November 2010 newsletter

News from Dunbar Gardens November 2010

Katherine Lewis weaving in her workshop

Upcoming Events

Art’s Alive! 2010 at Maple Hall in La Conner, WA, November 5-7. Annual celebration of local arts in the nearby town of La Conner.  Katherine will have a basket in the open show.

Adornment, a wearable art show at Gallery Cygnus, November 12-December 24, 109 Commercial Street, La Conner. Gem of a gallery in La Conner. Katherine will have one of her willow purses in this show.

willow basket purse

Pleasant Ridge Gallery at Rexville: November 19-22, at the Rexville Grange, 19299 Rexville Grange Road (1 block from the Rexville Grocery) Annual arts & crafts show featuring ceramics, glass, painting, photography, woodwork, and basketry. Opening night, Friday, Nov. 19 will have a party with Celtic music by Campbell Road.

Exploring Baskets: A juried show and sale of work by members of the Northwest Basket Weavers Guild: December 3, 2010 – January 29, 2011, Anacortes, WA. Katherine is involved in organizing this show and expects an outstanding and very diverse exhibit. Members’ work was juried by artists Lanny Bergner and Danielle Bodine.

fitched willow market basket

Katherine has four baskets chosen for the exhibit. The opening will be Friday, Dec. 3 from 6 – 9pm as part of the First Friday Art Walk in Anacortes. On Saturday, December 4 there will be a “holiday themed” Basket Day with classes and demonstrations in conjunction with the show.

Willow Basketmaking Classes with Katherine Lewis

Classes are two days, from 9am to 5pm. Everyone will leave with a finished basket. Class size is limited to 10. Cost is $175 per student which includes materials. We provide tea and coffee. Class will be held at the McLean Road Fire Hall meeting room just down the road from Dunbar Gardens.

January 29-30 (Saturday-Sunday): Oval laundry or garden basket

oval laundry basketgarden basket

Two very useful baskets and a good introduction to oval work in willow. Both of these oval projects start with the same base, using twining and chase weaves. The sides of the basket include a sturdy 4 rod base wale with step up to three rod wale. Both baskets have side weave of French randing, but the laundry basket is taller and straighter where the garden basket flares out. The laundry is finished with a raised end for inset handles; the garden basket has a sturdy handle wrapped with slender willows. Some previous work with willow is suggested, but beginners could also make a gathering basket. There is a registration form on our website.

March 16-20: Northwest Basket Weavers Annual Retreat

willow rope coilKatherine will be teaching a two day class at the retreat this year. The ‘willow rope coil bowl’ will be the project. She is also scheduled to teach a short evening workshop on leather braided handles. See the NWBW website for details and registration.

News

Katherine’s willow basket “Harvesting the Skagit” was awarded Grand Champion of the 2010 Puyallup Fair in the professional basketry category of the Home Arts competitive exhibits. The Puyallup Fair (officially the Western Washington Fair) draws over a million visitors every year and is the largest attraction held annually in Washington State. Katherine originally made this basket for an exhibit called “Paint Me a River!” that was staged by the Skagit Historical Museum last winter. Katherine is pleased to receive this award for the second year. She also won the 2009 Grand Champion ribbon at the Fair for the basket “Nana Queen”. You can see photos of both the baskets online at Puyallup Fair Grand Champion.

Dunbar gardens farmstand

Farmstand: We still have a selection of garden fresh produce for sale Friday, Saturday, and Sunday 10-5. You can stop by any day of the week if you want to look at the willow baskets we have on hand.

Facebook: Dunbar Gardens has a Facebook page. We post photos of Katherine’s latest baskets, commissions, and photos of the farm as well as other links of interest for willow basketry.

Katherine & Steve

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September newsletter

Katherine Lewis willow basketmaker

Upcoming Events

Seattle Tilth Harvest Fair:  Saturday, September 11, 10am-5pm, Meridian Park behind the Good Shepherd Center in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle. This annual event celebrates local farms, urban gardening, and the environment featuring tasty food, music, workshops, sustainable goods, and a farmers market. Katherine will be there with her baskets and demonstrating her work showing that our farms produce useful products other than food.

Festival of Family Farms at Gordon Skagit Farms: October 2 & 3, 10am-4pm, 15598 McLean Rd., Mount Vernon (just around the corner from Dunbar Gardens). Katherine will be demonstrating willow basketmaking and selling baskets at the Gordon’s Autumn Harvest Farmstand as part of the annual Skagit Valley farm tour. In addition there will be a blacksmithing demo, bee keeping info, cooking with squash, baked goods, and the usual impressive display of pumpkins, squash, gourds, apple cider and more from the Gordons.

Exploring Baskets: A juried show and sale of work by members of the Northwest Basket Weavers Guild: December 3, 2010 – January 29, 2011 at the Depot Arts Center, Anacortes, WA. Katherine is involved in organizing this show and expects an outstanding and very diverse exhibit. The opening will be Friday, Dec. 3 from 6 – 9pm as part of the First Friday Art Walk in Anacortes. On Saturday, December 4 there will be a “holiday themed” Basket Day with classes and demonstrations in conjunction with the show.

Willow Basketmaking Classes with Katherine Lewis

October 21-23: Tidal Twinings, Columbia Basin Basketry Guild Fall Retreat in Rockaway, Oregon.

willow bike basketwillow berry basket

Katherine will be teaching two classes at the CBBG retreat this year. Willow bicycle basket on Thursday & Friday and a Berry picking basket on Saturday. You can be a member of either the CBBG or the Northwest Basket Weavers Guild to attend this fun event. See their website for details and contact info.

