November First Thursday Art Walk

November 5, 2015  |  Art, Event, First Thursday, PI  |  No Comments

by Courtney Crockett

Fall is such a festive occasion in Pioneer Square; the dark of evening sets in early, the crisp air nips and grounded, rusting leaves are brittle beneath your feet. The holiday lights are up along First Ave S and in Occidental Park, and there are more interesting openings and events than one can count. On this 5 November First Thursday Art Walk, included below are only a few that caught my attention.


Piranha Shop

Project Girl Crush Image Courtesy of The Piranha Shop

The Piranha Shop –  1022 First Ave S

Technically this old artist warehouse may not be located in Pioneer Square but situated parallel to Century Link Field, it’s close enough. What is now The Piranha Shop is a fantastic mixed use space offering up entirely eclectic events from the global exhibition of Boxes of Death to a Seattle Seahawks tailgate event to the Sundries record release party.

This November’s Art Walk offers the inaugural issue of Crushed Magazine, the next development of Project Girl Crush. Created by local women, Jen Utley and Genevieve Pierson, their interviews focus on the importance of revealing a woman’s whole story.



Alessandra Maria's Di Minores

Alessandra Maria’s Di Minores Courtesy of Roq la Rue Gallery

Roq la Rue – 532 1st Ave S

Roq La Rue is an internationally known contemporary gallery that played an integral role in the Pop Surrealism art movement and more recently expanding to a broader vision of contemporary art. Nearly every event and opening is a happening and promises art goers nearly as interesting and adventurous as the art on the walls, nearly. During the preceding First Thursday, a guest was accompanied by their pet turkey.

November’s main gallery features Zachari Logan, Grotesques and Alessandra Maria, Di Minores, a body of work that comments on the subject of feminine identity. The loft gallery spotlights Joe Rudko, Broken Images.



#Paper Image Courtesy of Treason Gallery


Treason Gallery – 319 3rd Ave S

A grand welcome to Treason Gallery, brand new to the neighborhood and featuring its first group print exhibition, #PAPER. The show highlights the individuality and uniqueness of each artist while also celebrating prints on paper. Single limited edition print runs are available through November. Stop in and say hello!

Park(ing) Day in the Square

September 19, 2015  |  Art, Event, Families, Fun, Parking  |  No Comments

photo for PARK(ING)

By Beth Berube

If your travels led you through Pioneer Square yesterday, you may have noticed fewer curbed private vehicles and more public open space.

That’s because yesterday was Park(ing) Day. Every third Friday in September, a global make over takes place. Metered parking spaces are transformed into pop up parklets and Pioneer Square had nine of these lovely retreats. One of the parklets had a bubble making lounge. All of them afforded the public an opportunity to sit down and socialize without having to buy a cup of coffee first.

There is a movement to create more open space among urban congestion and Park(ing) Day draws attention to the value of inner city public space.

For more information, visit the Parking Day website.

UXIBAL Pop Up at the Pioneer Collective

September 4, 2015  |  Announcement, Art, Business, Event, Fashion  |  No Comments

by RaNae Vodder

In a previous blog by Sarah Norton we learned about the Pioneer Collective and their innovative business.  Today I stopped by to visit a pop-up store, UXIBAL that has taken residence there for the next week.  It is great!!!  I am a big fan of shoes so inspected all that they had to offer and ended up with a cute pair of Chi Chi flats!  You can also browse a nice selection of sandals,  unique bags, tall and low boots and be treated with excellent care by Britini, the founder of UXIBAL.

The story behind UXIBAL is a good one, it makes me proud to own a pair of their shoes.  Britini currently lives in Guatemala but has strong ties to Seattle so returned to host this pop-up for a week.  She is bringing high quality, hand made products to the neighborhood and is an example of how a small business can change people lives for the greater good.


I highly recommend that you take a break and go meet Britini while she is in town!  If you find something you love, but it doesn’t quite fit,  she offers to have a product tailor made “just right” and have it shipped to you in a couple of weeks.  When was the last time someone offered to do that!?


Out of Sight Seattle

July 29, 2015  |  Art, Event, PI  |  2 comments

by Courtney Crockett

When out walking last night I ventured a look into the upper windows of King Street Station, and I could see tiny human forms still busy transforming the interior space for this weekend’s gigantic art exhibition Out of Sight. In the true spirit of an arts community, King Street Station has been a hive of art and action with volunteers rehabbing and rebuilding the interior 24,000 foot space for the arts collective and its opening event tomorrow.

King Street Station InteriorIndependently run and funded Vital5Productionsfounder Greg Lundgren has been working tirelessly to reform the neglected and sizable third floor of King Street Station into an art exhibition this weekend. The curatorial team includes Kirsten Anderson and Sharon Arnold from Pioneer Square gallery Roq la Rue, and Sierra Stinson to organize and facilitate this alternative arts effort that features 110 Pacific Northwest artists. Out of Sight is running in conjunction with and in response to the more well funded Seattle Art Fair over the same weekend. Born of the notion that many Seattle artists would lack exposure there, Lundgren secured a lease and a key to the historic station. The key appeared prominently on social media more than a month ago.

The opening night celebration kicks off with Derek Erdman spinning records along with special performances by Doug Newman and Mal DeFleur.

Word is Lundgren plans to make this an annual event. Great news for Seattle arts, the underused King Street Station and Pioneer Square. Come out and make it happen.



