Loree McKenna tapestry

A tapestry component from Pendleton artist Loree McKenna’s “Inner Journey.”

By the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin

Loree McKenna is perhaps best known in Pendleton as a talented cellist, but in 1970, after graduating from San Francisco State University with a degree in cello performance, she began creating tapestries.

Hand-sewn at first, she later moved on to creating with a sewing machine.

“I am fascinated by and love the multitude of colors and textures of cloth that are available from all over the world,” McKenna said. “I wanted to touch and play with them. That’s why I chose tapestries as a creative medium.”

Twenty-seven of her works will be displayed from April 9-May 29 in the Lorenzen Board Room Gallery at the Pendleton Center for the Arts, 214 N Main St.

Admission is free. To schedule a visit, call 541-310-7413.

McKenna differentiates tapestries from quilts by their purely artistic presence and delicacy. She uses colored yarn and embroidery thread to outline and sew the edges of her collage-like compositions.

The tapestries are from a component of a larger event she calls “Inner Journey” and are not for sale.

A Pendleton resident since 1971, she teaches cello privately and in the schools and plays in area orchestras. She retired in 2019.

More information is at pendletonarts.org.


Annie joined the U-B news staff in 1979 and since 1990 has written Etcetera, a daily community column. She was promoted to a copy editing post in 2007. She edits copy, designs and lays out pages, including the weekly arts and entertainment guide Marquee,