The Factory

When Sue Pivetta found herself alone in the big Old Town house that she and her ex-husband designed eight years ago, she knew that she had to do something to stave off isolation. Fond of people, the artist and founder of the bimonthly 100th Monkey gathering first looked outside her home for company. “I started looking for a studio where I would at least be surrounded by other artists,” she says, “but then I thought, that’s crazy.” Instead, Pivetta decided to bring artists’ studios home to her already art-filled abode, remodeling her lower level and her garden shed to turn them into work spaces, launching the Old Town Art Spaces Web site to promote the cheap rental spaces and, last December, inviting the first of five artists into her home. 

Pivetta and her ex-husband designed their home together. “It was a big art project,” Pivetta says. “We had so much fun with it.”
This front room on the main level of Pivetta’s house used to be a library but has since been transformed into her own studio, which receives afternoon sun through stained glass created by Mandarin Glass owner Florence Welborn. 
A painting by Tacoma artist Sharika Roland reminds Pivetta of her childhood. 
Painter and sculptor Chuck Mullins became Pivetta’s first tenant, quickly filling the space with years’ worth of work and art books. 

The window in the work space occupied by painter Jena Marx provides a clear view of Pivetta’s well-groomed backyard and the former toolshed where jeweler Genne Laakso works on her creations. 

See more in the March 2011 issue   →