After seven years and its biggest showing for participating artists, the Sequim Arts Studio Tour is taking a summer off, maybe longer.
Linda Stadtmiller, president of Sequim Arts, said the group decided that its volunteers were spread too thin and couldn’t prepare it in time for Sequim Lavender Weekend, July 18-20. However, two groups of artists are putting on their own events like the first ART JAM with 10 artists off Silberhorn Road.
For the studio tour, Stadtmiller said no one with Sequim Arts was willing to serve as a chairman and last year’s chairman, Catherine Mix, couldn’t recruit enough help, so they decided to cancel the event.
“It’s a huge job and takes half a dozen people working hard for six months,” Stadtmiller said. “There’s a lot involved in putting it together.”
The studio tour typically runs during Lavender Weekend but with two separate events for the Sequim Lavender Festival and Sequim Lavender Farm Tour & Fair, Stadtmiller said they were trying to move away from the busy weekend.
“With double the lavender festivals and two street fairs, we just spread people too thin and people were confused where to go so it really hurt the studio tour,” she said.
Sequim Arts members have talked for a few years about moving the event’s dates to September but it remains a goal down the line, Stadtmiller said.
One group that saw a lot of success during the studio tour is starting a similar event called the ART JAM at Rock Hollow Farm, 505 E. Silberhorn Road.
Susan Gansert Shaw, who hosts the event in her barn, started by herself six years ago on the studio tour before recruiting painters Mary Franchini and Lynne Armstrong to which she called the “Barn Sisterhood.” Later she recruited jewelers Brian Buntain and Ed Crumley to form the “Fabulous Five.”
A year later, she’s branded her new group “The Top Ten,” which added Cynthia Thomas, bronze sculpture artist; Terry Grasteit, abstract acrylic painter, Barb Boerigter, found object sculpture artist, Steven Portner, wood worker; and Karin Anderson, acrylic painter.
Shaw said she continued to open her studio because she didn’t want to disrupt the flow for people who have been coming to her farm for five years.
“I thought we should just go for it and see what we can do,” she said.
While the ART JAM features demonstrations and displays, it also is creating a 50-foot canvas wall for artists and visitors to paint on.
Shaw said the group formed its own website (RockHollowArts.com) but not with any expectations for what comes next.
“We’d like to see it grow a little bit, maybe have some music and see how much we can handle,” she said. “We could go anyway we want to.”
The ART JAM won’t be the only new art happenings during Lavender Weekend for Sequim Arts as husband and wife Randy and Sallie Radock will host an open house for their block prints at Sherwood Village, 1021 N. Littlejohn Way, from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday-Saturday, July 18-19.
Sequim Arts’ next events include managing the Art Barn at the Clallam County Fair from Aug. 14-17 and its 5×7 art show with unframed, unmatted pieces at the Museum & Arts Center.