Artist: Bellingham blessed to have multicultural art events


Ralph Myers of Bellingham, who calls himself an amateur artist (including the art of Sumi-e) and photographer shares his thoughts on a recent gallery event:

"If only for a few moments, an hour or two, we could do something that perhaps will help slow things down at least a little bit and help us appreciate life and its serene offerings and beauty I feel certain we would want to do so. One such thing I have discovered to be helpful to me is learning about the ancient Japanese art form of Sumi-e or black ink painting. The Sumi-e art is not only graceful and serene it also helps one in relaxing and awakening our awareness and inner-self and it is by its very nature a simplistic art form. So much so that famed Dutch artist Vincent Van Gogh once commented on it when he said, 'If we study Japanese art, we see a man who is undoubtedly wise, philosophic and intelligent who spends his time doing what, studying the distance between the earth and moon or in studying Bismarck's policy? No he studies a single blade of grass.'

"June 6,7 8 at the Lucia Douglas Gallery in the Fairhaven District of Bellingham gave all of our art-loving residents the chance to experience the Charm of Sumi-e Art and if Van Gogh was still living, keeping in mind his observation, I feel certain he would have attended the exhibition and would have been pleased by it.

"The exhibition was directed by Japanese artist Shosaku Ito and artists Masanori Sakanaka, Masayuki Toshiyasu, Genichi Murai, and Koichi Maeda joined him as they travelled all the way from Japan and treated us with the beautiful display of their art.

"If you didn't have the chance to attend sadly you missed the simplistic beauty of Sumi-e art as Bellingham showed once again why it is one of the leading cultural centers in all of Washington and the Pacific Northwest. I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge the help in promoting and organizing the Charm of Sumi-e Art exhibit event by my friend Kumi Shields along with Shosaku Ito, the exhibit's director, and Linda Gardner, owner of the Lucia Douglas Gallery, for allowing all of us here in Bellingham the opportunity to experience this beautiful art form displayed there."


Blue Skies for Children, a local non-profit organization that supports programs for homeless, low-income and foster children, raised $14,000 in support of its Little Wishes Programs at its casino night fundraiser May 3. Sponsors included Pacific International Grout, Bramble Berry Inc., and The Best Western Lakeway Inn.

Sheila Connors of the Whatcom Museum Foundation and Shari Skinner of Haskell Corporation have recently joined the board of the organization, but the group is still looking for another board member. For information, contact Julie Guay at 360-756-6710.


Also 100 parade entries participated in the 2014 Farmers Day Parade June 7 in Lynden. Grand Marshal was Jensen Anderson and the primary event sponsor was Peoples Bank.

Here are the parade winners, from the Lynden Chamber of Commerce:

Best in parade was a tie with Tough Enough to Wear Pink and Despicable Me Minions. And the best of the rest: original or restored car, Luanne Van Werven; original or restored tractor, Puget Sound Antique Tractor and Machinery Association, original or restored vehicle - other, North County Christ the King; organizational float, Deming Log Show; float, Custer Cougar Athletics; mounted horse entry, Rodeo Cowgirls; horse entry with vehicle, Green Earth Technology; clean up entry, Shagren; commercial walking entry, WECU; organizational walking entry, Lynden Mini Cheer; youth walking entry, Lynden Youth Sports; middle school band, Meridian Middle School; high school band, Lynden High School Band; commercial truck, Go Big Paintball; commercial farm unit, OXBO International; commercial car, A1 Septic; commercial van/small bus, Little Caesars Pizza.

Out and About is published Mondays in The Bellingham Herald. Reach Executive Editor Julie Shirley at or call 360-715-2261.

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