"Homosexual Content" Not Allowed on Vashon Island


So is Vashon like Seattle's Fire Island?
I'm heading to Vashon on Saturday, I will attempt to check these out. There are quite a few activists who support gay rights who are a major part of the community/live on the island, so I am sure there will be some push back!
I'm a little lost. The landlords came into a rented space and took down the art? This should be unlawful entry and theft. I don't get how they did this - or why the art didn't go right back up. What landlord has a right to remove items in a leased space, let alone enter without permission?
@1 - Certainly not. It's quite a bit of farm land, actually. My friend is setting up the first credit union over there. The island is quite liberal and many in the community are very protective of the island culture. I don't think homophobia fits in with the island culture at all.
@3 I don't know, seems like it could be on shaky legal ground to do that unless their lease had some sort of provision in it regarding what was acceptable use of the space. However I don't even know if putting that sort of thing in the lease would even be legal.
Know what I wouldn't allow on Vashon island? A camera incapable of auto-rotating images. Fucking sloppy.
Didn't Dan Savage used to live on Vashon? What was all that about? Does he still own property there? Why did he leave?
@7 Maybe Dan was removed from Vashon for "HOMOSEXUAL CONTENT AND OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE."
@4: I've visited Vashon and have a few friends who live there who agree: Vashon isn't liberal. Indeed, it is the only neighborhood in the "206" where you'll find back-to-back (to back) pickup trucks and mercedes brandishing "McCain Palin" stickers.
@9 - Seriously? I've been going over there for months now with my friend while she prepares for the opening of a credit union and the place has a completely liberal hippie feel to it. One of the board members is from Vashon and is also a human rights activist. I'm not saying you're wrong, it's just not what I've seen while I've been there.
@3, That was my thought as well. A landlord usually cannot do that. Even if they had some provision in the lease on it, they still would likely not be allowed to just come in and remove the art. Thats not how things generally work.

@10 I'd compare it to say Moscow or Sandpoint Idaho. You have a solid contingent of hippy types out there, but its still a pretty conservative place.
It won't let me post on the linked webpage, but somebody should tell her that's not Jesus- it's St. Sebastian.
I had the same questions about how a landlord could come in to a rented space. According to the Two Wall Gallery's website, they aren't renting space, but just hanging art informally in an unused area in a building. (Not that this justifies the landlord's actions.)

"The Two Wall Gallery is an informal collective of a few interested people who coordinate the use of an unclaimed space. The space is unclaimed only because the adjoining businesses allow us to use it for art displays. We continue to run a gallery there solely at their discretion. Two Wall Gallery is not a small business. Much of the time, nothing that is exhibited sells, and the rest of the time we just look for someone to pay for the snacks and drinks. If anything is sold, the purchaser deals directly with the artist. Many of the artists have day jobs and do art only as a hobby. So clearly, we're not in it for the money. There is no mailing address for the gallery, and we have no formal business structure. We have a sign out front, and that's it. "
@ 9: Vashon is one of the most liberal communities in the state. You don't know what you're talking about.
this is a bigger story than just a couple paragraphs in a blog. go out there and Report!
Theres a gaggle of closet Republicans on Vashon. They sit paitently and quietly, awaiting the return of 'the dark one'. Don't be fooled.
@Supreme: I wish.
@iridius THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT! Be sure to stop in and say hello.
@dry dock The space is actually a hallway between multiple locations, think Pike Place Sanitary Market with lots of little shops with one or two main entrances
@Noadi it was a very loose arrangement/agreement, which is very Vashon...
@Jason Petersen as the photographer, I appreciate the criticism. I fixed it. If you have any more additional time on your hands, perhaps you could criticize the actual offense and not the people who are working to get the word out? Maybe? Just a little bit?
@stinkbug and bobbyjoe he's in West Seattle... but don't quote me on that.
@razorclammer it's not as Republican as you'd think, but a lot of rich white folk live here, making it prime breeding grounds for sheep-minded political choices.
@Xyzzy That's really good input. It's true, and the gallery has been like this for several years.
@aardvark I believe Jen has put this story out as fast as she can, and hopefully she will cover it fully in the next edition of the paper.

