Artfully Edmonds: Meet the creative force behind Cascadia Art Museum’s inaugural exhibit

David F. Martin (Photo courtesy of his Facebook page)
David F. Martin (Photo courtesy of his Facebook page)

Who is the energy and creative force behind Cascadia Art Museum’s (CAM) inaugural exhibit “A Fluid Tradition: Northwest Watercolor Society… The First 75 Years”?

Look to David F. Martin, independent curator, arts researcher, writer, and historian for that mantle.

Originally from New York state’s Niagara Falls area, Martin has been a tour de force in Seattle’s art community since his arrival to the Pacific Northwest in 1986. Three years after moving to Seattle from Phoenix, he and partner Dominic Zambito opened their first Seattle gallery on East Pike, and have since gone on to establish a gallery in one of Seattle’s most elegant and historic properties.

A noted author, Martin’s first Pacific Northwest book publishing projects included two volumes for The Fry Art Museum; followed by significantly successful books published by UW Press, notably, “An Enduring Legacy: Women Painters of Washington, 1930-2005.”

It was a few years – and many projects – later that Martin was approached by the Northwest Watercolor Society to compile the society’s silver anniversary commemorative volume, “A Fluid Tradition: Northwest Watercolor Society . . .The First 75 Years” and his work came to the attention of Lindsey Echelbarger, board president of Cascadia Art Museum.

Sharing his vision for CAM, Echelbarger proposed to Martin, we will “make this the opening show for Cascadia Art Museum!”

Martin’s contributions have – over the years – provided a deepening of the public’s understanding and appreciation of Northwest’s art history. This appreciation increases exponentially with the unveiling of his work commissioned by the Northwest Watercolor Society.

In considering, for both his NWWS commission and the CAM exhibition, the achievements of artists “on the scene” in the Cascadia region between the years 1939 to 2014, Martin generously allows for the “re-establishment of the reputations of many early” Northwest Watercolor Society members “while giving a glimpse of rare works by some of today’s leading regional artists.”

As Martin moves forward curating exhibitions for CAM, patrons can expect a broad interpretation of the “Cascadia Region” to be reflected in his showings; such as this current exhibition’s inclusion of Montana artists Aden Arnold (1901-1973) and Walter Hook (1919-1989).

Explaining to Artfully Edmonds the effort and breadth of the collection that represents Cascadia Art Museum’s inaugural exhibition, Martin revealed that the full effort of the NWWS commemorative edition and curating “A Fluid Tradition: Northwest Watercolor Society . . .The First 75 Years” represents a three-year, full-time effort.

At least 80 percent of the collection displayed for the inaugural CAM exhibit comes from private collections, with the balance being art museum and civic loans from the City of Edmonds, the University of Washington’s Henry Art Gallery, and the University of Montana’s Missoula Art Museum. Expect some never-seen- before discoveries in Martin’s curated work.

How does someone whose career is as storied as Martin’s originally, find his way to a passion for art?

He tells Artfully Edmonds, “When I was 10 years old my passions were piano and libraries. I had a goal of reading every book on art in my hometown library.” He doesn’t remember if he read every single edition catalogued; but definitely Martin admits he was hooked on the world of art – even dabbling in his own art forms for a number of years.

2 David F Martin _COVER book jPeg

Since arriving in Seattle, Martin has been prolific in his writing, completing a narrative series for relating to Northwest art, as well as having authored and co-authored a number of books “that are central to documenting the history of Seattle and Pacific Northwest art.”

Among Martin’s many titles are:

April 2015 A Fluid Tradition: Northwest Watercolor Society, The First 75 years

September 2012 An Enduring Legacy: Women Painters of Washington 1930-2005

June 2011 Evergreen Muse: The Art of Elizabeth Colburne

October 2010 The Art of Richard Bennett

Other works in Martin’s catalog include:

August 2013 (co-author) Austere Beauty: The Art of Z. Vanessa Helder

September 2011 (co-author) A Turbulent Lens: The Photographic Art of Virna Haffer; and

January 2011 (co-author) Shadows of a Fleeting World: Pictorial Photography and the Seattle Camera Club (Scott and Laurie Oki Series in Asian American Studies)

Taking an inclusive and diverse perspective of his work, Martin is known for this interest in the work of women artists; and minority artists, particularly Japanese- Americans such as Yasushi Tanaka (1886-1941).

Of note, Martin’s earlier published works relating to Northwest art history focused on the achievements of Imogen Cunningham, Adelaide Hanscom Leeson, Ella E McBride, and Myra Albert Wiggins.

What can the public expect from Cascadia Art Museum’s exhibitions under Martin’s curating efforts? In his interview with Artfully Edmonds, Martin emphasized that “Cascadia Art Museum won’t just talk about diversity – We will be diversity!”

