4Culture News

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HEY, WE FUNDED THAT!

Nights at Washington Hall: Rough Ground

Photo courtesy of Voices Rising.

Saturday, June 5—9, 7:00 pm
Washington Hall, 153 14th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122
$10—25 on a sliding scale, no one will be turned away for lack of funds

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Saturday, June 5—9, 7:00 pm
Washington Hall, 153 14th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122
$10—25 on a sliding scale, no one will be turned away for lack of funds

Take part in a community workshop-to-performance experience featuring Philadelphia poet Sha’Ifa Mami Watu. Rough Ground is a collection of poems written by Watu—accompanied by music, they are freedom songs. Dancers, vocalists and visual artists are invited to interpret the poems and, in a live performance with the poet, share what they have discovered with an audience. The workshop-to-performance format creates the opportunity for the participating artists, including the poet, to both listen and to be heard. For the audience, the “rough ground” of language and life gains traction through a shared telling of a singular story.

More details can be found on Facebook. Tickets can be purchased online.

string(12) "Lauren Semet"
HEY, WE FUNDED THAT!

Listen: It’s a Sound Show

Constance DeJong, "Pink Roland." Image courtesy of Emily Pothast.

Saturday, June 3, 6:00—11:00 pm
Equinox Studios, 6555 5th Ave S, Seattle, Washington 98108

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Saturday, June 3, 6:00—11:00 pm
Equinox Studios, 6555 5th Ave S, Seattle, Washington 98108

Listen: It’s a Sound Show is an immersive, one-night-only, multimedia art event presenting a dynamic and complex range of works that foreground the act of listening as a key element. The exhibition features stationary artworks and sound installations, live music, spoken word, and other performances that will fill the space in provocative and unpredictable ways.

This event was funded in part by our Tech Specific grant.

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Arts Sustained Support Grows with King County

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Photo courtesy of JHP Cultural Legacy.

4Culture’s Art Sustained Support program—the primary means through which 4Culture provides operational support to arts organizations throughout King County—has slowly but consistently grown over the past 25 years, generally increasing by 10 to 20 organizations every two years. But in the fall of 2016, the program was hit with a flood of new applicants for its 2017-2018 cycle: over 60 new applicants!

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Photo courtesy of JHP Cultural Legacy.

4Culture’s Art Sustained Support program—the primary means through which 4Culture provides operational support to arts organizations throughout King County—has slowly but consistently grown over the past 25 years, generally increasing by 10 to 20 organizations every two years. But in the fall of 2016, the program was hit with a flood of new applicants for its 2017-2018 cycle: over 60 new applicants!

We hope that this increase demonstrates the success of our recent efforts to increase our outreach into communities that have been historically underserved, increasing geographic, ethnic, and other forms of diversity.  For example, the new applicants include Seattle Chinese Chorus, eSe Teatro, From Within Nucleus (a Bharatanatyam troupe in Issaquah), Sundiata African American Cultural Association, 6th Day Dance (a dance company that works with differently abled people), Hands for a Bridge (an arts education program for high school youth), JHP Cultural and Diversity Legacy (an African immigrant cultural organization), Music4Life (an organization that refurbishes used musical instruments and provides them to students), Latino Theatre Project, Eritrean Association in Greater Seattle, Seniors Creating Art, Duvall Foundation for the Arts, Tibetan Association of Washington, the Big Brained Superheroes Club (which works to put the arts into STEAM programs), and many more.

King County’s population growth has been astounding, and one of the qualities that makes King County so attractive is its incredible abundance of cultural—and particularly artistic—activities. 4Culture seeks to ensure that all of the new populations in our community find themselves reflected in our funding.

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March at Gallery4Culture: Deanne Belinoff

Deanne Belinoff. Merging Fields, 2011. Polymer acrylic on paper. 27 x 45 inches.

Deanne Belinoff
Space: Inside/Out
March 2-30, 2017
Opening: Thursday, March 2, 6-8 pm
Artist Talk: Thursday, March 16, 12-1 pm

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Deanne Belinoff
Space: Inside/Out
March 2-30, 2017
Opening: Thursday, March 2, 6-8 pm
Artist Talk: Thursday, March 16, 12-1 pm

Deanne Belinoff’s abstract drawings and paintings express ideas about reality and its underpinnings, the vast rotations of solar systems, and the implicit connection of all things in the universe. Space: Inside/Out features recent work inspired by infinity, gravity, and time, revealing her personal relationship with the cosmos.

