Watershed: Paintings and Drawings by Michelle Lassaline


On Exhibit at the White River Valley Museum June 26 - September 29, 2019

See breathtaking watercolors and intimate drawings by Mary Olson Farm’s 2018 Artist in Residence Michelle Lassaline. In 2018 the Mary Olson Farm hosted our first artist in residence - Michelle Lassaline. Lassaline was selected through a competitive process and her time at the Farm was made possible by the City of Auburn’s Arts program. Her experience at the Farm is now reflected in a new exhibit entitled WATERSHED. Last summer Lassaline spent her time painting, drawing, and exploring the historic farm. As the season changed from spring to summer she watched the animals shed their thick dark coats and the maples along the stream spread out their broad shady leaves. Each morning began with a walk through the pastures and woods, sketching and taking photographs; she spent the afternoons painting in the barn. The residency extended briefly into October so Lassaline could watch the salmon return to the Olson stream to spawn.

Each of the paintings in this new exhibit show how water filters through landscapes. Lassaline painted these detailed images in her studio using reference photos she takes while walking, hiking, and canoeing. Locations include the salmon-filled stream at the Mary Olson Farm, the wild inlets of Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior, a serene river in mid-coast Maine, Kalaloch beach on the Olympic Peninsula, the churning dam at the Ballard Locks, and the Elwha River below the dam removal site and at its sandy delta.

Meet the Artist! August 4 at 2 pm – Artist led exploration of the WATERSHED exhibit with Michelle Lassaline, included with Museum admission or membership.

About Michelle Lassaline
Michelle Lassaline is an interdisciplinary artist based on Vashon Island Washington. Her artistic practice ranges from drawing and painting to mask-making and performance, and her work is founded in fine craftsmanship and a reverence for nature. Lassaline received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2014. In 2017, Lassaline became a National Parks Artist in Residence at Isle Royale NP, where she encountered a red fox for the first time. She has created performance art pieces for the Tacoma Art Museum, Seattle Mayor’s Arts Awards, and the Nevada Museum of Art, among others, and has received funding from the City of Seattle, the Artist Trust GAP award, and most recently the Auburn Arts Commission to help fund this exhibition.