Port Townsend artist Helga Winter has been hosting holiday benefit studio events for the past six years, and has annually contributed a percentage of her sales to organizations important to …
Port Townsend artist Helga Winter has been hosting holiday benefit studio events for the past six years, and has annually contributed a percentage of her sales to organizations important to her.
This year, Winter wants the community she cherishes to benefit, and is offering 30 percent off the pieces she is showing at her weekend gallery event: hand-turned wood bowls, paintings and art created from repurposed books.
The show is for those who have supported her over the years, she said, and “also probably some new people.”
The studio show is 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Friday and Saturday, Dec. 2-3 at 506 Lawrence St., at the corner of Monroe Street.
A WELCOMING COMMUNITY
“People welcomed me right away,” Winter said of her introduction to Port Townsend life three decades ago.
Winter was born in Germany and came to the United States to study education. She received her graduate degree from Vanderbilt Peabody College in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1981 and in the years that followed, studied with furniture makers, wood carvers and woodturners. She also helped start the Tennessee Association of Woodturners.
Winter came to the Northwest from Nashville in 1987.
“When I drove in, down Sims Way, it was a sunny afternoon, and all the Cascades were lit up and shining and bright and beautiful,” she recalled of her first day here.
The next day, she found a house to rent and, six months later, bought a home. She worked out of her home until 2010, when she opened a studio in Uptown.
Winter compares the process of woodturning as similar to that of shaping pottery. She “spins” bowls out of madrone wood, and often embellishes her pieces with dyes, acrylics, oil paints and encaustic finishes.
Winter said that sometimes people in the community give her a fallen tree of theirs to make into a bowl.
“Sometimes [the tree] just appears in my driveway,” she said, “or I go pick it up.”
Often, it was special tree, Winter said, which can now “live on in their house and their heart” in a new form.
Winter has been delighted to spend the past 30 years on the Quimper Peninsula. “I like that the community is so diverse,” she said, “unusual, beautiful – geographically and physically beautiful.”