Free Museum of Oddities and Curiosities
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 3, 12-4pm with music & beer
Alas, there is no need to travel hundreds of miles, brave treacherous mountain passes and city congestion just to visit the quirky curios and rare relics housed in Ye Olde Curiosity Shop, Seattle’s historic institution of the whacky, the unbelievable and the bazaar (and no, we’re not suggesting you go to the Ellensburg County Fair and Rodeo for that fix either). September is a family affair as the gallery at PUNCH Projects presents a spectacular survey of new and accumulated works made by each member of the Barlow family.
Rather than enjoying a Summer of leisure, recreation and play, Howard, Lorraine, Henrik and Elke have been hunkered down and hard at work crafting an assortment of delightfully intriguing objects for a scrumptious visual feast. In the spirit of the Wunderkammer, or Cabinet of Wonders from centuries past, the Barlows have cobbled together a fantastic array of wondrously juxtaposed art objects. In keeping with the indispensable categories that were must-haves in these earlier curiosity collections, you can anticipate the following:
- sculptures and paintings
- curious items from home or abroad
- antlers, horns, claws, feathers and other things belonging to strange and curious animals
The Barlows have been keeping a tight lid on what exactly will be displayed in this Free Museum of theirs, though we have caught a few glimpses of the enticing objects that will be displayed. Some of these include:
- idiosyncratic portraits of every pet and animal that currently inhabit their hobby farm in the Manastash Canyon
- hand-crafted figurines from an imagined realm of Henrik’s
- adorably felted pocket-sized puppies made by Elke
- larger-than-life, carved grubs cut out of alabaster from a Zimbabwean quarry (or was it Colorado?)
- an animatronic bobcat skeleton cloaked in one of Lorraine’s crocheted koozie
- a fathoms-deep shelf full of mysterious menagerie and legendary lore.
Expect to be shocked, amazed and enlightened by the quirky curios, rare relics and peculiar portraits the Barlows have in store for you.
The Barlow’s Free Museum of Oddities and Curiosities opens Saturday, September 3, noon-4 pm, with a Celtic jamboree on the stage at PUNCH Projects from 2-4 pm.
Additionally, PUNCH is excited to welcome more artists-in-residence for the Visiting Artist Program (in partnership with Gallery One in Ellensburg and the Robert B. McMillen Foundation) this September. Artist duo Shan Wu & Drew Cavicchi will occupy the space through Sept 7, followed by Seattle-based Katie Miller Sept 10-16.
Shan Wu & Drew Cavicchi are an interdisciplinary artist duo working predominantly in film, video, installation, photography, conceptual sculpture and process-based work. Their work investigates gender, cultural and national identity, science and technology in culture, site-specificity and human-nature relationship. Shan received her MFA in Film and Video and Integrated Media Program at the California Institute of the Arts. Drew received his B.A. in Asian Studies from the College of the Holy Cross and is pursuing his M.S. in Computer Science at National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan. Their practice involves working with land, environment, architecture, living plants, and nature, and raises questions about identity, politics, perception, and the relationship between humans and nature.
Katie Miller was born and raised in the backwoods of Northeastern Minnesota, but is now deeply rooted in the Pacific Northwest. As an interdisciplinary artist, she creates site-specific installations often with a participatory element. Her current work explores the pedestrian experience within rapidly changing built environments and how our perception of place is informed by our surroundings. As the urban core develops, buildings rise in areas that were once open and spacious. Neighborhoods are littered with construction sites, exposing architectural frameworks and superstructures. Her work distills these forms revealed through the building process into cut paper. The imagery—depicted as void and layered or segmented and then reanimated with light and shadow—expresses the temporality of our surroundings and memories of how things were.
About PUNCH Visiting Artist Program
For this residency program, housing is provided by PUNCH in the upstairs apartment of our exhibition and event space in Thorp, WA. Our partner organization, Gallery One Visual Arts Center in neighboring Ellensburg will provide studio space with access to their ceramics facilities if desired. With support from the Robert B. McMillen Foundation and Gallery One, $400 weekly stipend will be provided and a partial travel stipend will be available for artists traveling from outside of Washington State.
Upcoming performances on the PUNCH Stage (2-4 pm):
Sept 3: Celtic jamboree
Sept 10: Saint September
Sept 17: Inland Poetry presents Word Circus: a Headlight-Children Extravaganza
Sept 24: House of Ash