The San Juan Island Artists’ Studio Tour was started in 1991 with the artists intention of opening their studios to the public for a weekend. We, the artists, wanted to show our friends and neighbors our unique lifestyles, our tools of the trade, and the artistic process from the conception of an idea to a finished work of art.
Our Studio Tour in June continues to be a popular event for residents and visitors to the island. We welcome you on this self guided tour. Many studios will be hosting guest artists in their otherwise solitary work spaces. There will be artist demonstrations and door prizes at each studio.
June is a beautiful time on San Juan Island. If you have come to visit be sure to enjoy the historic town of Friday Harbor, stay over night in one of our many lovely lodging facilities, and crisscross the island on our scenic roadways. Just as the island is vibrant with spring, the artists are eager to show off new work created over the winter months, much of which will be on view to the public for the very first time.
Perhaps nothing can keep a good idea down when its time has come. The idea of an island artists studio tour was arrived at independently by several island artists in 1990. They mentioned the idea to each other of opening their studios to the public so that their island friends and neighbors could see what they were up to while hiding away in their studios. They wanted to show the public how the various arts were created and to create an event that was a celebration of the creative spirit. Thus the San Juan Island Artists' Studio Tour was born. Every year the tour is organized by the artists that are participating that year. On the first weekend in June, with the coming of longer days and warmer weather, the artists invite you to visit their private spaces to see artwork created over the quiet winter season. The idea of sharing the artistic process and to inspire others was central to the original concept of the tour, and that continues to make the tour the popular event that it is today.