Big, Bold Canvases by Ken Kelly bring in the New Year

© 2012 Ken Kelly, Eyes and Ears (detail), 84" x 96", oil on canvas. Photo credit: John Hollingsworth
© 2012 Ken Kelly, Eyes and Ears (detail), 84" x 96", oil on canvas. Photo credit: John Hollingsworth
© 2012 Ken Kelly, Eyes and Ears (detail), 84″ x 96″, oil on canvas. Photo credit: John Hollingsworth

January at Gallery4Culture

Continue Reading ›
© 2012 Ken Kelly, Eyes and Ears (detail), 84" x 96", oil on canvas. Photo credit: John Hollingsworth
© 2012 Ken Kelly, Eyes and Ears (detail), 84″ x 96″, oil on canvas. Photo credit: John Hollingsworth

January at Gallery4Culture

Ken Kelly: untitled
January 8 – 29, 2015
Opening: 2nd Thursday, January 8, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Gallery4Culture is pleased to bring in the New Year with untitled, a solo exhibition by the acclaimed northwest painter Ken Kelly. Untitled presents Kelly’s latest series of work, consisting of five large-scale canvases – bold, abstractions of explosive color and sumptuous texture. These works revisit the more immediate, less cerebral approach to painting that marked Ken Kelly’s early career.

For viewers acquainted with Ken Kelly’s paintings, the palette and surfaces of the new canvases present a significant departure from his more familiar work, where oblique references to low-brow influences (heavy-metal music and tattoos) were fused into dreamy rhythmic compositions of remarkable elegance. The new paintings consist of irregular blocks of robust color set in a vacuous black (or airy grey) surround. If they evoke any reference beyond the joy of emersion into color and texture, Kelly’s abstractions bring to mind folk textiles rooted in the deep South, or (when grounded) a bold built environment. Ken Kelly’s artist statement proffers something akin to a disclaimer,

“These painting don’t really lend themselves to statements. They don’t “reference” anything; they don’t “address issues” of anything. They don’t do much more than occupy space on a wall and, more importantly, in your eyes. I approached them in the beginning with nothing in mind, other than trying to walk back the past several years and return to the kind of immediate, physical and rather loud painting with which I began almost 40 years ago. Now, a couple of years into this series, I realize that they are really about pleasure–the pleasure of looking, of seeing, of making, and getting lost in the hedonistic excess of it all. And that is all.”

About the Artist: Ken Kelly was born in Magnolia, Arkansas in 1955 (he retains a subtle drawl). He studied fine art at the University of Georgia (Athens, GA) and the University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ). Kelly moved to Seattle in the mid-80s. His numerous awards include SAM’s Betty Bowen Award, two Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grants, Seattle Arts Commission Award and Neddy Finalist from the Behnke Foundation. His paintings are included in many public and private collections. Learn more at: http://mekenkelly.com.

National Trust Conference in Savannah

St. John the Baptist Church, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff
St. John the Baptist Church, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff

What Worked, What Needed a Little Work

First, what worked: THE SETTING! Downtown Savannah is gorgeous, evocative, walkable, friendly, has an incredibly intact building stock and fascinating history. Excellent choice National Trust. I had been wanting to go to Savannah forever, and what a better way to see the City than through the lens of a preservation conference.

Continue Reading ›

What Worked, What Needed a Little Work

First, what worked: THE SETTING! Downtown Savannah is gorgeous, evocative, walkable, friendly, has an incredibly intact building stock and fascinating history. Excellent choice National Trust. I had been wanting to go to Savannah forever, and what a better way to see the City than through the lens of a preservation conference.

Davenport House, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff
Davenport House, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff

This is the third time the National Trust Conference has been set in Savannah, and I can see why it continues to go back. For me, town highlights included good food, informative tours and beautiful squares to sit in and watch the world go by. A colleague had heard I was going and recommended Ms. Wilkes, a small local eatery that serves traditional southern family style meals. She said the food was “really good and worth the wait.” She wasn’t kidding, about the food or the wait. After an hour and twenty minutes in line that (I was told) wasn’t nearly as long as usual, I was ready to eat the farm. And good thing, because they nearly prepared all of it. Ten to a table, hot food that just kept coming: fried chicken, greens, corn bread, biscuits, and three different kinds of corn, beets, potatoes and peach cobbler for desert. Definitely worth the wait, but if I go again I will book a closer hotel. “Walking it off” was easier said than done.

