Fort Nisqually inspires local artists

Artwork inspired by the historical Fort Nisqually of the mid-19th century and the day-to-day life in a living history museum is on display in the new temporary exhibit, “Inspired by Fort Nisqually.” This juried art exhibition will be on display through Jan. 7, 2017.

“It’s exciting to be able to showcase some of our local talent,” said exhibit curator Claire Keller-Scholz. “All of the pieces on display were created by local artists within the last three years, and were chosen by a panel of judges for this show.”

Submissions included paintings, photographs, scrimshaw done with real India ink, and 3-D works that take inspiration from historical artifacts around the Fort. Some of the art was created by volunteer re-enactors as part of their historic emersion process, and other pieces were submitted by visitors and artists just stopping by for a brief trip to the past.

Inspired by Fort Nisqually provides a chance to slow down and contemplate history from an artist’s perspective. View the varying techniques used to highlight emotions, the use of different mediums to convey specific characteristics, and survey the unique works that bring new perspective to familiar scenes.

The majority of the artworks are available for sale, with a portion of the proceeds going towards Fort Nisqually.

The jury that selected the works for the show have awarded best in show to Gary Gillespie for “Salish Matron Mask,” with honorable mention prizes going to Richard Repp for his scrimshaw piece “The Right Whales,” and Leah Amyakar for her assemblage “1850 Medicine Cabinet.” Visitors will have a chance to vote on their favorite for the people’s choice award, decided upon at the end of exhibit. For the young ones, there will be a variety of hands-on activities including coloring sheets and take-home crafts.

For more information about museum programs and admission: or call (253) 591-5339.