Artists-in-residence

Inspiring Action to Mitigate Climate Change through the Arts

Since its founding in 2020, Earth Creative has been seeking direct partnerships with worldwide artists who share a passion for sustainability and the natural beauty of our habitat. Each month, new artists from all disciplines including music, visual arts, theater, literature, storytelling, poetry, film and documentary-making. Earth Creative promotes the works of those AIR and provides assistance for special projects. It seeks to build a global coalition of creative minds speaking as one powerful voice towards a responsible and sustainable stewardship our of environment for today and the next generations.  

Earth Creative is always searching for new passionate talents. If you know of an artist who is determined to save our species from self-destruction, send she or he our way by emailing our founder and Executive Director Christophe Chagnard at christophe@earthcreative.org 

“The arts have an immeasurable power to ignite passion for addressing the enormity and urgency of climate change. It is all too often perceived as someone else’s problem or one so overwhelmingly massive that action is futile. Art is the most potent and far-reaching expression of our humanity and as such, has the capacity to raise awareness and inspire action where science alone comes up short. Earth Creative is a gathering platform for artists from all over the world to share their passion for sustainability and climate justice through their creations.”     Christophe Chagnard, Founder 

Meet the Artists-in-Residence

Nhatt Nichols | Steve Klein | Tom Boatright | Meg Holgate | Sabah Al-Dahaher | J.R. Harris

Nhatt Nichols

Nhatt Nichols grew up on top of a mountain in north-central Washington State. Raised by survivalist parents, she grew up with the ability to watch and observe the world around her as a permanent outsider.

Nichols graduated from The Royal Drawing School in 2011 with an MFA equivalent degree in drawing. After graduating she left London, ending a decade of living abroad to travel in her home country. After living in Brooklyn and Martha’s Vineyard, she settled in Port Townsend, Washington where she is the editorial cartoonist for the Port Townsend Leader.


Steve Klein

Steve Klein’s kiln forming processes provide control of a piece during construction that must be relinquished as the glass is fired in the kiln, then regained through cold working to bring together both forces in a resolved work. His glass sculptures, readily recognized by their shapes and geometric patterns, find their inspiration in natural landscapes, masterworks of modern art, or remembered events and states of mind. Klein lives in La Conner, Washington, where he currently maintains a studio in the middle of several hundred acres of farmland with incredible views of Mt. Baker to the east and Mt. Erie to the west. In the winter, snow geese and trumpeter swans visit the surrounding fields by the thousands. In springtime, daffodil and tulip fields create an amorphous sea of color. Most inspiring though are the skies. “There is no shortage of nature’s inspiration right out my door.” 

Born in Los Angeles in 1946, Klein spent a good part of his adult life in sales and management related to industrial parts and supplies; however, in 1996 at age 50, he enrolled at Pilchuck Glass School in Stanwood, Washington, where he made his first glass sculpture. He has returned to Pilchuck many times since as a teaching assistant for Irene Frolic and Jane Bruce, as an instructor, on staff and as an artist in residence in 2002 and 2005. Klein has taught, studied, and shown his art in exhibitions and workshops throughout the US,  Europe, Australia, China and Taiwan. His sculpture can be found in the collections of the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, North Lands Creative Glass in Lybster, Scotland, and the Museo del Vidrio in La Granja, Spain, The Museum of Scotland, Palm Springs Art Museum, The Art Museum of California in Oakland, and Eretz Israel Museum. The artist has reduced his teaching to private, one-on-one classes as well as residencies with fellow kilnforming artist and friend, Richard Parrish. Klein serves on the board of Pilchuck Glass School and the Anacortes Art Festival. 
After spending his career exploring and establishing a relationship between shape, color and texture, Klein currently pays homage to the world’s vanishing natural beauty. His latest series will be on view in the fall of 2020 in an exhibition with Northwestern painter Meg Holgate at the Museum of Northwest Art, La Conner, Washington. Titled, A Precipitous Edge, the show will explore the consequences of global warming, the current administration’s policies as well as public perception and complacency about climate change.

Says Klein: “I’ve enjoyed a wonderful career, and I feel very strongly now that I must use the voice that I have to express my views and concerns.


Tom Boatright

Tom was compelled to paint in 2008, having had a visionary and transformative experience. He emerged from that incident able to feel the emotion and energy of the world. His paintings convey that energy. The canvas is a platform for the energy to surface. Tom creates artisan paints from raw oils, resins, pigments, and powders. The viscosity of the paint affects the tools Tom uses. The paint is scraped, rolled, sprayed, pulled, and dropped on the canvas. Tom’s technique is very experimental and fluid. His paintings are intended to be experiential. They are an invitation to the imagination – to go beneath the surface. Tom’s art is a process that is embedded in the product. Multiple stages are layered on the canvas. The intention of the painting may be written on the canvas in words or symbols. An initial application of base colors is complimented with an abstract layer of metallic or thick oils. The composition is painted into the existing layers as a base form. In the depth and complexity is an invitation to the audience to see beneath the surface, to access the emotion and raw energy that compelled and created it.