Savannah also has several well-preserved house museums in the downtown core open daily for tours. The volunteer docent for the Davenport House was excellent, a history buff with lots of information on early 19th-Century life in Georgia. He also told some really great stories about Madeira parties, both past and present. The restoration of the 1819 Owens-Thomas House was also very impressive. The carriage house contains one of the earliest intact urban slave quarters in the South, including patches of the original haint blue paint the slaves made themselves from crushed minerals, lime and buttermilk. In the basement were the original kitchen and laundry room; rough-hewn, low ceiling work places where the family’s slaves did much of their work. Upstairs, I learned that because paint was so expensive at this time, it was more impressive to paint your walls to look like fake wood and fake marble than having the real thing – even though in a port city, everything was available. How tastes change.

Green-Meldrim House, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff
Green-Meldrim House, Savannah, GA © 2014, 4Culture staff

I really liked the partnership that was created for this conference between the National Trust and SCAD. College properties were hosts for many of the sessions, and at nearly every session I attended there was a student that was presenting their work, or discussing new techniques and technologies being implemented in field. I took a fascinating tech class called “Digital Tools for Heritage Conservation,” where we learned about current 3D laser scanning techniques (equipment and software) and how it is being used to survey delicate or inaccessible structures. In fact, there were many educational training sessions that sounded fascinating. Unfortunately, there seemed to be an increased number of sessions not included in the registration cost this year, versus past conferences.

So, now what needed a little work. Too many educational sessions were only available for an extra fee; the “new” format for conference tracks was unclear and vague; and the website needed to be more informative. For attendees on a budget, choosing what sessions to attend was very difficult this time around, because so many sessions had an additional fee. Not just tours like in the past, but educational sessions as well. Add the cost of registration, flight and hotel stay, and this made for an expensive conference. This year’s conference also attempted to follow a new format, which was mentioned in the printed conference guide and at the TrustLive sessions, but was not apparent anywhere else. While, I commend the Trust for shrinking their printed conference guide and attempting to put more information online, what was online was not helpful when physically in Savannah. I found out how to pick up registration materials because, randomly, I was on a tour with a presenter the day before it started, and she had just gotten an email about registration. The registration process itself was also very wonky, too many emails, and not easy to log back into & navigate.

Overall though, I think the conference was a success. The setting and SCAD partnership made it worth the trip.  For conference organizers, no matter how much information you end up putting online, PLEASE keep a printed guide. I like carrying it around and writing in it.

 

Dakota Gearhart's multidisciplinary environment transforms Gallery4Culture

© 2014 Dakota Gearhart, Main, mixed media, installation detail. Courtesy of the artist
© 2014 Dakota Gearhart, Main, mixed media, installation detail. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Dakota Gearhart
When We Get There
November 6 – December 4, 2014
Opening: 1st Thursday, November 6, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Closing Reception: 1st Thursday, December 4, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Continue Reading ›
© 2014 Dakota Gearhart, Main, mixed media, installation detail. Photo courtesy of the artist.
© 2014 Dakota Gearhart, Main, mixed media, installation detail. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Dakota Gearhart
When We Get There
November 6 – December 4, 2014
Opening: 1st Thursday, November 6, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Closing Reception: 1st Thursday, December 4, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Gallery4Culture welcomes artist Dakota Gearhart in a solo mixed media installation titled, When We Get There, an experiential reflection on the psychology of a cage. Activated by human presence, the dense and constricted environment forces the viewer to confront the delicate line between comfortable and uncomfortable forms of containment. It poses the question: in what ways do individuals build emotional and intellectual limits for themselves and the world around them?

Winding under ceiling beams and around the 4Culture gallery space, hallways made from constructed archways interconnect and guide the viewer through a labyrinthine of repurposed wood, concrete and light. Gearhart’s intervention utterly transforms the space; rooted in play, her art proceeds as if from the perspective of a micro-organism exploring the inside of a glass jar. She is fascinated not only by the power of imagination, but also by the invisible walls that describe it. Where do such boundaries lie? What stories do they tell about our containment, our vulnerability? In an age of absolute knowledge, how far are we willing to go to preserve what is unknowable?

