Earth-themed art blooms at local galleries

Here is some of the bounty that will be on view Friday evening.

New exhibits will bloom at local art spots during Vashon’s monthly First Friday Gallery Cruise. Here is some of the bounty that will be on view that evening, when many local shops and eateries will also be open for business.

Hardware Store Restaurant

“South of the Border,” an exhibit of watercolors by Steffon Moody celebrating the people, culture and landscapes of Mexico and Colombia, will open at The Hardware Store Restaurant Gallery with an artist’s reception at 5:30 p.m. Friday, April 5.

The show is a compilation of watercolors created during Moody’s three trips to Mexico and one trip to Colombia. The warmth of the people, cultures and landscapes are evident in each painting — this is the reason he keeps returning to Latin America for inspiration, not only in art, but as a model for living life, he said.

Moody invites islanders to join him on his future travels — in March of 2025, he will lead a painting workshop in Baja, Mexico. Interested? Contact him via A blog, also located on the website, details Moody’s art-making journeys.

Swiftwater Gallery

See new works by the more than 50 members of this local artists collective, located at 17600 Vashon Hwy SW. The gallery showcases a wide variety of art including paintings, prints, etchings, jewelry, ceramics, textiles, mosaics and photography. Classes and workshops are also offered at the gallery. Find out more at


“Understory Tarot,” a solo show by Rachel LordKenaga, will be on exhibit in April at VALISE Gallery, 17633 Vashon Hwy SW.

LordKenaga has spent the last two years oil painting each card, 80 total, for her re-imagined tarot deck that is inspired by Northwest nature and animal elements. Both the original paintings and tarot card decks will be present. An opening reception, from 6-9 p.m. Friday, April 5, will include Understory Tarot readings offered by former Vashon poet laureate and shaman Susan Lynch, by donation.

VALISE, at 17633 Vashon Hwy SW, will be open from 1-9 p.m. Friday, April 5. The show will run through April 27. The gallery’s hours are 1-6 pm. Friday and Saturday.

Vashon Center for the Arts

Celebrating Earth Month, three artists are exhibiting solo collections at Vashon Center for the Arts in April.

Rachel Maxi, a Seattle abstract and mixed media artist, will bring paintings, sculptures, and assemblages to the gallery. Her work, she said, spans the last several years and reflects on influences from residencies in Morocco and locations throughout the American West, and her subconscious memory of things ancient, futuristic, and multi-dimensional.

Incorporating various materials including oil paint, beeswax, and gold leaf, her work fluctuates from flat to 3-dimensional.

“I think of myself as an explorer, collector, and synthesizer,” said Maxi.

Chris Maynard, from Olympia, works with delicate and precise eye surgery tools to carve intricate art out of feathers that have been naturally shed. For him, feathers represent flight, transformation, and a bridge between the lives and dreams of humans.

“The subjects of my work are drawn from my own experiences as a naturalist and artist, observing and thinking about wildlife,” he said.

Bill Ferris, who taught at Vashon High School for 32 years, will show a collection of his wood sculptures and bowls. He first began seriously working in wood with an interest in fairground art. He met his mentor in First Nation sculpture, Jim Ploegman, at a workshop in carousel horse carving and subsequently turned to present-day wood-turning.

Meet the artists and see their work at an opening reception from 5-8 p.m. Friday, April 5. Regular gallery hours are 12-5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. The shows run through April 28.

Vashon Senior Center

Meet Carol Digardi, whose paintings are currently on view at the Vashon Senior Center, at 2:30 p.m. Friday, April 5, for a meet-and-greet, and learn more about her current show.

Windermere Gallery

The gallery, located at 17429 Vashon Hwy SW, will feature an exhibit of artwork by Jeff Good, with a First Friday reception hosted by Beth de Groen.