Open Studio Tour

Dori O'Neal, Herald staff writerNovember 9, 2012 

Jan Nilsson is motivated to create art by simply looking out the windows of her West Richland studio.

"My studio overlooks the Yakima River, where I often take my inspiration from the celestial reflections on the water," Nilsson said.

Nilsson is one of the newer members to the annual Open Studio Tour, which features 16 Tri-City-area artists who will open their private studios to visitors Nov. 10-11. Hours are from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. The self-guided tours are free.

"I'm thrilled to be a new member of the Open Studio Tour," Nilsson said. "I will demonstrate painting with sumi ink on watercolor paper."

Nilsson's studio is at 1528 Riverside Drive in West Richland.

Another newcomer to the tour is jewelry designer April Ottey from Richland. She's been a jewelry artist for 15 years and has been teaching the craft as well as metalsmithing at New Horizons High School in Pasco for about five years.

"I've been making bracelets that are shaped by hammering, which is forging," Ottey said. "I don't forge in the same way a blacksmith does with hot metal. I work at shaping it with a hammer and then heat it up to soften the metal."

She also incorporates river and beach stones to her jewelry.

"I love the natural form of the rock and how the river or the ocean polishes and shapes it for me," she added.

Ottey's studio is at 65 Park St., Richland.

Weaver Susan Schmieman is also new to the tour. Her studio, at 11 S. Benton St., Suite A in downtown Kennewick, features a wide selection of work.

Returning artists to the tour include:

-- Glass artist Linda Andrews' new work includes colorful fabric art. Her studio is at 57204 N. Sunset Road, Benton City.

-- Sue Kimmel creates a wide range of art from craft books to collage forms as well as sculpting silver clay into jewelry. Her latest work reflects her recent travels to Europe. Her studio is at 4352 Laurel Drive, West Richland.

-- Photographer David Wyatt's award-winning work will be on exhibit at his Loftics studio in an airplane hangar at the Richland Airport on Terminal Drive.

-- Consuelo Soto Murphy's art reflects her migrant family heritage in the fields of the Yakima Valley. Her studio is at 1509 Sanford Ave., Richland.

-- Dennis and Bev Brunson's studio at 1955 Birch Ave., Richland, features pottery, paintings, artifacts and photographs. Visitors can bring along old photographs for free estimates on restoring them. Their studio also doubles as a sausage-making shop.

-- Kathryn Kaye applies memories and emotions to her collage art at her studio at 2119 Newcomer Ave., Richland.

-- Chris Walling, who organized the first Open Studio Tour nine years ago, is working on a series titled Art Reimagined, which uses previous cut-up watercolors embellished with black ink. Her studio is at 631 Lynnwood Loop, Richland.

-- Ted Neth, the former dean of arts and humanities at Columbia Basin College, invites the public to peek inside his sculpture studio, where he blends metal, wood, plastic and other material into exotic works that are in public and private collections around the Northwest. His studio is at 1931 Davison Ave., Richland.

-- Ron Gerton and his wife Vicki Piper Gerton blend a bit of yin and yang into their bronze and wood sculptures and hand-dyed fabric art. Their studio is at 1819 Davison Ave., Richland.

-- Kasia Gorski's painting studio will feature her illuminating paintings of Northwest landscapes. Her studio is at 702 Jadwin Ave., Richland.

-- Susan Schmieman creates looms and heaps of colorful yarn at her Flying Fibers Studio at 11 S. Benton St., Kennewick.

-- Laura Gable's oils and watercolor paintings are featured at 17 N. Auburn St., Kennewick.

-- D.S. Watkins' eclectic mix of book art was recently enhanced by a tabletop printing press that visitors can examine. Her studio is at 17B N. Auburn St., Kennewick.

*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;

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