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Suttle Lake

2017 Suttle Lake Centerfold

Suttle Lake Stone Carving SymposiumFellow stone sculptors,

It is time to come home.  Be with friends, mentors, students, and especially, take the opportunity to be present with yourself. Our symposium is an evolving form of education, a union of ideas, and a place for gathering your energy.  When we work alongside one another, it is a statement. It is a proclamation that the earth can be moved by individuals and that it can be moved in harmony through collaboration.
In August of 1987, NWSSA held our first annual international stone sculpture symposium. This landmark event coincided with a spectacular alignment of planets in our solar system, and coordinated meditation across the globe. 
In August of 2017, we will again be hosting our annual Oregon symposium at Suttle Lake. It is fitting that we will kick off this event with another celestial alignment. We will witness a total solar eclipse the morning of Monday, August 21st. The next two total solar eclipses that will even be close to Oregon occur in 2045 in northern California, and 2099 in Canada.  The next total eclipse to pass over Oregon (or Washington) will not be until June 25, 2169!  

Embrace the opportunity of a lifetime by sharing this special moment in the midst of an extreme concentration of creative energy.  
We have a full program this year that is certain to push us into new ways of thinking.  Two themes of approach and technique will frame the 2017 symposium: high-tech & traditional and east & west.  

Carl NelsonMichael BinkleyCarl Nelson and Michael Binkley will present on CNC carving and transforming computer generated designs into stone. A small CNC carving machine will be on site during the week so that we can observe the process from start to finish. M.j. Anderson will follow this up by giving a field demonstration on carving Italian marble and will be carving and mentoring through the week. Keith Philips, resident artist of Tenino quarry, will visit and talk about traditional techniques for hand carving sandstone.End of copy on the left side of circle.Uchida-san

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Suttle Lake Symposium 2015

Suttle Lake Stone Sculptors Symposium 
August 23rd - 30th, 2015 - Sisters, Oregon
Suttle Lake Logo

New Location!

NWSSA is pleased to announce a new location and extended days (at the same price) for our annual Oregon State Stone Carving Symposium! You may be familiar with "Camp Brotherhood" Symposium in Washington State - We hope you will join us for "Camp Sisters" near Sisters, Oregon for our Stone carving symposium this August! 

Suttle Lake Campground

Stone carvers are invited to convene at the Suttle Lake Campground near Sisters, Oregon for 7 days of sculpting fun. Set up a tent to carve, share, learn and be challenged. From the beginner's tent to the professional tool chest, there are ample ways to learn, get involved,  and connect with other artists.

Carving sessions are interspersed with tool & safety instruction, informative sessions, and on the field mentoring. Field instructors are always available to answer questions. Bring your gear (if you are a beginner, we have tools you can use), we provide power, water and air. S
hould you need them, there are tools and stone available for purchase.

We provide three meals and rooms. In the evenings, artists show their images and talk about their sculpture. If you need a break, hike in the surrounding hills or grab a boat and head out on the lake. In the evening folks can gather around the campfire before turning in.

Stay tuned to our website and facebook page for more details. If you would like to join us this year, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to be added to our mailing list so you will receive notice about our next Oregon State Symposium event!

NWSSA’s First Time at Suttle Lake, Sisters, Oregon

By Lane Tompkins
Two carvers waiting for the dinner bell

Sometimes trying something new doesn’t always turn out well, so moving the Oregon Symposium from our much loved Silver Falls State Park to a new location caused us more than a little apprehension.

We were told that Suttle Lake on the edge of the Cascades in Central Oregon was lovely. We were even told that the cost would be low enough for us to get 7 days for less than the cost of 5 days at Silver Falls. So those who went did so with big hopes.

Those hopes were more than satisfied. The Kitchen Staff was great to work with and the food was organic and locally grown. There was even a map on the wall showing what came from where.

Though the beds were on the Spartan side, the four-inch think mattresses were in abundance, allowing one to easily double or even triple the comfort quotient.

Kazutaka Uchida with his jellybean sculptureOur tenting area was almost scarily reminiscent of the one atSilver Falls and walking distance between field and rooms and dining hall were quite short, also like Silver Falls. It didn’t take us long to feel right at home.

We had a huge newbie tent with several people who had never, ever carved a stone. With what a will they jumped right into it and began carving. It was thrilling to watch their progress.

And this symposium was our chance to gather in a big circle and take turns thanking Tom Urban for his unfailing 20 years of service to the Oregon contingent. Of course that always includes a few outliers from way up north –Washington, Canada and Montana. (Bless those hardy Montanans who come down every year to brighten up our days and our auctions, bringing cases and cases of Moose Drool Beer from their contact at The Big Sky Brewery in Missoula.)
Walking from lunch back to the field
And speaking of the Auction. Trying to tell you what happened in the auction would be like trying to say what happened during any given three hours in the universe. A lot happened. People were sent to jail and had to be bought out. High-bidders went to the VIP lounge to be fawned over and anointed, too soon replaced by the next big buyer. People worked hard distributing beverages, they also worked hard to outbid someone and then gave the item to the one they outbid. It was fun. It was more than fun. We raised $6,400.

This short account is not all that happened at Suttle Lake. If you want to know that, you’ll have to come next year. I bet you’ll love it, too.

15th Annual Silver Falls Symposium

Find out what we did in 2009 at Silver Falls!!
August 22-26, 2009

Special Guests: Brian Goldbloom  and  Collen Wilson

The Symposium is open to all levels, from beginners who have never carved stone to the experienced sculptor.  This year the symposium will include individualized field instruction by Laura Alpert, Rich Hestikind, Lee Imonen, David P. Miller and Tom Urban. Bring projects you've started, or buy stone on site and get one-on-one attention from the instructor of your choice.  On Tuesday Paul Buckner will be on site to give individualized instruction.  Evening slide presentations will feature work by Brian Goldbloom, Coleen Wilson and Rich Hestikind. The Silver Falls Symposium is a great place to make new friends, renew old friendships and learn more about stone carving in a relaxed, supportive environment.


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