Brackenwood Gallery

A gallery on Whidbey Island, WA representing the very best in fine arts and crafts from the pacific northwest.

RELICS of the Past and Present

There’s something about sunshine and color that improves everyone’s mood. The new show RELICS at Brackenwood is full of color and so far everyone whose come through the door has enjoyed it. Its always fun to see how artists interpret a theme and this is no exception. Mystery Girls, Mixed Media, SaraSaltee

Sara Saltee’s amazing, intricate and incredibly creative assemblages are a joy to take in. Each one lovingly and painstakingly created with something in particular to say. My favorite so far is the wall piece entitled “Mystery Girls of 1956”! Sara found an old yearbook from the University of WA and cut out pictures of women, slipped them into little velvet sleeves and cut out phrases that explained what they were known for. It’s a walk down memory lane from days gone by: “Right Hand Man of the Business Manager”, “Sold Corsages” or “Rally Girl”. So fun and hey things have changed! Sara really played upon the theme Relics by incorporating vintage elements in each piece.

Hydrant 18, Cyanotype Photograph, Zoë Osenbach

Zoë Osenbach makes the statement that there are relics in our everyday world, things we take for granted and overlook. We see these objects: hydrants, dumpsters, overhead wires everyday and since they are such a part of our daily lives we cease to see them at all. But they are there, in our landscapes and certainly offer a different side of beauty. Zoë taught me a new photographic word, Cyanotype. I had never heard of this but once she explained the technique I understood that it was a fancy name for a sun print, a very old and often forgotten technique. The images all come out shades of blue, which give them an architectural blueprint feel. I love Zoë’s “out of the box” ideas and take on art!

Ominous Angels, Oil, Rene Flynn-Federspiel

Rene Flynn Federspiel’s relics are ancient little snippets of Venice. Peeling plaster walls imbedded with angle sculptures and quiet canals remind me that Venice itself is a relic. Federspiel finds it endlessly fascinating...always searching for the elegant decay and mystery of the obscure. The only time I visited Venice I wandered down forgotten corridors, over bridges and sniffed the smells of years of decay that comes from a city floating on water. I found myself stopping to admire little antiquities that greeted me around each corner. That’s the way I feel when I look at Rene’s oil paintings, they make me stop and remember a place I loved and hope to return to someday.

Pals, Encaustic, Christine Nyburg Epstein

Horses, who would think of them as relics? Christine Nyburg Epstein’s beautiful Mixed Media Encaustics made me reflect that indeed horses are ancient and in times gone by every household depended deeply upon them to plow the land or carry the load. They have a mysterious connection to many people, which Christine taps into. Her pieces are dreamlike, so many elements embedded in the wax, I find myself transfixed trying to see it all and seek out its relevance to me as the viewer.

Come celebrate the work these incredible artists are presenting, it’s a lovely show and full of thought provoking elements!




Brackenwood Gallery   |   302 First Street   |   Langley, WA   |   98260   |   360-221-2978   |


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