Tom uses his background in technology to create paints for each series. He adds metals and luminescence to raw oils and resins to produce an alchemical phenomenon. Tom creates vivid colors, organic textures, luxurious metals, and light refraction. Tom initially painted a traditional realism but rapidly evolved to a more fluid technique. Experimenting with the viscosity of the paint allowed for a collaborative process. It was raw and refined. The process is intentional and emergent. It was symbolic of life; it has an exquisite beauty because it is free.​ Tom’s innovative method and diverse technique have received national recognition. His paintings are sought after by private collectors around the world and grace hundreds of homes and commercial spaces. 

Tom was compelled to paint in 2008, having had a visionary and transformative experience. He emerged from that incident able to feel the emotion and energy of the world. His paintings convey that energy. The canvas is a platform for the energy to surface.  Tom creates artisan paints from raw oils, resins, pigments, and powders. The viscosity of the paint affects the tools Tom uses. The paint is scraped, rolled, sprayed, pulled, and dropped on the canvas. Tom’s technique is very experimental and fluid. His paintings are intended to be experiential. They are an invitation to the imagination – to go beneath the surface. Tom’s art is a process that is embedded in the product. Multiple stages are layered on the canvas. The intention of the painting may be written on the canvas in words or symbols. An initial application of base colors is complimented with an abstract layer of metallic or thick oils. The composition is painted into the existing layers as a base form. In the depth and complexity is an invitation to the audience to see beneath the surface, to access the emotion and raw energy that compelled and created it.

Tom uses his background in technology to create paints for each series. He adds metals and luminescence to raw oils and resins to produce an alchemical phenomenon. Tom creates vivid colors, organic textures, luxurious metals, and light refraction. Tom initially painted a traditional realism but rapidly evolved to a more fluid technique. Experimenting with the viscosity of the paint allowed for a collaborative process. It was raw and refined. The process is intentional and emergent. It was symbolic of life; it has an exquisite beauty because it is free.

​Tom’s innovative method and diverse technique have received national recognition. His paintings are sought after by private collectors around the world and grace hundreds of homes and commercial spaces. 


Meg Holgate

Meg Holgate sees our natural landscape as universal perfection. Her paintings are moments of beauty simply rendered on canvas with thin veils of muted color and quiet line-form. The framework for her system of visual storytelling is constructed through a lens that continually explores light and dark, stillness and movement, and soft focus and bolder shapes. It is in the physical act of painting and that she finds serenity and the space for infinite potential. Meg’s work reflects her experiences, philosophical beliefs and a lifelong study of art and its practice. She invites you to experience your own voyage through her work. 

Raised in both New York and London during the 60’s, her childhood was spent drawn to the parallel universes of the old masters and the contemporary works of the mid-century modernists. Her work was exhibited in the Coastal Alchemy exhibition at the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Washington (February 2014-2015) and in the Accreted Terrane exhibition at the Museum of Northwest Art in La Conner Washington (October 2014-January 2015.


Sabah Al-Dahaher

Sabah Al-Dhaher was born in Nasriyah, Iraq.  At the age of fifteen he was accepted to The Fine Arts Institute-Basra in Iraq, where he lived and received his training in classical art.  Sabah fled Iraq in 1991 due to his involvement in a failed uprising against the regime of Saddam Hussein at the end of the first Gulf war.  He spent two and a half years in a refugee camp in the desert of Saudi Arabia and in 1993 he came to the USA as a political refugee.  Sabah has been creating and exhibiting his work throughout the Northwest since 1995. Sabah’s story has been chronicled in various media including The New York Times in an article by Timothy Eagen, “My Saraab”, a documentary by Sarna Lapine, and featured in the book “100 Artists of the Northwest”.


J.R. Harris

J.R. has come a long way since his humble beginnings growing up in California. He was one of 17 children raised primarily by his grandmother. After an inspiring conversation with a neighbor when he was 13 years old, J.R had his first epiphany: he could forge his own path to success. He vowed to focus on his studies and excel at basketball, and eventually landed an athletic scholarship.

He first visited the Emerald City in 1981 while competing in a game against Seattle Pacific University. He instantly fell in love with the city and vowed to one day make it his home. He did just that—and embarked on a successful career in Sports Management. His clients included Anthony Peeler, Cliff Robinson, Doug Christie and Jerome Kersey. His frequent travels allowed him to visit art galleries throughout the country and internationally, further deepening his interest in fine art.

In early 2012, J.R. had another epiphany after returning home from his favorite art supply store. He settled onto his couch in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood to watch a Sunday afternoon football game and it was then that the realization hit him: “Now is the time.”  …And Indeed, it was. From that point forward he immersed himself in his love for paint. His stunning abstract pieces, created primarily with acrylic on canvas and wood, have been on display at businesses throughout the Puget Sound including Woodhouse Winery, Thomasville Furniture, and the Alibi Room. In just a few short years, he has built an impressive following. J.R.’s pieces are ideal for high-end galleries, corporate office settings and private homes.

His pieces continue to increase in demand, and he gains great meaning and inspiration from helping others find the piece that they connect with. J.R. engages in charitable causes and has donated a number of his works to high end charity auctions. The Detlef Schrempf Foundation and the Seattle Aquarium have both featured his works at fundraising auctions.