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




Juried by Scott Lawrimore, Director of the Jacob Lawrence Gallery, University of Washington

May 31 - September 6, 2015, Lightcatcher Building

KaleeAppleton Untitled2ResizedWeb

Bellingham National Art Exhibition & Awards waa juried exhibition featuring artworks in a variety of media, including video, photography, ceramics, mixed media, paintings and more. Representing artists from 16 states, including Washington, the exhibition included 101 pieces from more than 60 artists.

Juried by Scott Lawrimore, Director of the Jacob Lawrence Gallery, University of Washington, the exhibition attracted more than 600 artists who submitted works to be considered. Lawrimore selected pieces that inspire not only a sense of wonderment, but also curiosity and reflection about the meanings of art. "There is a strong undercurrent of social justice, gender identity, ecological, human rights, and other political issues running throughout the exhibition," says Lawrimore. "While this represents some of the societal concerns of artists working in the 21st century, I also wanted there to be pure aesthetic reflection and contemplation 'breaks'…of art with more formal concerns."

The top three artists were announced at the May 30th opening reception and received cash awards--$2,000 first prize, $1,000 second prize and $500 third prize.

1st Place: Alison Bremner, Kingston, Washington
2nd Place: Robert Campbell, Vashon, Washington
3rd Place: Rengin Holt, Blackburg, Virginia 

The popular choice award of $500 was announced at the Downtown Art Walk on Fri., August 7th.

Robert Campbell, Vashon, Washington

About Scott Lawrimore: As a curator, writer, art historian, and gallerist, Scott Lawrimore has dedicated his career to championing contemporary artists. He was recently appointed the first director of the Jacob Lawrence Gallery, University of Washington. From 2012-2014, Lawrimore was deputy director of collections and exhibitions at the Frye Art Museum, where he curated historical exhibitions drawn from the collection as well as innovative contemporary shows, such as the forty-year retrospective, Buster Simpson // Surveyor. Lawrimore held positions with Art Access Magazine, Foster/White Gallery, Davidson Galleries, and Greg Kucera Gallery before opening his own space, Lawrimore Project, in 2006. He also taught for graduate and undergraduate students in various colleges and universities. He holds a bachelor of art degree in art history from the University of California, Davis, and a master of art degree in art history from Sacramento State University.

Juror's Perspective: A walk-through of the exhibition with juror Scott Lawrimore was held on Sun., May 31, 1pm at the Lightcatcher Building.

 Image credit: Kalee Appleton, Untitled 2, Archival Inkjet Print (binary collage), 2014



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


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