Arts and Entertainment

Glowen to show ‘Walking Distance’ at MoNA

“Winter Garden,” is one of the new body of work by Kathryn Glowen inspired by a trip to Europe where community gardens line the railroad tracks across the region. The piece will be included in a group show, “Finds Refined” using recycled materials in a variety of ways, opening March 14. - Courtesy photo
“Winter Garden,” is one of the new body of work by Kathryn Glowen inspired by a trip to Europe where community gardens line the railroad tracks across the region. The piece will be included in a group show, “Finds Refined” using recycled materials in a variety of ways, opening March 14.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

La CoNner — Arlington artist Kathryn Glowen created a unique work of art in response to a request for “Art Shoes,” special for the Museum of Northwest Art’s annual fundraiser, MoNA Style, March 7.

She is also participating in a group show, “Finds Refined” which opens at MoNA March 14.

Her Art Shoe piece, “Walking Distance” will be on display and raffled off during the annual wearable art show and sale that supports the museum’s education programs and exhibitions March 7. It joins other artist-design shoes by well-known regional artists Allan Moe, Sue Roberts, Cathy Schoenberg and Maggie Wilder who have created a variety of amusing, whimsical and surprising shoe creations for this year’s MoNA Style. The art shoes are being displayed in La Conner store windows during the month before the event.

Glowen is also showing work in MoNA’s next show, “Finds Refined,” opening March 14. The show will include a piece from her “Wonder/Allotment Garden” series, created with “yoyos” stitched of vintage silk ties.

“Finds Refined” is a group show featuring emerging and established artists who use found matter in subtle or amazing ways in their creations, said the curator of the show, Kathleen Moles.

“Reused or ordinary materials are essential to the work, for aesthetic reasons or to incorporate its history or past life,” Moles explained.

In some works, found materials are only a part of the piece, mixed in with more traditional mediums. In other instances, the found elements will not immediately reveal themselves in the art upon viewing, Moles said.

In the wide variety of pieces in the show, artists address ideas of consumerism, history, nostalgia, nature, waste and abstraction. Along with Glowen, participating artists include Michelle Allard, Ross Palmer Beecher, Francesca Berrini, Gretchen Bennett, James Castle, Diem Chau, Marc Dombrosky, Scott Fife, Patrick LoCicero, Allen Moe, Jason Mouer, Jane Richlovsky, Whiting Tennis and Robert Yoder.

“Kathryn is calling these works ‘silk paintings’ and her work fits into our Finds Refined theme by being made of ordinary or recycled material,” Moles said.

In this case, it’s vintage silk that she has reworked into a large-scale “silk paintings.”

Kathryn attributes the inspiration for this new body of work to a 2007 trip to Germany and the Czech Republic.

“The crop circles viewed from the airplane while crossing the U.S., as well as the widespread practice of gardening in small collective plots (schrebergarten) near the towns and villages in Europe as seen from the trains were the inspiration for these works,” Glowen said.

“The plant material that I have used before in my collages has now been industrially processed in these vintage printed fabrics from men’s silk neckties,” she said.

The cloth is gathered in a simple stitching device to make flower-like forms traditionally known as “yoyos.”

“The fabric is packed into circles forming a riot of patterns and textures to create the visual feeling of dense and changing outdoor gardens,” said Glowen, who likes the organic contrast with the regimental flatness of men’s ties, and their well-defined knots associated with business suits and corporate situations.

She sees the work as an homage to the traditions of silk.

“The densely packed circles lend a somewhat Zen-like feel,” Glowen said.

“The idea that these materials used for one purpose at one time (men’s ties from the 1920s-50s) are now being used to create art in an ingenious way, and that the resulting artwork’s theme is completely separate from the material’s use, is the amazing and intriguing part, and is why they’re in the show,” Moles said.

Along with “Finds Refined” a survey of the works of Phillip Levine will be shown in MoNA’s Second Floor Galleries March 14 - June 14. The Seattle-based sculptor was one of the artists featured in the 2002 book and MoNA exhibition “Iridescent Light.” He is known for his large-scale public art, including Woman Dancing (1976, Washington State Capitol, Olympia) and Dancer with Flat Hat (1971, University of Washington, Seattle). The exhibition features small-scale sculpture in groups that explore the human form in terms of balance, mythology, movement, and abstraction. Rarely seen drawings and paintings provide more views of Levine’s process. The Phillip Levine Survey is shown in conjunction with the publication of “Phillip Levine: Myth, Memory & Image,” published by the University of Washington Press in partnership with Museum of Northwest Art.

The Museum of Northwest Art, 121 S. First Street, in La Conner is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sundays and Mondays, but the galleries are closed March

9 - 13 for installation of the new shows. For information see the Web site at or call 360-466-4446.

Walk Through

March 19

Join curator Kathleen Moles for an informal walk through the Finds Refined and Phillip Levine Survey exhibitions, along with Lisa Young, curator of MoNA’s permanent collection. They will also explore the Selections from the Glass Collection in the Benaroya Glass Gallery 1:30 p.m. Thursday, March 19.

Artists Panel

March 29

Kathryn Glowen will join several participating artists in a panel discussion on “Finds Refined” with curator Kathleen Moles in a wide-ranging discussion about methods, techniques, and meanings at 2 p.m., March 29. They will discuss how the artists find the materials they use in their work, why they use them and what their use signifies.

Kathryn and Ron Glowen to speak at AAC Artist Workshop March 28

Glowen and her husband Ron Glowen will speak about this recent body of work and bodies of work in general as the keynote speakers at the upcoming Artist Workshop presented March 28 by the Arlington Arts Council.

Ron Glowen is a renowned art critic and he is offering to provide feedback on artists’ work at the annual spring workshop to be held in the Hadley Room of the Arlington Boys and Girls Club, 18513 59th Ave NE, Arlington, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, March 28. Admission is by donation for members and $15 for nonmembers.

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