About the Artist: Dakota Gearhart’s art practice focuses on constructing immersive environments that incorporate interdisciplinary elements such as video, sculpture, sound and light. Through the coordination of these varied components, Gearhart aims to give shape to intangible aspects of her world. Her approach to installation involves setting aside conventional forms of organization in favor of more exploratory modes such as fantasy, psychedelia, and dreams. Refuting rational hierarchies, this unorthodox approach allows Gearhart to discover life at the heart of even inorganic matter. Born in Arizona and raised in Florida, Gearhart now lives and works in Seattle. She is a recent graduate of the MFA program at University of Washington School of Art.

Dakota Gearhart has exhibited her work nationally and internationally in such venues as Core Art Space (Denver, CO), Kincainya Gallery (Portland, OR), Vulpes (London), Universitat de Barcelona, and Taiyuan University (China). Her work has been published in Trifecta Magazine, Carpaccio Magazine, and Open to Interpretation Books. She is a recipient of the Juliane Martin Scholarship, the Jane & David Davis Fellowship, and the Cultural Ambassador Scholarship from the Spanish Ministry of Education. Learn more about the artist:  www.DakotaGearhart.com

Gallery4Culture will be closed for the month of December following 1st Thursday.

A Tale of Two Conference Cities

© 2014 The Neon Museum, Las Vegas
© 2014 The Neon Museum, Las Vegas, Photo by 4Culture

Culturally, St. Paul, Minnesota and Las Vegas, Nevada are miles apart. But this fall, each played host to cultural conferences that I attended. The American Association for State & Local History (AASLH) held its annual meeting in St. Paul where keynote speaker Garrison Keiller, whose Prairie Home Companion has entertained public radio listeners for four decades, talked of his strong connection to local history through his family roots.

Continue Reading ›
© 2014 The Neon Museum, Las Vegas
© 2014 The Neon Museum, Las Vegas, Photo by 4Culture

Culturally, St. Paul, Minnesota and Las Vegas, Nevada are miles apart. But this fall, each played host to cultural conferences that I attended. The American Association for State & Local History (AASLH) held its annual meeting in St. Paul where keynote speaker Garrison Keiller, whose Prairie Home Companion has entertained public radio listeners for four decades, talked of his strong connection to local history through his family roots.

At the Western Museums Association (WMA) Conference in Las Vegas, keynoter Mark Hall-Patton, a 35-year museum veteran and visiting expert on History Channel’s Pawn Stars, described the perils of his new celebrity status, and the need to adhere to one’s integrity despite the glare of reality TV. His remarks had special resonance in a city that has recreated its casinos and hotels as faux world landmarks.

St. Paul’s much quieter downtown offered its brand of authentic architectural marvels with the Cathedral of Saint Paul in proximity to the mansions of timber baron Frederick Weyerhaeuser, and railroad tycoon James J. Hill, two giants of industry whose impact on the Pacific Northwest still resounds today.

Although AASLH focused on the history field and WMA on museums in general, the content of the two conferences differed less than their locales. Both offered local tours, sessions on relevant topics, and social events at standout venues. But for me, the opportunities to connect with colleagues from around the country and region were, and always have been, the most rewarding moments. To be able to share common interests, issues, and concerns with peers has often sparked the ideas that have influenced my work as Heritage Lead at 4Culture.

Robert Morris Earthwork honored as part of Landslide 2014

Robert Morris Earthwork, Johnson Pit #30, 1979. Photo © Spike Mafford 2009.
Robert Morris Earthwork, Johnson Pit #30, 1979. Photo © Spike Mafford 2009.
Robert Morris Earthwork, Johnson Pit #30, 1979. Photo © Spike Mafford 20

Cultural Landscape Foundation honors Robert Morris Earthwork as part of Landslide 2014: Art and the Landscape

Continue Reading ›
Robert Morris Earthwork,  Johnson Pit #30, 1979. Photo ©  Spike Mafford 2009.
Robert Morris Earthwork, Johnson Pit #30, 1979. Photo © Spike Mafford 20

Cultural Landscape Foundation honors Robert Morris Earthwork as part of Landslide 2014: Art and the Landscape

Robert Morris’ 1979 land reclamation artwork, Johnson Pit #30 has been recognized by The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) through their Landslide 2014: Art and Landscape program as one of eleven notable land-based artworks worthy of attention, restoration or rescuing.

