Two talented women of Whidbey, Janie Cribbs and Maggie Hanley-Welles, are the featured artists in the new art show “88 Owls and Watercolors” at Blooms Taste for Wine & Art. The show opened Friday and runs through June 30.
Cribbs, a well-known singer/songwriter and artist who was raised in Ireland, has for many years called Whidbey Island home. Surrounded by everyday beauty and constant inspiration, she creates, writes and paints the narrative of her life and the precious reality of living in the moment.
Although most South Whidbey residents will recognize Cribbs as a talented and vibrant singer and musician, they’re now treated to another facet of her talents.
Cribbs said this show focuses on a project that started two years ago to paint 88 Owls for her mother’s 88th birthday and “somehow took off with its own wings and became a much larger endeavor.”
The owls are painted on found and repurposed plywood with a rich patina of age and abuse. Cribbs admires the owls “who appear like ghosts of forgotten forests and simpler times,” and, said they have “expressions that mirror our combined human experience of living on this spinning blue-green ball together.”
Born in the beauty of the Finger-Lakes region of New York, Hanley-Welles spent her early days playing piano and painting. She moved from the Northeast to the Southwest and back before settling in the Pacific Northwest. She has worked in art, theater, floral design and other creative and environmental endeavors, retiring as director of Santa Fe Gallery Association before moving to Whidbey. She will show art she created since her move to Whidbey as well as some of her previous works. They include a range of local landscapes and scenes, people, abstracts, and florals compelling and alive with vibrant colors.
The show will officially open with an Artist’s Opening Reception on Thursday, May 9 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Blooms Taste for Wine & Art as part of the Bayview Progressive Opening that includes both Galleria Chiropractica (at the Chiropractic Zone) and the Queen’s Buns/Island Framery.
The “88 Owls and Watercolors” show runs until the end of June. Blooms Taste for Wine & Art is the tasting room for Blooms Winery on Whidbey and is also an art gallery and wine bar serving food with Blooms’ award-winning wine and offering live music each Sunday afternoon from 3-5 p.m. Cribbs is a regular performer on the last Sunday of each month accompanied by Joe Reggiatore on guitar.
Blooms Taste for Wine & Art is open Thursday to Monday. Call 360-321-0515 or visit their website at www.bloomswinery.com for more information.