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Art & Culture Center of Whidbey Island

Artist-Owned Whidbey Art Gallery in Langley is now home to 39 South Whidbey Artists

Author: Carolyn Tamler

Date:

The Whidbey Art Gallery on Second Street in Langley is a great place to shop for lovely gifts for yourself or others. The gallery

The Whidbey Art Gallery on Second Street in Langley is a great place to shop for lovely gifts for yourself or others. The gallery offers a variety of art mediums including oils, watercolors, acrylic, pastel, printmaking, photography, glass, sculpture, metal, mixed media, textures/fiber, jewelry, ceramics/stoneware, wood and sumi art and more. Shoppers can choose from beautiful cards that sell for just $4 each or select a unique work of art selling for $4,000 or more.

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Moe Jerome, one of the founding members of the gallery and a highly regarded oil painter, believes that working with other artists is a “growth experience.” Tom Hanify, who is the Marketing Manager for the gallery agrees and adds, “I love being influenced by others; I get inspired by what I see.”

“This is a community for us to come and gather. We help and support each other.”

The two men are typical of many of the artists on Whidbey who had other occupations before arriving on the island. Jerome worked in management for Albertson’s for 42 years, while pursuing a private passion for working with watercolors. In 1995 turned professional and became actively involved in promoting what was then the Artists Cooperative Gallery in Langley.

Tom Hanify was in computer sales. He tells the story of driving across Deception Pass 10 years ago and noticing the gorgeous colors on the rocks at sunset. He suddenly became compelled to invest in a camera to capture these kinds of moments

Whidbey Art Gallery owes its beginnings to Paul Schell, who built the Inn at Langley. In 1992, Schell approached Moe Jerome and asked if he could create something nearby that visitors would enjoy touring. Before Music for the Eyes opened in the space next to the Inn, the Artists’ Cooperative Gallery (which became the Whidbey Art Gallery) was located there. In 2011 Whidbey Art Gallery settled into its current space at 220 2nd Street.

Nancy Duncan, an exceptional digital photographer, is on the Marketing Committee and she has been impressed with the caliber of the artists who share in the gallery. A juried selection process determines the regular and guest artists. Duncan especially appreciates the community atmosphere of the gallery: “This is a community for us to come and gather. We help and support each other.”

Since its inception, over 155 local artists have collectively owned and operated the gallery. It has been a policy from the beginning that only local artists could be in the gallery. Each member is required to work three to four half-shifts per month. Members pay a small percentage of their earnings and consignment artists pay 30% of their sales to the gallery, Exhibits are refreshed monthly by the addition of Guest Artists.

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Whidbey Art Gallery is open seven days a week, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and on the First Saturday Art Walk each month until 7 p.m.

For more information about the Gallery, the artists in residence and featured artists, visit the website or give the gallery a call at 360-221-7675.

Article originally published on WhidbeyLocal.com.

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