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Seattle's Public Art
Come along for a series of profiles on local artists whose compelling and inspiring works are seen in public places around Seattle and the Pacific Northwest! The Mayor's Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs commissioned the Seattle's Public Art video tour of the studios and sites where public art is being created, with the stories behind the art provided by the artists themselves in their own words.  More information about this show

There are 22 videos to watch.

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Seattle`s Public Art: Patti Warashina 5/26/2009
Ceramic sculptor Patti Warashina has received several awards including the 2002 Twining Humber Lifetime Achievement Award and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Washington College of Arts and Sciences in 2003.
Seattle`s Public Art: Gloria Bornstein, Neototems Children`s Garden 5/1/2007
Gloria Bornstein, Neototems Children`s Garden. The maze garden is a small corner plaza and transitional space for pedestrians passing from the Science Pavilion and the Children`s Theater at the Seattle Center -- a mixed-use park. The design of the whale garden is derived from a Salish Indian legend of whales swimming beneath the site, connecting the city`s two major waterways. The centerpiece of the garden is a baby whale tail water feature, part of the artist`s sculptural pod of whales installed at the International Fountain area in 1995. Low native plantings, pruned to children`s height for safety, are shaped and colored to resemble tidal pools. The garden is a field for the imagination where children can explore and take risks.
Seattle's Public Art: Fay Jones 1/26/2009
Fay Jones is one of the Northwest`s most recognizable artists. Her imaginative paintings can be seen around the city in public and private collections and in numerous public spaces (e.g., the Westlake Metro Station). Her work has also been featured on posters for city-wide events, such as Bumbershoot and Earshot Jazz. Jones work has been featured in over 100 solo and group exhibitions, and is included in the collections of the Seattle Art Museum, the Portland Art Museum, the Tacoma Art Museum, and the Boise Museum of Art. In 1997, the Boise Museum of Art held a 20-year retrospective on Jones` work.
Seattle's Public Art: Robert Jones 1/19/2009
Robert C. Jones was born in West Hartford, CT, in 1930. He attended the Rhode Island School of Design, receiving a BFA (1953) and an MS (1959). In 1963, Jones moved to Seattle with his wife, painter Fay Jones, to join the faculty of the University of Washington School of Art. He retired in 2001. Jones' large abstract oil paintings often invoke a sense of background landscape, with foreground figures and shapes drawn as simple curves. His canvases are heavily layered. White and black are often primary, with vivid colors providing the impression of light and shade. Robert Jones' work has been included in over 40 solo and group exhibitions, and is part of a number of public and corporate collections. His paintings have been shown at the Tacoma Art Museum, the Bellevue Art Museum, the Museum of Northwest Art, the Seattle Art Museum, and the San Francisco Museum of Art. Jones was the recipient of a 2003/2004 Flintridge Foundation award for west coast artists "whose work demonstrates high artistic merit and a distinctive voice for 20 or more years.
Seattle's Public Art: Barbara Earl Thomas 8/1/2008
As a Seattle based painter and writer Barbara has exhibited artwork at the Seattle Art Museum, The Bellevue Art Museum, and Whatcom County Museum and in museums throughout the U.S. In 2005 she had major solo exhibitions at the Evansville Museum of Arts and Science, Evansville, ID and at the Meadows Museum in Shreveport, LA. Her work is included in a number of prestigious private and public collections such as the Safeco Corporate Collection, the Microsoft Corporate Collection, The City of Seattle One Percent for Art and the Seattle Art Museum permanent collection.
Seattle's Public Art: Jen Dixon 8/1/2008
The theme for the Witness Trees at Bergen Place Park is inspired by the site's rich history. History is fluid like water -- always changing, moving and shifting upon each telling. The telling carves, reveals, and brings forward a strata of individual and collected stories. "Witness" or "bearing" trees were used as reference points for the first U.S. land surveys in 1851. The five cedar posts that previously held up an awning in the original park plan, suggest a vast primordial forest. The artwork symbolically turns the posts back into trees through the installation of five tree sculptures -- Fossil Tree, First Tree, Clam Tree, Immigrant Tree, and New Growth Tree.
