Tag Archives: Washington

Seattle Here We Come!

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Late this afternoon, I completed my final assignments for Personality Theory class and now have a 4 day break before the new term begins. Man!  That class was difficult!  I’ve never written so much in my life, but I’m happy to say that I have a 4 point and my professor just recommended I publish my last paper, so I’m pretty pleased that all my hard work is paying off.

Tomorrow, I shall turn off my computer and put my phone away and hit the road for a couple of days of sweet R&R!

My daughter, Sarah and I are going to take 4 yr. old Ingrid to Seattle for 2 of those 4 days, in order to see Maya, my 17 year old granddaughter, shown here at Seattle’s famous Pike’s Market, fiercely armed with a pineapple!

ImageRene Best musician                          Rene Best guitarist

 

We’ll be leaving in the morning.  She is so psyched about this, and so are we!   On Friday night, we’re going to have a “slumber party” at one of my best friend’s beautiful house.   Sheryl, (shown here with our mutual friend, George, who now lives in Mexico) and I have known one another since we both lived in Texas….20 years?  Something like that.  She and her partner, Dylan, are metal artists.  Sheryl specializes in patinas.  Dylan welds.  They both do amazing work!

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Sheryl and  Dylan, have created the coziest, most fabulous  living space.  Their house is full of plants and art and is …well, just perfect, really… Comfortable, beautiful and with much character.   It is in a remote-ish area and there is plenty of time to spread out and relax while we bask in the pleasure of one another’s company.  This is Dylan with their now-deceased boxer, Buddha.  Image

Sheryl and Dylan now have two beautiful black boxers, Ella and Able.  Our little Beatrix will be no match for these two big guys.  I’m planning to keep them apart.  These two dogs are like thoroughbred racehorses, and every bit as graceful.  They’re both brilliant, too, and have no idea that they are dogs.

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 It has been a long time since I’ve had the time to just hang out and have fun.   Maya is bringing a friend, and we’re just going to relax, eat pizza, play cards, watch movies and have a good time.  I SO look forward to spending this time with my family there!!

 The coming school  term is going to be difficult.  Two complex classes, lots of writing and much time and energy will be expended.  This will give me time to relax and unwind a little…to recharge, as it were.  My daughter Sarah needs this, too.  It will be good.

Can you see the smile on my face??     Can’t wait!

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B2 Galllery – Tacoma – Nature in the Making

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The trip to Tacoma last Sunday was a lot of fun.  We didn’t leave until late in the afternoon, but the sun was out and there were gorgeous, dramatic clouds floating across the sky to provide the perfect backdrop for our journey.   We listened to some good music and had a nice chat. I snapped photos along the way.

Very pleasant day for a road trip!

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We got to Tacoma early and were greeted by Deborah Boone, the co-owner and co-director of B2 Fine Art Gallery, who was setting things up for the reception.

 

The gallery space is beautiful.  It featured the work of a number of area artists in addition to that of Agnes Hauptli and Stacey Harvey-Brown.  For instance there were several small Chihuly pieces  (priced at around $16,000 each).

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There were also some stunning Native American pieces by PNW artist, Bo Chambers.

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However, the main focus of our interest was the Hauptli /Harvey-Brown exhibit.    I have written about these women’s work before.  They travel the world observing the topigraphical features of the earth’s surface and then go back to their prospective homes in New Zealand and England, where they sit at their looms and create amazing woven pieces that reflect the nature that they have observed.  One really must see it in person to fully appreciate the minute details, amazing textures and subtle colors that are used.

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We arrived at the gallery before Agnes and Stacey, which gave us the opportunity to walk around and snap photos.  Soon, however, the door opened, and these two weaving geniuses burst into the room on their own cloud of artful energy and lots of laughter.  It was absolutely delightful to finally meet them in person!  They are certainly forces to be reckoned with!

