"At WINTER and Christmas, all roads lead home . . ." ~ M. Holmes

 

Spokane is the largest city in Eastern Washington, but it has always been blessed with a friendly, small-town feel. Folks really love living in Eastern Washington's Inland Northwest. Spokane is my home town.

THE BEGINNING ~ Nearly 150 years ago, the first white settler to stake a claim in Spokane Falls ("Falls" was later dropped) was Seth Scranton in 1871. However, James N. Glover is credited as being the "Father of Spokane" as he shaped the area that bordered the falls on both sides into a town. The railroad, timber and rich ore nearby brought enormous wealth ~ making millionaires of many, although a huge fire burned most of Spokane in 1889, slowing the pace of economic growth for a short while.

KEY PLAYERS ~ Kirtland K. Cutter, Amasa Campbell, Patsy Clark, Louis B. Davenport, Francis Cook, Aubrey White, J.J. Browne, A.M. Cannon, J.P. Graves, William Cowles and others gave the city its complexion. These highly successful men built grand mansions for their families and imposing downtown buildings to proclaim their wealth. Remarkably, many of these structures are still in beautiful condition.

PRESERVATION & THE TOP 10 ~ After World War II, when other cities were tearing down structures, an economic slump had folks here restoring properties. The South Hill in particular is filled with vintage homes built in the '20s, '30s and '40s ~ many as pretty as when originally constructed. Add to that the school system, beautiful parks, manicured golf courses, 70+ lakes, bike trails, ski resorts ~ and the very active Spokane Preservationist Advocates (SpokanePreservation.org) organization. Spokane was recently rated among the top 10 cities in the U.S. for its quality of life by AARP Magazine.

FULL CIRCLE ~ In 2012, Doug and I moved from Seattle back to Spokane. We were both born here, although Doug grew up on Bellevue's Clyde Hill neighborhood. Fond childhood memories inspired much of the art in this Spokane Collection as the community is filled with endless inspiring subjects for an artist like me to recreate. If you grew up here, you'll see dozens of beloved familiar settings below.

 

WINTER 2017 ~ SEVEN GROUPS IN THE SPOKANE COLLECTION

I've divided this collection into seven groups with sub-categories. Each group highlights neighborhoods, communities and well-known beloved regional areas. In most cases, the artwork revolves with and reflects the seasons and holidays.

NEW ARTWORK, GROUP PDFS &"THE BIG LIST"

ENJOY ~ and click on Ordering for details on purchasing any of the artwork featured here (now accepting Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express).

 

 

 

 

SPOKANE'S DOWNTOWN DISTRICT (BELOVED ICONIC SIGNATURE STRUCTURES)

The Entire Downtown District Collection pdf ~ Click on this 2-page pdf to see all 7 paintings.

"The Crescent Window at Christmastime" (DOWNTOWN SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JULY 2009 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

 
The Crescent Department Store was THE place to shop when I was a youngster growing up in Spokane, Washington.

It opened in 1889, the year of the big Spokane fire that virtually destroyed the greater downtown area. The store served faithfully (nearly a century) until 1988 when it was sold to the F&N (Frederick & Nelson) Acquisition Corporation.

Our annual tradition, as it was with many Spokane families at the time, was the yearly visit to the downtown Crescent Department Store for pictures with Santa Claus. I was six when this photo was taken ~ and my sisters and me were dressed in red plaid taffetas created by my mother Sally. After photos, we always stopped by the signature animated store window which was filled with lights, baubles and figures (Santa, his elves and more) that moved in time to Christmas music.

Highlight ~ At the 2014 Arbor Crest Art & Glass Festival, one of the men responsible for the animated Crescent Store window stopped by to take a look at this artwork. He recognized the elves and colorful candy confections as some he had created decades ago ~ sharing stories with me and clients at my booth about his 30+ years at the beloved department store.

"Flying South Over Spokane Falls & Huntington Park" (DOWNTOWN SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 2004 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Not only did famed architect Kirtland K. Cutter create dozens of beautiful homes and handsome landmark buildings in Spokane, he also lent his design flair to other projects.

This portrayed the majestic Monroe Street Bridge which spanned the river at the west end of downtown Spokane. In 1910, John Ralston, Spokane’s city engineer and designer of the grand bridge, invited Cutter to design its decorative handrails and lookout stations, which featured life-size reliefs of bison skulls.

The photo here showed the bridge just after its construction. In the background was another famous landmark, the Washington Water Power Post Street Substation. Cutter designed that massive brick and basaltic rock industrial building in 1909.

Recently, Huntington Park situated on the south side of the falls was given a formal restoration with the installation of lawn, basaltic rock terraced gardens and assorted decorative plantings ~ creating a very inviting space for folks to not only view the cascading water, but stay a while and enjoy a picnic in the scenic spot.

Highlight ~ WWP’s first president, F. Rockwood Moore, gave Cutter one of his first residential commissions.

"Breaking News at the Review Building" (DOWNTOWN SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JUNE 2013 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This unique building in downtown Spokane was designed and built in 1890 after the Great Spokane Fire by Chauncey B. Seaton, although he left before the construction project was complete. Seaton designed it to fit the unusual shaped lot. It is one of the city’s tallest buildings and houses the principal newspaper, the Spokesman Review (Spokesman.com).

In 1883, Frank Dallam began the Review, which competed with the Spokesman, a newspaper owned by a group of local businessmen. In order to survive, the papers merged into one. Then the Panic of 1893 threatened to kill it, so W.H. Cowles came out from Chicago to salvage the newspaper and became the sole owner of the new Spokesman Review. He later purchased the Spokane Daily Chronicle.

His son W.H. Cowles II and grandson W.H. Cowles III were very influential members of the Spokane community. W.H. Cowles III served as director of the Associated Press for 33 years. When I painted this piece, the generous, civic-minded family still owned and operated the paper.

Highlight ~ Years after W.H. Cowles first took over the paper, his descendents orchestrated the building of downtown Spokane's Riverpark Square Shopping Mall.

"Sunday Brunch at the Spokane Club" (DOWNTOWN SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 2004 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Famed architect Kirtland K. Cutter designed the Spokane Club (SpokaneClub.org) in 1909, and it has always been a stunning jewel in his architectural crown.

Facing north and perched on the cliff overlooking Spokane Falls, Cutter created this handsome building in the Georgian style, using red brick with terra-cotta embellishments. Although the entrance had a distinctly Baroque feel with its ornate facade and columns, until recently a large medallion of a Native American warrior hung over the entrance, reminding members and guests that they were “out West.”

