Child dancing

Tribal Canoe Journeys: Paddle to Lummi

January 3 - March 8, 2020; Lightcatcher 1st Floor Hallway

The Whatcom Museum features photographs documenting the Tribal Canoe Journey of 2019, Paddle to Lummi. Since 1989, this significant cultural experience has occurred annually and is hosted by different tribal nations of and around the Salish Sea, with the Lummi Nation hosting the most recent journey in 2019. The canoe journey is a two-week to […]

Who Are We graphic

Who Are We? Washington’s Kaleidoscope

October 18, 2019 - February 9, 2020; Old City Hall

Washington is a kaleidoscope of more than 7 million people, each with a unique story to tell. Where do we originate from, and who do we become? Is there a quintessential Washingtonian? Hardly. History has made it clear that we’re more than our identity and more than just techies, coffee lovers, or outdoor enthusiasts. We’re […]

Minerals of the Pacific Northwest

What Lies Beneath: Minerals of the Pacific Northwest

August 17, 2019 - February 2, 2020; Old City Hall

Rocks and minerals are the foundation of our planet. Minerals are the basic geological building blocks of the solid earth. They can be dazzling to the eye as light catches the naturally occurring facets. To a trained eye, some minerals might be fairly easy to find with a bit of digging; others require rappelling down […]

City of Hope poster

City of Hope: Resurrection City & the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign

October 1, 2019 - January 5, 2020; Lightcatcher 2nd Floor Hallway

City of Hope: Resurrection City and the 1968 Poor People’s Campaign honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s daring vision for economic justice and opportunity for every U.S. citizen. The poster exhibition examines the Poor People’s Campaign — a grassroots, multiracial movement that drew thousands of people to Washington, D.C. For 43 days between May and […]

Ed Bereal

WANTED: Ed Bereal for Disturbing the Peace

September 7, 2019 - January 5, 2020; Lightcatcher building

Curated by Amy Chaloupka, Curator of Art The Whatcom Museum is proud to present the work of Bellingham-based artist Ed Bereal for his first museum retrospective, Wanted: Ed Bereal for Disturbing the Peace, which chronicles the full scope of the artist’s diverse practice. Born in Los Angeles in 1937 and raised in Riverside, California, Bereal […]

docent tours

Take a docent-led tour beginning Sat., Sept. 14 and learn more about the artist and his works featured in WANTED: Ed Bereal for Disturbing the Peace. Our trained docents will provide insight into his works, as well as discuss Bereal’s background. Tours begin in the lobby of the Lightcatcher and last one hour.


Studio Tour art

Whatcom Artist Studio Tour 2019 Showcase

August 3 - October 13, 2019; Old City Hall

This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Whatcom Artist Studio Tour. Each year the two-weekend event offers visitors insight into the creative process, work-life, and work-environment of nearly 40 artists. For the third year, the Museum will provide a showcase of select artworks from several participating Studio Tour artists. Artists include: Don Anderson, Suzanne […]

Raya Friday glass flame sculpture

In the Spirit of the People: Native Contemporary Artists

August 2019 - February 2020; Lightcatcher building

In the Spirit of the People: Native Contemporary Artists features works by Native American artists in the Museum’s gallery and public spaces on a rotating basis. The series is meant to highlight outstanding contemporary Native artwork and allow the Museum to work more closely with members of area tribes. Works in the series may also […]

Modern quilt by Sherri Lynn Wood

Modern Quilts: Designs of the New Century

June 1 – August 25, 2019; Lightcatcher building

Modern Quilts logo

June 1 – August 25, 2019; Lightcatcher building

Curated by Riane Menardi Morrison, Alissa Haight Carlton, and Heather Grant of the Modern Quilt Guild

Modern quilts are utilitarian art. They tell stories. They are graphic, improvisational, or minimalist. They break the rules. They make a statement. Modern quilts are creative expressions made with needle and thread, fabric, and time, expressing today’s aesthetic through a generations-old traditional craft. Modern quilters respect the rich tradition of quilts throughout history, recognizing that they are makers in a lineage that stretches back centuries.

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docent tours

Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays beginning June 1, 1:30-2:30 PM.

Tours begin in the lobby of the Lightcatcher, last one hour, and are included with admission/free to members.


Black and white photo of Pacific House

1889: Blazes, Rails, and the Year of Statehood

April 20 - July 21, 2019; Old City Hall

A year of big dreams, big burns, and big politics, 1889 captured a place in our history as a time of great prosperity and adversity. The face of Washington changed. Pioneers arrived, and townsfolk rebuilt from the rubble. Finally, on November 11, 1889, Washington rose as the 42nd state in the union. This exhibit from […]

1929 photo of a girl in a plane

Firsts in Flight: A Hidden History

April 13 – August 4, 2019; Old City Hall

Take a “timeline tour” outlining the significant contributions made by women and African Americans – particularly by African American women – to our country’s history of aviation and space flight. Meet pioneer aviator Bessie Coleman, who in 1921, became the first African American woman to earn her pilot’s license. And before her, in 1911 Harriet […]