Tech Specific Strikes a Chord

Isabelle Choinière, MUE DE L’ANGE, 2002, image courtesy of Suyama Space. Artist Fernanda D’Agostino will create an interactive performance installation at the Suyama Space before it closes at the end of 2016.

Our long-running Site Specific program went tech in 2015. We invited artists using all kinds of technological mediums to apply for funding, and encouraged designers, fabricators, engineers, developers, media-producers, and more to see themselves as artists. The deadline was in October, and with a record number of applications, it’s clear that this grant tapped into King County’s emerging fascination with the overlap of art and technology. Many hours of evaluation and discussion from a panel of experts later, we’re proud to announce that 20 projects have been recommended for a total of $150,000 in funding! Here are a few highlights—stay tuned for updates as projects take shape over the coming year:

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Isabelle Choinière, MUE DE L'ANGE, 2002, image courtesy of Suyama Space. Multi-disciplinary artist Fernanda D’Agostino will collaborate with choreographers, sound and video artists to create an interactive environmental performance installation as the final exhibition of the Suyama Space before it closes at the end of 2016
Isabelle Choinière, MUE DE L’ANGE, 2002, image courtesy of Suyama Space. Artist Fernanda D’Agostino will create an interactive performance installation at the Suyama Space before it closes at the end of 2016.

Our long-running Site Specific program went tech in 2015. We invited artists using all kinds of technological mediums to apply for funding, and encouraged designers, fabricators, engineers, developers, media-producers, and more to see themselves as artists. The deadline was in October, and with a record number of applications, it’s clear that this grant tapped into King County’s emerging fascination with the overlap of art and technology. Many hours of evaluation and discussion from a panel of experts later, we’re proud to announce that 20 projects have been recommended for a total of $150,000 in funding! Here are a few highlights—stay tuned for updates as projects take shape over the coming year:

James Coupe, Exercises in Passivity
Exercises in Passivity throws neuroscience, surveillance technology, and sleep states together to explore concepts of privacy, vulnerability, and trust.. The project uses sleep patterns, monitored by observing brain activity and eye movement on EEG equipment, to control a fleet of remote unmanned aerial vehicles—or, drones. Once REM sleep is detected, a drone will take off from a remote location and follow a flight path determined by fluctuations in the data. Where dream patterns are repeated, the drone’s location will be repeated. Where the EEG readings from different subjects coincide, so will the drones’ flightpaths.

Aashish Gadani, Interactive Installation
Founding artists of the new media company Cold Brew Collective will collaborate with a neuroscientist at the Allen Institute to bring Virtual Reality technology and biosignal measurement system—think FitBit—together to create a virtual experience that is created by one’s own body. The artist will measure brain activity and use that data to alter the virtual world a user is experiencing through the “game.” This experiment will utilize the Virtual Reality experience, which traditionally focuses on removing a human from their real setting and body, to further connect users with their own physical realities.

Robb Kunz, Sound/Performance Installation
Using a house or building slated for redevelopment and currently unused as a setting, Kunzt will create an interior sound installation using powerful sound transducers which transform the walls into speakers, as though the walls are literally talking. This work is a sound exhibition and performance based around the rapid gentrification in Seattle and cities around the world. The artist will engage the neighborhood in contributing their thoughts, feelings, and recorded ephemera for inclusion into the sound design. Using custom performance software and hardware he will weave a sound tapestry with 20 to 30 channels of voices and found sounds emanating from the walls, recounting the memories of the neighborhood before falling quiet.

Here is the full list of Tech Specific grant recipients:

Aktionsart, Black Box 3.0
Bellevue Arts Museum, Atoms+Bytes: Redefining Craft in the Digital Age
City of Auburn, Suzanne Tidwell Interactive Ceiling LED Installation and Workshops
James Coupe, Exercises in Passivity
Thomas Deuel, Encephalophone*Ensemble
Jacob Fennell, Places of Solitude
Aashish Gadani, Interactive Installation
Eunice Kim, Nontoxic Print Making at Cedar River Watershed
Robb Kunz, Sound/Performance Installation
LET’S, We
One Reel, Brent Watanabe at Bumbershoot
Barbara Polster, Kodochrome Mirage
Tracy Rector, Clearwater, People of the Salish Sea
Tivon Rice, Drone Photogrammetry
Fritz Rodriguez, Viola Organista
Ann Marie Schneider, Non-native
Tony Stuart, Making Music While the Sun Shines
Suyama Space, Generativity
Third Place Tech, Electric Sky
Velocity Dance, Dance Film Track

Closing Out 2015 on e4c

Still from Tess Martin’s The Whale Story (2012). Image courtesy of the artist.