One of the first publicly funded earthworks in the country, the Robert Morris Earthwork was commissioned as a result of “Earthworks: Land Reclamation as Sculpture”, a symposium held in King County that also resulted in the Mill Creek Canyon Earthwork in Kent, designed by Herbert Bayer. Morris was selected to work on a 3.7-acre site, a sand and gravel pit abandoned in the 1940’s. The creation of this artwork returned the land to active use.

Johnson Pit #30 was funded by a unique consortium of the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Endowment for the Arts, King County Department of Public Works, and the U.S. Bureau of Mines – the last of which had never before funded the creation of a piece of artwork. King County Arts Commission, the forerunner of 4Culture, oversaw its construction. Cleared of all of the undergrowth and trees, the 3.7 acre site was terraced and then planted with rye grass.

At the time of its creation, Johnson Pit #30 looked out on a sparsely developed Kent Valley cultivated for small farming. Its open, contemplative site has since been encroached upon by housing development, with agriculture in the Kent Valley replaced by industrial development.

The earthwork remains one of the most important artworks in the King County Public Art Collection and we are proud of its international importance, as well as the value it has to our own community as a gathering space, public artwork and destination. Visit the site and experience this unique public artwork.

How You Can Help Preserve This Important King County Heritage Site

Restoration: The anticipated cost of restoration $50,000 – $75,000 dollars. King County has allocated $20,000 of this amount, but additional funding is needed. Funding will be used to begin restoration and address vandalism at the site by installing improved signage, lighting and trash receptacles.

Landmark Designation: In order to secure the preservation of the earthwork and to open up possible additional funding sources for its restoration, 4Culture is submitting an application for designation as a King County Landmark, and listing in the National Register of Historic Places. Nomination research and preparation is estimated to be between at $3,000 – $5,000.

4Culture welcomes donations and support for this groundbreaking artwork. Visit the project page to donate and to sign up for email updates on the progress of restoration and landmarking efforts.

To learn about and support the efforts of the Cultural Landscape Foundation and Landslide 2014: Art and the Landscape visit their website.

 

A Maritime Heritage Area for King County

Fisherman's Terminal © 2004 4Culture
Fisherman's Terminal © 2004 4Culture
Fisherman’s Terminal © 2004 4Culture

Celebrating our ties to the sea

This week the King County Council unanimously designated the publicly accessible saltwater shoreline, the Ship Canal, and Lake Union as a “County Maritime Heritage Area.” What is a heritage area, anyway?

Continue Reading ›
Fisherman's Terminal © 2004 4Culture
Fisherman’s Terminal © 2004 4Culture

Celebrating our ties to the sea

This week the King County Council unanimously designated the publicly accessible saltwater shoreline, the Ship Canal, and Lake Union as a “County Maritime Heritage Area.” What is a heritage area, anyway?

The concept is borrowed from the “National Heritage Areas” Program, through which nationally significant landscapes are recognized by Congress. These are NOT national parks, but rather regions that have a living cultural heritage, shaped by distinctive geography. There are 49 of these special places around the country, but so far none in the Pacific Northwest.

Over the last decade, 4Culture has been part of a vocal grass roots effort – stretching from Aberdeen to Gig Harbor to Bellingham – to recognize our maritime culture in this way. After all, we’re known for scenic waterways, bustling waterfronts, dry docks and boat yards, commercial fisheries, centuries-old lighthouses, iconic historic vessels, and a huge fleet of private watercraft, from Native American canoes to corporate yachts.

But so far, the effort to gain recognition at the federal and state level hasn’t been successful. Some people fear that the designation brings regulation, but that’s not the case. Heritage areas are solely for purposes of promoting tourism, preserving a sense of place, and supporting economic development – there is no regulatory angle.

As King County Councilmember Larry Phillips so rightly observes, “We are defined by our waters and shorelines and our interaction with them over time, and that story should be highlighted and celebrated.” Kudos to Councilmember Phillips for putting King County out in front by sponsoring this legislation at the local level!

For more information on the County Maritime Heritage Area, contact the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation.

Mask required!

Dancers at the Century Ballroom, dancing to the Valse Cafe Orchestra. Photo by Dan Lamont.
Dancers at the Century Ballroom, dancing to the Valse Cafe Orchestra. Photo by Dan Lamont.
Dancers at the Century Ballroom, dancing to the Valse Cafe Orchestra. Photo by Dan Lamont.