Although an awe of the night sky forms the foundation of Belinoff’s practice, intersections with philosophy, dreams, bi-polar mood states, and Vipassana meditation shape its intimate subtext. We live in an ever unfolding universe. But even more hypnotizing, a universe lives within us.

About the Artist: Deanne Belinoff is a recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts Visual Arts Fellowships and several Artist Trust GAP grants. She has also been awarded a Ragdale Foundation Grant, a Blue Mountain Fellowship Residency Grant, and the Joshua Tree National Monument Artist in Residence Grant. Her work is held in major public and private collections including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Sackner Collection, The Peter Norton Collection, the King County Public Art Collection, and the Seattle Public Utilities Portable Works Collection. Belinoff moved her studio from Los Angeles to the Pacific Northwest in 1996. She currently lives and works in Seattle, Washington.

Website: deannebelinoff.com

Up next: Caché (Jackson Baker Ryan, Alex Boeschenstein, and Max Cleary)

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From Our Director: An Update on Access for All

4Culture
Learning at the Burke. Courtesy of the Burke Museum © 2011

Yesterday we learned that the King County Council approved the Access for All ordinance, placing the measure on the August 1, 2017 ballot to seek voter approval of a .1% sales tax increase  to fund arts, heritage and science nonprofit organizations who provide public programs and activities.

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Learning at the Burke. Courtesy of the Burke Museum © 2011

Yesterday we learned that the King County Council approved the Access for All ordinance, placing the measure on the August 1, 2017 ballot to seek voter approval of a .1% sales tax increase  to fund arts, heritage and science nonprofit organizations who provide public programs and activities.

Amendments added to Access for All by King County Council members are intended to achieve better geographic balance in the distribution of funds throughout King County and address equity in all its permutations. No matter the outcome of the public vote, 4Culture, as well as other regional funders, will continue in our commitment to provide grants, services, and opportunities for the artists and cultural organizations that make King County so unique and vibrant.

We are proud to live in a County with such strong support for the cultural sector. It is because of the leadership and vision of Executive Dow Constantine that Access for All became a King County initiative. I want to acknowledge King County Councilmembers Claudia Balducci, Jeanne Kohl-Welles and Joe McDermott for the sponsors of the Access for All and shepherding it through the County’s legislative process. We thank them for their support and service. We also want to thank you, many of whom organized and attended community meetings to better understand Access for All.

You can access the full ordinance here.

Sincerely,
Jim Kelly

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Guest Post: Connecting Youth to Our Heritage

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The YHP 2016 group learning about sketching as an early form of documentation at Mount Rainier National Park.

Jennifer Mortensen is the Preservation Services Coordinator for the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation and serves as the main organizer and point of contact their annual Youth Heritage Project). The Youth Heritage Project is a 5-day, hands-on field school/history camp designed to connect youth to Washington’s historic, cultural, and natural resources.

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The YHP 2016 group learning about sketching as an early form of documentation at Mount Rainier National Park.

Jennifer Mortensen is the Preservation Services Coordinator for the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation and serves as the main organizer and point of contact their annual Youth Heritage Project). The Youth Heritage Project is a 5-day, hands-on field school/history camp designed to connect youth to Washington’s historic, cultural, and natural resources.

How do we make historic preservation a priority for the next generation? Take youth to historic places and help them make a direct connection with the tangible pieces of our collective culture.

In 2012, the Washington Trust launched the Youth Heritage Project (YHP) to help build a statewide ethic that preserves Washington’s historic places while promoting sustainable and economically viable communities. Two long-standing goals for the Washington Trust are to engage both young people and diverse audiences in the important work of historic preservation; YHP does both. Through generous support from the National Park Service, the Washington State Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, and other grantors, the Washington Trust is able to offer YHP free of cost to all participants. It is a priority to ensure that any interested youth of any socioeconomic background can attend.

Groups at YHP 2016 preparing projects to present at the Town Hall event.

