Sunday, May 29, 2016

Spring's-End 2016 Gallery Picks Newsletter

It has been a while since our last Gallery Picks Newsletter so for this one we're pulling out all the stops!  (Well, some of the stops; there's so much more to show you.)  Please scroll down to see a wonderful cross-section of many new items, both functional and purely eye candy, and some returning friends (for example, the fabulous Jolda glass cups are finally back in stock).

We sincerely encourage drooling as you look through these extraordinary pieces, so keep your eyes open for our upcoming newsletters.   Oh, and please don't forget to click on the images below - doing so will magically transport you to their homes in our online Shop, for a closer look, more information, and ability to purchase.

Thanks for looking, for dreaming, and for going on this wonderful journey of art and excellence with us.



Illuminated Sculpture, Buttercup.  L. Wendy Dunder
Another delight from Wendy!
With her trademark whimsicality and visual skills, to say nothing of the physical
side of her impeccable construction and workmanship, this sweet lamp will
brighten up any corner of your home.  Imagine a kitchen table, glowing beneath
such comforting light.  Lovely!

Maple Live-Edge Bench, front face
This is a beautiful piece of woodworking indeed, with its Northwest vibe
and modern live edge look.  At 45-3/4" wide x 14-1/2" deep x 18" tall, and 2" thick,
and crafted by one of our marvelous local artisans, it is the perfect size to
grace an entryway or sitting area with equal elan.

Here's another viewing angle, as seen from above, to show off the
beautiful grain, with that trademark maple figuring.
Maple Live-Edge Bench, grain, from above 

Demi Luna Wall Shelf, Walnut
What can we say?
This is simply a lovely piece, in so many ways.  From the beautiful, perfectly
finished walnut to the modern design, with its sweep of upper shelf and anchoring
lower cubbyhole, this sits perfectly on the wall for that bit of eye candy we
were talking about, as well as perfect functionality.
Oops, where are my keys?  No problem, they're on the shelf...
The dimensions for this lovely creation are 37-1/2” wide x 7” deep x 5” tall.
Click on the image to visit it in the shop, along with more of this
terrific Northwest wood artisan's fine pieces.
Here's another look at it, a little closer up, focusing on the lower shelf component:

Demi Luna Wall Shelf, Walnut

Table Top  Reflection Pond.  Carol Fiedler Kawaguchi
An interesting creation, relaxing and charming...

Designed to be an interactive sculpture, this piece from Bainbridge Island
artist Carol Fiedler Kawaguchi will quietly ground you at the end of one of
those particularly hectic days (and we certainly all know about those).
Complete with sand and stone-moving utensils, crafted from Honduran
Mahogany, Olivine Sand (from Hawaii), stone, and mirror, it is intended
to be contemplative and therapeutic.  Even, and perhaps more likely (given
their ability to express their feelings and creativity better than we oldsters
sometimes can) youngsters have responded to its appeal, and have been
observed in the Gallery rearranging its earthy components.
It has been remarked that the Pond is reminiscent of Northwest seascapes
replete with boulders and eddies, the “water” following the stones' curves
and solid aspects with flowing sighs, drawing out all those wound-up,
daily stumbling blocks we shouldn't hang onto, leaving them lost in the Pond…

So if you’re having an angst-riddled day, no worries – wander into the Gallery
and visit with this intriguing piece for a while; it will surely clear your mind.
You might even feel the need to take it home with you!!

 (Click on the image to visit it in the online Shop for more information, and to purchase.)


Faceted Wood Fired Cylinders.  Eric Gorder
These magnificent faceted cylinders were crafted by ceramic artist Eric Gorder 
and wood fired at a kiln in Oregon.  As a grouping or singly they make a great statement
at a front door or a special view window, or even in a nook or bathroom.
(Best to display dried arrangements or use glass inserts as they do not hold water.)
The play of the flame in the kiln enhances the bold design with
myriad colors, for an eye-catching look at the vast creative possibilities
inherent to wood firing, the spice and soul that draws artists to this
most magnificent and ancient art form.

Gourmet Cookie Jar.  Dave Berfield
From renowned Bainbridge Island artist Dave Berfield comes this
stunning Gourmet Cookie Jar.
(Can you smell the chocolate chips?  Oatmeal-raisins? Ginger snaps??  Shall we go on...)
This piece, and a number of its friends currently residing at the Gallery, were 
wood fired, with a blue glaze, right here on Bainbridge Island.