The Spokane Club was designed with an elegant interior, featuring a classic formal dining room, ballroom, luxurious street-front bar and hospitable rooms above ~ making the club a wonderful destination for its guests.

The later addition of its sports facility has been a huge draw for members who want to stay “in shape” or gear up in winter for the Inland Northwest ski season.

Highlight ~ At the time that my parents were members of the Spokane Club, the tradition of their annual debutante ball was still occurring. My sisters and I each were presented to Spokane society on our father Joe’s arm.

 

 

SPOKANE COUNTY & STATE PARKS (CANNON HILL, MANITO, MOORE-TURNER HERITAGE GARDENS RIVERFRONT, MOUNT SPOKANE, RIVERSIDE STATE PARK AND MORE)

Entire Spokane Parks Collection pdf ~ Click on this 4-page pdf to see all 18 paintings.

Coming Soon! NEW Artwork of the Pergola at Manito's Rose Hill.

NEW! "The Christmas Carousel (Looff)" (DOWNTOWN, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JULY 2015 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

20 Years after the original artwork was created, this painting was reworked for Michael Bagley’s carousel-themed tree offering in Spokane’s 2017 Christmas Tree Elegance.

This carousel (SpokaneCarousel.org) carried hundreds of riders in merry circles for decade upon decade in both Natatorium and Riverfront Parks. I.D. Looff finished this glittering merry-go-round in 1909, which was elaborate in every detail with dozens of multi-sized mirror panels and 180 sparkling lights. Too expensive for Nat at a price of $20,000, Looff struck a special deal. If the park would allow his son Louis Vogel to run the carousel and other concessions on a percentage basis, Looff would ship the carousel to the park as a wedding gift for his daughter Emma.

When the Nat Park closed in 1968, its property developed into a trailer park, the carousel was dismantled and stored. With the opening of Spokane’s World Fair, Expo '74 at 100-acre Riverfront Park, one of the most anticipated events was the re-opening of the carousel ~ not just for viewing, but for riding.

Highlight ~ Recently, the merry-go-round was once again put in storage as a new protective structure (one of several ambitious Riverfront Park improvements) was begun to showcase the grand old girl.

"Vista House View" (MOUNT SPOKANE STATE PARK, WASHINGTON • FEBRUARY 2010 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • X10-INCH)

This artwork portrayed the historic Vista House on a gorgeous sunny day with friends, family and a group of eager young S.S.R.A. racers (Spokane Ski Racing Association) in the scene.

Located at the summit of Mount Spokane (MountSpokane.com) near the top of the #1 chairlift, this unique granite stone cottage was the design of Spokane architect, Henry C. Bertelsen.

It was built during the Great Depression in 1933 by the Civilian Conservation Corps (C.C.C.) who was headquartered at Riverside State Park on Spokane’s North Side.

It was constructed to blend with its stunning, natural setting. Renovated in 2002 by Mount Spokane State Park, once again it opened its doors to the public on Sundays and holidays, offering light fare and a huge, friendly fireplace

"Cavorting on Cannon Hll Pond" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JULY 2009 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Cannon Hill Park was created just west down the hill from Saint Augustine’s Parish where I attended grade school. There was little property for playgrounds in the 1950s-60s, so in winter, the 6th-, 7th- and 8th-graders were allowed to skate on the pond during recess. The boys played hockey and the girls twirled and skated backwards (we all dreamed of joining the “Ice Capades”).

The site of the Washington Brick & Lime Co. in the 1880s (used for many South Hill homes), when the clay deposits ran out, the Adam’s family (relatives of John Quincy Adams) donated 13 acres for Adams Park, later named for real estate developer A.M. Cannon.

In 1910, the famed Olmsted brothers designed the park, including a large pond with basaltic rock bridges, two pergolas and a wading pool for children ~ no longer in place.

This work is filled with family and friends ~ including the Roberts, McCarthy and Shelledy kids. The Shelledys lived in the brick two-story shown overlooking the pond.

Highlight ~ I've always loved this picturesque neighborhood filled with truly lovely homes. To date I've not only painted this pond, but four pretty residences that overlook iC

"Sledding on the South Hill (Manito Park)" (DOWNTOWN SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED OCTOBER 2013 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This piece pictured Manito Park’s (TheFriendsOfManito.org) sledding hill on the corner of Grand Boulevard & 18th Avenue as it looked in the late 1950s. I painted friends and family enjoying a crisp winter day at the park after a fresh snowfall ~ something folks in the neighborhood have done since 1904 when the beloved park was established.

In 1959, my parents gave me an aluminum “Flying Saucer” for Christmas. All of us kids had our “Flexible Flyer” sleds, but these metal discs were the latest thing! We sat down in the center, crossed our legs, grabbed the leather handles on both sides ~ and prayed we didn't hit a tree on the way down because steering was out of the question.

There were two sides of this sledding hill ~ a smaller one near the picnic shelter for the younger set and a larger one adjacent to the street that the bigger kids poured buckets of water on to speed up the ride. This sheet of ice guaranteed a VERY treaherous, swift trip to the bottom!

Highlight ~ Last winter when Doug and I were walking our neighborhood, we stopped by the park to watch the kids on the hill. Amazingly, one of them had a disc that looked just ike my original "Flying Saucer" ~ proving that what goes around does indeed come around!

"Afternoon at the Manito Administration Building" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 2003 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS •8X10-INCH)

The stunning focal point of the South Hill neighborhood, Manito Park was deeded to the city of Spokane in 1904.

This handsome, single-story basaltic rock and shingle structure (one of the park's oldest) was built over 100 years ago in 1912 on the north side of the glass Gaiser Conservatory. It overlooked the Ferris Perennial Gardens to the north and Rose Hill to the west and was designed to blend seamlessly in an unobtrusive way with the park's natural surroundings.

For decades, it has housed the offices of Manito’s horticultural staff and The Friends of Manito (TheFriendsOfManito.org), a non-profit service group partnering with the Spokane Parks & Recreation Department and committed to the work of preserving, promoting and improving the beloved setting.

"Vintage View of Coeur d'Alene Parkt" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • OCTOBER 2015 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 9X120-INCH)

This autumn-themed artwork portrayed how I imagined Spokane’s first and oldest park, Coeur d’Alene, might have looked in the early 1900s. Several wealthy Browne’s Addition residents made their fortunes in the Coeur d’Alene mines, perhaps inspiring its name.

Researching how the first pavilion and period clothing looked, I painted merrymakers listening to music, strolling leisurely, bicycling and riding in the elegant carriage based on the one owned by the Amasa Campbell family. Although the four-block parcel was set aside by developers A.M. Cannon and J.J. Browne in the 1880s, the park was not officially deeded until 1891.