I asked both women to do  wee promo videos so I could upload them to Facebook.  Here is Stacey’s:

and here is Agnes’:

Here is a very brief video of some of Agnes’ work:

 

We were very fortunate in that both Stacey and Agnes were quite vocal about their work, full of interesting stories about their processes. They “worked the room” very well, drifting from person–to-person, answering questions and imparting information.    In addition to being quite entertaining, their conversations lent greater meaning to the art for us.    In the following photo,  Agnes is telling me about the fact that they packed the entire exhibit into only two suitcases and  carried tiny backpacks for the few personal belongings that they brought.

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Here we are clowning around behind some of Stacey’s work.  (That’s me with the red scarf beside Stacy with Agnes hiding in the far back.)

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Here is an amazing triptych created by Agnes to reflect the rock formations in Arizona. She has such a sensitive grasp of the delicate colors and the naturally-formed designs.  I LOVE this piece!

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And another Stacey Harvey-Brown piece that represents a stratum of ancient rock formations, again in Arizona.

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Here is a little video that shows some of the fabulous texture, up close and personal:

The following photo is a room full of Stacey Harvey-Brown’s woven tapering structures that resemble stalactites or, as someone else suggested, flowing water.

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This brief video shows a sweeping view of my favorite of Stacey’s pieces:

While we were there, the gallery was descended upon by a large group of Pacific Northwest weavers.  Glad there was such a great turn out!

Because of the long drive home, John and I had to make a rather early exit, but I must say.  I have not stopped thinking about these women’s magnificent art since we were there, and I feel that I’ve made two marvelous new friends, which makes it even better!  My sincere thanks to Dhaj Sumner, in New Zealand, who called to tell me about Agnes, who is her neighbor, and Stacey.  My life feels richer for having experienced their unique perspectives on the world.  I can’t wait to see more!  (Who knows, maybe I’ll be able to afford a piece one of these days, too!)  🙂

Thank you, Agnes and Stacey!  Your talent is a true gift to us all.  Thank you, John, for driving and for accompanying me on this little day trip.  I had such a good time.

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Oh….and…. Thank you, ART and good karma….for simply being!

It’s a Crazy World! Loco Weed Vs. Chinese Fortune Cookies

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This morning, my friend, Diane, complained that she was unable to get decent Chinese food delivered to her house in Puyallup, Washington, but that she had the option, if she so desired,  to have marijuana and related products delivered without problem.    I checked out the link that she posted and this appears to be true.  A website called THCfinder.com lists Puyallup as a delivery location for the new legalized marijuana products such as an $8 pack of Boggle Gum or other hybrid and specially cultivated marijuana products.

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The state became one of the first to legalize pot for recreational use two years ago, but there remain many challenges ahead.  Washington is currently setting up a licensing system for pot growers and sellers and the Fed is busy setting a new limit on the amount of pot that can be found in the bloodstream for safe driving.  Medical marijuana is also still in the picture.

Things are really changing.  Now, it is  legal to light up in both Denver and Seattle, and marijuana is approved for medicinal use in some 20 states.  There’s one thing the Obama administration is most concerned when it comes to legalized recreational marijuana.  That is  making sure that kids are not part of this grand pot experiment.  In Washington, the rules have been written to restrict marketing and advertising. And there’s a hefty tax levied on legal pot.

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Yup. everything is changing.  Many view this as a bad thing…but is it really?  Is it even as bad as alcohol?  Guess we’ll see.   Colorado is already reporting a lower crime rate and profits from legal marijuana crops going toward school improvements.    However, Washington has run into problems.  A legal and political haze is making it all but impossible for entrepreneurs, activists, regulators, and smokers to know when legal pot will actually be a reality in Washington — which puts the high-stakes marijuana legalization experiment at risk of failure not just in the state, but in the rest of country.

Some of the bizarre complications currently plaguing Washington are inherent in any conflict between state and federal government. Marijuana remains a Schedule I prohibited substance under federal law, although US Attorney General Eric Holder has said the Justice Department will allow Washington and Colorado — Amendment 64 there also legalized recreational pot as of January 1 — to proceed unhindered. Some complications arise due to cumbersome provisions in the Washington law itself.  And others from the way the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) has interpreted its authority to create a new recreational marijuana system.