The next time you find yourself walking, riding, or cycling past the 4Culture offices on Prefontaine Place South, take a minute to enjoy some of the country’s most dynamic digital art, displayed on our street-facing screens. e4c—or, electronic 4Culture—puts filmmakers, animators, and designers in front of the public, daily from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm. After a brief hiatus to complete a technology update and screen reconfiguration, e4c went live again this August with a film by Evertt Beidler.

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Still from Tess Martin's Whale Story (2012). Image courtesy of the artist.
Still from Tess Martin’s The Whale Story (2012). Image courtesy of the artist.

The next time you find yourself walking, riding, or cycling past the 4Culture offices on Prefontaine Place South, take a minute to enjoy some of the country’s most dynamic digital art, displayed on our street-facing screens. e4c—or, electronic 4Culture—puts filmmakers, animators, and designers in front of the public, daily from 7:00 am to 10:00 pm. After a brief hiatus to complete a technology update and screen reconfiguration, e4c went live again this August with a film by Evertt Beidler.

Every month, the show gets more robust as we add new work—make sure to visit us as 2015 comes to a close to experience these riveting artists’ works:

 

Tess Martin: Slices in Time (2014), A Walk in the Woods (2013), The Whale Story (2012), and Hula Hoop (2012)

Launched: October 1, 2015

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/35038113[/vimeo]

Tess Martin is an independent animator who works with cut-outs, ink, paint, sand or objects. She is fascinated by how technique can help tell a story, and the process of creation is often evident in her work. Subjects of her films include the brain, human-animal communication, interpersonal relationships and creepy folk songs.

 

Barbara Robertson: Brain Waves (2015), Accumulation (2015), and Adrift (2012)

Launched: November 5, 2015

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/127848484[/vimeo]

Barbara Robertson is known primarily for her work in experimental printmaking, digital animation and sound installations. Three of her animation works will be included on e4c. Each piece is composed of images created by drawing and painting on paper, or by maps and charts which are scanned and imported into an animation program. Sound for these works were created by Johanna Melamed, a sound designer for theatre as well as art videos and installations.

 

Joseph Gray: Aether’s Reverie: Ver

Launches: December 3, 2015

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/96748402[/vimeo]

Aether’s Reverie: Ver is a variant within a series that explores an algorithmically generated, virtual, sculptural form. Randomness breathes an uncontrolled organic element into the simulacra, while aesthetic choices about lighting, color palettes and camera motion change the sense and mood of the final visualized environment. This video is a recording of the custom software’s output of the Ver version of Aether’s Reverie, aiming for a glowing, misty, vernal and blossoming quality. The original artwork is non-linear and runs infinitely without repeating, being generated in real-time.

 

 

Introducing the 2016 Creative Justice Mentor Artist Cohort

4Culture’s Creative Justice offers an arts-based alternative to incarceration for young people in King County, Washington. Through collaboration with mentor artists, participants consider the root causes of incarceration as they intersect with racism, classism and other oppressions and focus on the positive role youth voice can have in building a more equitable justice system for our region.

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4Culture’s Creative Justice offers an arts-based alternative to incarceration for young people in King County, Washington. Through collaboration with mentor artists, participants consider the root causes of incarceration as they intersect with racism, classism and other oppressions and focus on the positive role youth voice can have in building a more equitable justice system for our region.

