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Press Release for WPW Show at ArtsWest, Seattle

Show Reception: November 2 • 3-5PM

They are Women. They Paint.
They live in Washington.
The name says it all.
Or does it?

The Women Painters of Washington, a venerable, longstanding collective of talented, producing artists, maintains an organizational name that is almost ironic in its lack of descriptive resonance. With a decades-long history marked by major artistic milestones, a consistent exhibition record, and a commitment to advocacy that has produced opportunity and recognition for its members at the local, regional, national and international level, this is an organization that accomplishes far more than its name might suggest, due in no small part to the skill, dedication and artistic talents of the artists who comprise it. And now, through an alliance between the WPW and ArtsWest, the residents of West Seattle have an opportunity to view the works of some of those artists, and learn more about the Women Painters and their continuing contribution to the art history of Washington State.

In reviewing and selecting work for this exhibition, I was impressed, as I always am when working with the Women Painters, with the high standard of excellence evident among the nearly 100 works submitted for consideration. Consistency of quality, however, should not be interpreted as uniformity of style! Throughout the review, I was treated to a fascinating array of approaches to painting, and a range of styles that was almost dizzying. In making selections, I wanted to reflect this diversity in part to demonstrate the unique way that WPW members support and encourage one another to pursue their artistic interests without dictating or promoting any particular method or vocabulary. Within the exhibition there is landscape and portraiture, still life and abstraction. There are paintings that are expressionistic, traditional and romantic, politically driven, and quietly reflective. There is humor. There is celebration. There is urgency, and introspection. There is work that is deeply personal, and work that is universal in theme.

Of all of the works submitted, roughly 30 pieces have been selected for exhibition, and I further identified two paintings for special recognition that I considered especially strong. Anni Leedy’s “Irish Writer” conveyed a sense of complexity, dignity and quiet endurance that I found compelling, and Madelaine Georgette’s “Should I Testify” is perhaps the artist’s most powerful work yet, serving as a call to action on behalf of humanity. Additional artists whose offerings inspired me included Kathleen Redmer, Raenell Doyle, Arden Charles, Wendy Thon and Reni Moriarty. I look forward to following the progress of these artists and all of the Women Painters of Washington as they continue to pursue and present their work across the state, and beyond.

Peggy Weiss
Exhibition Juror
November 2003


To see the Award Winners

for this show

please visit the

WPW Gallery