Artist Profile: The One and Only Rene Westbrook

Rene Westbrook engages the viewer as a visual oracle of creative ideas that can stimulate the senses and become the vehicle for hidden mysteries she wants to explore. Painting, collage, sculpture, and photography work as a catalyst for her latest direction of inquiry, digital compilations.

The Beautiful, Chaotic and Rhythmic World of Tom Fath

Tom Fath says when he finishes a painting it gives him moments of clarity and a sense of being on the right path, creating good from chaos. Much like his life’s journey, his art explores fears and doubts while celebrating what life has to offer.

Debra Van Tuinen: Creating Light and Community

By Molly Gilmore Debra Van Tuinen has received many accolades for her paintings, which were included in the 2004 Florence Biennale and have hung in U.S. embassies, but her latest award recognizes not her art but her courage and her commitment to Olympia. Van Tuinen — who opened a downtown studio and gallery in August …

Read more

Olympia Artists Unite to Support Ukraine

By Molly Walsh At 5 a.m. Eastern European Time, Olympia resident Hanna Ilchenko turned on the news. She couldn’t believe the events unfolding onscreen: Russia had launched a full-scale invasion on her home country of Ukraine. Initially, Ilchenko said the reports emerging of explosions and invading forces were difficult to process. “I couldn’t believe in …

Read more

Olympia Family Theater Welcomes New Artistic Director Lily Raabe

By Molly Gilmore Lily Raabe, Olympia Family Theater’s new artistic director, loves fantasy, adventure — and community. The company plans to resume producing shows in the spring; meanwhile, Raabe is focused on connecting with and learning about the people who surround and support the theater. She’ll host a series of online and in-person meetings beginning …

Read more

Matthew Melendez: the Great Director at Great Bend Creating Unity Through Song

By Molly Gilmore Matthew Melendez, executive director of the Great Bend Center for Music in Union, is best known as a celebrated choral conductor. The center’s Great Bend Chorale, which is open to everyone with no audition required, has performed at Carnegie Hall and taken second place in a prestigious national competition. But what Melendez …

Read more

Artistic Director Jen Ryle Says Goodbye to Olympia Family Theater

By Molly Gilmore There’s change coming to Olympia Family Theater: Though she’s as passionate as ever about children’s theater, co-founder Jen Ryle is stepping down from her role as artistic director to create space for new leadership. She’s involved with the search for her successor and will stay on to work with the new hire …

Read more

Local Artist Charters Path Which Gains Her International Recognition

By Molly Gilmore A lifelong delight in art and a deep commitment to feminism have shaped of Lynette Charters’ way of seeing the world. Among the most recent recognitions of the Olympia painter’s talent: Two of her paintings will be included in Together, a national exhibition opening May 7 in Woodstock, Illinois. And she’s now …

Read more

Olympia Arts Month Featured Artist: Laurel Henn

By Alec Clayton This year’s Spring Arts Month cover art will be “Fluttering,” a hand-painted relief block by Laurel Henn, depicting quilts on a clothesline. The artist says this image is dear to her because of her mother’s life-long work as a quilter. “Quilts are a source of comfort and a symbol of family heirlooms,” …

Read more

The Dynamic Duo That Is Lynette Charters Serembe and John Serembe

By Alec Clayton Coming to Olympia from New York and England by way of Hollywood, John Serembe and Lynette Charters Serembe have built a life that is wrapped up in art and family and community. John is an actor and a graphic artist, greatly admired for his performances with Harlequin Productions, Theater Artists Olympia, Animal …

Read more

Skip to content