Tori Karpenko

Awarded 2020

I am a father, an artist, a community builder, and a maker of things. I feel deeply connected to the landscape and the people of the Methow Valley, where I have lived for the past twenty years. Concurrently with the evolution of my personal art practice, I have also been deeply involved in the development of the local art community. I have served as a regional ambassador for Artist Trust and the board chairman for Confluence Gallery & Art Center. I continue to collaborate with local arts organizations to advance Twisp as a destination for the arts, including Twisp’s recent designation as a “Creative District” by ArtsWA. For the past nine years I have been employed as the Director of Campus Operations at TwispWorks, whose mission is to increase the economic vitality of the Methow Valley. My primary focus is the transformation of an abandoned 6.4 acre Forest Service complex in to a campus for creative rural business development. I have managed the re-purposing of 17 buildings into flexible spaces that now house over 30 small businesses and artists. As a place-maker, I have helped to establish a central hub for the community to gather and to celebrate our unique, art-centric, rural mountain culture. Most recently, I have begun to develop an Artist Residency program at TwispWorks that will invite artists to our campus to explore the rural-urban dynamic, to exchange cultural ideas and to increase artistic diversity and expression in the Methow Valley.

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