Anything goes in summertime, including sitting on your art. Art chairs, that is. Because the art Adirondacks are back in Ruston this week – 21 artist-painted Adirondack chairs, which are up for viewing 4-7 p.m. every day this week outside the Ruston Town Hall, and available for you to buy via silent auction this Saturday.
This year, though, there are a few differences. For starters, the chairs are arranged in front of the low-slung, sage-green Ruston Town Hall, instead of ranged along the grassy median strip in the middle of North Winnifred Street. Clustered on the front lawn, they have an expectant, cozy look, as if waiting for a summer concert or evening drinks party.
“We wanted to involve the local town hall,” explains co-chair Lucy Davis. “And it looked charming.”
The second change is the way the public can bid and buy for the chairs: a silent auction, to be held7 p.m. Saturday evening at a free wine-and-nibbles outdoor party.
Says Davis: “It was an easier way to get the chairs to people. They can spend as much as they want, then take the chair straight home (if they win).”
“21 Adirondacks, 21 Artists” was begun several years ago by Davis and another Ruston resident Ginger Kryger as a way of both creating community and raising money for Ruston Arts and Parks. Artists donate time and skill; the proceeds from the sold chairs are used to fund gardens and art in the Ruston/Point Defiance community.
This year, artists have let the whimsy fly in styles from geometric (Kryger’s plaid chair) to abstract, with a lot of figurative in the middle. Liz Day went with a red, white and blue U.S. flag, while Judy and Rollie Grams painted a scene of the Town Hall itself. Summer plays a big part in many chairs from delicate dragonflies (Kai Hellman-Thomsen) to wispy bamboo (Colett Judd), and underwater scenes by Ben Meeker and John Armstrong. Rachel Mathies spreads a turquoise peacock over the back of her chair, while Mary Mann positions a fluffy hen whose egg-filled nest is on the part of the chair you sit on.
New this year are teen artists from Lakewood and University Place as well as eight returning artists and 10 others from Ruston, Tacoma, Bonney Lake, Vashon Island, Covington, Fox Island and Seattle.
“Everyone’s done a great job,” says Davis.
The chairs are on view 4-7 p.m. daily outside the Ruston Town Hall, 5117 N. Winnifred St., Tacoma. The auction evening begins at 6:30 p.m. July 28 with a preview, then a 7 p.m. auction at the Mary Joyce Community Center/Old Ruston School, 5219 N. Shirley St., Tacoma. Information: firstname.lastname@example.org