Who are these mentor artists? The cohort changes each year based on the recommendations of a panel made up of professional teaching artists, youth and adult community members, and court representatives. This year’s panel recently convened and selected four incredible individuals that will give life to 2016 programming:

 

King Khazm. Photo © Cahn Nguyen
King Khazm. Photo © Cahn Nguyen

Daniel Kogita
Emcee, artist and organizer Daniel Kogita AKA King Khazm advocates for community empowerment through Hip Hop culture. As a bi-racial, disabled person from Seattle’s South end, Khazm’s story of perseverance is a testament to Hip Hop’s founding principles. He is the Executive Director of the non-profit organization, 206 Zulu Nation as well as the indie label, Fresh Chopped Beats/MADK Productions. Khazm’s commitment to nurturing youth has been recognized by communities around the United States and the world, as well as by dignitaries such as Hip Hop’s Godfather, Afrika Bambaataa, former Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, and Governor Jay Inslee.

 

Olisa Enrico. Photo © Khadeidrah Cochran
Olisa Enrico. Photo © Khadeidrah Cochran

Olisa Enrico-Johnson
Olisa “Spyc-E” Enrico-Johnson has been rockin’ the mic for over 20 years. Born into a life of music, she began exploring theatre in 2003. She holds a BFA in Performance and an MFA in Theater Pedagogy from Virginia Commonwealth University. Olisa believes that artists and the arts are vital to the state of culture and society and she hopes to share her soul through performance and teaching. A board member of TheConciliationProject.org, she works to promote open and honest dialogue about racism in America through active and challenging dramatic works. Olisa teaches students of all ages and stages. Her teaching, of any subject, incorporates principles of community and shared responsibility.

 

Jamil Suleman. Photo © Aaron Jacob
Jamil Suleman. Photo © Aaron Jacob

Jamil Suleman
Jamil Suleman is a Hip Hop artist, filmmaker, traveler, and teaching artist. Acclaimed in his field not only as an artist and educator, but as a community organizer, Jamil uses music and entertainment to educate and empower people to become the strongest versions of themselves. A passion for creativity, culture, and sustainability, drives Jamil to work with like-minded individuals in the pursuit of a socially just and ecologically equitable world for future generations.

 

Shontina Vernon. Photo © Joanna Degeneres
Shontina Vernon. Photo © Joanna Degeneres

Shontina Vernon
A returning Creative Justice mentor, Shontina Vernon is a storyteller, singer-songwriter, performer, and teaching artist. Her interdisciplinary work fuses live music, poetic narrative, and multimedia to tell the diverse stories of underrepresented communities. She is a National Performance Network touring artist, a recipient of 4Culture’s Art Projects Grant, and a nominated playwright on the Kilroy’s List. Her solo performance piece titled WANTED centers music in a coming of age tale about forgery, fear, and juvenile justice. Shontina’s work has been produced by Seattle’s ACT Theatre, SoloNova, Hip-Hop Theater Festival, and the Central District Forum for Arts and Ideas in collaboration with the Hansberry Project.

 

Aaron Counts will continue in his role as Lead Engagement Artist and Nikkita Oliver, a 2015 mentor artist, will assume the position of Case Manager.

 

Robb Kunz Receives the 2015 Conductive Garboil Grant

Artist Robb Kunz

4Culture, Artist Trust and the Estate of Su Job have just announced local artist, Robb Kunz as the 2015 recipient of the Conductive Garboil Grant, a yearly, non‐restricted award of $3,000.

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Artist Robb Kunz
Artist Robb Kunz

4Culture, Artist Trust and the Estate of Su Job have just announced local artist, Robb Kunz as the 2015 recipient of the Conductive Garboil Grant, a yearly, non‐restricted award of $3,000.

The grant was developed by Job just before her passing in December 2008 and acknowledges King County artists with a connection to Pioneer Square who “challenge the limits of conductive creative discourse and its effects on our society, pushing the creative act beyond the accepted limits, definitions, or purposes of art while engaging audiences outside the aesthetic industrial complex.” Su also wanted her grant to recognize artists who, “incorporate the creative process into a life practice that diffuses the boundaries between professional activities, social responsibilities, and respect for the people that compose the community we all share.”