In the early 1900s, John Charles Olmsted and Frederick Dawson of the famed Olmsted Bros. offered several suggestions to improve the park, including reducing the drives through it and the addition of a bandstand pavilion.

This was replaced very similarly to the original plans and rededicated in 1990 with two of the handsome urn-shaped planters seen in many early park photographs flanking it. The park was also renowned for its collection of one of nearly every type of tree native to the Northwest.

Highlight ~ 2016 marked the 125th anniversary of the park’s founding with celebrations driven by the stewardship group, the Friends of Coeur d’Alene Park.

 

BROWNE'S ADDITION (REMARKABLE RESIDENCES INCLUDING THE MAC'S RESTORED AMASA CAMPBELL HOUSE)

Entire Browne's Addition Collection pdf ~ Click on this 5-page pdf to see all 26 paintings (14 Browne's Addition settings and 12 of the historic Campbell House).

NEIGHBORHOOD MANSIONS AND MORE (LIFE IN SPOKANE'S FIRST AND OLDEST NEIGHBORHOOD)

"The Christmas House (Loewwenbert-Roberts)" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED MAY 1997 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

The Loewenberg-Roberts House (EJRoberts Mansion.com) on First Avenue was designed by W.J. Carpenter for Bernard Loewenberg in 1889. Loewenberg owned a dry goods store nearby on Riverside Avenue, which floundered financially to the point that he was compelled to trade his home for another in the neighborhood owned by E.J. Roberts.

Built in the Queen Anne Victorian style, Carpenter designed the house using a unique decorative blend of granite, wood and brick ~ resulting in an unusually beautiful home.

In Browne’s Addition where many of the larger mansions had been converted into apartment houses after World War II to accommodate returning soldiers, this the Roberts House remained home to this family well into the 20th Century.  

Mary Moltke purchased toward the end of the last century and began an ambitious restoration project, re-opening it as an upscale inn and special event center in the 1990s.

Highlight ~ E. J. Roberts great-granddaughter Molly Roberts Hannan has been my dear friend (see more about Molly on my Biography page) since we were toddlers living on Lincoln Street. See that cottage further down on this page.

"Autumn Afternoon at Patsy Clark's" (BROWNE’S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WASHINGTON • PAINTED MARCH 1997 • 8X10-INCH

The Patrick Clark Mansion (PatsyClarks.com) across from the Coeur d’Alene Park on 2nd Avenue and Hemlock Street was the fine work of architect Kirtland Kelsey Cutter. The flamboyant design of this three-story residence was inspired by the palaces of Islamic Spain. Constructed beige-gold brick with a crimson tile roof, it stood out dramatically in a neighborhood of Tudor-Revivals and Queen Anne Victorians.

Born in Ireland of poor parents, 20-year old Patrick Clark arrived in the United States in 1870 and chose mining for his career path. He worked in several states before joining a Spokane syndicate, partnering with high-profile businessmen Finch, Campbell, Wakefield and Corbin.

He moved his family into this opulent mansion in 1897 after living temporarily in the Fotheringham House across the street directly east. For a time in the 1980s and 1990s, the residence was a very popular fine restaurant named after him. Later on in the 2000s, the grand mansion was purchased by a group of successful attorneys who installed their offices on the second floor. A further renovation and restoration was completed, making the first floor a sought after event center for weddings and other social functions

Highlight ~ When Doug and I were courting in 1997, I brought him to Spokane to meet my mother. We chose Patsy Clark's as our restaurant for that special introductory dinner.

"Winter at the Wakefield House" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED MAY 1997 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

The Wakefield Mansion, once the family residence of lawyer and capitalist, W.J.C. Wakefield, was designed and built in Browne’s Addition in 1897 by famed Spokane architect Kirtland K. Cutter.

Created in the classic Mission Revival style, it was located on the lot west of Amasa Campbell’s Tudor four-story. This was just one of several elegant residences near Coeur D’Alene Park commissioned by the community’s new wealthy businessmen who wished to proclaim their financial success in the form of spectacular family homes.

This painting celebrated the theme of holiday gatherings. Note the turkey in the dining room window and folks arriving with hot dishes to contribute to the feast.

Highlight ~ In the late 1940s, thousands of servicemen were returning from fighting in World War II, so large structures such as the one in this painting were divided into several apartments.

"Touring the Campbell House" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JANUARY 2011• ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

2016 marked the milestone 100th birthday of the MAC (Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture) (NorthwestMuseum.org). Located in the heart of historic Browne’s Addition, Spokane’s first residential neighborhood, the Amasa Campbell House portrayed here became "jewel" in the crown of the MAC complex.

At one time, the mansion housed the museum, but a new modern complex was built and an ambitious restoration that progressed for decades was begun on the Campbell House from the basement through the second floor. Folks who had purchased the Campbell’s furniture gave many of the signature pieces back to help the project along.

This mansion was particularly luxurious as Campbell was a very wealthy man through his mining partnership with neighbors John A. Finch, Patrick Clark and W.J.C. Wakefield.  When a fairly large portion of the restoration was complete, the museum began offering tours of the Campbell House ~ frequently with docents on hand to answer questions and share stories about this historic Spokane family.

Highlight ~ A scrapbook with samples of wallpaper and other important details pertaining to the house was compiled during its initial construction in 1899. This was found in the linen closet in the third floor maid’s quarters during the mansion's restoration ~ a huge help to the ambitious project.

 

THE AMASA CAMPBELL HOUSE (GRACIOUS LIVING FOR THE FAMILY AND THEIR SERVANTS AT THE TURN OF THE LAST CENTURY)

"Christmas at the Campbell House" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 20051 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8x10-INCH)

The Campbell family’s focal point was the library on the main floor of their grand residence.

Located left of the entryway, it was finished in rich dark oak echoing the woodwork in the hallway. Dark beams set off the ceiling in the library and the handsome carved Gothic arch over the fireplace.

This room provided the family with a warm and inviting place for casual relaxation like listening to music, reading and playing board games.

The Campbells also hosted parties and dances here, as well as more formal events like weddings and funerals. On June 27th, 1917, the library was festooned with blossoms to host the wedding celebration of the Campbell’s only daughter Helen to William Powell.

Highlight ~ This room has been opened to the MAC (NorthwestMuseum.org) members and guests at Christmastme for their Annual Open House.

"Rose Reception Room (Campbell House)" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED AUGUST 2011 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Inside the entrance of the Campbell House to the right was the reception room ~ an elegant, feminine pink and white Louis XVI French Rococo room with its woodwork, mantle and wall panels embellished with golf leaf.