Every year YHP is in a different place with a different historic topic. This year, we are excited to dive into the maritime history of Washington State and host YHP in downtown Tacoma, July 11-15, 2017. There is no denying that water and our incredible coastal landscapes have deeply affected Washington’s history, and we are excited to help bring these topics to light for the next generation. The program will be structured around the seven themes in the proposed Washington State National Maritime Heritage Area:

  1. Canoe Cultures
  2. Voyages of Discovery
  3. Trade and Commerce
  4. Water Highways
  5. Protecting Our Shores
  6. Harvest from the Sea
  7. Communities Shaped by Water
Participants at YHP 2017 will have the chance to experience the Commencement, a rehabilitated historic fishing vessel.

YHP participants will have the opportunity to tour various sites in Tacoma and engage hands-on for an in-depth learning experience. Want to take a ride on a historic fishing vessel? Or visit a renovated part of a former “rails to sails” warehouse that once stretched over a mile? Or how about helping with a boat building project at a local woodshop? We are creating a curriculum that will make YHP Tacoma an unforgettable experience for all!

We want students to form their own ideas for what constitutes successful and engaging historic preservation strategies. In addition to all the activities we are planning, participants will be asked to develop their own ideas about why preservation matters and how remembering the past can be a crucial part of a sustainable future. We strive to teach participants that strong communities are the result of deliberate strategies, actions, and choices. YHP helps students become better educated citizens and voters who are conscious of history and its importance to our future.

Application and more info: http://preservewa.org/discoverwashingtonyhp.aspx

For questions contact: Jennifer Mortensen, 206-624-9449, yhp@preservewa.org

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Guest Post: Making the Cut

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Eleanor Boba is a public historian, currently working on Making the Cut: The Locks, the Lakes, and a Century of Change, a collaborative history project commemorating the legacy of the Lake Washington Ship Canal a century after it was completed. Here, Eleanor gives us some insight into how the project has evolved and what’s in store for the community:

One hundred years ago the construction of the Lake Washington Ship Canal forever changed the topography, economy, and environment of Seattle and surrounding communities. The canal provided a navigable connection between several bodies of water, dropped the level of Lake Washington, and dried up the Black River. It made life easier for coal and timber interests in the hinterlands, but affected the livelihoods of many living and working along the lake shores and the canal pathway.

This year we both commemorate and celebrate the achievements that are the Ship Canal and the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks.

Our efforts began with a chance encounter between public historian Mikala Woodward and Susan Connole of the Friends of the Ballard Locks. Putting their heads together they determined that the centennial of the Ship Canal and Locks was an outreach and education opportunity not to be missed.

With the support of 4Culture, Mikala and Susan brought together a team of interested parties. The group includes the Army Corps of Engineers, original builders of the Ship Canal and Locks, Friends of the Ballard Locks, Seattle and King County Archives, and representatives of virtually all historical societies, museums, and maritime organizations touching the ship canal or Lake Washington. We are historians, archivists, librarians, writers, folklorists, and a videographer.

Beginning with monthly meetings in 2015 our group committed to telling the stories of these events in a fair and balanced way, using both traditional and innovative methods during the time period 2016-2017. We adopted the name “Making the Cut” with a corresponding graphic identity. Discover Your Northwest took on responsibility for administering a website and allocating 4Culture seed funding.

Mikala Woodward chalks the line where the waters of Lake Washington used to rise in Southeast Seattle.

Ultimately the project produced a range of exhibits, lectures, tours, publications, and events interpreting the history of the Ship Canal and its effects. In addition, a number of innovative projects testify to the creativity of our heritage community. These included a chalk-line installation illustrating shoreline changes in Southeast Seattle, a scale model of the Roosevelt, the ship that led the celebratory boat parade in 1917, a recreation of that boat parade planned for July 9 of this year, a series of videos, a scavenger hunt, and a song-writing contest resulting in some two dozen new folk songs inspired by the Ship Canal and Locks.

A flowering of research has produced the book Waterway, published by HistoryInk, as well as a number of articles, blog posts, brochures, and interactive maps. Eastside Heritage Center and the Bellevue School District, with HistoryLink.org, have built a K-12 curriculum unit. Researchers have uncovered new resources, including engineering drawings for the building of the Locks, diagrams of condemned mills on Salmon Bay, a family photo album documenting the digging of the canal by the Stilwell Brothers, and a variety of not-yet-digitized personal accounts.