Onsite Review of Masquerade Ball and Valse Cafe Orchestra

Continue Reading ›
Dancers at the Century Ballroom, dancing to the Valse Cafe Orchestra.  Photo by Dan Lamont.
Dancers at the Century Ballroom, dancing to the Valse Cafe Orchestra. Photo by Dan Lamont.

Onsite Review of Masquerade Ball and Valse Cafe Orchestra

Through the On-Site Review program, 4Culture evaluates arts and heritage organizations who receive Sustained Support funding. On-Site Reviewers attend events produced or presented by recipients and write up short reviews, which give the adjudicating Sustained Support panelists a patron’s-eye-view of each organization.  Each month, the 4Culture blog presents excerpts from these reviews.  This month’s review is by Allison Shirk.

The event, on January 31 at Capitol Hill’s Century Ballroom, was a Masquerade Ball with dancing and cabaret. Music was performed by the Valse Cafe Orchestra—a nine piece ensemble featuring soprano, Lucia Neare—for dancers who were dressed in gowns and costumes. All were required to wear a mask to be admitted. The cabaret performed scenes from Romeo & Juliet in between dances, seeming to appear out of the crowd until the spotlight found the actor or actress (who was wearing a wireless microphone) as the scene unfolded seamlessly. The cafe orchestra performed a variety of music including waltzes, swing tunes, Foxtrots, one steps, polkas, two steps and tangos.

The quality of the production was outstanding. Those in attendance were obviously primarily interested in dancing and seemed to enjoy the range of music, the setting and atmosphere, and the surprise cabaret very much. The performance of the production was matched in quality by the audience dancers who very talented as well.

Two aspects of the performance should be highlighted. First, the orchestra did an outstanding job of increasing access to compositions of bygone eras and cultures…Paris in the thirties. Hapsburg Vienna. Yiddish melancholy. Gypsy romance. Ragtime Manhattan, and dual genres of swing – the sophisticated urbane variety as well as a few Bob Wills barn-burners.

Second, the cabaret was brilliant in its ability to be in the crowd interacting with the audience/dancers and then suddenly increase in volume as the wireless microphone was turned up to blend into a scene from Romeo & Juliet. The transitions were seamless and the Shakespearean prose came to life each scene. Because the scene in the play was also a ball, it was simply magical the way it worked together.

The Century Ballroom was the perfect setting for the production. The stage projected the orchestra quite well, the cabaret was able to use the second floor for its balcony in the scenes, and the audience / dancers were able to dance effortless with little crowding. The venue was founded to promote social dancing and provided 2500 square feet of sprung wood floors.

The audience was primarily comprised of skilled dancers who seemed very much to enjoy the opportunity to dance to great music and enjoy the entertainment. The masks worn by all audience members facilitated switching of dance partners so that all the audience were given an opportunity to dance with a partner. The male to female (or lead to follower) ratio was monitored so that there were plenty of dance partners available for everyone.

The audience/dancers had to stand in line for a bit waiting for the ballroom to open, but event staff were there to entertain those in line and distribute chocolate and poetry during the wait. There were staff members on hand an available to answer questions and to get the audience/dancers inside smoothly once the doors were opened. Most importantly, it was really fun!

You can hear a sample of the Valse Café Orchestra on 4Culture’s Touring Arts Roster.  Their next performance is the Waltz Cafe on Oct 26 at the Century Ballroom.

Les Fleurs du Mâle, Steven Miller in Gallery4Culture

© 2013 Steven Miller, Les Fleurs du Mâle, Archival inkjet print, 42x28. Courtesy of the artist.
© 2013 Steven Miller, Les Fleurs du Mâle, Archival inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist.
© 2013 Steven Miller, Les Fleurs du Mâle, Archival inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist.

September at Gallery4Culture

Continue Reading ›
© 2013 Steven Miller, Les Fleurs du Mâle, Archival inkjet print, 42x28. Courtesy of the artist.
© 2013 Steven Miller, Les Fleurs du Mâle, Archival inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist.

