Past Exhibitions



Pacific Northwest Masters Series

March 7- June 14, 2015, Lightcatcher Building

Tom Sherwood interprets the beauty of the human form and the natural environment in exquisite detail. His mastery of perspective, anatomy and techniques that define Renaissance art – egg tempera and gold leaf on wood panel – elevates the work to a spiritual dimension. In his paintings, drawings, and wood block prints, the artist integrates a rich variety of inspirations: poetry, garden landscapes, mythology, architecture, and mathematics.

Based in Bellingham since 1970, Sherwood has traveled and taught art at colleges and universities in the United States and China. His life and work have touched many prominent Washington artists, including Susan Bennerstrom, John Cole, Ann Morris, and Thomas Wood, among others. Tom Sherwood: A Golden Perspective offers viewers an unusual opportunity to experience the unique work of a master artist, who has made a significant contribution to our community's creativity.

 Apotheosis, 1997
Egg tempera and gold leaf on panel
Collection of Ron Binns




Magic Windows/Framing Place

February 7 - May 17, 2015, Lightcatcher Building
Curated by Barbara Matilsky, Curator of Art

Exhibitions often represent the personal preferences of a curator whose experience looking at works of art defines a distinct aesthetic taste. For the curator, collection shows offer both opportunities and challenges contingent on the nature of the museum's holdings. S/he tries to tease out a theme from widely disparate artworks in different styles, media, and periods. Drawing upon imagination, knowledge of art history, and willingness to experiment with unconventional groupings of work, the curator makes a selection and presents a unifying idea that hopefully engages the viewer's mind, senses, and spirit.

The theme of this exhibition, Magic Windows/Framing Place, derives its name from a painting, Magic Window, by the renowned artist Robert Colescott. Dreamy interiors, surreal landscapes, and cosmic visions are highlighted through a diverse mix of work that traces the way artists represent multiple worlds of reality and experience. These paintings, drawings, photographs, and sculptures provocatively evoke places both real and imagined. 

MagicWindows Robert_ColescottReSize

Robert Colescott, Magic Window, 1960s; Oil on
board. Gift of Don Foster, 1991.29.2.



February 7 - May 10, 2015, Lightcatcher Building

Mingled Visions features 40 original photogravures from Edward S. Curtis' epic work, The North American Indian, including one of Curtis' earliest images taken in 1895 of Princess Angeline, the elderly daughter of Chief Sealth. The portrait won the top prize in a photographic contest and helped launch his photo-graphic career, ultimately leading to his mission to document and celebrate the vanishing heritage of Native American people. He spent three decades documenting more than 80 tribes west of the Mississippi, producing more than 40,000 images and thousands of pages of text. A definitive project of the American West, The North American Indian was published in 20 volumes from 1907 to 1930.


A traveling exhibition organized by the Dubuque Museum of Art, Iowa.


Curtis53croppedEdward S. Curtis, Lúzi – Papago, plate 53, 1907Photogravure on Dutch Van Gelder paper. Collection of Dubuque Museum of Art, Dubuque, Iowa.




Ongoing on the 2nd Floor Passageway of the Lightcatcher

Curated by Jeff Jewell

Complementing The Art of Genre: Posters from Hollywood's Golden Age, this 2nd floor hallway show will feature a dozen historic images of movie theaters in downtown Bellingham, including the Bell Show, the Star, the Liberty, the Dream, the American, the Avalon and the People's. Photographs will be in stunning black and white, just like early motion pictures.


 3158 web

American Theatre's New Marquee, 1938
Photographed by J.W. Sandison
Whatcom Museum Collection, 3158



Pacific Northwest Masters Series

November 2, 2014 - February 22, 2015

Curated by Barbara Matilsky and Patricia Leach

The paintings of renowned Yakima-based artist and designer Leo Adams express his unique vision of nature and the landscape surrounding his celebrated home, itself an ever-evolving work of art. The show features work from private collectors as well as new paintings made by the artist exclusively for the exhibition.


137n LeoAdams DIG for web

Leo Adams
Untitled, 56 × 42 in., 1992
Image courtesy of Marquand Books, Seattle

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