Tickets for Cascadia Art Museum’s Inaugural Exhibition are available here. Tickets for the free-admission, timed-entry tickets that the art museum is making available Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 12-13, are available at this link.

~ ~ ~ ~


Saturday, Sept. 12
12:30-1:30 p.m.
Birds, Backyard Habitat & Beyond
Edmonds Theater
415 Main St.

“Birds, Backyard Habitat & Beyond” will be showing at the Edmonds Theater, 415 Main St., on Saturday, 12:30-1:30 pm. This is one-time-only, free showing of the film created by Whidbey Island watercolor artist and photographer Craig Johnson, and his wife and writer Joy Johnson. Come and see the show, meet the Johnsons, and learn about their lifelong passion for studying birds and using their talents to inspire others to protect birds and wildlife habitat. You will be allowed to bring food into the theater for this lunchtime show.

For additional information regarding the upcoming Birdfest being held in Edmonds, go to

~ ~ ~ ~

4 Prather_Anne_15Sunday, Sept. 13
1-4 p.m.
Gallery North
401 Main St.
Artist’s Reception

Gallery North announces the opening of “Transcendence”, a solo show by photographer and digital artist Anne Prather.

Born blind, Prather’s cataract surgery at age 36 opened a whole new world of vision to her. She began her photographic career by taking pictures of the tiny seedlings she studied during her graduate work at the University of Washington. “Cataract surgery alone wasn’t enough to give me useful eyesight,” Anne says. “I had to learn to look for the sharpest possible image—a skill sighted people have naturally. Working with a microscope and taking micrographs taught me this skill.”

In 2002, Prather had the rare opportunity to photograph the blooming of a corpse flower. A native of Sumatra, the plant (Amorphiphallis titanium) blooms only once every 10 years or so. For several hours, the intrepid photographer climbed a ladder to the top of the six-foot tall inflorescence in order to catch the beauty of the “petals” as they opened to reveal the real flowers hidden deep inside the enormous “flower.” She shared the resulting series of pictures with her delighted lab mates, who quickly brought the work to the attention of the rest of the university’s botany department.

“The corpse flower is the plant on which Audrey from Little Shop of Horrors is based,” says the artist. “The stink of the thing was awful and towards the end of its opening you could see steam coming up from the top. As I held my camera out over the center of the inflorescence, I kept being afraid I’d drop it right into the middle of that hideous, steaming maw.”

Captivated by the intricate beauty of plants, Anne turned her efforts to capturing the texture and patterns that her new lens implants allowed her to see. From mountains to the faces of glaciers, to the facets of crystals, Anne set her camera to the challenge of capturing the labyrinthine world her eyes drank in.

For further information, please visit the Gallery North website at or contact the gallery at 425-774-0946.

~ ~ ~ ~

Starkovich Jolly Roger-Box at the Beach Series-WomenPaintersWA
Jolly Roger-Box at the Beach Series by Beverly Shaw-Starkovich.

Exhibit Opening: Tuesday, Sept. 15
Artist Reception:
Thursday, Oct.1
4-6 p.m.
Columbia Center Building
701-5th Ave., Suite 310, Seattle
“Painting Poetry”

Edmonds business owner of Aria Studio Gallery Joan Archer and Edmonds resident and Art Commission member Beverly Shaw-Starkovich will be participating in the Women Painters of Washington upcoming show “Painting Poetry” running Sept. 15-Dec. 31 in downtown Seattle.

Over 35 members of Women Painters of Washington will show their work inspired by poems, sonnets, limericks, and lyrics from a multitude of genres and authors, including some original poetry written by the artists themselves.

Shaw-Starkovich will show two pieces inspired by poet Shel Silverstein.

“In my opinion, no modern poet captured the spirit of childhood like Shel Silverstein,” Shaw-Starkovich said. “Childhood is a time for dreaming and pretending, and I did plenty of both. Now I watch my grandchildren doing the same thing, and sometimes I get to join in.”

Archer pulls her inspiration from an anonymous poet with a poem called “The Covering” speaking about God.

The Covering by Joan Archer.
The Covering by Joan Archer.

“My inspiration for this painting was two fold,” Archer said. “I enjoy painting arches and have always thought of them as having strength and able to last for years. I also wanted to paint about my strong feelings about God and his protection in our lives. The arches represents the strength and stability that I see in God.”

More information about this exhibit can be found at

~ ~ ~ ~

7 OYC Yacht Club

Friday, Sept. 25
6 p.m.
“A Night To Remember”
Presented by Outdoor Youth Connections
Edmonds Yacht Club
326 Admiral Way

Presenters of Outdoor Youth Connections annual fall gala have chosen Edmonds’ Yacht Club as the venue for this year’s benefit. Proceeds are intended for projects and scholarships that engage youth in the natural outdoors.

