Image: Viewer's Choice 2022: "Beautiful Red, White, and Blue" | Patsy Surh-O'Connell | ink on rice paper | 39"x74"


The Southwest Washington Regional Juried Exhibition serves area artists by providing a high quality exhibition opportunity that promotes the region’s creative identity.

The Southwest Washington Juried Exhibition is organized by The Leonor R. Fuller Gallery at the Kenneth J Minnaert Center for the Arts on the campus of South Puget Sound Community College. Artists working in all media and residing in Clark, Cowlitz, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Pacific, Pierce, Skamania, Thurston, or Wahkiakum counties are invited to submit an entry for consideration.

artist face

Nathan Barnes

Guest Juror


Nathan Barnes was born in Salt Lake City and raised in the Mormon faith. His youth featured frequent religious observances, such as personal and public prayer and worship, intertwined with earnest accounts of ecstatic visions and magical healings, Kolobian cosmology, and folklore. It was an immersive milieu that colored many of the artist’s formative experiences.
Nathan received a BFA in Painting and Drawing from the University of Utah and an MFA in Studio Art from Idaho State University.
Nathan has lived in western Washington since 2013. He is a Professor of Art at Grays Harbor College. He has been twice selected to the Washington State Arts Commission’s public art curator roster. His artwork can be found in a variety of publications, private and public collections, and has been exhibited in solo, group, and juried exhibitions throughout the United States.
Art has been a constant in Nathan’s life. It’s how he has found his way. He often thinks of the titular character in the novel My Name is Asher Lev, whose pursuit of art put him in tension with the religious tradition of his ancestors. But Nathan found a new community in the vast human family that began, so long ago, by painting animals and leaving hand prints on cave walls around the world.

Artist Statement:

I need to find both meaning and pleasure in the work in which I choose to engage. These are two of my core values. Both played a role in my evaluation of this year’s works for consideration. I thank the artists for their work. I would like to acknowledge their committed practice. I hope you are finding what you need in your creative enterprises. In your work I discovered much meaning and pleasure despite the glow of my computer monitor.
My selections for the exhibition emerge from a few rationales -discovered during the process of evaluation- that I can easily articulate. The work inspired me. The work challenged me. The work conversed with other works for consideration.
Some work was chosen without “reason”. Nebulas. Abysses. Comets.
Also, one thing can be two things.
I’d like to thank Sean Barnes and The Leo’s exhibition committee for inviting me to participate in the annual Southwest Washington Juried Exhibition. What a pleasure. I hope the exhibition gives the audience what they need.