Brackenwood Gallery

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

Filtering by Category: Life in Langley


If you are an animal lover or someone who supports local foods, you will enjoy the exhibit this month at Brackenwood Gallery! FARM & TABLE is a lively exhibit featuring some of the distinctive farm animals that abound on this island as well as the abundant food our farms and sea provide.  Got Goats anyone? ... Whattle, Photograph, Kevin Horan


Kevin Horan’s goat portraits are something to behold! Each of these animals has such presence and personality. But as Kevin explains, “…a good portrait is a collaboration between photographer and subject. But how do you collaborate with a goat? A goat you’ve just met?” I don’t know how he did this but the photographs are truly amazing!        Georgia Gerber brought in her Nubian Goat bronze sculpture to top off the goat offerings! My grand daughter loved it and it looks perfect paired with Kevin's Nubian Goat!

Nubian Goat, Bronze, Georgia Gerber


As a shepherd who serves her flock daily, Claudia Pettis knows sheep, which is her subject matter. She also knows painting. Trained as a classical painter, Claudia uses fine ground pigments, Belgium linen and complex glazes to achieve the textural earthy paintings of her flock.




Hey Buds, Oil, Sandy Byers



Her love of animals comes through Sandy Byers’ paintings. The way Sandy depicts her subjects lets you know she has a personal relationship with these critters. Horses deep in conversations, or cow buddies running to the fence to greet her convey the joy she feels when she comes in contact with animals.



Welsummer Rooster, Oil, Barbara Barry



“Holy Cow” by Barbara Barry is a fun and vibrant painting! I live across from Fossek’s farm here in Langley and I can tell you she captured the essence of cow curiosity I see in the cows across the street from me! I am also totally enamored with her Fiber Goat and Perky Rooster paintings as well.



Small, Medium, Large, Oil, Cary Jurriaans

Juxtaposed to the animals is the other part of the equation, the food we harvest and enjoy from our island. Cary Jurriaans, who is known for her elegant still life paintings, shows table offerings of Shigoku oysters, lovely eggs from the Burr Oak farm and bread made from wheat grown on local farms. Her paintings make your mouth water and your heart know the value of eating local.

Also, I would like to welcome Susan Burgers to the gallery. She brought in 3 ephemeral graphite drawings into the gallery. They are already getting acclaim and many positive comments so we are thrilled to have her work grace the gallery walls. Be sure to check her work out when you come in.

Come see this show, it is a winner! Commune with our artists’ during the Artists’ reception from 5-7 PM on Sat. Oct. 4, 2014. Or stop by sometime between no and Oct. 27 to enjoy the show!






Brackenwood Has Some Fabulous New Artists!

Brackenwood has the distinct pleasure of welcoming three new very accomplished artists to our gallery! Jewelry Designers Sandrajean Wainwright and Tessa Fleming and Textile artist Peggy Juve! Both Sandrajean and Peggy have had their own retail shops in Langley, Sandrajean’s shop was called The Wayward Son and Peggy Juve’s shop was called Eddies. These two amazing artists have elected to foregoe retail and focus on what they love, designing and producing their own work! Tessa Fleming was one of Sandrajean’s featured jewelers for 20 years. Elephant Pendant, Sandrajean Wainwright

Sandrajean Wainwright is really an institution in the jewelry world and in Langley. Inspired by the stones she finds on her journeys in various places in the world and her passion for the antique Sandrajean designs distinctive one of a kind treasurers. Wainwright's jewelry is revered by her clients and many have asked about her since she retired from retail. Clients can now find Sandrajean's jewelry here at Brackenwood and she continues to enjoy working with clients to create custom jewelry as well! Clients can make an appointment with her to meet in the gallery for consultations. Brackenwood Gallery is truly honored to have Sandrajean’s work in our gallery and we look forward to having her clients of many years visit us to see her newest creations! Many of Sandrajean's precious stone pieces, such as the one here, have been carved or engraved by world renown carver Hans-Ulrich Pauly.