September at Gallery4Culture

Steven Miller:  Les Fleurs du Mâle
September 5-25, 2014
Opening: Friday, September 5, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Gallery Talk: Wednesday, September 17, 5:30 – 6:30

In his September solo exhibition titled Les Fleurs du Mâle, artist Steven Miller presents a cohesive body of photomedia works that pay homage to the French novelist, playwright and political activist Jean Genet. Genet, who lived 1910 through 1986, was openly gay and imprisoned multiple times for petty crimes and indecency. Representing the absolute opposite of what society considered permissible, Jean Genet is celebrated as progenitor of the modern queer movement.

Steven Miller, inspired by Genet’s 1949 book “The Thief’s Journal” and 1950 film, “Un Chant d’Amour”, has, in Les Fleurs du Mâle, created a captivating narrative depicting a Genet-like version of life in prison.

Jean Genet’s core themes of outcast and oppressor, violence and intimacy pervade Miller’s work. Genet’s theme is relevant: the rate of incarceration in the US is astronomical. Oppression of LBGTQ individuals is worldwide as human right falls to the whims of government.

Beyond large-scale photographs, gallery visitors will experience a video projection presenting a grid of individual prison cells. Surveillance has cropped up everywhere today, accelerated by technology, but it has always been a mainstay of prison security. In the late Eighteenth Century, social theorist Jeremy Bentham introduced the Panopticon – a unique design for institutions (especially prisons) where surveillance of the entire population could be carried out by a single watchman. While it’s obvious one individual can’t observe everyone at once, in the Panopticon, prisoners never knew when they were being watched and thus were coerced into feeling as if they were being watched constantly. This “mind over mind” plan was designed to control behavior and discourage deviance among inmates.

Steven Miller’s meticulously staged, dark and moody representations of prison life are a beautiful homage to Jean Genet’s art and life as well as a disquieting reminder that some things never change.

About the Artist: Steven Miller is a Seattle-based artist whose work has been widely published and exhibited. Queer issues and the theme of nonconformity are central to his art practice.

Learn more about Steven’s artwork and visit his photography site.

Summer Drives & Buried Hatchets

Saltwater State Park, Photo by infinitelypie, Flickr, https://www.flickr.com/photos/infinite-pie/
Saltwater State Park, Photo by infinitelypie, Flickr, https://www.flickr.com/photos/infinite-pie/
© courtesy of White River Valley Museum

Destination Maritime Spotlight

Continue Reading ›
© courtesy of White River Valley Museum
© courtesy of White River Valley Museum

Destination Maritime Spotlight

Offering Expansive views of Puget Sound, Marine View Drive connects the waterfront communities of De Moines and Redondo, and meanders past several notable parks. Starting from the north end, Des Moines Beach Park was known for decades as Covenant Beach. Several historic buildings on the park property have recently been restored, and is designated as a City of Des Moines Landmark and is listed on the National Register. For those of you traveling by water, please note the adjacent Des Moines Marina offers guest moorage. For mariners and landlubbers alike there is plenty to see, do & eat nearby.

Heading south through the historic community of Zenith, Saltwater State Park was established in 1926, and many of the park’s amenities were built by the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) in the 1930s. The park is located halfway between Seattle and Tacoma and, interestingly, its  dedication ceremony included an effort to make peace between the two rival cities by burying a symbolic hatchet under a rock in the park. (No, sadly, i don’t know which rock.)

Continuing south, Marine View Drive turns into Woodmont Drive S. Wind your way along 16th Avenue S, and then 272nd Street to Redondo, a waterfront community with a half-mile public boardwalk. Redondo once boasted an amusement park and staking rink. Salty’s Restaurant, a local favorite, displays historic photos in its entryway, for some great views of the area in bygone days…

Check out the drive and more to do in these areas by visiting Map4Culture. Map4Culture includes tourism attractions, public art, museums and lots of local history!

We are continually adding updates to Map4Culture, to provide viewers with *new* and interesting content. Below is one of the recent video clips we hope to add this Fall to select sites on the map, so be sure to check back often.

Not *NEW, NEW but perhaps new to you, is the story of the founding of Des Moines – play video below. (Psst, the full video tells you where certain…um…stuff was buried. No, not the hatchet.)

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/101663422[/vimeo]

 

TK Art of the City Street Fair this Saturday!

