Oct. 17, 1950 - Feb. 1, 2013 VASHON ISLAND, WA Mia passed away at her home on Vashon Island, WA at the age of 62. She was born in Oklahoma City to Priscilla and James McEldow-ney. She graduated from Casady School and then received her undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado. In Boulder she studied ceramics and art history. She earned her Master Degrees in Museum Studies and Art History of Textiles from the University of Washington. Her enthusiasm for life, travel, arts and her love of the outdoors led her to make Seattle her home where she lived for many years before moving to Vashon Island in 2004.Mia was well known in the Seattle area for her active involvement and support of the arts. She opened Mia Gallery in Seattle in 1983 where she specialized in self-taught artists also known as folk art or "outsider" art and represented more than 50 artists over 14 years.She was instrumental in the founding of Artist Trust, an organization that directly supports individual artists through grants. She served as its President and then Vice-President for many years. She was honored with their Creative Catalyst Award in 2012. Mia was a founding member of both the Seattle Art Dealer's Association and the Seattle Gallery Exhibitions Guide. Mia also had a special interest in contemporary jewelry and metal arts and was the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Seattle Metals Guild in 2010. Mia was preceded in death by her parents and her cousin Bob Bonnell. She is survived by her husband Bill Mitchell of Vashon Island, WA and her sister Ann McEldowney of Austin, TX. Also surviving her is her step-mother Eloise McEldowney and cousin Patty Cohenour of Oklahoma City, cousins Bill Bonnell of Seattle, WA, Karen Trowbridge of Amelia Island, FL, and John Voorhees of Santa Fe, NM.There will be a Celebration of Mia's life on Sunday, March 3rd, on Vashon Island. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Artist Trust, www.artisttrust.org, or call Pat Bako at 206-467-8734, ext. 18.
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Published in The Oklahoman on Mar. 3, 2013