Sculpturettes, Bronze, Tessa Fleming


If you visited the Wayward Son in the past, you will remember Tessa Fleming’s jewelry. As I’ve gotten to know Tessa its clear she absolutely loves creating. Fleming names her pieces, and they each hold a special place in her heart. Tessa also makes what she calls “Sculptureettes”! They are adorable creations with names like: Buddha Bunny or Coquette. Her trademark is whimsy - you can’t help but smile and enjoy the fun her jewelry and sculptures inspire!

Peggy Juve, Studio Designs

Peggy Juve has worn many artistic hats in her life: painter of art glass, oil painter, clothing designer and business owner. Most recently Peggy has been designing one-of-a-kind wearables as a digital textile artist. Her technique is fascinating and incorporates many of her talents. Peggy produces her newest creations using “Ana,” her garment printer. In a recent interview by Okan Arts Blogger Patricia Belyea Peggy explained, “Digital-to-garment printers are typically used for applying graphics to t-shirts. I stretch my machine’s capabilities, applying my designs to up-cycled clothing and luxury fabrics.” Peggy prints on cotton, silk, wool and angora. Juve repurposes cotton, wool, rayon, cashmere and wool sweaters embellishing them with artwork, appliqués, buttons and other lovely touches. Peggy currently is showing a variety of her scarves, hats and garments in the gallery.


Come Fly With Us, Come Fly, Come Fly Away...

This time of year I always yearn to get away, often fantasizing about far off places, sun or just a change of scenery. If this is something you experience, pop into Brackenwood and at least take a trip with your eyes! Join us tonight, March 1 for JOURNEYS Artists' Reception and Langley's Art Walk from 5-7 PM ! Window Seat #6, Photograph, Kevin Horan


Stepping through the door you might feel like you’ve been transported up into the clouds, anyway that’s the feeling Kevin Horan’s light and airy photographs make me feel. I love the deep blue of the sky, which is in stark contrast with the pure white of the clouds. The photographs are restful and serene. Kevin told me when he gets on an airplane he can’t stop looking out the window. The beauty totally captivates him and he finds himself snapping pictures of the scenes going by the oval window of the plane. Looking at each one I find myself wondering what part of the world he was flying over when he snapped the photo; the ocean, water, farmland but where? Kevin’s work has something to say, and each of us will have our own interpretation!


Pont Alexandre III, Photograph, Lorraine Healy19webFIX

Joining us for this show is photographer and poet Lorraine Healy. Lorraine hails from Buenos Aires but is now a Whidbey local. Healy has a wabi sabi philosophy about her art; she likes the little imperfections, or blemishes that crop up when she uses her plastic Holga cameras. These imperfections give the photograph character, which reminds the viewer of the human behind the lens. Healy  captures the look and feel of Paris, like the iconic nymph leaning over the Pont Alexandre III. She is looking back over her shoulder like she has something to say to you. It must have been a wet day because she looks shiny and wet too. The image is crisp in the middle but the outer edges fade to black all in a circle, something our iphone cameras just don’t do. This is the wabi sabi Lorraine is fond of coming through, I love it.



Berber Tents, Photograph, Earl Olsen



Moving onto the Sahara Desert with images of Berber Tents, beautiful tiled doorways, sand dunes and a local beckoning the tourist into his store.  The warmth of the desert is so apparent in Earl Olsen’s photographs. Earl’s ability to see what others may miss makes his work something special. He often finds some ordinary thing like a wire just sticking out of a building, but then he stops long enough to realize the wire is spelling something… then snap its captured and we get to share in the surprise.




Merguza Shawl, Textile, Carys Ann Hamer


Silky yellows, ochre, mauve, gold and peach come to life in the shimmering shawls and scarves Carys Ann Hamer has on exhibit for this show. Carys Ann journeyed to Morocco a few years ago and took classes on native dying techniques. Using osage, cochineal, madder Hamer creates multicolored Murzuga shawls that are stunning. They are simply scrumptious to feel and are definitely eye candy for the soul.


