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The Watercolor Art of Ron Kasprisin





I consider the factories, mills, graineries, dredges, ships and trains of North America as a form of blue collar architecture—working architecture.   They were all designed to perform powerful focused tasks in shaping our cities and landscapes.   We don’t have to agree with all of their tasks to admire their strength and power—as built form—as architecture.   Many of these artifacts are rapidly disappearing from the American scene.   In many ways they represent the non-franchised real cultural forms of North America’s recent past.   I am fascinated with their forms, their unique structures and their rugged beauty.

Ron Kasprisin is a watercolor artist, painting on and about his travels throughout Alaska, Canada, the Pacific Northwest and Italy.   As an architect, community designer and Professor in Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington, Ron has worked in many small coastal communities, capturing in watercolor the drama and power of these working communities and the buildings and equipment so much a part of the history of their regions.  


From the Yukon River to Haines and Ketchikan in Alaska, to Port Alberni and the Sunshine Coast in British Columbia, to the mill and fishing towns of Washington and Oregon, Ron’s community design work has introduced him to communities which are abandoning their resource-based heritages for tourism, cruise ship stopovers, and entertainment-retail complexes.   Capturing the remnants of past cultures through this “working architecture” in watercolor is his driving aspiration.


In Rome, Ron taught design and painting for the University of Washington, focusing on the hill towns of Italy and the neighborhoods of Rome.   The townscapes of Italy are organic forms sculpted by human creativity and energy over thousands of years, thus this series: The Organic Townscapes of Italy..   They are as alive and vibrant as the wonderful Italians who to this day continue to sculpt them.  


Ron’s paintings have been recognized regionally and nationally in juried exhibits, including: Salmagundi Club, 47 Fifth Avenue, NY, Non-Members Annual Exhibit; East Side Association of Fine Arts (ESAFA), Bellevue, WA (Honorable Mention) Barns and Farms Annual Exhibit, Kawaunee, WI; Wyoming Watercolor Society; St. Louis Artists Guild; and the Peninsula Art League, Gig Harbor, WA (Honorable Mention).


Ron lives on Whidbey Island northwest of Seattle, Washington with his yellow Labrador and his red wine grapes.









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