Conventional Wisdom

Posted by Kate Cushman, Jun 19, 2009 2 comments

Greetings from Seattle.  Here we are in downtown Seattle, Americans for the Arts and a vast contingency of 1,200 artists, arts administrators and advocates has taken over the convention center and four hotels.  Seattle has rolled out the welcome wagon (or should I say monorail). 

The arts scene here continued to thrive despite the moist environment. In fact, it is growing more everyday. Creativity is all around with public art is seemingly visible around every corner.  The fashion is as eclectic and fabulous as the people. Even in our short walk from the hotel to the convention center, we stumbled across street performers of all variety. One claimed to be the out of work actor named, none other than, Denzel Washington.  Spoiler alert: He says he is making the transition from film to stand up comedy…so look out for that coming soon.  We also saw a troubadour (a la Gilmore Girls) playing his bright blue acoustic guitar.  All of that before you even get to the convention!  

Once the convention began, I met an attendee who has launched an endeavor that could be used as a model for others. Dane Johnson is one of the founders of The Burien/  Interim Art Space. The project involves the use of land owned by a developer who could was forced to put the construction of a new high-rise facility on hold due to economic conditions. Johnson and co-founder Kathy Justin recognized that they could utilize the temporarily empty space as the foundation for a new art and community collaboration that hosts newly-installed sculptures for one-year. Should construction continue to be delayed, there is even the possibility that it could be extended even further. For more information, you can visit their website.

With still one more day to go, I can’t wait to see what else the Emerald City has in store for all of us.

2 responses for Conventional Wisdom


Marco Mazzoni says
June 19, 2009 at 7:05 pm

The Burien Interim Art Space (B/IAS) is an excellent example of community supported public art. Dane and Kathy have done an awesome job in sourcing the actual art pieces on the site, fundraising, and keeping a calendar of events focussed on keeping the site in the public's eye. It's very impressive. I hope you can see it while you're in town.

Marco Mazzoni
Fan of B/IAS

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Treacle says
June 20, 2009 at 1:53 am

B/IAS is a rad idea and host some fantastic art.. the opening night event alone blew people's minds! (Fire, oh yes, fire, that gets their attention.)

I hope that the Free Sheep Foundation gets some mention as well, as they began a similar idea a couple years ago, by taking over a soon-to-be demolished motel and turning it over to a whole pile of artists... the result was amazing.

This weekend they have done it again, this time at The Moore theater. Check the URL for local paper The Stranger's write up on the Moore art sitch.


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