The Large Locks, February 17, 1916, shortly after the first opening. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

No real history is without controversy. Digging into Ship Canal history we tackled controversies ranging from accusations of racism on the part of the “hero” of the ship canal, Hiram M. Chittenden, to the displacement of Native American families and the widespread environmental consequences of Seattle’s big ditch.

At this writing, we feel we can turn to celebration in the summer sun. The Centennial Boat Parade, a period dance, band concerts, song performances, and travelling museums are all planned for the coming months. Find the complete schedule—along with many other historic resources and maps—on our website or follow us on Facebook.

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Goodbye, Mr. Whipple!

Bill Whipple saw a lot in his 19 years as the King County Public Art Collection Preparator. He witnessed the evolution of our organization from the Office of Cultural Resources to 4Culture, worked with three different curators, learned the most expedient way to enter and exit every county facility, and installed, de-installed, cleaned, repaired, re-framed, and schlepped thousands of artworks.

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Bill Whipple saw a lot in his 19 years as the King County Public Art Collection Preparator. He witnessed the evolution of our organization from the Office of Cultural Resources to 4Culture, worked with three different curators, learned the most expedient way to enter and exit every county facility, and installed, de-installed, cleaned, repaired, re-framed, and schlepped thousands of artworks.

Nobody knows the collection as intimately as Bill. He officially retired his post on April 12th and the institutional and cultural memory that left with him is vast.

Bill Whipple. Plunge. 39 x 28 x 8 inches. Man with word tail rocks back and forth.

Bill arrived in Seattle in the fall of 1968. He had just transferred to the University of Washington’s School of Art from Colorado College to study painting. Before that, life was centered in his hometown of Worchester, Massachusetts.

His first art installation job was at the Henry Art Gallery in 1970, after which he began working with Rolon Garner at the Seattle Art Museum, the Frye, and various other regional venues. In 1977, he helped start the art services company, Artech.

I feel lucky to have been in Seattle during those early years when the art community was vibrant but fairly compact, making connections and job possibilities relatively easy.”

Bill’s personal practice has been as prolific as his work experience. Early success in the art market was found at street fairs in the U-District, Fremont, and Bellevue where he exhibited and sold mechanical sculptures, including his infamous “exposer” dolls.

Later, he showed his studio work at And/Or, Traver/Sutton (now Traver Gallery), Rosco Louie, Esther Claypool, Room 104, and many more iconic Seattle galleries.

At Bumbershoot in the early ’80s, Bill won a prize for the best artist collection – an assortment of animal scat!

Bill combines meticulous craftsmanship and a healthy dose of humor in his work. He is a jack of all materials.

My work is fairly obvious—no tortured art speak necessary. The materials are mostly available from your local lumber yard, the tools are low-tech (the most faithful being a cast iron, Atlas jigsaw), the messages are conveyed with common, off-the-shelf symbols, and the movements are usually simple metaphors for the meanings.”

Public commissions include projects done for Seattle, King County (with 11 pieces in our collection), Washington State, and Metro. Next time you are at 5th and Pike, take a look at his Question Mark Clock!

This diptych, part of the King County Public Art Collection, was completed in 1979. The imagery, a depiction of Mount Rainier as a peaceful mountain and as an exploding volcano, was inspired by the tension between Seattle’s relentless urban growth and the eternal beauty of the surrounding mountain landscape.

 

I have become totally obsessed with things being level within a 16th of an inch to my detriment – sort of in the obsessive compulsive category.”

Bill may be hanging up the level professionally, but after retirement he will not be moving to Arizona to play golf. Instead, he will take advantage of the extra time to dedicate to his own art, some house repair, travel, and getting more remote camera wolverine photos.

A wolverine captured by Bill’s remote camera.

He will also have plenty of time to reflect on his work with 4Culture and, as he says, “the good people there who believe in what they do.”

What he won’t miss? A lot of dusting, scrubbing, cleaning muck out of fountains, removing graffiti, moving art in the rain, and most of all, installing art using security hardware.*

We congratulate Bill on this next chapter and wish him well!

*Bill figures that in his work at 4Culture he installed more security hardware that anyone north of San Francisco and west of the Missouri River.

Bill Whipple. Struggle. 14 x 16 x 12 inches. The letters go from rest positions, to upright, to clattering, chaotic movement when activated by the swinging ball.