A delicate porcelain portrait of the Madonna and Child sat on the mantle ~ popular in Victorian home decor at the time this grand residence was built in 1898.

Social calls were a very important part of upper class life in the late 1800s ~ and this ornate space was where Grace Campbell received her guests. According to custom, the visits were brief (about 15 minutes) and women left calling cards on a tray provided for that purpose as a reminder of their visit before moving on to the next mansion in the neighborhood.

Highlight ~ Befitting Spokane's “Age of Elegance” in which this mansion was built, this small room was indeed the most elegant in the home.

"Cookies in the Kitchen (Campbell House)" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JUNE 2011 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH))

The red and white kitchen with its white octagonal tile floor must have been a hub of activity when the Campbell family lived in their grand residence. It was conveniently located across the hall from the servants’ dining room on one side and next to the butler’s pantry, which served the formal dining room on the other.

All of the meals for the Campbell family as well as the staff of servants were prepared here. The focal point was the huge, ornate Majestic wood stove with ovens for baking, roasting and keeping things warm and a cook-top large enough to accommodate several skillets and saucepans at the same time.

To the left of the range was a large walk-in pantry equipped with a glass-windowed oak ice-box storage unit. I gave this piece a cookie-baking theme, as I’m certain plenty of that was going on between during the holiday season.

Highlight ~ During past Holiday Open Houses, this space was open for guests to explore ~ including the rarely seen butler’s pantry ~ all while munching on a freshly baked warn cookies!

"The Lovely Linen Room (Campbell House)" (BROWNE'S ADDITION, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JULY 2011 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Tucked into the southeast corner of the second floor, this room caught the morning sun and must have been a cheerful place to be on sunny days. The north wall had built-in shelves and drawers for storing the bed and other fine linens that a fine residence like the Campbell House required.

Grace and Helen stayed abreast of the latest fashions and shunned ready-to-wear. They visited several salons in New York and ordered garments from there, Boston and San Francisco.

Once or twice a year, a fine seamstress used this room for a couple of weeks to measure and sew for the family. I’ve pictured the wire dress form and the sewing machine ~ no electricity required as this apparatus used “foot power.”

Highlight ~ The dress pictured to the far right of the piece was Helen Campbell’s wedding gown.

 

THE SOUTH HILL (CHARMING HOMES AND PUBLIC PLACES ON WHAT IS KNOWN SIMPLY AS "THE HILL")

Entire South Hill Collection pdf ~ Click on the 14-page pdf to see all 68 images.

SOUTH HILL NEIGHBORHOODS (CANNON HILL/MANITO, CLIFF PARK, HIGH DRIVE, LOWER SOUTH HILL, ROCKWOOD, OVERBLUFF, SOUTH PERRY DISTRICT AND MORE)

NEW! "Pretty Parker Place on Cannon Hill" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED NOVEMBER 2017 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

The historic Grombacher-Herrick House (commonly know as the Dr. Parker House) was built in 1924 on West Shoshone by Joseph J. Lorenze, who lived less that a block away.

Several significant families lived here, among them the Grombachers (music shop owners who also managed the Liberty Theater), the Herricks (Milwaukee Lumber Company and Palouse Oil & Gas) and the Winklers (Wm. Winkler Paving Contractors).

But the fifth owners were the most well known. Dr. Robert Parker and wife Jeannie (Marcella) moved into the 2-1/2 story in 1956 and stayed for six-plus decades ~ raising their family of seven children. The Parker House was a classic brick Tudor-Revival with a steeply pitched gabled roof, narrow multi-paned windows and stucco cladding. These strong architectural elements were reminiscent of charming, comfortable English/European residences ~ indicative of the development of homes overlooking Cannon Hill Pond from the 1920s to the 1940s.

For decades, Dr. Parker hosted caroling in the late afternoon on Christmas Eve ~ opening his home afterwards to friends and neighbors. Guest of honor Saint Nicholas (possilby a local firefighter) stopped by the crowd with a bag of treats for the kiddos. Former neighbors remember this annual tradition fondly.

Highlight ~ In the last few years of her life, Jeannie Parker joined my mother's weekly bridge group. One special spring, I treated the ladies to tea at the Silver Spoon Tea House at the Monroe Mansion (pictured below).

"Merry Christmas at the Monroe Mansion" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED DECEMBER 2046 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This three-story Queen Anne was built in 1902 on 6th Avenue in Spokane’s Cannon Hill neighborhood and was home to the Levi Monroe family for over 50 years. Spokane was a “railroad” town, so many successful businessmen were able to build grand homes like this.

He worked for years for the Spokane Chronicle and later served as the secretary for the Spokane Chamber of Commerce. During the Great Depression, he was the assistant to James Sullivan, director of the Columbia Basin Commission, which allowed Levi to become involved on the federal, state and local levels with the planning of Grand Coulee Dam.

When I painted this piece, the residence was serving folks as the elegant Silver Spoon Tea House (SilverSpoonTeaHouse.com). I pictured the owner/proprietor Sylvia Erickson with her granddaughter in front of the festively decorated tea house as guests made their way up the sidewalk for a break after a morning of Christmas shopping.

Highlight ~ I treated my mother’s bridge group which included Jeannie Parker whose house is part of this group to high tea at this establishment one spring afternoon in 2014.

”Whispering Pines on the Sourth Hill" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED MAY 2007 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Located just off Bernard Street on 21st Avenue on the hill above Cannon Hill Park, this charming French-influenced cottage sparkled like a jewel in a neighborhood filled with lots of other attractive homes. Ponderosa pines towered in abundance, so I pictured several in the back yard of this scene.

Sean Nichols and Anne Marie Byrd raised their two daughters in this home. During the 1900s-2000s, they were also the proprietors of the much-loved Hannah’s Garden Inn located nearby in the historic Corbet-Aspray mansion. This piece was a nod to their years as innkeepers there, so I named this painting “Whispering Pines.”

In the artwork, I pictured my husband Doug and me as guests accompanied by our kitties Andy and Sophie on a crisp winter afternoon just after a fresh dusting of snow.

Highlight ~ My family celebrated my mother Sally’s 80th birthday at what used to be their  “Hannah’s Garden Inn,”

NEW! "Shimmering Snowfall on the South Hill" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED NOVEMBER 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 11X14-INCH)

Designed by Whitehouse and Price, this remarkably pretty Colonial Revival-style clinker brick residence was built on the corner of Stevens and Shoshone in 1926. Overlooking Cannon Hill Pond. It was believed that Hawley owned an oil company and he had this home created for his family. A later noteworthy resident was Dr. Harcus of Harcus & Aspray Radiologists (Spokane’s first large radiology practice).

