By Kris Ekstrand
Kris Ekstrand is a painter and printmaker who works out of her studio in Edison, Washington. Her work has been shown in one-person shows at Smith & Vallee Gallery (Edison), MUSEO (Langley, WA), Jansen Art Center (Lynden, WA), Moses Lake Museum (Moses Lake, WA), Skagit Valley College (Mount Vernon, WA), Roby King Gallery (Bainbridge, WA) and juried shows throughout the region. She holds a BFA from Pacific Lutheran University and lives in Bay View, Washington, with her husband Carl Molesworth, an aviation history writer, and her two Norwich terriers. ~~~ ARTIST STATEMENT My work is strongly rooted in the estuarine edges of the landscape that surrounds me in the Skagit Valley of northwest Washington. Here, fertile farmland meets the saltwater flats and the light, weather and shifting energy creating a dynamic and powerful aesthetic tension. My subject matter ranges from the dikes that edge cultivated farmland, the colors of seasonal crops and the foothills beyond my Edison studio. For the past few years I have also been intrigued with the architecture of found birds’ nests. How can something that appears so fragile be so strong? Do they represent shelter, safety or loss? A nesting bird makes a thousand trips or more out into the world to retrieve construction materials for these diminutive structures. Drawing them has given me a deep respect for their architects and builders.