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A large-scale solo exhibition in a museum setting is a great honor for any artist.

Occasionally, though, it is the museum that is privileged to host such an event.

Such is the case this month, said Bainbridge Island Museum of Art executive director and curator Greg Robinson, with the opening of “Heaven On Fire,” a 30-year survey of paintings, prints and newer works in glass and paper by the peerless Barbara Earl Thomas.

“It is a big deal for the museum,” Robinson said.

Thomas — recently called “a legend worth the title” by the Stranger — is a Seattle based-artist and writer perhaps best known as the founding director of the Northwest African American Museum. She has exhibited work at the Seattle Art Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, the Whatcom County Museum and other venues around the country. Her work is also included in a number of prestigious private and public collections, such as the Safeco Corporate Collection and the Microsoft Corporate Collection, among others.

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