- About Us
- Local Savings
- Green Editions
- Legal Notices
- Weekly Ads
The first 365: BIMA auction helps celebrate museum’s first anniversary
How do you measure success?
There are a lot of statistical ways to measure the successful impact of the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art at the conclusion of this, its first year of operation.
According to the American Alliance of Museums, BIMA has already welcomed more than 80,000 visitors from more than six different countries.
More than 1,000 visitors participated in last year’s Family Weekend event.
The museum has hosted more than 477 school-aged children on field trips from Bainbridge, Bremerton, Port Ludlow, Port Townsend, Sequim and Silverdale.
Nearly 1,600 people attended the museums’ ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony on June 14 last year.
BIMA Bistro sources eggs and produce from at least seven local farms.
However, perhaps the most important number to keep in mind during the museum’s first anniversary event this weekend is one.
All of that happened in only one year, and museum staffers aren’t shy about assuring regional art lovers that they ain’t seen nothing yet.
“We have added some pieces that were featured in our recent solo exhibitions and have been donated from various collections since — artwork by Barbara Helen Berger, Richard Jesse Watson and Gayle Bard,” said Greg Robinson, BIMA executive director and curator. “It’s exciting to see the reaction from collectors, and gaining their confidence that BIMA is a great place to donate their artistic treasures.”
The museum’s birthday will be marked by a special art auction fundraiser event, a three-day celebration that began Thursday, complete with extensive item catalogue, refreshments and live entertainment.
The auction item preview will be held from 1 to 6 p.m. Friday, June 13. This event is free and open to the public.
Doors open for both the silent and live art auctions at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, June 14, hosted by auctioneer John Ellis. The event will feature musical entertainment by perennial local favorites Paundy, and catering by Ann Pearl with a full hosted bar.
Auction tickets are $250 per person and space is very limited.
Tickets can be purchased, and the item catalog can be viewed, at www.biartmuseum.org.
“This is the first time that BIMA has produced an auction event, so everything is new to us. We’re all borrowing from our past experiences, but having the event at the art museum changes everything,” said BIMA spokeswoman Renate Raymond.
“We’ll have limited seating for the live auction, so we have added [the] Thursday preview event and [the] Friday public open house. We want to make sure we have a good representation of local artists without overburdening the artists financially,” she added. “We have offered a percentage commission on the sale price, which not a lot of artists have opted for. We reached out to several collectors on the island to donate works of art also, and this added some interesting rare items.”
The first year has been a learning experience for BIMA staff, Raymond explained, but the support from the community and island visitors has been consistent.
“We average about 150 visitors per day, which is steady,” she said. “We did see a slight drop in attendance during January, February and early March, [but] this is typical for all museums around the region. We expect a boost again this summer and fall.”
In addition to their permanent collection and a variety of rotating exhibitions, the museum also hosts numerous other arts-related community events including the ongoing smARTfilm screening series, culinary events at BIMA Bistro, continual Eye on Artist lectures and a Member Exhibition Preview event each quarter.
“We built the space for multiple and simultaneous uses and it has proven to be successful for both our programs and for renting to various community groups,” Raymond said. “We’ve discovered we can accommodate large crowds and still enjoy and protect artwork, maintain good crowd flow and the internal temperatures are good.”
With the relocation of Bainbridge Bakers and the upcoming opening of an alehouse nearby, BIMA staffers are excited about the rejuvenation of the area around the museum and possible future collaborations with neighbor businesses, Raymond said.
“We love the idea of multiple food and activities in one location,” she said. “It enlivens the corner and will be beneficial for everyone. This was the original idea behind Island Gateway complex. We’ve all added outdoor seating on the plaza with some umbrella tables. It’s a great place for local and visitors alike.”
“In the long run we hope that BIMA helps to sustain a thriving community and a healthy economy where arts and culture continue to be valued and small businesses can flourish,” Raymond said.
What: Bainbridge Island Museum of Art anniversary fundraiser art auction and party.
When: 5:30 p.m. Saturday, June 14 (free public preview at 1 p.m. Friday, June 13).
Where: BIMA (550 Winslow Way East).
Admission: $250 per person. Tickets available at www.biartmuseum.org.