When I finished the painting in 2016, the owners had recently finished an extensive “facelift” as they were planning to put their beautiful home on the market in spring. After decades spent there raising their six children, they were down to just the two of them on four floors. It was time to downsize, but the memories would always be there ~ like this scene of the skaters walking to and from Cannon Hill Pond on a crisp winter evening.

Highlight ~ in the 1950-60s, older students from nearby Saint Augustine’s School spent lunch hours skating here as there was a shortage of playgrounds in those days.

"Christmas Lights on 25th & Bernard" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED DECEMBER 1993 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

I painted five portraits (my favorite home growing up) of the historic Codd House where our family lived for a decade from 1952 to 1962. This classic Dutch Colonial was built by Dr. Codd in the 1920s as a wedding gift and his new wife.

The living/dining room suite featured unique gumwood built-in bookcases, windows, French doors and crown molding. When Bernard Street was widened into a busy arterial, our family moved to the suburbs of Spokane Valley and the residence was purchased by the Sullivan family.

Subsequently, the Starbucks became the fourth family to own it in 2002 and they gave the house a fresh, new look. This piece pictured our family decorating the two-story with multi-colored Christmas lights ~ one of our very favorite Christmas traditions while living here.

Highlight ~ When I finished this painting in 1993 and gave it to my mother for Christmas, the scene brought tears to her eyes as my father had passed just five years earlier.

"Lighting up the Lincoln House" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED NOVEMBER 2014 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS ~ 8X10-INCH)

Christmastime in Spokane! Fond memories have always warmed my heart remembering holidays spent on the South Hill. This charming cottage on Lincoln Street across the street from Cannon Hill Park was the home my parents Joe and Sally Simpson brought me to as a newborn.

During our family’s short stay there, one of the coldest winters on record dumped nearly four feet of snow in our neighborhood. That December, my sister Marilee and I were outside for days on end playing in it. I’ve pictured us in this scene as toddlers working on a snowman while our parents decorated our cottage. We loved the multi-colored lights, but our favorite was a light-up Santa face that my dad positioned above the front door. This artwork was revised from a much earlier painting completed in 1987.

Highlight ~ At an event at Manito Park benefitting the Spokane Symphony last summer, my gal pal Molly Robert Hannan introduced me to a friend whose parents purchased this cottage from mine. She too remembered a magical stairway that unfolded and dropped down from the living room ceiling.

 

 

SOUTH HILL PUBLIC PLACES (iCONIC CHURCHES, SCHOOLS AND BELOVED SMALL BUSINESSES)

"Family, Friends & Flowers (Saint Augustine's)" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JANUARY 2014 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

When I grew up in Spokane, my first twelve years were spent at Saint Augustine’s (StAugustineSpokane.CatholicWeb.com) where my family attended Mass and grade school on Spokane’s South Hill. The school building  functioned as the church for decades, but in the 1940s, Father (later Monsignor) Stephen P. Buckley drove the fund-raising for a new church.

Designed by the John W. Maloney architects, Walter G. Meyers & Son contractors built the church. They used brick veneer and Indiana limestone for the exterior with a cornerstone of red carnelian granite from Minnesota.

Bishop Charles C. White dedicated the new church on October 1, 1950. Later Father Buckley had landscaped terraced gardens added to honor the Seven Sorrows of Mary ~ creating a remarkably beautiful setting. I completed this work to commemorate the 100th birthday of the parish. Monsignor Buckley left Saint Augustine’s in 1968 and years later my husband and I purchased the brick bungalow where he spent his retirement years (this was the view from the front porch).

Highlight ~ I pictured my sisters and our sweethearts enjoying the Nativity scene that always decorated the corner of Bernard and 18th Avenue at Christmastime.

NEW! "South Hill Snowman" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JANUARY 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Three whimsical snowmen punctuate the charming portrait of this beloved icon a half block east of Manito Park on Spokane’s South Hill. Whether the weather was chilly as pictured here or warm for al fresco dining on the deck of the historic 18th Avenue setting, the Rockwood Bakery has always been full of loyal patrons.

For folks with a sweet tooth and discerning love of good coffee and tea, from the day it opened, the Rockwood Bakery has been a favorite.

When my sister’s fiancé was working on the hardwood floors in our nearby vintage bungalow, he breakfasted every single morning here.

Highlight ~ the structure once served the neighborhood as a small grocery store in the early 1900s and was the first market to offer its customers meat lockers to freeze their large quantity purchases.

"Winter Campus at Lewis & Clark (HIgh School)" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED NOVEMBER 2014 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This lower South Hill setting on Fourth Avenue was home to three prominent schools. Spokane Central School was founded in 1883 as a two-story, four-room schoolhouse.

Eight years later, an elaborately beautiful Victorian brick building was constructed there as South Central High School. Tragically, fire gutted the structure, leaving only its shell. $500,000 was raised, acclaimed L.L. Rand was chosen as the architect, and students traveled across town to North Central High School while the European Gothic-style building was under construction.

North Central’s Principal Richard Hargreaves won a contest sponsored by The Spokane Chronicle with the name “Lewis & Clark” for the High School. President Theodore Roosevelt laid its cornerstone in 1911. I created this piece with a post-WW II time period and gave it a winter theme.

Highlight ~ I dedicated it to my father Joe Simpson who loyally attended many L.C. class reunions until his death in 1987.

NEW! "Autumn at Art in Bloom (D.C. Corbin Mansion)" (THE SOUTH HILL, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 2017 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8x10-INCH)

Kirtland Cutter designed and built this Colonial Revival mansion for D.C. Corbin on Seventh Avenue just east of his son’s more elegant home in 1898.

D.C. led a simpler life than Austin who was famous for his extravagant parties and balls. The only social event hosted by D.C. was an annual display of fireworks on Independence Day.

Decades later, this three-story opened its doors as the beloved Corbin Art Center. Managed by the Spokane Parks and Recreation Department, over the years, dozens of instructors have taught art classes there with additional special activities for kids in summer.

This piece pictured Friends of The Moore-Turner Heritage Gardens volunteers and fine artists preparing for Art In Bloom ~ an annual fundraiser pairing fine floral arrangements with local artists’ works to benefit the gardens and art center.

Highlight ~ Visitors to the historc Corbin House would be amazined to find a basaltic rook "folly" on the back grounds of the property inspired by those found at fine European country houses.