Pinhole Study #4, Photograph,  Zoë  Osenbach


Another Mediterranean country well represented is Italy. Zoë Osenbach’s journey to Venice is so lovingly captured through her Pinhole camera study. Zoë’s patient, she must wait 7-8 minutes for the magic to work in her little box camera. Pinhole cameras do not have a lens instead there is a small hole in one side of a lightproof box. Zoë manually moves the shutter so that light enters through the hole landing on photographic paper. No dark room here, no chemicals, just the light on the paper. The paper Zoë used has a great deal of texture, which adds to the overall look and feel of these photographs.


Ladies, Oil, Rene Flynn Federspiel


Finally Rene Flynn Federspiel’s oil paintings have captured her emotional memories of the places she has traveled in Italy. A poignant moment seeing a man sitting outside watching the street, or ladies truckin’ down the street going somewhere in a hurry. Rene has a great sense of humor and it comes through her paintings. One of the experiences Rene tries to capture is stillness. I really feel the stillness in her beautiful stone doorways and the table just waiting for someone to sit down and enjoy a meal. That’s the beauty of art, we all get to interpret what it is the artist was trying to say.


I hope you can come in and take your own journey. The weather is fine, the ambiance is quiet but welcoming and the art is simply superb!


Langley Art Walk & Brackenwood Opening Tonight!

Join us at Brackenwood Gallery tonight Feb. 1, 2014 from 5-7 PM for the Artists' Reception for... Eroticism, Intimacy and the Space Between, a very classy show! The artists at Brackenwood really stepped up to the plate for this month’s exhibit. The theme is broad enough to evoke a variety of responses all of which are tasteful and beautifully executed. Casey's Gold Diptych (1), Oil, Danielle Hendrix


Danielle Hendrix, a younger painter who grew up here on Whidbey, has three powerful pieces in the show. A diptych of two lovers, their heads and hands on one side, their feet and legs on another is definitely a focal point as people enter the gallery. Its already eliciting some interesting questions!


Jason Waskey, who usually paints still lifes, painted some

Invitation, Oil, Jason Waskey

lovely nudes or nearly nudes that feel reminiscent of Degas, Manet or Renoir. They are contemporary in nature yet his style reminds me of 19th Century French Salon paintings.


Jeff Day’s mixed media painting is a little gem, very classical yet with a decidedly Asian influence. Jeff is a multidimensional artist; he paints and sculpts. His sculpture of a sensuous female Bather is a strong balanced form that is also on display.

Sharon Spencer’s sculptures of several female forms beckon the viewer to touch them and follow their sensuous curves. While Georgia Gerber known for her animal forms has demonstrated she is also very adept at sculpting the human body!

Sleeping Girl, Prisma Pencil, Carrie Whitney


A returning artist Sharon Shoemaker brings some graceful and quietly elegant photographs that push the concept of traditional photography with a creative eye and alternative techniques! There are also some quiet intimate pieces by a new artist to the gallery, Carrie Whitney. She has captured the essence of those heartfelt moments we all have watching a child sleep or snuggling with your baby. Fara Wexler’s mixed media nude Dreamer is another exquisite piece.


At Brackenwood, there is the show up front and the show in the rest of the gallery. We try to feature as many of our excellent artists as possible each month. Every so often we add new artists and this month I would like to mention one, Earl Lasher. Earl is a watercolor artist who paints the subject matter he loves: water adventures in sailing and boating as well as the scenery found in N.W. waters or in his travels. He has painted all his life, loves art and feels so strongly about supporting budding artists that he donates the proceeds of his sales to several arts organizations who support art for children. We are proud to offer Earl a spot in our gallery and look forward to showing his work throughout the year.

As you can tell, there is so much to see and enjoy at Brackenwood! The show up front is a street stopper! Literally people are stopped in front of the gallery to peek in! Hope you can come in and visit us this month. The Langley Art Walk is tonight, Sat. Feb. 1, as well as our Artists’ Reception from 5-7PM.


