May 19 – August 19, 2018; Lightcatcher building
This exhibition features fifty-two of Richard Diebenkorn’s (1922–1993) drawings and paintings on paper, which reveal the working hand and mind of one of America’s most respected and admired twentieth century artists. Created while living and teaching in different locations—Albuquerque, New Mexico, Sausalito, Berkeley, Ocean Park, and Healdsburg, California—these works represent a painter of profound lyricism and curiosity.
Diebenkorn developed a reputation for ethereal, large-scale abstractions. Although his early work is associated with Abstract Expressionism and the Bay Area Figurative Movement of the 1950s and 1960s, his vision was truly unique. The later Ocean Park series culminated in his receiving worldwide acclaim. Diebenkorn’s rich, intimate works have inspired generations of artists, as well as art lovers.
This national touring exhibition is organized by the Richard Diebenkorn Foundation. Additional support has been provided by the Whatcom Museum Foundation, the Whatcom Museum Advocates, and the City of Bellingham.
PARTY > Members See it First! Member reception, Friday, May 18, 5 – 7pm at the Lightcatcher
DOCENT TOURS > Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, 1:30pm, beginning May 26th at the Lightcatcher. Touring concurrently with Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts at 25.
CURATOR’S LECTURE > Chester Arnold presents, “Richard Diebenkorn: A Life in Art,” Saturday, June 23, 2pm at Old City Hall.
This exhibition, organized by the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in partnership with the Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts, chronicles the history of Crow’s Shadow over the past twenty-five years as it developed into an important native printmaking atelier in Pendleton, Oregon. Founded by Oregon painter and printmaker James Lavadour (Walla Walla), who envisioned a traditional arts studio focused on printmaking, Crow’s Shadow is the only professional printmaking studio located on a reservation community in the United States.
The exhibition presents more than 70 prints drawn from the Crow’s Shadow Print Archive and focuses on themes of Abstraction, Landscape, Media and Process, Portraiture, and Word and Image. In addition to the prints on display, the exhibition is accompanied by text panels, chat panels, and a video that showcases Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Art. Both Native and non-Native artists who have worked at Crow’s Shadow are featured, including Rick Bartow (Wiyot), Pat Boas (US), Joe Feddersen (Colville Confederated Tribes), Edgar Heap of Birds (Cheyenne), Brenda Mallory (Cherokee), Wendy Red Star (Apsáalooke), and Marie Watt (Seneca), among others.
Support for this exhibition has been provided by Mary Summerfield & Mike O’Neal, the Whatcom Museum Foundation, the Whatcom Museum Advocates, and the City of Bellingham.
PARTY > Members See it First! Member reception, Friday, May 18, 5 – 7pm at the Lightcatcher.
DOCENT TOURS > Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, 1:30pm, beginning May 26th. Touring concurrently with The Intimate Diebenkorn: Works on Paper 1949-1992 at the Lightcatcher.
Curated by Jeff Jewell, Photo Archives Historian
Salmon can labels have long been collected for their variety and beauty, a decorative prize for the avid recycler. The labels reproduced in this exhibit all originated with Pacific American Fisheries (PAF), headquartered in Fairhaven at the foot of Harris Avenue. PAF, which was founded in 1899 and operated until 1965, was once the world’s largest canning company. See historic photos, label reproductions, and prints at this new exhibit on the first floor of Old City Hall, then head upstairs to the Maritime History Gallery to learn more about Bellingham’s maritime heritage and industry.
February 3 – June 10, 2018; Old City Hall
Curated by Rebecca Hutchins, Curator of Collections
Hidden in the Bundle features a selection of baskets from the Whatcom Museum’s extensive Native American and First Nations collection. Representing different eras and cultures, the baskets showcase some unique, innovative, and even playful elements of design or decoration. The viewer can explore these creative and practical adaptations while pondering the role of individual expression in the world of basket-making.