 

 

THE NORTH SIDE (HANDSOME HOMES, GONZAGA UNIVERISTY AND BELOVED PUBLIC PLACES)

Entire North Side Collection pdf ~ Click on the 5-page pdf to see all 24 images)

THE NORTH SIDE (CHARMING RESIDENCES ON INDIAN TRAIL, THE UNIVERSITY DISTRICT, WEST POINT ROAD AND MORE)

"The Old Maxwell-Pettet Place" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED AUGUST 2008 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This snowy scene portrayed the old Maxwell-Pettet place located on picturesque West Point Road. This sprawling North Side residence was reputed to be the oldest home in the community according to Spokane’s Public Records.

The original small cottage was built by the Pettet family who sold it a short time later to the Maxwells ~ which is how the home got its name. The Maxwells lived in this residence for several decades. Eventually, the property was sold to the Powell family.

Over the years, the original wood cottage was encased and added on to, resulting in this remarkably pretty rambling residence in the woods on the cliffs overlooking the Spokane River and old Fort George Wright.

Highlight ~ William Powell married Helen Campbell, the only daughter of Amasa and Grace who raised their daughter in the historic Tudor Revivial Campbell House, part of the Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture. A number of Campbell House paintings are pictured above on this page.

"North Side Noel" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED DECEMBER 1987 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This was a portrait of the classic Queen Anne-style home that my father grew up in just before the Great Depression hit Spokane in the late 1920s. Life had been very prosperous for the Simpson family and they not only owned this beautiful home, but another that added to the family’s revenue as a rental.

Pictured in front of the three-story Victorian were my dad Joseph and his little sister Wanda, about to take their “Flexible Flyer” sled out for a ride.

Sadly, the Depression spelled disaster for this family as it did for so many others. The Simpsons experienced hard times and lost all their properties to foreclosure ~ an all too common fate in the tragic time.

A highway was constructed through the property decades later, so this pretty Victorian was demolished in that process. Luckily my grandmother Jessie Simpson kept several photographs of it, which made this portrait possible.

Highlight ~ I gave framed reproducions of the finished painting to my dad and aunt for Christmas in 1987, which was fortuitous as a few short months later, my father passed away from heart disease.

 

 

THE NORTH SIDE'S GONZAGA PREP AND GONZAGA UNIVERSITY (FR. JOSEPH CATALDO S.J.'S JESUIT RENOWNED HIGH SCHOOL AND JESUIT UNIVERSITY)

NEW! "Gathering at Gonzaga Prep" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED March 2017 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Gonzaga Prep was establlshed in 1887 by Father Joseph Cataldo and S.J. with eight other faculty members. It became one of four Jesuit High Schools in the Pacific Northwest acclaimed for “preparing students for life.”

Once known as Gonzaga High, from early years it had a solid relationship with Gonzaga University. Gonzaga High was located within the college at one setting or another wherever the institution moved ~ and some years, the tuition from its considerable student body helped keep the college afloat.

The high school split from the college administratively in 1926, but the permanent move to Euclid Avenue did not occur until 1954 after Father Gordon Toner, S.J. purchased 85 lots that ultimately comprised the campus. Ground was broken in 1953 and a year later, Gonzaga Preparatory School, Inc. began teaching its 610 male students. In 1975 with the close of Holy Names Academy (Marycliff High School followed in 1979), Gonzaga Prep opened its doors to women.

Also history making, in the late 1980s, Gonzaga Prep became the first Jesuit school in the United States to hire a lay president. When I painted this artwork, John Traynor’s longtime successor Al Falkner was completing his 43rd and final year of service with plans to retire at the end of the 2016-2017 school year.

Pictured on the right (front to back): Al Falkner, president; Joe Feryn, counselor and track coach; Phil Kuder, teacher and golf coach; and Fr. Peter Byrne, S.J., Superior Manresa community.

Highlight ~ This campus view inspired by Al, pictured the old school building, the Barbieri Student Center and the Chapel of the Three Companions with students enjoying a break between classes.

"The Historic Huetter House (Gonzaga University)" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • MARCH 2013 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

John Huetter started work on this stately mansion in 1889. In the construction business ~ and a fine stone mason and brick layer ~ he was also responsible for Gonzaga University’s DeSmet Hall and the Administration Building (College Hall).

The great fire of 1889 provided other opportunities, such as the construction of the original St. Joseph’s Orphanage. Huetter’s family of nine children were active in St. Aloysius parish.

Several Catholic organizations used this house until 1956 when Bishop Bernard J. Topel dedicated it to the memory of Bishop Charles D. White (second bishop of the Spokane Diocese) and commissioned it as a Preparatory Seminary.

This painting was completed to honor its 50th year of preparing men for the priesthood. When a new seminary was built, a decision made to move the historic structure to its location near Bing Crosby’s residence where it began serving Gonzaga University as the alumni center.

Highlight ~ I pictured my brothers John, Bill and Bob Simpson as young altar boys in the foreground of this piece.

"Bing Crosby's Craftsman (Gonzaga University)" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • JULY 2008 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This handsome two-story craftsman house cottage was home to Hollywood’s most famous crooner Bing Crosby and one of Hollywood's most memorable actors during his years of growing up on Spokane’s North Side ~ although Harry L. Crosby was born in Tacoma, Washington.

Located adjacent to Gonzaga University (Gonzaga.Edu) campus, Crosby was a huge booster of the college during his lifetime and did a great deal for the university, including fundraising and donating the famous Crosby Library.

Although Bing never finished earning his degree at Gonzaga, in later years he was awarded a special honorary degree, an especially meaningful occasion for him.

For many years, Crosby's craftsman served as the home for the Gonzaga Alumni Association, which later moved to the Huetter House across Boone Avenue from this house.

Highlight ~ My father met Bing Crosby when the actor was in town and came to listen to the band my dad was playing in during his college years.

"Classmates at College Hall (Gonzaga University)" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • JUNE 2013 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Gonzaga University (Gonzaga.Edu) owed its beginning to Italian-born missionary Fr. Joseph Cataldo, S.J. Often in poor health, he was a dynamo nonetheless and was appointed General Superior of the Rocky Mountain Mission in 1877 (eight residences and 38 members scattered throughout the Northwest). Competition with Protestants for access to local Native American tribes was the main reason for founding a Jesuit college in Spokane.

When it opened, applicants had to “know how to read and write, and not be under ten years of age.” Originally only white students were permitted to enroll. Railroad land was purchased in 1881, Gonzaga began educating in 1887 ~ and it was incorporated and able to grant degrees by 1896. A permanent residence and four-story building was completed by 1899. The hall’s entrance was further enhanced in April 2008 by the dedication of George Carlson’s Saint Ignatius statue, a reflection pool and new landscaping.

When I painted this piece, stately “College Hall” was still handling the university’s administrative duties and functioning as the key building on the beautiful campus.

