Steve Jensen: Seattle Grand Opening

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Long-time Ellensburg artist Jane Orleman moved slowly through the gallery on Saturday afternoon, enjoying a private conversation with Jensen in the gallery lighting casting a sublime sense on what was being discussed. She later posted on her Facebook, "I just saw (Steve's) exhibit for the fourth time ... it speaks to me." Clymer Museum/Gallery curator Matthew Lennon stood back and observed as people moved throughout the gallery, taking in the various carvings on the wall and sculptures in the center of the room, knowing this was a significant body of work by a renowned artist. "Jensen's work tradition and craft eloquently merge to remind us that life is a journey, a shared voyage. The boat, or vessel, speaks of the unknown, risk and necessity," he said. "His work fearlessly and caringly addresses this most mysterious and profound odyssey. His work defies division, validates and celebrates human experiences." Jensen is a graduate of Cornish College of Arts in Seattle. His work is featured throughout Washington and on a national stage.

In 2008, self-funded private astronaut Richard Garriott spent 12 days in space aboard the International Space Station. Among the items he took was a 12-piece art exhibition by 10 artists, including two of Jensen's pieces.

Ghost Ship is a 45-inch by x go-inch piece oil and Italian plaster on wood. Others are made of recycled pallets with a burnt background. Others include personal items of those who have crossed over. He pieces personal history into carvings of life, as well of death. "I was showing in Edison, and they were dredging in the slews and the mud and they came across these gigantic trees," he said. "This piece has been radiocarbon dated, it's 2,300 years old. "This one over here, this is the cutting board from a kitchen, and down below it's part of the deck of a ship." He has a way of bringing to life carvings of art, partly inspired by his upbringing of parents that were born in Norway. It reaches across the tragedy of life's lessons and inspires to make something good from something bad.

Rodney Harwood Rodney Harwood: award-winning journalist and columnist. Lover of golf and the written word. I can be reached at