The annual meeting in person Visit of the Edmonds art studio was introduced only almost a year ago due to the pandemic and has been sorely missed. This year, the free self-guided event will continue from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, September 19. Its list of 35 artists promises to be as exciting as that of previous years, if not more.
The Art Studio Tour Weekend seeks to increase both visibility and notoriety of the arts in Edmonds, through the work of many diverse and talented artists whose very presence helps make the city so special.
This opportunity to tour the artists’ private workspaces, which are usually not open to the public, provides an intimate insider view of how they live and work in their own particular world. The artists chosen to participate are deeply connected to the Edmonds community. During the tour, the artists will not only showcase their own work, but will also be eager to discuss their creative processes. Several of them will demonstrate their methods and practices.
Art is particularly vital at the time we have been living for a year and a half. Those who create art, as well as those who feel a deep connection to it, can enjoy the healing benefits of painting, sculpture, and the myriad other artistic facets to be found among participating artists.
According to longtime Arts Studio chairman, landscape designer Andy Eccleshall (Studio 17), the unique tour showcasing the artists’ works will include exhibits and demonstrations of painting, pottery, photography, jewelry, glass, ceramic, mixed media, etching and polish, or hot wax painting. Many of these artists are inspired by their gardens – in Eccleshall’s case, the one designed by his wife, landscape expert Ingrid.
âIt’s a chance to meet and talk with the artists in person, ask questions about their work and techniques, and purchase work direct from the studio,â Eccleshall said.
Eccleshall, a staple of this event for the past few years, is delighted to be able to reopen the studios this year. He is also excited about a new exhibition of his own work that will open at the Cole Gallery in downtown Edmonds in December. The new collection, which is still in progress, will be available for viewing during the tour.
âSeveral pieces are almost finished, but it is possible to see other pieces in their very early stages,â he says. “I will also have framed paintings for sale and a few older pieces at reduced prices.”
The landscaper is stepping down after several years as president of the event. âIt was an absolute honor to work with such a dedicated and enthusiastic committee,â he says of the event run entirely by volunteers. “The event only happens with a year’s hard work from everyone involved.”
Sue Coccia, from Earth Art (Studio 21), offered her own take on attending the event. âI never thought opening my home and studio could be so fun for me and for clients! Says Coccia. âI have found that people are fascinated by artists’ houses, which can be a bit eccentric, like mine!
Coccia loves the difference in feeling between a gallery or art exhibition and public home studio visits.
âNormally, in a gallery or an art exhibition, it seems formal. With us, I’m more comfortable sharing my way of working and sharing upcoming projects, âexplains Coccia. âOne year while on tour, I found a woman taking pictures of our bathroom. It made me happy.
Coccia is super excited about all aspects of the tour. This year, she says, “our front yard is sporting weirdly large sunflowers!” When asked if unusual sunflowers were part of the tour, she replied, “They should be the art of nature!”
âNature’s Artâ perfectly describes much of what visitors will see at this iconic event. This, and the unique collective creativity of the artist community that Edmonds is fortunate to have, make this event a must-see. There is still time to see the artists’ studios, as they will be open again on Sunday between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.
The event is made possible through support from the Edmonds Festival of the Arts Foundation and the Edmonds Arts Commission Tourism Promotion Fund through the Town of Accommodation Tax Fund. Edmonds, as well as the generous advertisers named in the Studio Tour brochure: www.edmondsartstudiotour.com/supportersandadvertisers.
COVID security measures will be observed and masks are mandatory when visiting the studios.
– Story and photos by Erica Miner