By Beachcomber Staff
Those who miss Vashon’s vibrant monthly gallery cruise can now reserve that night — as well as any other day of the month — to browse an expansive new online art gallery recently launched by Vashon Center for the Arts.
The new virtual art spot, at vashoncenterforthearts.org, is now home to the work of several different female artists who opened their shows at the art center’s last public gallery opening, on Friday, March 8. By the end of the following week, VCA had closed its doors in response to the COVID-19 public health crisis.
All the works on view in the new online gallery can be purchased, with artists receiving 80 percent of the sale price, and VCA receiving the remainder to help support its operations while the arts center remains shuttered.
One of the shows is not only an exercise in art — but might also come in handy as a tool for a rich Women’s History Month lesson for high school students now engaged in distance learning.
The show, part of The Women’s Wisdom Project by artist Anna Brones, features 27 portraits of iconic and inspiring women leaders including Gloria Steinem, Toni Morrison, Ida B. Welles, and Malala Yousafzai. All of the portraits, hand-cut from a single piece of paper, are paired with a quotation. More information on the entire series, and selected interviews Brones has conducted with her subjects, can be found at annabrones.com.
Other artists in the online gallery include the members of the artists’ collective 29th Street Women, who pay homage to famous mid-20th century abstract women artists.
Another online exhibit, “Dirty Laundry and Other Women’s Work,” features embroidered vintage intimate apparel by Julie Thurber.
The final show currently online is “Layers of Water,” a black and white photography show by Joan Dinkelspiel. This show, unlike the others, was scheduled to open in April, and therefore will run through May.
In other VCA news, the organization’s 30th annual Garden Tour, planned for May 30 and 31, has now been canceled due to the ongoing concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
But according to an email sent by the organization on April 7, plans are unfolding now for the arts center to present virtual garden tours and interviews with gardeners. As soon as the ‘stay at home’ mandate is lifted, VCA staff will be visiting gardens, with cameras in hand, to interview owners and capture their handiwork.
Another special art project, planned to coincide with Garden Tour, will proceed online as well.
A dozen artists were each given a wooden Adirondack chair as a canvas for their creative talents. Featured artists include Kari Ulatoski, Kristen Reitz Green, Eddy Radar, Gator Lamphear, Britt Freda, Christopher Overstreet, Jon-Eric Shafer, Lyle Harris, Susan Bates, and Keith Prior. Each completed their original lawn chair, and VCA will launch an online auction of them in May. Proceeds from the auction will support VCA and the loss of income related to the Garden Tour cancellation.
VCA will contact all who pre-purchased garden tour tickets to discuss options including refunds, exchanges or turning the ticket into a donation to the organization.
Finally, VCA has also posted an extensive list of resources, including opportunities for financial assistance, for artists whose livelihoods have been affected by the pandemic. Find it online.