Creative Collaboration

A Tradition of Friendship


What: "A Tradition of Friendship"

Where: Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum, La Conner


WHEN: Through Oct. 25


Wednesday, October 7, 2020

If autumn gloom is getting you down, consider visiting the Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum on the top of the hill in La Conner for a blast of color.

Make a reservation online, and when you arrive, shimmy up to the second floor and relish the fruits of an ongoing collaboration between women fabric artists in the Northwest and Japan, “A Tradition of Friendship.”

Utilitarian objects in Japan are invariably made to be beautiful. Fabric instructor Kazuko Yoshiura displays two “Furoshiki” (wrapping cloths), which rise to the level of fine art. Each is embellished with intricate sashiko stitchery. One has a circle at the center, surrounded with a maze of interlocking figures with fans at the four corners. The other, a vast cross of interlocking webs, is bordered with stars enclosed by hexagons. An intriguing composition by Yoshiura is a rectangular wall panel in indigo, embellished with 47 historic family crests.

Yoshie Igarashi tells her own “Tale of Genji” by interlacing strips of a formal, historic kimono with vertical cloth bands to evoke room partitions which secluded ladies of the nobility during the Heian period (8th through the 12th centuries).

A tribute to 20th century Western influence is Koyama Noriko’s “Kabuku Cube,” in which blocks of heritage fabrics are “deviated” into an illusionary composition framed within spiderwebs and ocean waves.

Cultural transmission came from the other direction in the 19th century when European impressionism was midwifed by Japanese woodblock prints. Noriko’s striking “Angry Waves” recalls the dynamism of Hokusai’s historic tidal wave print. She combines slices of a heritage silk kimono with mosquito netting—quilted and painted into an arresting, abstract composition. Another of hers is the enigmatically titled, “Where Will the Ice From Russia Go?”—it’s fashioned with cotton and silk, quilted and crocheted.

In “Encounter with Indigo,” Miwako Kimura combines hand-dyed indigo pieces from Burkina Faso and Japan into a wall hanging of great classical simplicity and abstract power.

Indigo was also the theme of Northwest fabric artists whose work remains on display through Nov. 1. Their exhibit, “Colors of our World,” features “Dragonflies in Flight,” by Steffany Neuschaefer and “Spirit Caribou,” by Jane Clark of Anacortes, a delightful whimsy in orange, blue and green.

Pat Ross of Vancouver, B.C., also a member, shows three panels of fabric dyed with marigolds from her garden and enhanced with weeds from the roadside.

Clark’s “Garden Party” is an equally striking abstract of hand-dyed linen and silk with “an assortment of stitches,” but a tour de force is her assembly of three “Bling Volcanos” made from purchased fabric, hand-dyed materials and stitching.

Image credit: “Kabuku Cube,” by Koyama Noriko


[Oct. 7-17]

WHATCOM ARTISTS STUDIO TOUR: More than two dozen area artists will open their creative spaces to the public as part of the 26th annual Whatcom Artists Studio Tour through Oct. 17 throughout Whatcom County. Due to COVID-19 precautions and restrictions, appointments will individual artists must be made in advance. Some artists have additional restrictions, so make sure and suss them out before your arrival. Entry is free.
For more info:


A GUILDED GALLERY: Stanwood-Camano Arts Guild’s “Art Aloft” exhibit will be on display from 11am-5pm Wed.-Sat. through Oct. 19 in Stanwood at A Guilded Gallery, 8700 271st St. NW. The second in a series of ongoing juried shows features new works by dozens of regional artists in a variety of mediums. All works are for sale.
For more info:

ALLIED ARTS: “Magnificent Emotion” shows from Oct. 2-31 at Allied Arts, 1418 Cornwall Ave. The exhibit features paintings by Tanya Tjoelker, Jean Ferrier, Lori Hill, and Jamie R. McPherson. Gallery and thrift store hours are 11am-4pm Tues.-Fri. for the foreseeable future. Safety guidelines are in place.
For more info:

ARTWOOD: Hours are currently 11am-5pm Wednesdays through Fridays, and 11am-6pm Saturdays at Artwood Gallery, 1000 Harris Ave. Please wear a mask when entering the gallery; gloves will be available for guests who need to handle the merchandise.
For more info:

GALLERY SYRE: Peruse “David Syre: Envisioning a Better Future” from 11am-4pm Tuesdays through Thursdays (and by appointment) through Nov. 7 at Gallery Syre, 465 W. Stuart Rd. The works Syre created during quarantine have a unique language and message for a better future. Mostly abstract and painted with powerful colors, these recent canvases inspire people to take a leap into the unknown, to think about new forms of living together—and a new world in which humans can coexist with nature again.
For more info:

GOOD EARTH: “Kindred Spirits” will be featured from 11am-5pm Thursdays through Saturdays, 12pm-4pm Sundays, and 11am-5pm Mondays through October at Good Earth Pottery, 1000 Harris Ave. The juried exhibition of wood-fired, soda-fired, and salt-fired ceramics features works by invited artists Lindsay Oesterriter, Lorna Meaden, Liz Lure, Jan McKeachi Johnston, Neil Celani, and Simon Levin, as well as 61 atmospheric-fired works selected through the competitive jurying process. At 5pm Sat., Oct. 9, tune in for an Instagram livestream visit to the show with juror Simon Levin.
For more info:

I.E. GALLERY: “Less: Presence in Absence” can be seen from 11am-5pm Fridays through Sundays through Nov. 29 in Edison at i.e. gallery, 5800 Cains Court. The group exhibit emphasizing the significance of absence as a shaper of knowing features works by Marc Wenet, Barbara Sternberger, J.W. Mahoney, Margy Lavelle, Galie Jean-Louis, Joe Goldberg, Ed Bereal, and Sharron Antholt.
For more info:

: Mike Bathum’s “Emerging Nature 2,” “Through the Eyes of the Beholder” by Malissa Perry and Christen Mattix, a Whatcom Artist Studio Tour showcase, a Juried Exhibit, and the annual “Cup Show” can be viewed in person through Nov. 28 at the Jansen Art Center, 321 Front St.
For more info:

MATZKE GALLERY: Peruse approximately 100 pieces of fine art in a variety of mediums as part of an annual “Art Auction” exhibit from 11am-5pm Fridays through Sundays through Oct. 31 on Camano Island at Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park, 2345 Blanche Way. “Bid or buy” the artworks by coming to the gallery or previewing the works online.
For more info:

MONA: “The Barn Show,” an exhibit commemorating the annual art shows held at the Reims’ farm on Fir Island starting in 1987, can be seen from 12pm-4pm Thursdays through Sundays in La Conner at the Museum of Northwest Art, 121 First St. Following CDC and state guidelines, only 20 people at a time will be admitted into the galleries.
For more info:

PERRY AND CARLSON: Check out sculptor Maria Wickwire’s new body of work, “The Nature of Things,” from 11am-5pm Thurs.-Sun. in Mount Vernon at Perry and Carlson Gallery, 504 S. First St. The one-woman exhibit can be viewed through October.
For more info:

Landscapes by oil painter Keith Sorenson will be featured from 11am-4pm Wednesdays through Fridays through Nov. 3 in Anacortes at Scott Milo Gallery, 420 Commercial Ave. Also showing are Anacortes-based artists who would’ve been taking part in what was to be the 98221 Studio Tour month, including Lanny Bergner, Les Eelkema, Kathleen Faulkner, Lewis Jones, and Joella Solus. The show can also be viewed online.
For more info:

SMITH & VALLEE: View works by painter Rob Vetter and bronzes, cast glass and original sculptures by Peregrine O’Gormley through Nov. 1 in Edison at Smith & Vallee Gallery, 5742 Gilkey Ave. The works focus on themes of roads—and ties between landmark, landscape and journeys.
For more info:

WHATCOM ART MARKET: Works by Whatcom Art Guild members can be viewed from 11am-3pm Fridays through Sundays through August at Whatcom Art Market, 1103 11th St. Due to public safety concerns, masks are required for all customers, and hand sanitizer will be provided.
For more info:

WHATCOM MUSEUM: “Anatomy of a Collection: Recent Acquisitions and Promised Gifts” is open to the public (with limited capacity) from 12pm-4:30pm Wednesdays through Sundays at Whatcom Museum’s Lightcatcher Building, 250 Flora St. This exhibition reflects the longstanding relationships with artists, institutions and donors who have helped shape and expand the museum’s collection through gifts of art, and marks 10 years since the Lightcatcher’s construction. Whatcom Museum’s Old City Hall and Museum Store are also open.
For more info:

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