In Transition Artist Talk and Slideshow

Tonight Saturday Jan. 18, 2014, is a special opening and I hope you are able to come! The Retrospective showing of artist Sarah Wallace’s art paired with the art she produced during her journey through Alzheimer’s is astonishing. Ivan & Sarah

Ivan Neaigus, Sarah’s husband and caregiver, helped her to continue creating art over several years as she transitioned through the disease. The work itself has an eerie beauty and gives the viewer a great deal to think about especially when juxtaposed with her original artwork. But more important is Ivan's  message that helping patients experience things they love as they transition through this devastating disease can bring joy and comfort.

Ivan and concert violinist Talia Marcus will discuss their new collaboration that offers art, music and movement experiences to Alzheimer’s patients and caregivers. Having a chance to sit with Sarah and share her love for art helped Ivan and Sarah communicate when she was no longer able to connect in other ways. It gave them a focus and brought her out as she worked on something she loved. I think this joy comes through her work.


Ivan’s talk and slideshow of Sarah’s complete “In Transition” work starts at 6:00 PM this evening and will be accompanied by violinist Talia Marcus. The Artist Talk will include information about their joint venture to bring Art to Alzheimer’s patience In Transition. Proceeds from any sales of the Transition prints will go to the Time Together program at the Bayview Senior Center. This show continues through Jan. 27.


2. Two Scissors and a Red Marker  oil  2013  14X18Ah a new year, new paint and a few new names added to the already outstanding mostly Whidbey Artists Brackenwood represents. We have a wide range of offerings this month: several new Pete Jordan paintings, a new Georgia Gerber sculpture, new Jewelers Tessa Fleming and Ellen Hochberg and a new concentrated effort to include more contemporary work. DSC_0076Tessa has shown her jewelry and small sculpturettes at Sandy Wainwright’s “Wayward Son” gallery in Langley for many years. Along with Tessa’s work comes an amazing jewelry case crafted by David Gignac! Sandy Wainwright is retiring which is good for Sandy but bittersweet for Langley. She has been in business in Langley for about  27 years! Brackenwood is truly fortunate to have Tessa Fleming and the Gignac’s jewelry case join us! Soon, Sandy Wainwright will have jewelry at Brackenwood as well! We will be thrilled to add Sandy’s sophisticated and unique jewelry line to our gallery.

Wishing you all a prosperous and joyful new year! Come on in and see how fresh we look!



Langley Inside and Out!

“Langley Inside and Out” opens Dec. 7, 2013 at Brackenwood Gallery. The Artist’s Reception is from 5-7 PM. We are thrilled to have this show added to an already wonderful collection of “Small Pleasures”. Ray’s paintings capture the essence of Langley. Cozy restaurants with chatting patrons, funky houses or hand made items in a local shop, no matter what the subject Phyllis seems to tell Langley’s story well. Morning Gathering, Oil, Phyllis Ray

Ray’s color pallet is cheery and bold and the statement that emanates through her paintings is that Langley is a place where people gather, connect and enjoy life. In a nutshell, the paintings are uplifting! Who knows, you might even recognize yourself in one of them!

Ray’s work is also artistically strong. Her sense of composition, use of light and shadow create balanced paintings that draw the viewer into the piece. Phyllis combines realism with a loose painting style giving the work a nice complexity. Many people feel that great art touches the mind, heart and soul of the viewer and I feel like Ray’s love affair with Langley is felt through her work.

We also have Phyllis Ray's 2014 calendars for sale. Pick one up and you can take a little bit of the show home with you to enjoy all year round.


Bronze Frog on Rock, Peregrine O'Gormley

“Small Pleasures” continues as well with new work from Briony Morrow-Cribbs, Liz Axford a new textile artist, LaChaussee glass ornaments, Georgia Gerber sculptures, Pete Jordan paintings, tiny bronze Frogs by Peregrine O'Gormley and many other works from the esteemed artists we represent. We also have several new jewelry offerings from our various jewelers.

