more.

If you plan your Friday night right, it will be possible to view “Illuminating Darkness” on your way to the “Night Gallery,” ensuring that the visions you see when you close your eyes later than evening—likely including nightmarish newborns, severed body parts and skulls for days—will be ones that will stick with you for a long time to come.

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Home for the Holidays

5:00pm|Ferndale Events Center

The 39 Steps

7:00pm|Sehome High School Little Theatre

Little Women

7:00pm|Ferndale High School

Peter and the Star Catcher

7:00pm|Squalicum High School

Romeo, You Idiot!

7:30pm|Heiner Theater


7:30pm|Mount Baker High School

Craft Bazaar

9:00am|American Legion Post #43

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Hot Cider & Cool Art

10:00am|Morgan Block Studios

Used Book Sale

10:00am|Everson Library

Red Barn Handpicked Holiday Market

12:00pm|Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

Holiday Gifts from the Kitchen

3:00pm|Lynden Library, Ferndale Library

It's Where the Sidewalk Ends

6:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

New Music, New Dance

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Concert Hall

The Big Short One-Act Festival

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Bellingham Repertory Dance's Emerge

7:30pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center

Backyard Brawl

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

VFW Breakfast

8:00am|VFW Hall

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|Ferndale Senior Center

Pancake Feed

8:00am|VFW Post 1585

Holiday Bazaar

9:00am|Hillcrest Chapel

Christmas in the Woods

9:00am|Garden Spot Nursery

NSEA Work Party

9:00am|Acme Elementary School

Turkey Trot

9:00am|Squalicum Creek Park

Climate Reality

10:00am|Bellingham Public Library

South Fork Winterfest

10:00am|Van Zandt Community Hall

Fall Gardening

10:00am|Lynden Library

Cheese Fest

10:00am|Everybody's Store

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show

10:00am|Rexville Grange

Holiday Farmers Market

10:00am|Port of Anacortes Transit Shed Event Center

Lynden Book Club

10:30am|Everson Library

Salmon Sighting

12:00pm|Haynie Creek

Conquering Writer's Block

2:00pm|South Whatcom Library

Fishboy Holiday Show

2:00pm|FishBoy Gallery

NaNoWriMo and Indie Publishing

3:00pm|Everson Library

Skagit Wine & Beer Festival


Homeless Summit and Cold Weather Giveaway

3:00pm|Maritime Heritage Park

i.e. artists talk

3:30pm|i.e. gallery

Small Works Opening

4:00pm|Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park

Smith & Vallee Artist Talk

4:00pm| Smith & Vallee Gallery

WA 129 Poetry Reading

6:00pm|Maple Hall

Giving from the Heart

7:00pm|Depot Art Center

A Light in the Darkness

7:00pm|Church of the Assumption

Welcome Home Celebration

7:00pm|Village Books

Ruach Consort

7:00pm|St. Paul's Episcopal Church

Contra Dance

7:00pm|Eagles Hall

Michael Kaeshammer

7:30pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Legends of the Blues V

7:30pm|Byrnes Performing Arts Center

Bellingham Farmer’s Market
Peter and the Star Catcher

7:00pm|Squalicum High School


7:30pm|Mount Baker High School

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Bellingham Repertory Dance's Emerge

7:30pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center

Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show

10:00am|Rexville Grange

Cheese Fest

10:00am|Everybody's Store

Holiday Farmers Market

10:00am|Port of Anacortes Transit Shed Event Center

Rabbit Ride

8:00am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Community Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Post #43

Rabbit Ride

8:30am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Getting in on the act


Sound of Music Singalong

1:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

A Musical Thanksgiving

2:00pm|McIntyre Hall

Harmony from Discord with Whatcom Symphony Orchestra

3:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

The 25th Hour

4:00pm|Village Books

Southside Community Meal

5:00pm|Our Saviour's Lutheran Church

Way North Comedy Showcase

7:00pm|Farmstrong Brewing Co.

Rutie Dornfeld, John Miller

7:00pm|YWCA Ballroom

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Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Wander + Camber Beer Dinner

6:30pm|Camber Cafe

Rocks & Gems

7:00pm|Bloedel Donovan Community Building


9:30pm|Green Frog

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