The Stardust Consort, a 6-piece ensemble featuring members of MoodSwings Jazz Band and other performing groups, will provide music for the upscale event. It’s time to polish your dancing shoes, and brush off your dinner party attire for a glide across the yacht club dance floor.

The evening’s special guests will include Tim Noah, Emmy-winning songwriter and entertainer, and Michele Westmoreland, photographer and documentary director.

Sandra Ingalls, director of OYC tells Artfully Edmonds, “Outdoor Youth Connections was founded to honor the life of my late husband, mountaineer Larry Ingalls. The organization leads with the mission that “younger generations may ‘revel in the accomplishment of outdoor recreation and education opportunities like those he valued so much as a Mountaineer. OYC encourages love and respect for nature, education, leadership and community involvement; building connections through schools, individuals and groups in order to bring kids and outdoor experiences together by providing financial support.”

Ingalls tells Artfully Edmonds, “our motto says it all, ‘Connecting Kids with Outdoor Adventures!’

Tickets for this upscale event, being held at one of Edmonds’ premier locations are $75 and available here.

~ ~ ~ ~

Catherine Alexander
Catherine Alexander

Accomplished Edmonds Artists and Authors

Two short stories by Catherine Alexander have been accepted for the publication, “When Women Waken.”

“When Women Waken” is a literary journal of poetry, prose and images by women. The first issue was published on May 31, 2013 with submissions from writers, authors, and artists from Spain, England, Ireland and India; and within the US, from Arizona, New York and North Carolina.

The stories selected include “Dancing on 74th Street.” Synopsis: A girl of 20, having left Nebraska the previous year, moves into an upper west side Manhattan brownstone. Her discovery of bongo-playing Caribbean neighbors deepens her perspective of the world.

“First Morning,” is about a woman who leaves her husband after twenty years. She must conquer her fear of what beginning over means on the first day of her new life. With the speed of her bike and a blue heron to come home to, she gets what she wants–even if she has to “steal” to get it.

“When Women Waken” is currently encouraging submissions. For more information go to their contact page.

– – – –

Alice Owen
Alice Owen

Alice Owen’s artwork will be featured in a one-woman showcase at the Edmonds Arts Festival Foundation Gallery from August 1 through September 14, 2016 announces Darlene McLellan, EAFF board president this week.

The gallery is located at the Frances Anderson Cultural Center, 750 Main St.

~ ~ ~ ~

scarecrowScarecrow Festival
Registration begins Oct. 1

They are popping up everywhere – one here! One there! This morning on the way to Chanterelle Hometown Bistro, I saw a friendly little cutey perched in a storefront along Main Street.


Scarecrows, of course! They are heralding the beginning of the Edmonds Historical Society’s Scarecrow Festival.

The 3rd annual festival will consider scarecrows in six categories:

Residential (single or multi-family, care facilities);

Retail Business (stores and shops – except art galleries);

Service Business (legal, medical, travel, salon);

Food/Beverage Business (restaurants, bars, coffee);

Financial/Insurance/Real Estate (banks, agents, financial consultants); and

Arts/Government/School/Civic (galleries, city, artists, service clubs)

A photo gallery at shows off past year’s entrants shows off incredibly creative and artful masterpieces reflecting a range of Edmonds’ historic icons and pop culture heroes.

~ ~ ~ ~

11 Rocky Horror

Alert! Ticket Sell-Out Warning!
Friday, Oct. 30
9 p.m. Doors Open
Edmonds Center for the Arts
410 4th Ave. N.
You heard it here first!

Edmonds Center for the Arts announces one of the world’s biggest extravaganzas of Cult Culture History – Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Give yourself over to absolute mischievous fun as the mother of all cult classics hits ECA’s big screen with a live cast!

So slink into your fishnets, slip on your gold shorts, and prepare to morph into a creature of the night for your arrival at the screening of one of the strangest, sexiest films of all ages!

This show is R rated, admittance for ages 17-and under requires the accompaniment of a parent or adult guardian.

Tickets for this happening are available here.

Emily ~ 2015 Bio jPeg for News

— By Emily Hill

Emily Hill is the author of two novels and a short story collection. She also writes the “Lynnwood Lifestyle” column for Lynnwood Today. Emily is retired from a career in public information and news media relations. If you would like your event listed, or featured, in Artfully Edmonds, Emily invites you to contact her at [email protected].

2 Replies to “Artfully Edmonds: Meet the creative force behind Cascadia Art Museum’s inaugural exhibit”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *