To Seattle with Love

Taking paintings across the border
Although I am an American citizen, and there remains a free-trade agreement between the USA and Canada, getting a few paintings across the border to show in Seattle is a somewhat complicated and interesting process.

Three weeks before the exhibit, I pay a broker to create the paperwork listing painting titles, sizes, prices & weights.

Three days before the exhibit, I drive to the Pacific Truck crossing at 5 a.m. My Honda CRV is officially a “truck” and I have an official ‘Trucker license number’. Huge tractor-trailers are racing to merge into one line and my tiny SUV is crushed between them. My car is very vulnerable but more nimble, and I squeeze into the line.

When it’s my turn, I drive to the window – which is 10 feet above my car roof. I need to stand on tip-toes to hand over my passport and papers. Then I sit and wait while my car inspected, or sometimes x-rayed in a machine inside a covered shed with a 20-foot high roof. It’s always a relief to finally be waved through.

Party & receptions & shows
Thank you for reading this, and a particular thank you to those friends who came to my September receptions in Vancouver and Seattle!

For those who couldn’t make it September in Vancouver or Seattle, please see photos of the reception for 80+ Views of Mount Baker as well as installation views of Angry White Men, and I hope to see you next time.

Seattle brouhaha
September was a tumultuous month for me. I did not expect the backlash against the Angry White Men (AWM) exhibit. I considered there might be a public reaction, but instead it was fellow-artists, gallerists and left-leaning individuals who shocked me by wildly misinterpreting my exhibit in September, and haranguing and threatening the first days of the show.

I am profoundly grateful for what Seattle gallerist Greg Kucera wrote in early September, coming to my defense:

“David Haughton has produced a fine exhibition showing the underbelly of this country. Think of George Grosz’s paintings of the Nazis coming to power in the buildup to WW II Germany. And all manner of other protest art. Depicting them doesn’t glorify these people and their beliefs. It shows us who they are and what they mean to our world. This is the artist’s job.”

Things then settled down, but in the week before the reception on September 22, we heard a concerning rumor that a determined group were calling for a “meeting” to generate further community animosity toward AWM. We were forced to go to the police to lay out the threats that had been made, including threats of firebombing, ripping paintings off the wall and throwing them on the ground. However, in the end, nothing untoward happened; the reception was a great success, attended by friends and patrons as well as by Michael Wooff of the Consulate General of Canada, Seattle and some of his guests.

Nice painting available
Gallery 110 – The Holiday Show
December 6 – 29, 2018
Reception Saturday December 8, 4-7 PM

I took a particularly nice painting from the 80+ Views of Mount Baker series down to Seattle, titled Seattle Dawn – from West Seattle. Come see it at Gallery 110’s Holiday show which opens next week on December 6. You are also warmly invited to the reception on December 8.

Please note the holiday show is different than most shows. Collectors buy the artwork right off the walls and take it home, so come early!

Seattle Dawn – from West Seattle, Acrylic on Multimedia Artboard, 2018. 22 x 30 inches, $2800

5 thoughts on “To Seattle with Love

  1. Marion Jamieson

    I had to laugh reading your description of crossing the border with artwork as I have had exactly the same experience. Our little truck lined up with the semis; the border patrol guy WAY up there; getting shunted off for secondary Xrays & the whole expensive business of getting the broker & paperwork done. I got to dread it. It’s likely easier to ship a truckload of manufactured items than a coupla paintings or a sculpture. Cross-border cultural exchange? Forget it!

  2. Angela

    We really enjoyed your Vancouver reception in September, the paintings, and meeting some old friends there, and also your super” ‘Merikan” fans up North to scoop another one of your paintings for their collection.

    I was surprised at the reaction to the “Angry White Men” series.
    I’m just ‘ old’, well-educated in European history, academically, and orally through family tales; I grew up in an angry country which soon, after we emigrated, descended into ” a little civil war” to quote a cousin, consequently the portaits in the series came to me as horrible reminders rather than glorifications.
    Also fabulously painted! For me, the critics were very naive.

  3. Alix V Barbey

    Good heavens, David. What a completely “has the world gone mad” moment! Everyone seems to be seeking to demonstrate that they can be more outraged than the next person. So stupid. How can a show titled angry white men possibly be glorifying them? Especially with the ever so pertinent quotes next to the paintings. (Brilliant, by the way.) I especially enjoyed (from my online viewing) the two paintings with figures breaking out of the traditional confines of the paintings. (Brilliant again.)

    Still hoping to get back to the Pacific Northwest some day. Hope it will correspond with the timing of one of your shows. My best to you.

  4. val bryan

    David, thank you for sharing this. I was in Seattle for a visit in late September (but did not attend your opening). My friend Carolyn Mawbey and I just stopped in and were so impressed with your painting and subject matter. I’m from Hartford, CT and indicated that Real Art Ways in Hartford might be interested in hosting an exhibit of your work and I would be glad to contact the director, Will Wilkins. I’m still glad to do that, but you probably should check out the RAW website, realartways.org, and let me know if you are interested in traveling all the way to the East coast. Perhaps there are other locations on the East coast that would want to host your exhibit. Winter can be problematic, with closings for snow and folks not coming out. RAW probably already has exhibits booked for a number of months.
    Thank you for your creative expression.

  5. Suze Woolf

    I can assure you that bringing paintings into Canada from the U.S. for an exhibit , if you are doing all the paperwork yourself, is not particularly easy either : – )

    Essentially you have to assure that appropriate taxes will get paid on any piece that might get sold going in and then prove it when you exit with them : – )

Comments are closed.