Here's a little info on Dave:

Dave Berfield, originally from Pennsylvania, has a background in art and art
education, and studied ceramics at the University of Hawaii where he received an MFA.
In Seattle he learned enameling techniques and over 35 years collaborated with
many artists, including painter Jacob Lawrence, on large-scale public murals, fixing
enamel images to steel. His company was called The Porcelain Company.
The Lawrence enamels in Seattle's Kingdome were Barfield's work and were
moved to the Seattle Convention Center when the Kingdome came down.
More recently he built a prototype mural with artist Ellen Forney, painted
with porcelain enamel on steel, for the Sound Transit Capitol Hill Station
opened in March, 2016.


Charging Station.  Chris Thompson
Gift for Dad?
We think so!

 This cunning box contains a surprise that will delight the techno-savvy
in the family, or anyone who uses lots of high-tech devices but doesn't
like fighting with all those cords.  And who also appreciates the return to earth of a
good wooden box, or in this case, a slightly whimsical turn on low-tech:

Well, well, look at that:  a Charging Station in Black Walnut with a
 Curly Red Oak lid and trim, finished in teak oilAt 14-1/2” x 8” x 5-1/4”,
this will sit right on a desk and keep a "lid" (sorry...) on all those
messy cords we battle daily.

How clever - and useful, and attractive - is that?

Here's a little about Chris:

Artist Chris Thompson, who recently moved from northern Michigan to Washington,
is committed to fine wood working. He is an avid collector of both antique
woodworking tools and rare and exotic woods, reflected in the range of functional
and sculptural pieces he creates, from beautifully grained boxes and book stands
to whimsical birdhouses.

In his own words:

I have been an artist all of my life.  Originally I drew with ink and paper…
I've been doing fine wood working for about six years now.  I have worked
at a furniture factory in the past, making cheap office furniture.  That is where
I became familiar with the different saws found in a wood worker's shop.
I did wood working at home, mainly construction or repair.  I would find
furniture on the side of the road, tear it down and make something new out of it.

Then one day, a friend of mine, who was in his 80s, retired from wood working.
He gave me several truck loads of quality walnut, cherry and fine maples…
I became serious about woodworking.  I read endless hours of wood working
books and started buying tools.  I built my shop mainly from
garage sales and estate sales.  

My main method of working with wood is using antique tools such as
hand jointers, jack planes, scrapers and other quality tools.  I am
completely self taught.  I strive to build the best, exemplifying quality joinery.

Pine Needle Basket.  Viola Pace Knudsen
Perennial favorite Gallery artist Viola Pace Knudsen never fails
to please with her award-winning basket designs created from
eastern pine and lovingly shaped into visually pleasing swirls and swoops.
Her baskets are bold, dramatic and sturdy, while still giving an impression
of lightness and air-filled space.

This beauty, filled with a flutter of glorious blue hydrangeas, is 15” x 17” x 9-1/2”,
and gives only a hint of what you can do with one of these to enhance your home decor.


Collapse Weave Linen Ensemble.  Carol Lee Shanks

Carol Lee Shanks has sent us some absolutely wonderful new pieces
for summer - that they are wonderful really goes without saying -
and there are more on the way!

This piece and the piece below are two favorites, or three, really,
as the two-piece crop shirt/pants ensemble shown above are sold separately.  What a
terrific look, with Carol's deceptively simple yet elegant styling (such a great
trademark we always see from her studio), brilliant workmanship,
understated colors that can be paired with absolutely anything, and
the ability to layer with either other of her own great designs or pieces
you already have hanging in your wardrobe.

Below:  How lovely!  And this silver, flowing smock has "summer"
written all over it, doesn't it?

Smock Shirt.  Carol Lee Shanks
Ahhh.  Warm-weather perfection.

See Carol's available pieces here in the online Shop, and
check back for more (on the way).


Neckpiece: Bubbly - Happy Dance.  Christine L. Sundt
Note the name of this piece:
"Bubbly - Happy Dance"
Yep - That pretty much sums it up!

From the workbench of jewelry artist extraordinaire of Eugene, Oregon,
comes this dancing queen of a necklace, crafted from hand dyed silk-wrapped beads,
Chris's own aluminum sculptural work, and nylon wire, on magnetic neck wire.

A very special piece, just bursting with summer, or holiday, happiness!

To see many more of Christine's wonderful pieces, simply click here. 

Ochre Collar.  Neo

Chic, sophisticated, perfect to wear scuba diving...

Wait, what...??

Yes indeed, this fab neckpiece is crafted in Italy from neoprene, the substance
used to make all those slick - and soft - scuba-diving outfits.

Not that we're recommending wearing it that way, but you COULD,
if you really wanted to...

While you continue to contemplate that unusual bit of information, let me
go back to the chic and sophisticated part of this piece.  Let's say once again
that these NEO pieces are really great looks, and can be worn casually
or with the highest of high fashion, going between the two as easily
as cream into a cat.

