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Bainbridge Island gets a new creative space for artists

A new creative space for artists on Bainbridge Island is opening its doors this weekend. The Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network, or BARN, is designed to inspire people -- a place where artisans can learn and share different crafts. (Photo: KOMO News)

BAINBRIDGE ISLAND, Wash. -- A new creative space for artists on Bainbridge Island is opening its doors this weekend. The Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network, or BARN, is designed to inspire people -- a place where artisans can learn and share different crafts.

"There's so much talent," said weaver Jason Devinney. "I want to absorb as much as possible and share my knowledge."

BARN, at 8890 Three Tree Lane N.E., has 11 studios for artisans that include: book arts, electronic and technical arts, fiber arts, glass arts, jewelry and fine materials, kitchen arts, media arts, printmaking, woodworking and small boat building, and writers. There is also a common space for artisans to gather.

"To have 11 studios of varied crafts with such a high level of expertise - with the studio leads and the participants in each studio - is a very unique opportunity," said woodworker Jeff Williams.

The idea is for artists to teach others about their crafts - both the young and old - and collaborate.

"We can take people that are new to a particular craft that have no experience in it whatsoever, and we can bring them up to speed where they can create and design and build things to their heart's desire," said Williams.

The organization raised more than $8 million for this new space after it outgrew the previous location.

Volunteers have also donated lots of time -- they built more than 400 cabinets throughout the new building.

"It's a community, and it's innovation," said BARN's Executive Director Mark Nichols. "We're stronger together, we're more creative together."

Once the building is open, visitors can take classes and listen to lectures-- there's something there for anyone who wants to work with their hands.

"It's worth the ferry ride, it really is. This is such a unique facility," said Williams.

BARN's grand opening is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June. Volunteers will be doing tours and studio demonstrations.

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