There will be an article in our Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber newspaper and I have been told it is being picked up by several other art galleries as well.
Wow. Vashon is hardly a republican stronghold. Vashon has the highest percentage (nearly 70%) of registered democrats in the state. The person who removed the art owns the building but lives in Burien.
Gang, the landlord is from Burien. I don't know what the vote was in the 2008 election, but in 2004, it was 84% for Kerry. Vashon is NOT some closeted Republican outpost. I also understand that as soon as the (Burien) landlord took the art down, a shopkeeper across the street put it right back up at her place.

I encourage you all to read this and you'll understand why we're upset. Comments and suggestions on what to do next are welcome.
@razorclammer there's so few tea party people here they all are in the closet and its the gentry note the base population. And i haven't see both or those bumberstickers anywhere on the island.
Having lived on Vashon for 31 years and having arrived as part of the second wave of the hippy invasion, it's amusing to read the stereotypes, myths and simple disinformation that persists about Vashon Island.

Vashon has changed tremendously in the last 15 years; most recently it's slowly being populated by a new landed gentry of gentle-person lavender farmers all-the-while third- and fourth-generation Vashon rednecks continue to hold out on their 10-acre enclaves.

It still tries to cling to a liberal-artsy-craftsy-openhearted-open-minded schtick, while off in the background on a weekend you can hear shooters out at the Sporstmans's Club firing range squeezing off round after round after round...

So you get "Keep Vashon Weird" bumper stickers on Acura SUVs and NRA decals on pickup trucks.

And you get curators who put up shows that contain hardly-earthshaking art, and conservative, narrow minded property owners who, unilaterally and without any prior discussion, remove art *they* find objectionable because it promotes Teh Gay.

It's that "without any discussion or warning" part that's the real issue here: as I understand it, at no time whatsoever have the owners made it clear to anyone that they reserve the right to come into "their" hallway and take down art they (or their friends) personally dislike.

I'm sorry: that's bullshit.
Let's not get too indignant here, I would in a heartbeat take down Step-N-Fetchit styled Obama art from walls that I was providing for free to an arts group. The geezers don't like homos; no big.
HI everyone, I am Jack Strubbe, the curator of the gallery in question here, and neighbor of both artists removed. Removal was legally possible in one regard by the landlord, because the gallery is the open access hallway to a retail cluster. It is space donated for gallery use to me, and I have been asked to leave that position by the landlord, although ironically have not had direct communication from her and family as yet. I know this only through hearsay from one of the merchants in the building. The work is so softly innocuous that Good Merchandise, an island arts and crafts store across the street, has them placed IN HER STORE WINDOWS on the street open to all. And yes, there does exist a strong thread of conservatism on this island in spite of its apparent liberal reputation. Please check the Beachcomber (island weekly) site to read the article about this in a pre-publication format. I will let Jen Graves know directly of more news as it occurs. Thanks to all!
@ Jack, Greg Wessel the old curator of the gallery is talking smack on facebook... Hes a douche.
I've lived on Vashon for over 18 years and it has always had a liberal feel to it. The influx of off-islanders moving to the Island building McMansions has brought with it the associated intolerance and lack of integration into island life.
Wow talk about Bad Reporting, this is a lame article.

I have read others News accounts of this event and it is Censorship because of Homosexual content, Louise Rice stated that as the reason. Totally Legal to do as she pleases she owns the building, and volunteers the space to artists.

I said Totally Legal, not totally right.

What happened to Tolerance?

What happened to Acceptance of others?

Controversial Art is the best art. Art that will opens people's hearts and minds to different types of Love is not bad Art, and she has no right calling herself a friend of art and artists if she feels she can censor what she does not believe in.

What kind of example is she setting for her family, and friends?
no tolerance and no acceptance of anything she does not believe in or agree with.

You do not have to be gay to peacefully accept the differences in people, and accepting differences in people will not make you gay.

Love and Appreciation,
Reverend Adrienne
Look, "reporting" hasn't had anything to do with selling newspapers since the days of William Randolph Hearst. Scream bloody murder and stomp your feet - that's what people want. OK, these guys are worse than most, but even the "real" press isn't a hell of a lot better.