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Our Formation

In 1999, three gallery owners in Stanwood and on Camano (Karla Matzke, Gayle Pickens, Sal Hutson) held a meeting where they determined to produce a progressive Art Tour. Venues included Souvenirs of the Soul Gallery in Stanwood, Maritz Gallery, History of the World Gallery, and many artist studios along the route. The concept was wildly successful two years in a row, so the tour artists formed the non-profit Camano Arts Association and created a Board of Directors.

Studio Tour History

From the Stanwood Camano News, April 1999:

The artist community of Stanwood and Camano Island will hold its first annual Spring Art Studio Tour during Mother’s Day weekend, May 8 and 9, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Eighteen artists will participate in this inaugural event, with works ranging from glassblowing to oil painting, including works in bronze, watercolors, pen and ink, and stained and fused glass.

Participating artists include Jack Archibald, Scott Benefield, Jeanine Borree, Marc Boutte, John Buczek, Jack Gunter, Liz Hamlin, Sal Hutson, Louise Kerr, Shannon Kirby, Karla Matzke, David Maritz, Dave McCallum, April Nelson, Peter Hall, Paula Rey, Amy Link and John Ebner.

The tour is open to the public and free of charge. Studios on the tour will be marked by colorful balloons and signs where visitors will find work for sale and exhibition. Several of the artists will offer demonstrations of their techniques, including two glassblowing studios.Maps for the self-guided tour will be available at two different locations, which will also serve as starting points: Souvenirs of the Soul, an art Gallery in downtown Stanwood (and) History of the World Part IVOn the same day, “Camano Martha,” a new gift and arts shop, will host an open house along the tour route at the top of Lands Hill, Camano Island.