Highlight ~ My dad Joseph A. Simpson attended both Gonzaga and Gonzaga Law School (the latter on the G.I. Bill). As a young newlywed, he continued his association with the law school, teachiing night class there the first few years of his marriage.

 

 

THE NORTH SIDE'S PUBLIC PLACES (BELOVED SMALL BUSINESSES, NORTH SIDE SCHOOLS AND CHURCHES)

"Snow Chapel at Holy Names" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED DECEMBER 2015 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This was the second rendition of my high school Holy Names Academy building painted 15 years after the first, “Celebrating Spring at HNA.” This work was completed in honor of the arrival of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary’s to the Pacific Northwest 125 years ago.

I pictured my classmates and younger sisters working on a chapel made of snow and twigs on the front campus grounds while our teachers looked on.

The Victorian red brick building functioned as a “normal school” (teachers’ college) before it became a private school for girls. Located a few blocks from Gonzaga University, HNA closed its doors in 1975 and the empty building sank into sad disrepair. In 1987, it was developed into “The Academy,” a non-denominational full-scale retirement community by local developer Harry A. Green.

Highlight ~ it was featured for a few minutes at the end of the movie starring Johnny Depp, “Benny & Joon.”

"Flowerfield in the Fall (Saint George's School)" (THE NORTH SIDE, SPOKANE, WA • PAINTED JUNE 2008 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

Located on the banks of the Little Spokane River on Spokane’s North Side, Flowerfield was once the 440-acre summer estate of Louis Davenport and his family.

The property was sold in 1955 and 120 acres of it became Saint George’s School. The Davenport’s lovely two-story residence is still part of the private school’s campus. Louis Davenport was known for hiring outstanding architects and commissioned renowned architects Kirtland K. Cutter and Karl Malmgren to design what was to become one of the grandest hotels in Spokane’s history. Closed for decades, the Davenport Hotel was restored to its former glory by Walt and Karen Worthy, and re-opened to the public in the early 2000s. (Photo courtesy of John Meyer)

Highlight ~ The portrait of this once pretty summer home was inspired by my friend Anni Ryan Meyes whose son took the photos I used for this prortrait of it.

NEW! "Gathering at the Garland Milk Bottle" (NORTH SIDE • PAINTED MARCH 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This piece pictured Paul E. Newman’s Benewah Creamery’s Milk Bottle building on Garland Avenue, the first of two in Spokane (this one constructed in 1934) of the six planned.

The milk bottle buildings were classic examples of “literalist” architecture as they advertised in a very real way exactly what they were selling. It was the Great Depression and the architectural firm of Whitehouse and Price (famous for the Hutton Settlement and other important local buildings) designed and built each for a hefty price tag of $3,700.

After decades of serving the community, the Benewah Creamery closed in 1978 and the milk bottle when on to house a variety of small businesses. When I painted this portrait, it was a diner that served the Garland District as Mary Lou’s Milk Bottle.

I painted students from North Side high schools ~ Rogers, Gonzaga Prep, North Central, Holy Names Academy and Shadle ~ in their school colors gathering for ice cream treats.

Highlight ~ In 2011, fire nearly destroyed the milk bottle and adjacent Fergusson’s Café, but after a year of rebuilding, the beloved historic icon reopened for business.

"The Spokane County Courthouse" (DOWNTOWN/NORTH SIDE • PAINTED AUGUST • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

29-year-old W.A. Ritchie won the design competition sponsored by the Board of County Commissioner in 1893 for the Spokane County Courthouse (SpokaneCounty.org). Construction in the French Renaissance style began in 1894 on property located just across the Spokane River from the heart of downtown. It was regarded as a masterpiece with its romantic statuesque towers, handsome masonry and intricate wrought-iron metalwork. The center tower and roof were freshened up in 2012. It has been an important part of Spokane’s skyline for over a hundred years.

A dubious honor, the courtyard held the county’s first public hanging on its grounds in 1897, executing a man who had murdered a woman.

Highlight ~ I dedicated this painting to my father, a successful Spokane attorney who spent a lot of time here.

 

 

SPOKANE VALLEY (ARBOR CREST CELLARS, OLD MILLWOOD, THE NORTHWOOD NEIGHBORHOOD AND OTHERS)

Entire Spokane Valley Collection pdf ~ Click on this 3-page pdf to see all 17 paintings (5 of the Barton Snow Fort and 12 others).

NEW! "Flexble Flyers in the Valley (Moran-Henry)" (SPOKANE VALLEY, WA • PAINTED AUGUST 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This Spokane Valley white brick Colonial home was built in 1940 for the Henry family on Boone Avenue on a large, gently sloping lot. Interestingly, its design was slightly asymmetrical as the left side of it was larger in width than the right.

In 1957, Joe and Rita Moran purchased the residence where they would raise their family of five children (L-R Georgia, Curt, Joey, Kathy and Marty) for nearly 20 years.

The property included an orchard to the left, an outdoor “living room” with white wrought iron furniture beneath the giant willow (note the lovely statue of the Blessed Mother) and a swimming pool behind the house ~ the setting for many warm weather gatherings with family and friends.

I gave this artwork a mid-1960s holiday theme, picturing the kids ready to enjoy the frosty afternoon sledding down a nearby slope. (Vintage photograph courtesy of Moran daughters Kathy Denenny and Georgia Ferguson.)

Highlight ~ I met Kathy Moran Denenny in the sixth grade when our family moved from the South Hill to Spokane Valley. We went on to share high school years with at Holy Names Academy. She's always been a woonderful friend.

"Barton Snow Fort V" (SPOKANE VALLEY, WA • PAINTED AUGUST 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This is the fifth and final alteration to a painting I completed years ago picturing my youngest sister Peggy’s family home in the Spokane Valley.

After spending a decade or so living on the outskirts of San Francisco area and then Honolulu, Hawaii, they moved back to Spokane, Washington so that Jeff could take over his family’s automobile business. Peggy and Jeff had this home built on a lot overlooking Millwood and they enjoyed a stupendous view of the Spokane Valley below.

Their first child Michael arrived soon after. This portrait pictured the entire family as it was in 2014. I swithered about whether or not to add the menagerie of pets they owned over the years, but finally decided not to as there were so many dogs, cats and other creatures that they would have far outnumbered the family! Pictured (L-R) Mikaila (son Michael’s new wife), Kelly, Jeff, Peggy, Brooklynn and Mark. As the family grew, I altered the piece to include new additions.

I gave the final edition of this painting to Peggy when she celebrated her milestone 60th birthday.

