Treasure hunting

An hour with a stranger can change your life forever.

It was  2004 and we had  just moved  back to Washington from  Austin  Texas  and my youngest daughter and I drove out to  Centralia to visit my sister.

On the way we passed a house that I could not resist  stopping to  check out.


We  pulled up the the house and we  walked up to a gate . There was a  sign that said come on in. We walked  around the yard admiring the sculpture and after about  45 minutes a man appeared  from out of  no where.

Chehalis2 _1242We talked about his work and he got excited and invited us into a  secret  basement underneath is  house.We hesitated for a  second and then we took a  risk  and  followed him  down under the  house . What we saw was  breath taking. Stacks and  stacks of art on tables some stacked all the way to the  ceiling. I  pointed to a  piece on the wall that I  liked and he said  let me get a knife.

He came back with a rather scary looking knife and  proceeded to cut the  art off the wall and then he  handed it to me. I  offered to  pay him for the  piece and he said he did not want money. I argued and he said,” If you give me money I will  just hand it to the  next person who comes through the door.” I told him that would be fine and I  handed him $20.  He then got a  twinkle in his eye and  said to me, ” If  you like would really like to to  do  something  for me I would like some wooden toothpicks . But  don’t  bring them to me bring them to the sculpture  garden and  hide them for me to  find.  I  just love a  treasure hunt. ”  My daughter and I left his place  and heading to the local  store . We  brought back  a few boxes of wooden toothpicks to hide.

rich art 010

I am glad we stopped off at to admire the  Styrofoam  sculptures and had a chance to  explore and  play. We had a lot of fun  hiding those tooth picks!

During our visit Rich Tracy  told us that he does not  create art to make a living  he creates to  live.

I found this photo online  which gives you another view of the  Rich Art sculpture garden. 


RichArt’s Art Yard, July 2012: Rich reported retiring, taking apart all art.