Jinseok Choi, a Los Angeles-based artist who is originally from Seoul, said the theme for the biennial Bellingham National exhibition aligns with his artistic practice.
“Bellingham National provides a great platform for artists to connect with diverse local and international audiences, and create a space for conversations about healing and repair — an essential stance in this highly polarized time,” Choi said.
Amy Chaloupka, curator of art at Whatcom Museum, organizes and manages the museum’s exhibitions. While she did not jury “Acts of Healing and Repair,” she has been the juror liaison, on-site exhibition organizer, and curatorial administrator working with the artists who contributed work for the exhibit.
Whatcom Museum Curator Amy Chauloupka talks to an artist during the opening reception. (Andrew Ford/Cascadia Daily News)
This year’s theme, she said, was chosen with guest juror Grace Kook-Anderson, a curator at the Portland Art Museum.
“We selected ‘healing and repair’ to recognize that artists, and our communities as a whole, are still processing a global pandemic as well as social, political and environmental turmoil,” Chaloupka said. “We wondered how artists are creating and working through these challenges and wanted to provide an exhibition dedicated to exploring those experiences, which are uniquely personal but still relevant and understandable to all of us.”
Chaloupka said the exhibition is an opportunity to experience art from nearly 80 artists from across the country who responded to the same theme in vastly different ways.
Bellingham artist Cynthia Camlin said when she first learned about the theme of the exhibit, she didn’t think it would relate to her.
But over the course of the summer, she said, she had a change of thought and realized that “healing and repair is exactly what my newest paintings are about.”
Arts patrons walk around the “Acts of Healing