Highlight ~ When Peggy and Jeff lived on Oahu, she fell in love with the island lifestyle. It fit her like a glove. It was a huge adjustment for her tomove back to Spokane, so as a nod to her happy island days, she had a stained glass window bird of paradise fitted into her front door.

"Cliff House at Arbor Crest Winery" (SPOKANE VALLEY, WA • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 2012 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

The handsome, Florentine-style Cliff House was built to take advantage of the view of the Spokane Valley. It was designed and built by Royal Newton Riblet in 1924. An inventor and mechanical genius, Riblet’s estate was filled with marvels for its time like his garage with its mechanical door. He also installed a waterfall that recycled water back to the top of the falls and a life-size chess game on his grounds.

The property with its three-story mansion, basaltic rock out-buildings and marvelous gardens later became the headquarters of Arbor Crest Cellars (ArborCrest.com).

Highlight ~ When Royal Riblet was living there, the cement factory far below on the riverside spewed harmful dust into the air, deteriorating his mansion’s facade. He sued ~ and the attorneys who won the first ever case of its kind were associates James Winton and my father Joseph A. Simpson.

NEW! "Gathering at the Gatehouse (Arbor Crest Cellars)" (SPOKANE VALLEY, WA • PAINTED DECEMBER 2016 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

This arched basaltic rock gatehouse on the campus of Arbor Crest Cellars (ArborCrest.com) has always been the signature welcoming structure leading to the handsome Florentine-style mansion known as the Cliff House ~ shown to the right side of the gatehouse.  The estate was the home of Royal Riblet who built Cliff House in 1924.

The gatehouse was just one of several stone out-buildings on the property. Another was the structure where folks waited to board the tram that carried them down the hillside to the valley below. Riblet was a famous mechanical genius, best remembered for inventing the chair lift, which upgraded the experience of snow skiers everywhere.

Now the home of Arbor Crest Cellars, this piece portrayed the Art & Glass Fest, the much anticipated annual summer art event hosted on the grounds of the property.

Highlight ~ When I met the owner of the property in 2015, Harry Milke shared that the stone arch once served as the servants’ quarters.

 

EASTERN WASHINGTON AND NORTH IDAHO (LAKES IN EASTERN WASHINGTON AND NORTH IDAHO PLUS ONE W.S.U. SETTING)

Entire Eastern Washington/North Idaho Collection pdf ~ Click on this 3-page pdf to see all 14 paintings.

COEUR D'ALENE, HAYDEN AND PRIEST LAKES

NEW! "Coeur d'Alene Lakeside Getaway" (COEUR D'ALENE LAKE, ID • PAINTED JANUARY 2017 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 11X14-INCH)

Rockford Bay on Coeur d’Alene Lake was the setting for this lakeside portrait of family and friends at one of many 4th of July celebrations. Note the flag billowing from the deck, colorful pots of red geraniums and the comfy crimson Adirondack chairs by the fire pit ~ all in honor of the patriotic holiday.

Purchased in the early 2000s, this beloved home hosted years of fun times ~ creating unforgettable memories for the folks who owned it, their two daughters and nearby friends just down the beach.

There was always something to do around the property ~ from “home improvement” interior cabin projects to puttering on the beach to chopping wood by the shed to sunny days spent on the dock and riding in the Supra.

Pictured in the foreground was a friendly gang of good friends enjoying music by the beach fire while the golden retriever kept them company from the dock. Hot dogs, roasted marshmellows, tasty s'mores and lots of singing by the fire (note the fellow with the guitar) ~ what could be better after a long fun-filled day at the lake?

"Summer Day at Sunset Beach" (HAYDEN LAKE, ID • PAINTED JULY 2015 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 9X12-INCH)

I pictured three generations of the Dix family who have owned this property for decades at Hayden Lake on beautiful Sunset Beach. This is how Kathleen Dix described a magical day there.

“It often starts in the morning before breakfast when many of us go water skiing. Then the fun of building sand castles begins ~ digging, making decorations in the sand and pushing toy boats around in the water.

Nothing’s better than a cold drink and a good read on a comfy chair under the umbrella. It’s great fishing right off the dock. Even a turtle or two can be caught nearby and released to see which one makes it back into the lake first.

As the sun dips below the skyline seen from our wonderful beach, the fire is built for roasting hot dogs ~ and of course, s’mores. The orange, red and golden hues make us smile as one more day at Sunset Beach comes to a end.”

Highlight ~ The Dix family bought their place at Sunset Beach a few decades after my parent's purchased their property in 1956, but have spent many, many summers as good neighbors down the beach from the Simpsons.

"Rick's Lakeside Lodge" (PRIEST LAKE, IDAHO • PAINTED SEPTEMBER 1998 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 8X10-INCH)

When my parents Joe and Sally downsized from their mid-century modern in the Spokane Valley suburbs on 21st Avenue near Bowdish Junior High, they chose a view condominium on Argonne Lane called Mountain View Estates.

Their next door neighbor was a friendly high school teacher named Rich who was close to retirement. When that day finally arrived, Rich sold his unit and moved to a scenic spot on Priest Lake to share his life with his longtime love Linda. The two finally married and together built a large new log home to replace the small one-room cottage that had served as a summer cabin on the lake’s shoreline.

Very old and riddled with dry rot, the place had become uninhabitable and dangerous, so the couple decided to demolish it. To surprise his bride, Rich took several photos of the cabin before it was torn down and commissioned this portrait. I pictured Rich and Linda on the front deck overlooking an autumn scene dotted with wildlife.

"Cast & Blast" (HAYDEN, IDAHO • PAINTED JULY 1999 • ACRYLIC ON CANVAS • 11X14-INCH)

In the 1990s, this rustic log store located in the town of Hayden Lake was THE spot for bait, lures, rods, shells ~ and every possible gift item for the outdoor sports enthusiast. Charming and cozy with the shop walls covered with vintage outdoor treasures, folks passing through the community on their way to Spokane or all points east usually left with some remembrance of the North Idaho "Panhandle."

I painted my sisters, Peggy, Marilee and myself in full fly-fishing gear ~ from vests to boots ~ in front of the Cast & Blast. This was a bit of a stretch, as our summers spent for decades at Hayden were more about sunbathing, water skiing and cruising around the lake in one of the mahogany Century boats so prevalent there in the 1950s and 1960s.

Sadly for all its customers, a short time after I painted this artwork, the unique shop closed its doors as the owners retired to enjoy all of the activities their mercantile had supported for so many years ~ off to fly fish at some nearby pristine setting.

 

 

Click on the Red Hand graphic here to access "The BIG List" of ALL of the Spokane Collection artwork. Titles are listed alphabetically by group and linked in bold red type to pages throughout this WINTER edition of the webstie.

 

 

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