Seattle's Public Art: Kay Kirkpatrick 8/1/2008
n the Northwest our eyes turn always to the great forests; they hold our dreams, mark our memories, and provide us sustenance and safe haven. The trees stand together in order and harmony, despite inundation by the chaos of life. Although hiding uncertainty and the unknown in their vastness, they shelter and protect us. The art works in the station look at the surrounding Longfellow Creek Watershed for different perspectives and attempt to create the same sense of sanctuary and peace for both police officers and citizens.
Seattle's Public Art: Mary Ann Peters 8/1/2008
Inspired by her Lebanese heritage, Mary Ann Peters' work investigates a combination of Western aesthetic elements with Arabic influences. This cross-cultural interest gives Peters' work a unique personal vocabulary. Sensuous in their forms and inviting in their reference to a personal territory, Peters' work maps a response to a place either real or imagined. They are abstractions anchored by the possibility that the elements exist. Peters' unique formal vocabulary uses a combination of Arabesque lines, organic shapes and washes of graphite and color. Driven by something largely felt, or initiated by and guided within intuition, these elements combine to give her work a rhythmic spontaneity and complexity.
Seattle's Public Art: Norman Lundin 8/1/2008
Just as one cannot have something long without having something short for comparison, one cannot have an object without a void. It is the void that interests me. With this kind of priority I find that I must use objects that have little or no emotional association. Negative space is fragile if one wants to use it as the primary ''subject matter'' of a painting. Any object depicted that has significant emotional associations will tend to dominate (which is exactly what I don't want to happen). The objects are not there to be described; they are there to explain the space. I don't limit myself all the time, though, and, once in a while, I do use loaded subject matter.
Seattle's Public Art: Stuart Nakamura 8/1/2008
Stuart Nakamuara's "Call and Response," a sculptural installation comprising several elements will greet staff of, and visitors to, fire Station 10 at the entry plaza. A composition including a boulder, inlaid paver and a cut metal screen reflects Fire Station 10's legacy, ties into the international District, and draws attention to the importance of water in live and in the work of the firefighters. A large, custom selected rock, etched with abstract lines evoking water ripples, forms the focal point of the composition. It recalls the original Fire Station 10's stature as the foundation, the footing and the anchor of the firefighting service in Seattle.
Seattle's Public Art: Ted Jonsson 8/1/2008
Artist Ted Jonsson created this artwork for the Seattle Public Utilities' Operations Control Center, answering the City's request for work that would "use water as the primary sculptural element, rather than other sculptural materials." The sculpture consists of two curved, stainless steel pipes, at either end of a pool of water. The pipes mirror one another, creating a figure eight. Water pours out of the top of each pipe and into the pool. The water can be manipulated by two valves, which employees and the public can operate.
Seattle's Public Art: Ashley Thorner, JUMs 11/26/2007
This edition of Seattle's Public Art looks at JUMs by Ashley Thorner. JUMs consists of three sculptures that combine three elements (jellyfish, umbrellas, mushrooms) that relate to the Northwest environment. The sculptures reflect upon the themes of community and diversity, but with an Alice in Wonderland fantastical kind of way. Produced for the SEATTLE CHANNEL by John Forsen with support from the Mayor's Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.
Seattle's Public Art: Gerard Tsutakawa, Urban Peace Circle 11/26/2007
This edition of Seattle's Public Art looks at The Urban Peace Circle by Gerard Tsutakawa. The Urban Peace Circle is the culmination of a gun buy-back program by an organization called Stop The Violence, formed after six young people were shot and killed in the Puget Sound region on weekend in March 1992. The funds raised from the buy-back were used to commission the piece, and several of the reclaimed guns were symbolically entombed in the concrete base of the sculpture. Produced for the SEATTLE CHANNEL by John Forsen with support from the Mayor's Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.
