Lifestyle

Whidbey Island history saved through art

Watercolorist William Hook’s painting of a gas pump on the Freeman Boyer Farm appeared at the first preservation art exhibition at the Pacific Northwest Art School. BELOW: Artist Jim Short created “Natural Edge Oak Box,” which relates to the connection the trees make with our community. - Photo by Tacey Jungmann, Frame of Mind Photography
Watercolorist William Hook’s painting of a gas pump on the Freeman Boyer Farm appeared at the first preservation art exhibition at the Pacific Northwest Art School. BELOW: Artist Jim Short created “Natural Edge Oak Box,” which relates to the connection the trees make with our community.
— image credit: Photo by Tacey Jungmann, Frame of Mind Photography

The gas pump on the Freeman Boyer Farm, a tree and a Coupeville church may not seem connected at first, but they are all part of a year-long preservation project.

Artists with a soft spot for the past are creating images of what they feel needs to be saved on Whidbey Island.

The Pacific Northwest Art School launched the campaign in October.

“We think this is a special time for people to look around Whidbey at landscapes that might be changing because of development,” Eve Parrish, a board member for the art school, said.

The exhibit is separated into four parts, with the second show coming up Feb. 12 to 28.

The first “Whidbey Preservation Art” show brought in about 40 pieces, Parrish said, with a surprising mix of people, locations and mediums. The Best of Show was a collage of Chief Snakelum, the late chief of the Lower Skagit Tribe.

Other artists chose to capture the do-it-yourself lifestyle of pioneer farmers and a grey October sky on Ebey’s Prairie.

Watercolorist Gary Shallock painted the St. Mary’s Catholic Church. His caption read, “Another look at Small Town America, nothing says ‘paint me’ more than a little white church in pines.”

At the end of the year, the art school hopes to combine the images and artist statements into a coffee table book.

The artist deadline for the second show is Feb. 5. It’s a juried show, and awards will be given for categories such as paintings, photography and 3D art.

The free opening begins at 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12 with a reception at the school. The exhibit will remain open to the public until Feb. 28, Monday through Friday.

A third preservation show is May 7 to 21, with a final show in November.

The Pacific Northwest Art School is located at 15 N. Birch St. in Coupeville.

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