Facebook: Dunbar Gardens has a Facebook page. We post photos of Katherine’s latest baskets, commissions, and photos of the farm – like the always popular ‘birds of the farm’ album – as well as other links of interest for willow basketry.

For more information about classes, baskets, willow growing, or our farmstand please visit our website.

Katherine & Steve

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August newsletter

Katherine Lewis, Arts at the Port opening

Upcoming events

Anacortes Arts Festival Arts at the Port Juried Exhibition: August 6-8, Exhibition entitled “Next” juried by Esther Luttikhuizen showing a diverse mix of work in fine crafts, painting, sculpture, and photography. Katherine is excited to have four pieces selected for the show which reflect the diversity of her willow basketry work. You can visit the fine arts exhibit for free any day of the festival.

Art of the Garden: July 8-August 19, Arts Council of Snohomish County Gallery located in the historic Monte Cristo in Everett at 1507 Wall Street. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 10-5, and Saturdays from 11-4. Katherine has four baskets for sale in this show featuring artwork that enhances the garden or brings the garden into the home.

Seattle Tilth Harvest Fair:  September 11, 10am-5pm, Good Shepherd Center in the Wallingford neighborhood of Seattle. Annual event celebrating urban gardening and local farms. Katherine will be there with her baskets and demonstrating her work showing that our farms produce useful products other than food.

Festival of Family Farms at Gordon Skagit Farms: October 2 & 3, 10am-4pm, 15598 McLean Rd., Mount Vernon (just around the corner from Dunbar Gardens). Katherine will be demonstrating willow basketmaking and selling baskets at the Gordon’s Autumn Harvest Farmstand as part of the annual Skagit Valley farm tour.

Looking ahead: Exploring Baskets: A juried show and sale of work by members of the Northwest Basket Weavers Guild: December 3- January 29, 2010 at the Depot Arts Center, Anacortes, WA. Katherine is involved in organizing this show and expects an outstanding and diverse exhibit.

Willow Basketmaking Classes with Katherine Lewis

There is one more class scheduled this summer and there are a couple of spaces open.

willow shoppermagazine basketsquare shopper

August 16-17 (Monday-Tuesday): Scallomed projects

This class provides baskets at all weaving levels. We will weave the base on a hoop frame, and scallom on the stakes. The oval shopper is the simplest of the shapes, great for beginners. The magazine basket is a skinny long oval basket with a lengthwise handle, making it great for magazines or books next to your favorite chair. The square basket is great for shopping, and is a chance for those with previous willow experience to learn square shaping and square border corners. Experience with willow is helpful, and comfort using a knife is essential for this class.

Classes at other locations

October 21-23: Tidal Twinings, Columbia Basin Basketry Guild Fall Retreat in Rockaway, Oregon.

willow bike basketwillow berry basket

Katherine will be teaching two classes at the CBBG retreat this year. Willow bicycle basket on Thursday & Friday and a Berry picking basket on Saturday. You can be a member of either the CBBG or the Northwest Basket Weavers Guild to attend this fun event. See their website for details and contact info.

Farmstand: We have a selection of garden fresh produce for sale now Friday, Saturday, and Sunday 10-6. You can stop by any day of the week if you want to look at the baskets we have on hand.

Facebook: Dunbar Gardens has a Facebook page. If you are a Facebook user, check out the photos and postings there.

For more information about classes, baskets, willow growing, or our farmstand please visit our website.

Thanks!

Katherine & Steve

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NBO exhibit at The Bascom

fitched willow market basket

Katherine was recently invited to send some of her work to an exhibit of National Basketry Organization members at The Bascom, a non-profit center for the visual arts in Highlands, North Carolina. The Bascom art center is located on 6 acres of beautiful pastoral land with buildings that encompass museum quality galleries and art studios for instruction. Artistic Director Kaye Gorecki worked with NBO President Michael Davis to select a few basketmakers to showcase in a small exhibit June 12-July 18. Katherine was honored to be chosen along side some outstanding artists that included  Jackie Abrams, JoAnn Kelly Catsos, JoAnn Russo, Donya Stockton, and Pamela Zimmerman.

An exhibit of contemporary basketmakers should be a nice compliment to another work at The Bascom. Beginning June 2, sculptor  Patrick Dougherty is constructing a site specific work on The Bascom grounds. He has made his unique structures all over the world. Katherine had the opportunity to volunteer a couple of days on a work he made in Lynden, Washington a few years ago.willow basket purse by Katherine Lewis

Katherine only had a week’s notice to decide what to send. Unfortunately there was no time to make anything specifically for the exhibit, so she picked out these two baskets to send. The oval market basket or “panier á jour” is woven primarily with our farm “‘brown” (with bark) willow and “buff” (peeled) willow for the fitching. It is a traditional French design, but woven with the “browns” rather than all peeled. The small square purse is an original design woven from willow with a braided leather strap. Katherine hopes viewers will appreciate these functional forms of contemporary basketry.

Post Script: Well there are good experiences and there are learning experiences…

crushed box

This is how our box looked when it returned from the exhibit. The Bascom sent it back by UPS ground. When we opened the box we saw that the ‘panier á jour’ had been packed incorrectly – upright instead of sideways and without the cardboard baffles like when we shipped it by FedEx. The Bascom’s exhibitions registrar replied to our complaint “I want to assure you that it was not done through carelessness.” Really? It seemed like a double dose of carelessness from the packer and UPS. And we end up with a basket that is decidedly tweaked in shape.
Most of our boxes only go one way – direct to the customer and we’ve never had a basket damaged in shipping. I guess we should have been reading the helpful info over on Ask Harriete about packing your artwork for delivery to and return from exhibits. Chalk it up as a learning experience.

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