Four Artist Profiles: Lopez Artist Guild

  • Sat Feb 27th, 2010 12:22am
  • Life
Four Artist Profiles: Lopez Artist Guild

Lopez Artist Guild Features Four Artists in March Art Show

Something that always stands out about Lopez Island is the number of very talented artists residing here.

The four featured artists in the upcoming Lopez Artist Guild’s Art Show Opening on Friday, March 5 from 5-6:30 p.m. at the Lopez Center for Community and the Arts, are a reflection of this talent.

Sylvia Chesley Smith, whose richly colored and textured paintings most islanders know, will be showing some new sculptures that she has created from “found” materials. She calls these sculptures “The Wheeley Family.”

Smith attended Cornish Institute of Allied Arts in Seattle. At her studio, she can work in formats both large and small. She considers her painting work more felt than known, more about space and time and energy rather than a recognizable object. Her new sculptural work reflects these ideas. You can see examples of her work on her website:

Jan Scilipoti will be showing a series of textile pieces that have the quality of abstract landscapes. She began exploring textiles as art in 1999 coming from a background as a professional designer. Although textiles are always at the core of her work, felting is a new addition after she recently learned a resist dyeing technique on New Zealand merino wool.

Most of her recent pieces emerged from two dye bath sessions. The first session utilized four separate color baths of acid dyes and the second resulted from an experiment with natural dyes.

To the felting she has added hand-stitching, beading and incorporated quilting techniques to bridge her new love of felt with her quilted textiles. More examples of her work can be viewed on her website: www.janscilipoticom.

Steve Ruegge is a self-taught artist with a life-long love of the ocean. Currently, he finds himself perpetually soiled from head to toe with sand and cement dust, feeling himself to be a free man enjoying the challenge of making his own “garden” art designs.

He has been experimenting with cement and aggregates for several years and learned the basics of molding from the companies that supply him with mold making materials.

He works at applying principles of stone sculpture, ceramics/pottery, model making and the concrete pre casting industry to produce objects that are rugged or ancient in appearance.

Ruegge will be participating this year in numerous community fairs as well as continuing to have his work at the Lopez Farmer’s Market.

Lynda Meurk Anderson initially earned her degree in costume design and went on to work first in textiles, then interior design and finally in landscape design.

In the past 10 years, she has begun to merge her experiences in these fields with fine-art sculpture and printmaking. The organic shapes and processes she has observed in her garden are a great influence, as are the different cultures she’s encountered in travels through Asia and Europe. In her recent work, she focuses on blending her fondness for antiques and found art with a healthy dose of humor.

The mixed media work she will be showing includes printmaking techniques, collage, encaustic, stitchery and beading.

Anderson has a “Garage Gallery” on Lopez, open occasionally and by appointment. More of her work can be seen on her website at