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President's Message

President's Message May-June 2019

From the President.... 

President’s Message

Pilgrim Firs is not to be missed this Pilgrim Firs is not to be missed this year! In addition to our Beginner’s Workshops and special Jade tent,we have two incredible Guest Artists.From Florence comes marble sculptor Jason Arkles. Jason also hosts The Sculptor’s Funeral podcast. In my drive down and back from Austin TX, I got to sample and binge. I highly recommend it. Go to:

Also with us is limestone sculptor Dale Enoch, from Indiana.He has a bunch to talk about on doing public work as well as public commentary, see: Cartouche, (Chronicle of the Orange King):

Check out the Centerfold for more information.

Finally, we were sorry to receive Lane and Penelope’s announcement that they are retiring and hanging up their editors' hats. We have been so fortunate to have them as the editorial team for the Journal for a combined 30 years. They say it has been a rewarding journey and are pleased with their stewardship. The board echoes that feeling as the two of them have created a respected and beautiful record of our collectiveworks and activities over this time.

I suggested to them that we would like to honor them in someway, but they feel amply compensated by having had the opportunity to work so closely with the Association over the years. So I think I speak for the Organization when I say a heartfelt Thank You.
In addition to mark the transition, an Editor’s Scholarship Fund has been setup for those needy sculptors out there to attend our symposiums and workshops. A group of anonymous donors have contributed $500 as a challenge to all members who wish to both honor Lane & Penelope and help those who carve stone.Instead of one of those $5 hallmark thank you cards, donate at our web site and make note it’s for the Editor’s Scholarship Fund.

Their retirement also means the Association needs a new editorial team. Penelope and Lane have planned well for the transition. They have already done most of the work for the July/August issue so there is a good running start, and they will be happy to work with their replacements to assure a smooth transition.If you have an interest in taking on the role of editor, there are two main functions required:
1) Soliciting material, including artist interviews and other things that artists find interesting;
2) Editing the material for clarity/presentation purposes.
The person who does our printing also does the content layout so the job does NOT include layout and design of each issue,just a gathering and editing of material.

If taking on this role appeals to you and you’d like to be part of the next team, please email or call Ken Barnes: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (206-930-0681) or Carl Nelson: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.(425-7564-7967).

Carve Proud, Learn Much, and Share with Many...
... Carl

President's Message March-April 2019

From the President.... 

President’s Message

I set my expectations high for the CROSS+OVER show and was not disappointed. Thirteen members created a diverse set of forms from the crosses and filled the gallery with seventeen pieces that held folks’ attention. During setup, almost all sculptors had stories about working with the deteriorated cross material to get to their final form. Carol Duree-Jones told a story about showing an elderly gentleman her final work and a picture of the original cross, and the first thing he asked was where the cross was stolen from.

Again, many thanks to Kim Lewis and Michael Creger. Without them the show would not have happened. Also, special shout-out to Portland Community College's Mark Smith and the North View Gallery crew. They provided pedestals, lit the show, and made setup easy.

One more reminder: The Old Alcohol Plant in Port Hadlock is looking for NWSSA members’ sculpture to display and sell in their lobby area. Check out the web page: and give Cheri Perry a call.

The winter potluck at Marenakos was a delightful gathering of old and new members. Lots of yummy ribs, salads, Pat Barton’s chanterelle pâté, desserts and Scott Hackney's hospitality. Many Thanks to Marenakos for generously providing their facility for our gathering. Toward the end of the gathering the board convened for a quick meeting and formed a nominating committee for this year’s elections. Patty McPhee will be the chair and Renee will put the ballot/email out for members. Drop Patty a note (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) if you, or someone you know, would like to run for the board.

This year there will be seven positions on the board that need filled: Rick Johnson, Steve Sandry, Ben Mefford, Steve Galea, Patty McPhee, Pat Barton, and myself. Pat and I will be reaching the end of our four-term limit of serving on the board and will need to take a year off until we can run again. 

So far Rick Johnson, Ben Mefford and Patty McPhee have stated they wish to run. Steve Sandry and Steve Galea would like to see their positions filled with a new face, someone who has not served on the board before. In addition, Ellie Hochman and Kirsten Rayhawk have affirmed they would like to be on the ballot, so that makes five people for seven positions.  

You make this community function, so please consider sharing your skills and wisdom by serving on the board for a two year term. 

Carve Proud, Learn Much, and Share with Many.…


President's Message Jan-Feb 2019

From the President.... 

President’s Message

Not long ago, Carl was asked what an artist should consider if they wanted to put their sculpture into a non-gallery setting, such as a coffee shop. Here is Carl’s answer.

  1. Ask if the coffee shop has any insurance regarding theft or vandalism, if not, be willing to lose the piece in exchange for “exposure.” Generally insurance covers cost of materials like $50 for the new piece of stone. In some cases, you will probably be a friend of a friend who thinks this is a cool idea. Get to know the owner and their staff.
  2. Will you get any say in display and curation so as to minimize grab and go theft?
  3. Soft stone is scratchable. Will the display allow someone to inadvertently scratch the piece? If it is going to be touchable, make sure it stays safe and can’t be knocked over or dropped.
  4. Lighting in a coffee shop can suck. Will you get any say about lighting?
  5. Have a clear inventory, with each piece listed and priced. Find out who will be handling sales and the collection of money. Think about having a price label with a QR code so folks can contact you directly to learn more about the work and about you.

Hope this helps.


President's Message Nov-Dec 2018

From the President.... 

The opportunities to display your work continues. Mark your calendars for the Jan 14, 2019 opening of: “Cross + Over Honoring a Re-Birth in Form” at Portland Community College’s Sylvania Gallery. This show will feature the works made from re-purposed marble crosses. As described in the show brochure, “Following the replacement of weathered cemetery crosses with granite, Colorado marble forms became available for sculptors. Celebrate the new life given to these crosses.”

Over 20 members have “acquired” a cemetery cross at NWSSA’s Suttle Lake auctions. As of this writing, 10 have confirmed they will be contributing a piece or documentation of their work for display. If you have a “Cross + Over” to display and have NOT contacted me, please email me: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ASAP so we can reserve a spot for you in the show. 

Many thanks to Michael Creger for finding the space and scheduling the event, and especially to Kim Lewis for his vision and generosity of the cross donations that make it possible. See two of the cross + over entries on the back cover of this issue.

Ben Mefford reports progress on the sculpture display at Marymoor, and are waiting for a contract from King County to get the final details of our arrangement hammered out. Stay tuned and think “public art” in late 2019.

Speaking of public art, Candyce Garret will be back next year to Pilgrim Firs to continue work on her granite pieces, and John Lafortune will also be there. So, if you want first-hand experience and hints, put Pilgrim Firs on your calendar, July 6-14, 2019. And, if you’d like the opportunity to work on a large marble piece, think about joining Mark Andrews and fellow sculptors at the Suttle Lake symposium, August 11-18, 2019 as they continue the carving.

I’ve been very surprised by the warm response I get when I speak with people about having a youth-oriented symposium event. If you have any ideas about what you might like to see at a stone carving event for 12-18 year olds, drop me a note.

I would like to welcome Constance Jones to the board. Given her years of experience as a therapist, she has expressed an interest in working with Rick Johnson and the folks at joint Base Lewis McCord (JBLM) veteran’s art therapy program. If you would like to lend a hand, drop Rick Johnson a note so he can pass it on to the folks at JBLM.

Finally, please consider sharing your skills and wisdom by serving on the board for a two year term. It is you that makes things happen, so please consider how you might contribute.

Carve Proud, Learn Much, and Share with Many.…