Robb Kunz is a prolific sound artist and engineer. He creates immersive, often renegade, sonic installations in public places as a way to inspire people to unplug, embrace a deeper sense of listening and connection, and confront social and political concerns.

Robb Kunz, Andromeda Strained, 2012/13, photo: Spike Mafford.
Robb Kunz, Andromeda Strained, 2012, photo: Spike Mafford.

Kunz’s exploration of artifice, acoustics, architecture and place creates a shared experience for unsuspecting audiences. His “sculptures,” handmade electronics and kinetic elements built from repurposed materials, broadcast elaborate and shifting compositions.

Originally from Oklahoma, Kunz was deeply affected by the powerful tornado and air raid sirens that punctuated his life on a weekly basis. They continue to be his primary influence. Upon moving to Seattle, following the 1999 WTO protests, he became a central member of the Infernal Noise Brigade. He is also a member of Degenerate Art Ensemble and founded the Berlin-based group, Alcalica. He teaches, engineers and produces recordings, creates affordable stereo systems and museum exhibits out of reclaimed and surplus parts, and keeps a studio at INSCAPE.

The public is invited to celebrate Robb Kunz on First Thursday, October 1, 2015, 6-9pm in the TK Lofts’ Vandenbrink Community Room: 115 Prefontaine Place South – Seattle, WA 98104. Award presentation begins at 7pm.

About the Conductive Garboil Selection Process
Prior to her death, Su Job chose the inaugural recipient of the Conductive Garboil Grant, Johnathan Heath Lambe. She also established a group of panelists to select the 2009 recipient, Sheri Brown. Panelists have since nominated their successors, according to Su’s guidelines. Kelly Lyles received the award in 2010, Rio Pacific Studio (Jeff Jacobson & Jen Vertz) in 2011, Paul Rucker in 2012, Christian French in 2013, and Jeppa K. Hall in 2014. The grant is administered on an annual basis by 4Culture and Artist Trust with the assistance of Su Job’s personal representative, Lynn Schirmer. More details may be found at www.garboil.org.

 

Apply to Be a Creative Justice Mentor Artist

Mentor Artist Shontina Vernon, Session 1, 2015. Photo: Tim Aguero

King County teaching artists: lift up the creativity and imagination of youth and help transform the juvenile justice system as a Creative Justice Mentor Artist!

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Mentor Artist Shontina Vernon, Session 1
Mentor Artist Shontina Vernon, Session 1, 2015. Photo: Tim Aguero

King County teaching artists: lift up the creativity and imagination of youth and help transform the juvenile justice system as a Creative Justice Mentor Artist!

4Culture’s Creative Justice is an arts-based alternative to incarceration for court-involved youth in King County. Through collaboration with Mentor Artists, participants consider the root causes of incarceration as they intersect with racism, classism and other oppressions, and focus on the positive role youth voice can have in building a more equitable justice system for the region.

Mentor Artists lead 8-12 week intensive project sessions in a range of disciplines. During these sessions, participants meet twice a week, for two hours to dialogue, create, and share meals. Each session culminates with a youth-produced event in the community.

As we wrap up a transformative pilot year of programming, we are calling for a new cohort of experienced teaching artists to facilitate 2016 project sessions. To learn more, visit our Opportunities page.

Deadline: October 12, 2015, 5:00 pm
Eligibility: Open to professional teaching artists residing in King County, WA
Compensation: $14,000
Apply: 4culture.org/apply

Making Art, for Life

Eunice Kim lives and maintains a studio in the Cascade foothills of Ravensdale, a small town located in Southeast King County. For more than a decade, Kim has been committed to a safer, sustainable approach to printmaking that utilizes nontoxic techniques. She is a recipient of a 2015 4Culture Art Projects grant. Here she shares a little about the making and presentation of her work. 

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Eunice Kim lives and maintains a studio in the Cascade foothills of Ravensdale, a small town located in Southeast King County. For more than a decade, Kim has been committed to a safer, sustainable approach to printmaking that utilizes nontoxic techniques. She is a recipient of a 2015 4Culture Art Projects grant. Here she shares a little about the making and presentation of her work. 