People of the Sea and Cedar, in the second floor gallery of the Lightcatcher building, shares the history and art of the Northwest Coast people, blending both historical and contemporary perspectives. This exhibit features artifacts from the Museum’s collection, such as Coast Salish artwork and carvings, woven blankets, hand-made tools, cedar hats, clothing, and baskets. The exhibit provides hands-on learning experiences, a Lummi and Nooksack language interactive, and videos showcasing Lummi and Nooksack weavers and carvers. Themes of cultural knowledge, art and symbolism, lifestyles, and community present the Northwest Coast tribes as vibrant, living cultures who honor their past while building cultural and economic futures for their people.
DOCENT TOURS > Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, 2:30pm. Tours begin in the lobby of the Lightcatcher and are included with admission/free to members.
Opened March 16, 2017; Ongoing; Old City Hall
This new exhibit in Old City Hall provides a glimpse into the local history and culture of the Victorian Era, when taxidermy flourished and mounted animals often decorated interior spaces. For the Museum, this collection of birds is also important to the building’s history. If it hadn’t been for John M. Edson, Old City Hall might not be standing here today. While city officials were considering demolishing it, Edson saw an opportunity to not only save the building, but also to create a public museum within its walls. He dreamed of having a permanent home for his bird specimen collection, and the museum became the perfect showcase.
Now, more than 75 years later, the Whatcom Museum has taking this important collection and reinterpreted it as an educational experience. Designed in collaboration with the North Cascades Audubon Society, the new exhibit provides opportunities to learn about bird migration, conservation success stories, birds in peril, and the importance of studying bird specimens today. Alongside the interpretive panels and the birds themselves, the Hall of Birds provides a variety of interactive opportunities, including video clips of birds in our local habitats, audio files of Puget Sound-area bird calls, and hands-on activities for children. We look forward to sharing this important collection with visitors for years to come.
Ongoing, Old City Hall
Curated by Jeff Jewell, Photo Archives Historian
Before the development of color film, there was a way to make a color photograph — you painted it by hand! Known as tinting, it’s a meticulous, time-consuming process. The exhibition Kinseys In Color features fifteen examples of this art form by Darius and Tabitha Kinsey, whose half-century in commercial photography is renowned for views of the early Northwest timber industry. Kinseys In Color offers a different aspect of the Kinsey legacy, one focused on scenic views and Tabitha’s talent at hand-tinting prints.
The Museum’s 1892 Old City Hall building features a variety of exhibits that tell the stories of the building’s architecture, the city’s early days, logging history, and waterfront industry.
GREEN GOLD: LOGGING THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST:
Relive the history of logging in our corner of the Pacific Northwest through photographs, artifacts, and stories documenting both the good and the bad of Bellingham’s timber era during the mid- to late- nineteenth century. Historic video footage takes you back to a time when only the sheer strength of the lumberjacks felled the enormous trees. Learn what it took to be a lumberjack, the long days and hard work. Find out what a “road monkey” and a “river rat” did for their jobs.
Get a sense of place, and where we are in this fourth corner of the country, through an audio-visual journey of Old City Hall and the early days of Bellingham. Located on the main level of Old City Hall, in the gallery that was once the first mayor of Bellingham’s office in the late 1890s, you’ll learn a variety of historical facts and trivia.
MARITIME HISTORY GALLERY:
Walk into the second floor Allsop Gallery for a lesson on Bellingham’s maritime heritage. From early steam ships, to fisheries, to notable schooners plying the shores of Bellingham Bay, you’ll get a waterfront history overview through photographs, artifacts, interactives, and model ships while looking through the gallery windows to the Bay.
JOHN M. EDSON HALL OF BIRDS:
Partnering with the North Cascades Audubon Society, this exhibit features our founding collection of more than 500 mounted birds, with interpretation, videos, and hands-on activities highlighting Pacific Northwest flyway zones, migration patterns, habitats, nests, and more.