Brackenwood Gallery is looking forward to seeing you this holiday season as you look for that special gift for loved ones or a new wrap to accent a dress for an outing. So pop in for a cup of Christmas cheer and enjoy the art! Wishing you all Happy Holidays!

Catch up with Laura Hudson and Briony Morrow Cribbs!

LAURA HUDSON Several of our clients have collected work by Laura Hudson, a Whidbey Island native and daughter of Georgia Gerber and Randy Hudson. Since we have had various inquiries about Laura we thought it would be great to do an update about her.

Laura-Recent Opening

Laura Hudson had a few shows here at Brackenwood Gallery before going back east to further her art education. Ms. Hudson was just awarded her Masters in Fine Art from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Currently living as an artist in Residence at Gallery Four in Baltimore, Laura also works as a cocktail server at Woodberry Kitchen.





Laura's first solo show is up right now in Baltimore called, TUG OF WAR - a chanty for the studio practice (Thank you Patti Smith).  This year Laura was also a semi-finalist for a prestigious prize in Maryland called the Sondheim and has one painting up right now at MICA for that prize. Laura was recently in New American Paintings, which was her entré into a show in NYC in Tribeca this fall.  Currently Laura is working on a solo show that will be up in October at the Arlington Arts Center outside of D.C. Since Laura’s work is on a large scale, she is unable to have work here at Brackenwood Gallery but we continue to follow her career and are delighted she is doing so well back east!


Another artist many have inquired about is Briony Morrow-Cribbs, who will have work in our upcoming Print Show opening on Sept. 1. Briony grew up on Whidbey and is the daughter of local artists, Buffy Cribbs and Bruce Morrow. After earning her BFA at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, Briony moved to Vermont where she opened Twin Vixen Press in Battleboro, Vermont with fellow printmaker Helen O’Donnell.



While in Vermont, Briony began a professional relationship with Amy Stewart and Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, NC. Between 2008 and 2011, Briony illustrated two New York Times bestsellers: “Wicked Plants: The Weed that Killed Lincoln’s Mother & Other Botanical Atrocities” and “Wicked Bugs: The Louse That Conquered Napoleon’s Army & Other Diabolical Insects.”


A few years ago, Briony moved to Madison, WI to continue her art education and in May 2012 Briony was awarded her MFA in Printmaking at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. While in Wisconsin she was the recipient of the University Fellowship, a Vilas Travel Grant and several professional development awards. Briony was recently offered an appointment at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to teach etching.


Briony’s work from her MFA show is spectacular and looks at animals through the “lens of what we have in common”, revealing “parts of ourselves otherwise hidden”. Briony’s “menagerie is an exploration of the categories, ‘human’ and ‘animal’ and the intersections between the two. The work uses groupings of animals inhabiting a psychological space usually identified as the domain of the human: emotional interactions and complex relationships.”




In her artist statement, Briony examines what happens when familiar “human” sentiments are portrayed in the space between two animals: “Can we continue to define ourselves in opposition to a scene that is charged with the delicate nuances of passion, shame and excitement? And why do we often reserve animal imagery to represent us at our “worst”?”



Briony Morrow-Cribbs continues to show at Brackenwood Gallery, sending us new work from time to time and will be one of our featured artists in the upcoming Print Show which opens on September 1, 2012. We look forward to having new work of Briony’s in the gallery and encourage her collectors to come see the show!

Aleah Chapin wins BP Prize at London Portrait Gallery!

Our South Whidbey community is celebrating the success today of 26 year old Aleah Chapin, a native daughter raised on Whidbey Island! Aleah won the prestigious first prize in the BP Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery in London, England! Along with mountains of accolades from reviewers and friends, the first prize Aleah won is £25,000 and a commission from the National Portrait Gallery. Ms. Chapin has recently graduated with an MFA from the New York Academy of Art in Brooklyn, NY. Aleah’s painting entitled “Auntie” is part of a series of nude portraits named ‘The Aunties Project’. These portraits are of women Aleah has known all her life. According to Aleah, “The “Auntie” painting exemplifies the personification of strength through an unguarded and accepting presence.” The director of the National Portrait Gallery, Sandy Nairne believes “Aleah Chapin’s portrait is ambitious and beautifully painted, with superbly controlled color and tone.” The judges agreed, “Aleah’s nude portrait of this family friend is a deserving winner.”