Not only that, but the price is excellent on all of NEO's wonderful pieces.
Many can be found here, and we have more in the Gallery ready to post.

Stay tuned, I'll showcase more as soon as they're available.


Yes, finally, they are BACK!

If you are as yet unfamiliar with the wonderful world
that is Ted Jolda glass, wait no further to immerse yourself.
This talented Canadian glassblower, whose studio is
located on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, has brought
us his wonderful, whimsical glassware and ornaments for
many years.  He's just put together a new studio, is back at work on
these and other wondrous creations, and we
couldn't be happier.

Ted's legend in the glass biz looms large.  If you haven't been
to the Gallery in recent years and heard the story of his
work, in particular the tale behind his gorgeous, glowing
ornaments, do enjoy reading the following,
a brief, and most entertaining, History of Ted:

Working in wood, metal, fabric, and glass, Ted Jolda has been a creative
individual all his life.  He attended classes at Simon Fraser University,
Western Washington University, and Sheridan College School of
Craft and Design.

Ted co-owned Andrighetti Glassworks in Vancouver (1988-1993) with
Joanne Andrighetti. After the death of a close friend, he sold his share
of the studio to Joanne and took off on a year long round-the-world tour.
Working with artists in Australia and Europe, Ted saw and learned a
great deal about his art and himself.

Currently he is one of Canada's best known glass artists and has been called
the nation's pre-eminent ornament maker. Working primarily in glass since
1985, Ted has received international recognition for his work. As well as being
in the collections of the royal houses of England and the Netherlands,
his work is also in the collections of the Canadian Craft Museum and
the Corning Museum of Glass, and has been exhibited internationally
in numerous group shows representing the finest of contemporary Canadian Art.
Ted was chosen to create the goblets for the formal table of the Lieutenant
Governor of British Columbia and later was asked to expand the set to
accommodate the eighteen heads of state attending the 1999 APEC conference
in Vancouver. His work has been presented to presidents, prime ministers
and heads of state around the world; he counts U.S. President Bill Clinton
and Oprah Winfrey as fans.

Ted comments on a recent brush with retail nirvana, a cautionary
tale that all artists should file under "Be Careful What You Wish For,"
but aspire to nonetheless:

This is one of the things I get asked most about . . . No I didn't meet Oprah.
Nor did I send her any of my work. I had an agent, who for a couple of years
took my stuff to the big Gift Trade Shows out east. In New York some of
Oprah's personal shoppers saw my ornaments [the Golden Pears] at the
booth and liked them.  Bought some and took them to show Oprah.
She liked them and put them in her magazine.

(Blogger's note:  Ted is being a bit humble here.
She actually put them on her cover that year, for the influential "O List".)

I knew nothing of this until about a week before the magazine came out.

It was great. It was amazing. It was an incredible year. I made little else for
the next year. My income (for that one year only) more than doubled.
We were able to buy a new washer, a new - to us - car, and a new
refrigerator. Paid a bit off the mortgage. That's it, that's all. The next year
I was no longer the 'new thing' and sales went back to their old - well
actually slightly worse than their old levels. I had lost some clients that
I couldn't supply with other work while I was making pears.
I'm not complaining. Variety is good. But it was amazing while it lasted.

In fact, Oprah's enjoyment of Ted's lustrous Golden Pears led to back orders that
Christmas of 10,000-plus ornaments, all personally hand-blown by Ted.

Below:  Ted's fabulous and very much in demand Brooklyn Shooters,
a mini-version of his Party Cups.

Brooklyn Shooters.  Ted Jolda
Please note: These disappear fast probably because, sort of like
potato chips, it's hard to walk away with just one; they're not only pretty, with
their glorious gemmy colors, but their "wave" indentations make
them the most comfortable cups you will ever own.  The backstory on these
cups is that Ted first made them for a neighbor who suffered from arthritis in
his hands and required a comfortable, secure glass.  Thanks to Ted,
he found exactly what he needed.  Voila, the Party Cup!

If you're looking for your very own set of what will likely
become your favorite glassware, please contact the Gallery first - phone, email -
to ascertain availability of the different colors in both Cups and Shooters.

Click here to see them all!

Well, that's it for this end-of-spring, almost-summer newsletter.  We'll be back with a totally-summer one soon, so please stay tuned.  If you'd like to be added to our mailing list to receive advance notice of blog postings, shows, sales and concerts, please email ssn [at] the island gallery [dot net]* and we'll add your email address right away.

See you soon!

*Sorry, but we have to do this to discourage those naughty spammers.