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Artist Spotlight

Artist Spotlight: Kentaro Kojima

Meet Kentaro Kojima Kentaro Kojima

I was born and raised in Guatemala. My parents, both Japanese, met in Guatemala and had a family and, in fact, they still live there.

In the 60’s, it was very rare and difficult for a young Japanese artist/designer to get out of Japan, but it was rarer still for a single woman, in her early twenties, to go out of Japan. It was pretty much unheard of at the time. Even today, I am constantly surprised at the resistance some young Japanese people seem to feel about going outside of Japan, let alone altogether moving out of it. So, you might say that the two black sheep that were my parents, met in Guatemala and raised a family of black sheep. (Their life story is a lot more interesting than mine.)

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Artist Spotlight: Bob Leverich

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT •	Home and Away, Lavender Gray Maine Granite, 9’-2” H x 7’-10” W x 22’-10” W Bob Leverich
By Bob Leverich

Who are you and how has art come to fit into your life?

I grew up on a dairy farm in western Wisconsin not far from the Mississippi, in an era when rural kids had the whole world to range over – pastures and fields, orchards and woods, hills and streams, in all seasons. There was always work to do on the farm, but it afforded a closeness to the natural world that still informs who I am and how I think about much of my work. I count myself lucky for that.

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Brian Goldbloom's “THRESHOLD”

BrianinholeA Multi Pieced Work in Granite
for Portland’s TriMet Milwaukie/Main Street Light Rail Station in Milwaukie, Oregon. 

“Threshold” spans the length of the Milwaukie/Main Street Station, with three pieces that take their cues from the site’s history. The north end of the platform is in downtown Milwaukie, while the south end faces Kellogg Lake. The lake began as a natural creek before becoming a millpond for a largeflourmill in the mid 1800s. Later, it was enjoyed for recreational use until around the mind-1950s when it began to decline. Now there are ongoing citizen efforts to restore its scenic integrity and healthy habitat.

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Artist Spotlight: Rich Hestekind


After two and half decades of membership in the NWSSA I thought I would share a few observations and thoughts on who we are and what we do.

In the spring of 1991, while working on a design project in the Capitol Hill area of Seattle, I ran into an old friend and mentor, Everett Dupen. He was the former head of the sculpture department at the University of Washington where I received both my BFA and MFA. He excitedly expressed his enthusiasm in meeting a group of stone sculptors and encouraged me to attend a symposium they were having in early summer at a place called Camp Brotherhood. Stone was always my preferred medium for personal expressive sculpture. At the time and for the past number of years my energy had been focused on social and environmental art. The return to personal expression and the visceral allure of stone propelled me to attend.

Arriving, I absorbed what was happening in this extraordinary environment. I experienced a transformation. The feel of community was immediate and warmly embracing. Full supportive resources of material, tools, and instruction was there to receive. Each participant was subtracting chip by chip, layer by layer their vision embedded in the stone they now embraced.

The fountain that Rich designed and created in the Magnolia Courtyard of the Bardessono HotelHow and why? This was not some militarized artisanal boot camp nor was it some hierarchical art academy with its cannons of performance and its standards for righteous achievement. This seemed to be a focused community thriving in a nurturing supportive setting. The participants, regardless of experience or recognized achievement, seemed to be flourishing in each other’s company. It was amazing. I had stumbled into an experience of such deep and resonant personal value, a culture of trust and sharing. I needed to embrace and commit myself to this community like so many others have done.

I came to know the vision and goals of the core establishing members: Vic Picou, George Pratt, Meg Pettibone, Tamara Buchanan and others.

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Alabaster and Light by Marie Sivak

Excerpts from her interview with writer Nikki Grattan published online by San Francisco based In The Make

We visited Marie in her bright and airy Portland studio in an industrial area right near the Willamette RiverOne of Marie’s main preoccupations in her work is the exploration of the complex and elusive world of memory Using a variety of materials besides stone, she creates mixed media pieces that bring both personal and collective memory and meaning to the forefront to provoke a collision of time, emotions, and space.

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Artist Spotlight: Lane Tompkins 2014

Meet Lane Tompkins Again, After 5 Years

Who are you?Lane Tompkins

I am the same Lane Tompkins that was in the Artist Spotlight in the January/February, 2009 issue. That time I answered this question with a short, pre NWSSA bio ending with the fact that I was in the process of moving to Whidbey Island. I made that move and continue to live in Langley and am one of a dozen artists working at the Freeland Art Studios, just up the road from Langley.

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