Even when Washington’s aspiring weed moguls finally do get their licenses, they’ll have only begun the permit process. Each license holder must also secure business permits from local authorities who are often openly hostile to legal pot. Most growing operations will need construction permits to build their irrigation, electrical, and waste-disposal systems. Premises must be found. Leases must be signed. Finances must be secured to pay for all this, and not from traditional lenders — banks remain skittish about funding an industry that remains illegal under federal law, even after the Justice and Treasury departments announced in February that financial institutions may work with licensed pot businesses. Lastly, marijuana has to actually grow. It takes at least a couple of months to produce a crop.

Over the next decade, we will probably see more states legalize marijuana.  Oklahoma is in line and there is talk of legalization down the road in Texas and in other states.  Only time will tell if this will be a good thing.  One thing that even opponents of legalization should consider, however.  Even if you are opposed to smoking marijuana yourselves, legalizing it will make things safer all around.  It will cut down on drug-related crimes by eliminating street dealers.  Regulation of bud will keep the quality high and the dangerous chemicals out.  It will generate revenue for schools, roads and health care and it will cause it to be much less likely to fall into the hands of children.

The jury is out on this one.  We’ll see how it goes.  There was a tremendous bruhaha about the legalization of alcohol, back in the day. Now it is legal everywhere.  I have a feeling the same will be true of pot.

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I was recently contacted by my friend in New Zealand, Dhaj Sumner, who informed me of an upcoming exhibition in my neck of the woods that I am quite excited about.  This one has appeal for nature lovers and art lovers alike.

Coming up next month, the Nature in the Making exhibition of incredible hand woven art will feature interpretations of naturally-formed landscapes and geological forms as seen through the eyes of  UK weaver Stacey Harvey-Brown and fellow-weaver, Agnes Hauptli, from  New Zealand.  Featured  in the B2 Fine Art Gallery in Tacoma, Washington, the exhibit will run from   June 19 through July 25, 2014.

Easily accessible from Portland and Seattle, the exhibit will be the Pacific Northwest’s opportunity to witness a truly remarkable display of woven and pictorial canyons, caverns and stalactites via the artists’ unique 3-D weaving techniques and photographic images.

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The work is the two weavers’ specific responses to  the Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyons in Arizona, as well as the various cave systems under the Blue Ridge and Shenandoah Mountain ranges in Virginia, where they have met every two years since 2010.  Visitors can witness the woven details of undulating stratum and majestic mountains  in artistic stories told as no one else has ever portrayed them.

 

Agnes Hauptli uses a computer-assisted jacquard loom to create stunning  colored panels.

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Stacey Harvey-Brown uses a shaft loom to create highly textured three-dimensional growth forms installations and large, off-the-wall Strata Wall pieces.

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Please tell your friends about this one.  The exhibition is a must-see for art lovers across the PNW!

 

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Agnes is an award-winning, self taught weaver who first  began her artistic weaving endeavors with  a rigid heddle loom in 1992.   She has been in love with the craft of weaving ever since.

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Stacy Harvey-Brown’s book, Woven Shibori for Textural Effects: How You Can Weave Waves, Sand Ripples, Volcanoes and Mountains on a Shaft Loom,  can be found  HERE on Amazon.com.  She can be seen in this interesting video about the Jacquard loom:

 

I sincerely hope that my PNW-area readers will show up at the exhibit and give these two remarkable artists your welcoming support.  This is an installation you will not want to miss!

 

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EXHIBITION OPENS ::
3RD THURSDAY TACOMA ART MINGLE
THU JUNE 19 2014 :: 5PM-8PM

:: ARTIST RECEPTION ::
SAT JUNE 21 2014 :: 5PM-8PM

:: SPECIAL NIGHT CAP ARTIST RECEPTION ::
Complex Weavers Conference Attendees & Friends
SUN JUNE 29 2014 :: 8PM-10PM

 

 

 

 

Nature in the Making – by Agnes Hauptli and Stacey Harvey-Brown

Cops Satisfy Munchies with Free Doritos in Seattle

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SEATTLE (AP) — A few things will be different at this year’s Hempfest, the 22-year-old summer “protestival” on Seattle’s waterfront where tens of thousands of revelers gather to use dope openly, listen to music and gaze at the Olympic Mountains in the distance.