Ms. Chapin was one of four finalists who were selected from 2,187 entries from all over the world. Aleah’s painting will go on display at the National Portrait Gallery on Thurs. June 21, 2012. We at Brackenwood Gallery salute you Aleah for your hard work, your incredible talent and for creating a painting that came from your heart. Obviously you were able to capture the essence of these Aunties who have cared for and love you all your life. What a gift you have given them by creating this touching series of paintings now known as ‘The Aunties Project’. BRAVO!

To read more google: Aleah Chapin BP Portrait Award. To see more of Aleah's work google: Aleah Chapin artist.



Lee Wexler A Retrospective of his Art

It is not often you get to know someone after they are gone. Anne and I have just had this experience. A few months ago we contacted Fara Wexler and asked her if we could host a Retrospective of the work of her late husband, Lee Wexler. She agreed wholeheartedly and the journey began. We went to visit Fara, who we also did not know, at her home overlooking the ferry on Whidbey. The first thing that struck me was how gracious Fara was and then how much in love she was with her husband. They were lovers up to the end and you could feel it palpably when you entered the house. We began to tour the different rooms where the art we would be exhibiting was hanging. Each piece had a story behind it and as we went along Fara would fill us in on each one. It turns out Lee was painting images of the Northwest before he ever laid eyes on this place! He loved the sea so there were many images of the water with tide pools or sun shining across the water and mountains in the distance. These were amazing to see in the context of their home because you could tell immediately where his inspiration he was channeling came from just looking out the window.

But beyond landscapes you could tell people were really important to this man. Not just any people but people who had interesting stories to tell. People waiting at bus stops...each person has a totally different look and demeaner and you begin to wonder... where are they going, or why does the lady on the bench look so tired? People who survived the Holocaust who don't look sad and defeated and you begin to wonder... how do people who went thru such atrocities still find happiness? A stunning portrait of a beautiful woman "Behind the Bamboo Curtain" and you start to wonder... what happened to her? Is she in a concentration camp or just standing behind a bamboo door?

As you can tell, our tour was profound, not only because we came away in awe of Lee Wexler the artist but also because we were privy to an intimacy few ever experience between a lovely woman and her beloved husband. These two people were lovers, colleagues and artists that loved life and each other. What a gift it was to get to know them. We are honored and privileged to host this special exhibit.

I hope you also can come get to know them at the Artist Reception which opens Lee Wexler's show on January 7 from 5-7PM. Fara will be here along with her son Mark. It promises to be an extraordinary event!

FUN & FASHION ~ Langley Style!

Merchants in Langley have teamed up to plan a fabulous weekend full of fashion, wine tasting, trunk shows, happy hours and late night entertainment! Come and see what affordable fashion Langley has to offer and have some fun! Whether you have a special occasion to shop for like a graduation or wedding or are just in the mood to see what's up with summer fashion, Langley is the place to shop!

As part of this event, Brackenwood is honored to host Trunk Shows with our local and esteemed textile designers Cheryl Kamera and Carys Ann Hamer as well as our jewelry designer Judy Morgan. Be sure to get to 1st Street by 12:30 to catch the FLASH and the free stellar Fashion Show at the Clyde directly following.

If you live on the island, going to the mall costs a b

undle: $14 for the ferry

, gas and the hassle of finding parking and traffic coming and going. Shopping locally in Langley is much cheaper and way more fun! Working on this event I have had a chance to learn the efforts that the shop keepers go to in order to keep their costs competitive with stores on the mainland. Most Langley merchants really work on trying to appeal to locals with down to earth styles and prices we can afford.

The town is ready to put on a GREAT FASHION EXPERIENCE for you this weekend so come into Langley and have some FUN!



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


© Brackenwood Gallery  |  Site by Underexposed