Eunice Kim, Porous #22, collagraph with chine collé, 23.5 x 23.5 inches (image) 28 x 28 inches (paper), 2005. Courtesy of the Artist. Eunice Kim creates printmaking plates via her own nontoxic process.  The artist forms, shapes, and polishes dot marks on her matrices--which she likens to miniature sculptures--entirely by hand manually, and prints them in a solvent-free environment.
Eunice Kim at work in her studio. Courtesy of the Artist. Eunice Kim creates printmaking plates via her own nontoxic process. The artist forms, shapes, and polishes dot marks on her matrices–which she likens to miniature sculptures–entirely by hand manually, and prints them in a solvent-free environment.

My printmaking journey began when, as an undergraduate art student, I pulled my very first print off the press.  I was instantly hooked.  Following many years of complete immersion in the medium, however, I was riddled with various allergies, sensitivities, and health issues as a result of exposure to caustic chemicals and solvents commonly used in traditional printmaking processes.  Making art was making me sick, and I found myself at crossroads: find an alternate way of working or give up printmaking.  The latter, of course, was not an option. I opted to take a five-year hiatus from printmaking to detox and regain health,and to find a way to do printmaking differently.

In early 2004, I began my investigation into a safer, sustainable approach to printmaking that foregoes the use of hazardous mordants and various organic solvents. Through this research in alternative processes, I arrived at a unique dot-based visual language that is specific to my work and intent, and informed by cultural, personal and formative experiences.

This October, I am thrilled to partner with Davidson Galleries with support from a 2015 4Culture Art Projects grant to mount a very special installation of my work produced via nontoxic printmaking techniques. Eunice Kim 2005-2015: Ten Year Survey will showcase nearly 80 select collagraphs from the past decade and present a rare opportunity to view the artworks in one comprehensive setting.  I invite you to come out and join us, take in the show, and perhaps take away a small inspiration for embarking on a safer, sustainable art making journey of your own.

To broaden the impact of this exhibition and ensure availability of my work to the public, two regional institutions–Swedish Medical Center and University of Washington Medical Center, have each received a gift of artwork for acquisition into their permanent art collections.  I can’t think of better or more fitting stewards to entrust my work to, and am honored to be able to support these organizations’ mission to heal and inspire.

Eunice Kim, Tessellation (144-3) #12, collagraph monoprint, 36 x 36 inches, 2012.
Eunice Kim, Tessellation (144-3) #12, collagraph monoprint, 36 x 36 inches, 2012.

Eunice Kim 2005-2015: Ten Year Survey

Opening Reception with the Artist: First Thursday, October 1, 2015, 6-8pm

Exhibition Dates: October 2 – 31, 2015

Gallery Hours: Tues – Sat, 10:00 am – 5:30 pm

Davidson Galleries, Pioneer Square, 313 Occidental Ave. S, Seattle, WA 98104

Free and open to public

 

 

 

Guest Post: Van Wolfe on VanFest 2015, an Open 4Culture Project

Photo by Mitch Barchi

In a region that features dozens of outdoor music festivals every year, Maple Valley’s VanFest is unique. Organized by 21-year-old Van Wolfe, the festival, which took place on August 15, is all about community – it features underground music in an all-ages setting, and profits go to the Maple Valley Food Bank. We helped fund VanFest through our Open 4Culture grant program, which exists to reach people and organizations new to 4Culture, and to fund projects happening outside of Seattle. We checked in with Van to get a recap of VanFest Five:

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Photo by Mitch Barchi
Photo by Mitch Barchi

In a region that features dozens of outdoor music festivals every year, Maple Valley’s VanFest is unique. Organized by 21-year-old Van Wolfe, the festival, which took place on August 15, is all about community – it features underground music in an all-ages setting, and profits go to the Maple Valley Food Bank. We helped fund VanFest through our Open 4Culture grant program, which exists to reach people and organizations new to 4Culture, and to fund projects happening outside of Seattle. We checked in with Van to get a recap of VanFest Five:

VanFest was a resounding success this year! In this fifth year, the vision of bringing the intimacy of DIY music to a large beautiful outdoor environment was realized in full. Being able to bring the community together to see 35 bands on four stages out in the park was an amazing opportunity, and marks the beginning of a full-fledged, year-round effort to bring arts and culture into the forefront of Maple Valley once again.