The haze of pot smoke might smell a little more like victory, after Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize marijuana use by adults over 21. Having won at the state level, speakers will concentrate on the reform of federal marijuana laws.

Oh, and the Seattle police — who have long turned a lenient eye on Hempfest tokers — don’t plan to be writing tickets or making arrests. They’ll be busy handing out Doritos.

“I think it’s going to be a lot of fun,” said Sgt. Sean Whitcomb, department spokesman and junk-food-dispenser-in-chief. “It’s meant to be ironic. The idea of police passing out Doritos at a festival that celebrates pot, we’re sure, is going to generate some buzz.”

The idea isn’t just to satisfy some munchies. The department has affixed labels to 1,000 bags of Doritos urging people to check out a question-and-answer post on its website, titled “Marijwhatnow? A Guide to Legal Marijuana Use In Seattle.” It explains some of the nuances of Washington’s law: that adults can possess up to an ounce but can’t sell it or give it away, that driving under the influence of pot is illegal, and that — festivals aside — public use is illegal.

Organizers are expecting as many as 85,000 people each day of the three-day event, which begins Friday and is the first Hempfest since voters passed Initiative 502 last fall.

The vote legalized possession of marijuana and set up a system of state-licensed marijuana growers, processors and stores to sell taxed and regulated weed. Officials are still writing rules for the new pot industry, with sales scheduled to begin next year.

Hempfest executive director Vivian McPeak said that despite the state-level legalization, work remains as long as pot is illegal under federal law. The event is free, but McPeak is asking attendees to contribute $10 to offset the $800,000 cost of Hempfest so it can continue next year.

“It’s going to be the most interesting Hempfest we’ve ever had because it’s going to be part victory celebration,” McPeak said. “That said, we feel it’s very important to remind everyone that as long as it’s still a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act, it’s not legal anywhere. The job’s not done yet.”

The event will feature 117 musical acts on six stages and more than 100 speakers, not to mention 400 vendors offering informational pamphlets, colorful glass bongs, food and art.

McPeak said that to encourage the responsible use of pot, Hempfest this year will be handing out cards with marijuana “gut checks” prepared by Roger Roffman, a University of Washington School of Social Work professor and marijuana dependence expert. The cards note that while marijuana is used safely by many people, it can cause short-term memory loss, affect your ability to drive and cause dependence.

“We hope people will take it more seriously coming from us than from a traditional messenger,” McPeak said.

And although police won’t be ticketing people for smoking in public, officers will be ensuring public safety and keeping a close eye out for intoxicated drivers leaving the event, Whitcomb said.

Brian Laoruangroch is hoping to use Hempfest to promote his fledgling business, Prohibition Brands, by rolling a joint of at least 2 pounds — an effort Hempfest’s organizers have frowned upon as not compliant with Initiative 502. Prohibition Brands hopes to obtain a marijuana processing license under the state’s new law.

“This is a big moment for me,” he said. As a pot smoker, “You kind of get an image that’s cast upon you in a negative way. For a lot of people, this is a you-don’t-have-to-hide-in-the-shadows-any-more kind of thing. You can be out in the open.”

Day #10 – A Place

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Photo a Day – APRIL

Day #10 – A Place

© Stacy Alexander – 2013

Original artwork by Stacy Alexander. Silverthorn Studios

A Day at Mt. Saint Helens

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There is nothing like a little day trip to a gorgeous place, to enhance a marriage.  We love to take day trips, and we do it frequently.  Yesterday, John and I drove up to Mt. Saint Helens.  This is another one of those beautiful places within a couple of hours’ drive from where we live.  There are so many!

For the most part, it was an overcast day.  We had a little sunshine, but the clouds didn’t hamper our spirits, nor did it distract from the distinct beauty of this incredibly lush, gorgeous place.  I’m just going to post a series of photos after this and let them do the talking for me.

Enjoy!

Stacy

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If you ever have the opportunity to go there, I highly recommend it!