Above is a link to more information about the upcoming August 5-6 workshop with Polly Adams Sutton at the Bainbridge Artisans Resource Network, BARN.
There are many artists I’ve been influenced by. When I see a shape in space that I like, or materials that draw me in, or a brilliant idea worked into the material world, I am changed somehow. I agree with the many who have said there is no original idea anywhere, that we are all touched by what we’ve seen or experienced. One such artist whose work I am constantly touched by is Polly Adams Sutton.
Polly Adams Sutton is a Seattle artist who has been teaching nationally and internationally for over two decades, and throughout this time has been my constant cedar bark gathering companion. She knew someone who worked for a shingle company that regularly received permits to log in the North and Central Cascades, on Washington State Department of Natural Resources Land. So, for two decades, with permission, we found our way into the most beautiful and remote places ahead of the logging operations. We drove on narrow, bumpy logging roads, hiked for miles, were yelled at by unsuspecting logging-truck drivers, met a pack of wild puppies once, all on the quest to gather the Western Red Cedar bark from trees that were destined to be clear cut. Polly and I have spent our careers working with the gifts of these forests.
Many of these forests no longer exist, and those that exist were not replanted with Western Red Cedar, but were replanted primarily with faster growing Douglas Fir. We have witnessed first hand how over time many diverse forest ecosystems in our area have been converted to monoculture crops. Through our work as artists, we are trying to keep something living that is important. Not only does the Western Red Cedar continue to live in our work, but we understand first-hand why we need diversity in our world.
Polly is an excellent teacher, and if you are interested in learning skills that push the boundaries of what a basket made with the humble materials of inner cedar bark and NW sweetgrass can look like, this is a great opportunity to learn with a Master. Following is a link to more info about Polly.