From the stage that we partnered with KGRG-FM‘s The Post to put on, which featured the best of large melodic rock, to the Tent where we had great hip-hop representation, to the Nicolas Stage, where the band SEACATS performed a talk show instead of a musical set, and everything in between, VanFest showcased a variety of the best music currently being made by and for the young people of the Pacific Northwest. VanFest’s youth access program, providing half price tickets to those in high school or younger, helped make the event more  available to the teenagers of Maple Valley and beyond who might be interested in new and relevant underground music.

All in all, the festival was friendly, fun, affordable, and ran smoothly. 4Culture’s contribution was a major factor in allowing an event like this to run at the level that it needs to, with the quality necessary to really start a movement in the city.

Piper’s Orchard Tours & Call for Volunteers from Artist Shin Yu Pai

Keepsake, part of the HEIRLOOM project by Shin Yu Pai. Courtesy of the Artist

Shin Yu Pai is a poet and photographer whose current work focuses on place-based writing, installation, and public art. She has received two 4Culture Art Projects grants, as well as a Heritage Project Award. She was awarded funding from Art Projects in 2015 for HEIRLOOM, which she shares a bit about with us here.

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Keepsake part of the HEIRLOOM project by Shin Yu Pai. Courtesy of the Artist
Keepsake, part of the HEIRLOOM project by Shin Yu Pai. Courtesy of the Artist

Shin Yu Pai is a poet and photographer whose current work focuses on place-based writing, installation, and public art. She has received two 4Culture Art Projects grants, as well as a Heritage Project Award. She was awarded funding from Art Projects in 2015 for HEIRLOOM, which she shares a bit about with us here.

Throughout this summer, I’ve been working on an ongoing public poetry installation project in the trees of Piper’s Orchard in Carkeek Park. HEIRLOOM is part of Heaven & Earth 7: Propagation, an exhibition of outdoor art curated by Thendara Kida-Gee and David Francis. As part of my project, I am “printing” words on apples using adhesive stencils applied to the fruit that are exposed to the rays of the sun. As apples ripen and the stencils are removed, words are revealed on apples throughout the trees. At the base of the orchard, a sign about the project includes a link to a QR barcode that directs smart phone users to a website where visitors can listen to a recording of a full-length poetic text about Piper’s Orchard set to an ambient soundtrack of sonic recordings made in the orchard throughout the seasons.

My project has faced some challenges in terms of natural and human interventions – ripe apples falling from branches, picking. From day to day, what’s physically on the trees changes – the rapid ripening of apple skins, bug infestations, rot. I never know what I’ll see when I go back into the orchard to work, which has been a very different process than creating for the written page.

This Saturday, I’ll return to the orchard to install the last batch of vinyl stencils for HEIRLOOM. I’d like to invite blog readers to join in the experience. Volunteers will help to install dozens of stencils, but more than that, I’d like to as anyone interested in participating, or seeing HEIRLOOM unfold, to take on the role of “apple stewards” Come back to the orchard every day, or as often as possible, to see the subtle changes in color through the ripening process and capture the experience before the apples fall from the trees or disappear. Send me your photos or post them to Facebook with the hashtags #FriendsofPipersOrchard #shinyupai or #theheirloomproject.

Volunteer work party this Saturday, August 15, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Piper’s Orchard in Carkeek Park, located at 950 NW Carkeek Park Rd. For more information on volunteering, contact City Fruit or Friends of Piper’s Orchard. Or just show up at Piper’s Orchard on Saturday!

Orchard tours and art talk/poetry readings scheduled for Saturday, August 29, 2-3 and 3-4 p.m. Meet at the Environmental Learning Center and wear hiking shoes.

HEIRLOOM is funded with support from Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture and The Awesome Foundation. Recording and production made possible through the Artist Residency Programs at Jack Straw Cultural Center. Find out more.