The Paths of Sculptors: Angela Gregory, James Washington, and Mimi Miles

Lecture with Nancy Penrose, LaVerne Hall, and Mimi Miles

Saturday, April 27, 2019
2:00 – 4:00 pm

Frye Auditorium

This panel discussion, moderated by Frye Art Museum Manager of Public Programs Negarra A. Kudumu, will address the three aspects of a sculptor’s life and work: the value of a young artist finding the perfect mentor; the roles of intuition and inspiration in artistic process and practice; and the challenges of preserving an artist’s legacy.

This event is also a celebration of Nancy L. Penrose’s newly released book A Dream and a Chisel: Louisiana Sculptor Angela Gregory in Paris, 1925-1928. There will be a book signing in the foyer immediately following the discussion.


Nancy L. Penrose is co-author of A Dream and a Chisel: Louisiana Sculptor Angela Gregory in Paris, 1925–1928 (University of South Carolina Press). This newly released memoir, co-written with sculptor Angela Gregory (1903–1990), offers a fresh view of Paris in the 1920s through the eyes of Gregory, a hard-working young American woman intent on fulfilling her dream of studying sculpture in the atelier of prominent French sculptor Antoine Bourdelle (1861–1929). Gregory’s architectural sculpture may be found today on many public buildings in Louisiana and her monuments are in several public spaces. Penrose is an award-winning essayist and served from 1999 to 2014 as writer, editor, and communications coordinator for the University of Washington’s ocean observatory program.

Reverend Dr. LaVerne C. Hall is Executive Director of the Dr. James W. Washington Jr. and Mrs. Janie Rogella Washington Foundation. James Washington (1911–2000) was a celebrated African American sculptor and painter, and a leading member of the Northwest school. Today Washington’s works may be found in many private and public collections, notably the Smithsonian, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Seattle Art Museum. His Seattle studio and home in the Central District are a designated historic landmark and form part of the legacy that the Foundation, led by Dr. Hall, works to preserve and promote. Hall is a published poet and an artist. She holds a Doctor of Ministry from San Francisco Theological Seminary.

Mimi Miles is a ceramic artist with a studio in West Seattle. After earning her B.A. from University of Washington, she went on to teach at various local venues and to produce tile commissions and functional pottery. She currently focuses on figurative sculpture. In 2016 she combined her figurative work with tile in a bas-relief commission of the four Evangelists on the exterior of Christ Our Hope Catholic Church at the Josephinum building in downtown Seattle. These eight-foot-tall tile sculptures were placed in unused alcoves, a process that was the subject of a 2016 Seattle Times article. Miles’ latest project involves developing a technique of sculpting the human form completely on the potter’s wheel.

Mimi Miles. Steady Resolve, 2018. Thrown ceramic altered and assembled. Courtesy of the artist.


Tickets to this program are free of charge, and our seating capacity is limited. Free tickets, limit 2 per person, may be reserved in advance, up to two days before the program. The reserved tickets may be picked up on the day of the program at the desk in the foyer outside the auditorium. There is no late seating, so please arrive at least 15 minutes early. All unclaimed tickets (regardless of reservations) will be released to standby 10 minutes before the program!

Frye Members receive advance notice of programs and performances—become a member today and get the benefit of early registration!


On the day of the program, pre-registered and standby tickets will be available at the desk in the foyer outside the auditorium.

  • Tickets for Members may be picked up beginning one hour before the program.
  • Pre-registered tickets for nonmembers may be picked up beginning 30 minutes before the program.
  • All unclaimed tickets (regardless of reservations) will be released to standby 10 minutes before the program.