TK Art of the City Street Fair poster
TK Art of the City Street Fair poster

Join us in celebrating 10 years in the TK

Continue Reading ›

Join us in celebrating 10 years in the TK

Saturday, August 2
11:00 am – 9:00 pm
4culture hours: 11:00 am – 7:00 pm
Music stage, pop up performance, artist studio open house, food, fun & community

TK Art of the City Street Fair posterThe Tashiro Kaplan Building is celebrating a decade of affordable live/work space for artists, arts-related businesses and 4Culture’s settling into the corner of Yesler Way and Prefontaine Place South. Our offices will be open from 11:00 am- 7:00 pm. Scott Kolbo’s remarkable Gallery4Culture media installation, Our Alley, will be held over for the day. Staff will be on hand to welcome visitors, and butoh-inspired dance performance will move from 4Culture out onto the street.

Prefontaine Place will be closed to traffic for the day. In addition to 4Culture, most of the galleries on the block will keep their doors open. The TK artist lofts will also be open for visitors – meet the artists and see their work. Enjoy music, food trucks and the incredible community that lives and works in our patch of Pioneer Square. Check out the full schedule of events and artists.

Performance at 4Culture

DAIPANbutoh Collective & Friends present Galaanza II: Ethers of a Native Land, directed by Sheri Brown and Joan Laage. Two cycles of performance will begin in 4Culture, move through the space and interact with the street fair. We are really looking forward to the party and hope to see you there.

 

Agua es Vida!

© 2014 Gustavo Martinez, Agua Para Ti. Photo courtesy of the artist.
© 2014 Gustavo Martinez, Agua Para Ti. Photo courtesy of the artist.
© 2014 Gustavo Martinez, Agua Para Ti. Photo courtesy of the artist.

August at Gallery4Culture

Continue Reading ›
© 2014 Gustavo Martinez, Agua Para Ti. Photo courtesy of the artist.
© 2014 Gustavo Martinez, Agua Para Ti. Photo courtesy of the artist.

August at Gallery4Culture

Gustavo Martinez: Agua es Vida!
August 7 – 28, 2014
Opening: 1st Thursday, August 7, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Gallery4Culture welcomes artist Gustavo Martinez in a solo exhibition of figurative works that centers on the elemental theme of water, a substance essential for survival. Agua es Vida is an installation of large-scale clay and mixed media sculptures that tells a very basic story about subsistence, conveying a variety of ways in which water has historically been transported and stored.

Despite progress in many arenas, the struggle among the world’s poorest countries to access to potable water is a present-day reality. After graduate school, Martinez elected to work in Guatemala as a ceramic water filter production consultant. He helped organize the first annual ceramic symposium and sculpture exhibition to raise funds for the donation of ceramic water filters to the rural Guatemalan communities in most need.

Agua es Vida carries on Martinez’s exploration of the theme. The sculpture Agua Para Ti pays tribute to the water carrier – the person who endures great hardship to have access to what is so easily accessible to most of us. Nature is its own force when it comes to moving and storing water; the sculpture Tlaloc pays homage to this. Martinez experienced powerful storms in Guatemala that flooded streets and carved waterways through the unpaved roads. In contrast to this force he also experienced gently flowing water and placid lakes storing water.

Born in Mexico but raised in the United States, Martinez’s relationship between Mexican history and American popular culture has profoundly shaped his experience. Exploring characteristics of the past and present of both cultures, Martinez’s art constantly examines their relationship as he searches for a balance.

About the Artist: Gustavo Martinez was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico and raised in California. He earned a BFA in Spatial Art with a minor in Mexican American studies from San Jose State University, San Jose, CA. He has been involved in the completion of public artworks for the city of San Jose. In 2007, Martinez spent six weeks exploring sacred archaeological sites in southern Mexico and Central America, where he also studied traditional indigenous pottery and pottery techniques at Escuela Valentine Lopez (San Juan de Oriente, Nicaragua). In 2011, Gustavo Martinez earned an MFA degree in the 3D4M program (ceramic / glass / sculpture) at the University of Washington, Seattle. He has worked as a studio assistant at Penland School of Craft and as audio visual coordinator at Pilchuck Glass School. Martinez was awarded the Pilchuck Glass School Minority Scholarship in 2014. He is adjunct art faculty at Green River Community College and a volunteer in the youth arts program at the Tacoma YMCA. Gustavo Martinez is teaching ceramics as a visiting artist at the University of Washington this summer session. Learn more about the artist and his work.