Work is underway at the Bainbridge Island Historical Museum (BIHM) for a new exhibit in the Helen L. Bucey Gallery.
Trees is a year-long exhibit celebrating an important Island resource. Trees have always played a central role in the life and culture of Island residents, from the Suquamish people to immigrant homesteaders to residents today. In fact, the City of Bainbridge Island maintains a Heritage Tree program to identify and safeguard trees of exceptional size, form, age, rarity, ecological and cultural significance.
Inspired by the book Historic, Champion & Unique Trees of Bainbridge Island, WA, by Olaf Ribeiro*, the exhibit will feature seven oversized photographs. Joel Sackett* was commissioned to seek out and photograph some of the many Island champion and Heritage trees. His intimate photographs capture the trees’ majesty, fragility, and their human connection.
Curator Merilee Mostov explains, “People expect to find stories about people at a history museum. I’ve always wanted to expose the stories of the Island’s many magnificent trees. So often, their stories include people. Joel captured that connection brilliantly in this beautiful series of tree portraits.”
Trees will open on Friday, November 18th. The Museum will be open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm that day, and admission is free.
*After a decade working as a self-employed photographer in Japan, Joel Sackett landed on Bainbridge Island with his wife Michiko and their two children, Daniel and Yuri in 1990. For the past 30 years, Joel has enmeshed himself in all things Bainbridge, documenting the island’s past and present through photography and stories told by local islanders. To read more about Joel and his work, visit: Join the Bainbridge Public Library for the March 2022 First Friday Art Walk, featuring photographer Joel Sackett | THE ISLAND WANDERER
The Bainbridge Island Historical Museum began as an informal Society in the 1930s, and in 1949 they joined with the Kitsap County Historical Society, Bainbridge Island Branch. In 1971, the Island Center schoolhouse (the schoolhouse was built in 1908, and one of the last one-room schools in operation on the island until 1923, when it closed), was donated by the school district to the Society to be used as a museum and moved to Strawberry Hill Park (site of a former U.S. Army Nike missile base). As the museum grew, and the community donated materials, they soon found themselves full to capacity, and through the generosity of the McCracken family, a new building was added onto the rear of the schoolhouse in 1997. Though Strawberry Hill was a beautiful setting for the museum, it wasn’t easily accessible and a new site was located on Ericksen Avenue, just one block north of Winslow Way and a short walk from the Seattle-Bainbridge Island ferry terminal. Both museum buildings were moved to the new site in 2004.
The museum has several docents/volunteers, so there’s always someone to share their knowledge and guide you through the exhibits.
*Exhibit information and image provided by BIHM
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