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Pacific Northwest Artists

The Frye Art Museum’s substantial collection of works by artists of the Pacific Northwest reflects the Museum’s transformation from a personal selection of late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century—predominantly European—oil paintings to a museum dedicated to creative practice in its myriad forms. Since opening in 1952 to the present day, the Museum has remained steadfast in exhibiting and collecting artworks by contemporary artists, especially those living and practicing in the city of Seattle and surrounding region. Walser Sly Greathouse, executor of the Frye estate and founding director of the Museum, ensured Charles and Emma Frye's vision for a free, public art museum for the people of Seattle was brought to life. Beginning in 1952, Greathouse was the first of six directors who expanded the Museum’s collection, acquiring new works to enliven and contextualize the paintings bequeathed by the Fryes. Subsequent leaders sustained the Museum’s legacy within the evolving identity of the Pacific Northwest through the ongoing collection and exhibition of works by artists of the region—from Washington and Oregon up to Alaska. The Museum’s extensive holdings of Alaskan art were initially assembled by the Museum’s second director, Ida Kay Greathouse. Between 1969 and 1993, she acquired over 125 paintings and works on paper. Subsequent Frye directors Richard V. West, Midge Bowman, and Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker added 175 more works by artists associated with the northernmost state. Highlights of the Pacific Northwest holdings range from twentieth-century Alaskan landscapes by artists such as Sydney Laurence and Eustace Paul Ziegler, to evocative works by contemporary artists and artist collectives across a broad range of mediums, including Juventino Aranda, the Black Constellation, Alison Bremner, Degenerate Art Ensemble, Ellen Lesperance, Jeffry Mitchell, Buster Simpson, and Ko Kirk Yamahira, among others.

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Title Artist Medium Date
Pack Train   Ziegler, Eustace Paul   Watercolor on paper  n.d. 
Two Freighters & a Barge   Ziegler, Eustace Paul   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1930 
Starring   Muñoz, Rie   Watercolor on paper  1981 
Sailing Ship   Ziegler, Eustace Paul   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1940 
The Journey   Marshall, May Warner   Watercolor on paper  1935 
Zephyr   Ireland, Joseph   Watercolor on paper  1974 
Passing Storm   Gray, Marie Elise   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1972 
The Wall   Gish, Del   Watercolor on paper  1950s-1960s 
Flowers in a Vase   Forkner, J. Edgar   Watercolor on paper  1920s 
Mt. Index   Ziegler, Eustace Paul   Watercolor on paper  1944 
Cannery Workers, Naknek   Muñoz, Rie   Watercolor on paper  1977 
Head of Christ   Ziegler, Eustace Paul   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1949 
Rye Grass   Burns, Mike   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1970 
Birds Playing Among Peonies   Liu, Lucy   Watercolor on paper  1980 
Black River Quarry   Benson, R.A.   Watercolor on paper  1985 
Saddlebacked   Amundsen, Norman C.   Watercolor on paper  1962 
The Last Port, Clam Bay, Kuper Island, B.C.   Jensen, Arne Rudolph   Watercolor on paper  n.d. 
Winter in South Bend   Benson, R.A.   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1983 
Indian Horses at Sekiu, Washington   Marshall, May Warner   Watercolor on paper  n.d. 
Untitled   Juvonen, Helmi Dagmar   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1955-59 
Untitled   Juvonen, Helmi Dagmar   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1955-59 
Reindeer Roundup   Muñoz, Rie   Watercolor on paper  1992 
Grecian Caribou #13   St. Amand, Lynn Hale   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1978 
Dona Rosa   Acker, Perry   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1976 
Driftwood, La Push   Marshall, May Warner   Watercolor on paper  ca. 1953 


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