In spite of rainy weather both days of the weekend tour, attendance was reported to be greater this year by artists who opened their studios to local and visiting art lovers.
In its fourth year, the tour drew many return visitors along with new visitors from Seattle, Canada and many towns closer to Anacortes. “Our goal is always to provide opportunities for artists to explain their art and to show how they create their works of art - and we definitely met that goal again this year,” said Lisa Rhoades, Anacortes Arts Commissioner who chairs the event with co-chair Terry MacDonald. She was also happy to report “strong sales” by the artists who already look forward to the fifth annual tour in 2020.
“We already have some ideas to enhance next year’s tour and we already know of some artists who will join us for the first time,” Rhoades reported. At the “wrap-up” meeting of the artists who participated, they told of visitors who were shopping for art for new homes, those looking for gifts and others who were just curious about techniques and processes used by the artists. At the Samish Nation’s carving shed, visitors lingered to watch the carvers and artisans at work and numbered more than 100 both days.
Artists new to the tour in 2019 were pleased with the turnout - Jon Schmidt, stone carver/sculptor, opened his new workshop/gallery with “great” attendance both days. Mark Gardner and Dona Reed saw lots of traffic at the couple’s combined gallery downtown at 1009 Sixth St. that showcased his photography and Dona’s decorative gourds, assemblages and art prints.
Winners of the four gift baskets will be announced at a later date. The event is organized by the Anacortes Arts Commission that thanked the sponsors of the fourth tour: Anacortes Brewery, Rockfish Grill, the Croatian Center, Anacortes Arts Festival, Scott Milo Gallery, Majestic Inn and Spa, Derek Damon Orthodontics, Mountain View Dental Center, Bank of the Pacific and How It Works.
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