Pat and Peter Simpson: Collectors & Patrons
Opening March 24, the Jefferson Museum of Art & History is featuring an exhibit based upon Pat and Peter Simpson’s art collection, “Pat and Peter Simpson: Collectors and Patrons.”
The exhibit will feature pieces from the Simpson’s collection, which is mostly from the mid-80s, along with works of the some of the same artists from later points in their career. “By showing some of their more contemporary work we get a little bit of a survey of those artists and how their work has progressed,” said curator Ann Welch.
Artist's featured are Tom Wilson, Jo Ann Alber, Kate Jenks, Anne Hirondelle, Stephanie Lutgring, Stephen Yates, Linda Okazaki, Galen Garwood, and Ed Cain. Stephen Yates created a large painting, Navigator’s Strategy, specifically for the exhibit.
Pat and Peter Simpson were known for many things, Pat for her work at Centrum and running and Peter as the director of Port Townsend Film Festival, his writing, and his work at Community Action. Unless you’d been to their home, or were an artist, you may not have known that they were also serious art collectors.
The Simpsons donated the bulk of their collection to the Jefferson County Historical Society. Their son David loaned the family portraits to the museum for this exhibit.
“One of the things I discovered was that they had their hands and minds and hearts in almost every major organization, and minor organization, that was going on in Port Townsend. Over the years I think they left a big imprint on Port Townsend. If we could imagine what it would have been like here without them, the town would have been quite different,” said Coney.
The Printed Word in Port Townsend:
Literary Presses of the 1970s and 80s
From the exhibit catalog:
In the 1970s and 80s a beautiful, forgotten, small town on the Olympic Peninsula, Port Townsend, Washington, was the sight of an unusual literary blossoming. Writers, most of them young, had started migrating to the area in the aftermath of the sixties. The Centrum Foundation’s Writers’ Conference was established and Copper Canyon Press found a home with them. Other small presses started soon after.
In 1984, only New York City received more National Endowment of the Arts awards to literary presses than Port Townsend. There was more than one publisher for every 850 people of the population.
The exhibit features seven of Port Townsend’s presses, the people behind them, and the magical time and place where they came into being.