Seattle's Public Art: Kristin Tollefson, WaterLogs + Leaf/Hull 11/26/2007
This edition of Seattle's Public Art looks at WaterLogs + Leaf/Hull by Kristin Tollefson. The work blurs the boundaries between land and water, past and present, nature and our imprint on it. The curving tilted logs reclaimed from the bottom of Lake Union suggest the half hull of a boat, the pilings of an old pier, or perhaps outstretched fingers. The concave steel ellipse alludes both to the trees and to the maritime influences at the site. The work aims to be simultaneously scientific and poetic, minimal and baroque. Produced for the SEATTLE CHANNEL by John Forsen with support from the Mayor's Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.
Seattle's Public Art: Preston Singletary, Raven Crest Hat 11/26/2007
This edition of Seattle's Public Art looks at Raven Crest Hat. The design style of Northwest Coast Native art is used by artist Preston Singletary for his glass designs. Mr. Singletary says: Working with these designs gives me a sense of purpose while paying homage to my family and my ancestors. By researching my family/tribe, I have a stronger foundation by comparing an older understanding of the world and how it works, to my current notion of society. Produced for the SEATTLE CHANNEL by John Forsen with support from the Mayor's Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.
Seattle's Public Art: Perri Lynch, Straight Shot 7/26/2007
Perri Lynch's Straight Shot is a procession of 12 standing stones (one stone has yet to be installed due to park construction), which runs parallel to and marks the calibration baseline. The stones are perfectly aligned over the course of one kilometer in an orderly progression from north to south. In land surveying, as in art, special relationships may be expressed through classic algebraic terms. Between each pair of stones, the distance doubles.
Seattle's Public Art: Monad Graves Elohim, The Unity and Oneness for All 7/19/2007
The Unity and Oneness for All is an installation of sculptural figures spanning the central skylight atrium of the Southeast Seattle Community Health Center. From a primary mother figure, various other smaller creatures are suspended. All have both human and animal characteristics, and are made of artificial fur, cloth, papier-mache, and/or clay.
Seattle's Public Art: Vicki Scuri, West Galer Flyover 7/12/2007
Wave Wall is a pattern created using thick rope and tire treads has been pre-cast onto retaining wall panels. The panels, when turned, repeated and laid in a running bond, form a pattern which simultaneously evokes waves, nautical motifs, and the helix of genetic material. Sail Armatures are four custom light fixture brackets which are attached to standard light poles. Fabricated of white-painted bent steel pipe with cross bracing, the arching attachments resemble sails and marine mammals. Lit from below, they will be visible both day and night and will mark the overpass for those passing below, and will also provide a gateway to Magnolia and Interbay.
Seattle's Public Art: John Young, The Fin Project 7/5/2007
The Fin Project is a major environmentally scaled sculptural installation on the west shore of Lake Washington. Located on the north loop trail of Warren G. Magnuson Park, the Fin Project is built from the recycled diving plane fins from 22 decommissioned 1960's United States Navy attack submarines. The artwork, which resembles a pod of Orca whales, consists of hydrodynamically designed fins, placed at various angles and heights. It traverses a length of 410 feet and a width of 90 feet. Each fin is 10,000 pounds, and the donation has been valued by the U.S. Navy at $625,000.
Seattle's Public Art: Dan Corson, Cedar River Watershed 4/9/2007
Dan Corson was selected in 1994 to work with the architectural and landscape architectural firm Jones and Jones to integrate art into the new facility. Spending time in the watershed and working also with Cedar River Watershed staff, the developed artwork which relates not only to the natural resources of the watershed, but also uses nature and technology to create a musical artwork in the rain drum court.
Seattle's Public Art: Marita Dingus, Children of the Sea 4/9/2007
A mixed-media installation featuring three African-American cherub-like figures that "swim" among seaweed and vines located at The Douglass Truth Library. The artwork was inspired by an existing bas-relief frieze adorning the exterior of the building and the mythical Yoruba momolokun, "children of the sea."
Seattle's Public Art: Paul Sorey, Tree Bench 4/9/2007
Paul Sorey was the first artist selected (from the Public Art Roster) to complete a small park project under the Pro Parks Art Plan. Pratt Park was selected because of its geographic location within the city and its relation to other park sites selected for art projects. Paul used the metaphor of a tree as a gathering of many cultures.





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