Monday, April 19, 2010

Great local shows

Ginny Ruffner, Envisioning Series, A self image

This past Sunday, I asked a friend in Anacortes to join me in a Sunday outing to the Museum of Northwest Art [ 121 south First Street, La Conner]. Fabulous sunny day. The best part, for me, I could walk on the ferry boat and get picked up. What fun! So much less time spent waiting in ferry lines.

I wanted to hear this talk, Resonances in Glass with Ginny Ruffner, James Minson and Masami Koda. Ginny Ruffner, is the queen of Lampworked glass, I just started showing the jewelry of James Minson, and recently saw the works of Masima Koda. The common thread for all three artists is their medium is lampworked glass. The talk was conceived by the curator Kathleen Moles.

But as I learned in this talk, there are more common threads between them. I love all these connections that happen in the art world. James actually used to work for Ginny Ruffner, after her accident, James was involved in the lampworking program at Pilchuck. Then when it was time for him to move on, he had Masima replace him. She too works with Ginny Ruffner constructing her pieces. Small world , apparently years ago, James when he was in an MFA program in Japan, and Masima while,living in Japan, both attended the the the International Glass show. This was the first time both of them saw the whimsical, and wacky, works of Ginny Ruffner. Both, James and Masima fell in love with the newness of the work.
[I think I remember all the important facts from this talk.]

James Minson, The Reef, lampworked glass

The show, Resonance in Glass, currently installed in the small glass Benaroya Glass Gallery in the Museum. This show reflect the differences in these three artists work, yet reflects their passions.

Ginny spends lots of time thinking and asking questions. Her works can be seen as questions or perhaps new ways at looking at old information. James, from a family of industrial science glass workers, spent time diving in the ocean and exploring new frontiers in jewelry. His pieces reflect his interest in ocean reefs and the interactions with nature. Masami concern about her intimate environment shows up in her work. She has translated glass into rain, and her gardens into dreams.

Masimi Koda, Water Crochet, lampworked glass

This show includes works loaned by Anne Gould Hauberg, the Microsoft Collection and Traver Gallery
For me, I had a wonderful time listening to each of them, share a story about their works and perhaps, I caught a glimpse of how and why they work. I felt more intimate about their works. I wanted to take them all out for food and continue the conversations. Kudos to Greg Robinson and the Museum of Northwest Art!

All images courtesy Museum of Northwest.
Next time in La Conner, take the time to discover the Gallery Cygnus, [105 Commercial St.] It is across from Maple Hall at the end of town in La Conner. The show currently on view is a small collection of mixed media sculpture form Philip McCracken and the photographs of Mary Randlett. The space is well organized, and intimate. The gallery is run by a small group of artists, including Peggy Doyle, whom I chatted with. She told me the gallery is celebrating being open one year. Wahoo ! The gallery is open weekends. Stop by and see some Skagit Valley artists.
Gallery. A wonderful opportunity to see these three artists works together.