Thursday 30 July – Preview and Grand Opening Party
Ages 21 and over only, tickets include one re-entry over the weekend
7:00 pm – 11:00 pm

Friday 31 July and Saturday 1 August – $10 Admission
Exhibition Hours 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm with Happy Hour Bar Service from 5 til 8

Sunday 2 August – $10 Admission
Exhibition Hours 10:00 am – 6:00 pm with Swedish Pancake Brunch from 10 til 2


FB Event Page



Volunteer for Art of the City Fest

June 5, 2015  |  Art, Call to Action, Event, Food, Fun, PI  |  No Comments

by Courtney Crockett 

Images Courtesy of Art of the City Fest

Images Courtesy of Art of the City Fest

The Tashiro Kaplan Building (TK Artist Lofts) is busy programming its second annual Art of the City Street Fest slated for Saturday 1 August. The event is an entire day of indoor and outdoor celebration featuring artists, musicians and food from Pioneer Square and Seattle at large.

Last year’s event was a smashing success with nearly 3000 attending the closed-off street at Prefontaine Place S and the TK Artists Lofts interior. This year, Art of the City Fest is asking for a little help from the Pioneer Square community to make the event equally vital and an annual neighborhood happening. Pioneer Square residents can help make this year’s event an even bigger success by making an individual donation and neighborhood businesses can contribute through sponsorship. Volunteers are also needed for security, to act as guides, and as people power to set up and tear down structures.

AotCF valiseLocal creative talent is offering live music, dance, conceptual and visual arts. Food trucks and artisan booths, interactive installations, live painting and street art are also in the mix. In addition, artist studios and galleries are open for viewing inside the TK Lofts. To grasp the size and scope of this event, take a look at the list of participants and performers from last year’s lineup here


Art of the City Street Fest –  Saturday 1 August at Prefonaine Place S – From 11 am to 11 pm – Event is Free and Open to the Public 

AotCF stage

For individual contributions, please donate directly at

To arrange sponsorship or volunteer, please contact Jay Mason, Development and Community Outreach at or call 206.334. 5203.

First Thursday Art Walk at OK Hotel Gallery

June 2, 2015  |  Art, First Thursday, PI  |  No Comments

by Courtney Crockett

With the waterfront redevelopment and the tunnel project, all of the rude construction makes it easy to neglect our neighborhood offerings on Alaskan Way South. That is one reason to go to the OK Hotel Gallery on 4 June First Thursday Art Walk. Another is to support the OK Hotel and its historic relevance to Pioneer Square during the days of yore as a bar and venue for Seattle’s epic music scene. Another reason still is to check out the one-night only exhibition called, Strange Coupling.

Originating in 2002, Strange Coupling is a University of Washington student run organization whose purpose is to generate meaningful connections between professional artists and art students. Students are selected by jury and partnered with a Seattle artist and the pair collaborate over a 2 month period to culminate in a one-night group exhibition. This year marks their twelfth annual event.

Artists participating in Thursday’s opening are Neddy award winning and have previously shown works at Frye Art Museum, Henry Art Gallery and the neighborhood’s own, Greg Kucera Gallery. This year’s artist lineup includes-

Amber Barney + Rodrigo Valenzuela
Christie DeNizio + Gretchen Bennett
Coley Mixan + Gary Hill
Danielle VonLehe + Nat Evans
Ellen Xu + Neal Fryett
Hami Bahadori + Alejandra Salinas & Aeron Bergman
Pattique Shi + Paul Berger
Paul Baughman + Sol Hashemi
Paulo Castillo + Anne Fenton
Søren Nilsson + Matt Offenbacher

The OK Hotel Gallery is located at 212 Alaskan Way South; now a residential property with artist studios open to the public every First Thursday Art Walk from 6-9pm.

More than bats in The Belfry

May 12, 2015  |  Announcement, Art, Business  |  No Comments

By Beth Berube

“Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and howlet’s wing.”

A Macbeth witch seeking essentials for a potion might find at least some of these ingredients arranged methodically on armoire shelves inside this oddball boutique. Allow me to introduce you to The Belfry. It can be found at 309 A 3rd Avenue South, next to the Police Museum. It is a delightfully wacky, yet well-organized shop, showcasing captivating and sometimes creepy collectibles.


Christian and Jessica Harding, owners of The Belfy, opened their store in 2012. They buy many of their objects d’arte from museums in Europe. The acquisitions are either antique (over 100 years old) or vintage (over 20 years old).

Does an iridescent beetle or a bristly bat, entombed in clear resin caskets, suit your fancy? If taxidermy is up your alley, or more precisely — down your hallway, you are in luck. Here you can find an assortment of lifelike animals, or parts of animals, in natural forest poses.

BelfryAntalopeWhen I visited, I saw an antelope mount. Actually, it was the front half of an antelope, with legs and all. It appeared to be bounding through the Police Museum wall, as if the museum director was prodding the poor creature from behind.

Victorian mourning wreathI was drawn to a Victorian Mourning Wreath made of human hair and displayed inside a shadow box. Its woven curls and twisted strands resembled the fine detail of Chantilly lace. Christian explained that wreaths could have been fashioned solely from the hair of the deceased or a composite of the entire family, and this one was made here in Seattle!

If you are a doctor looking for a human skeleton to hang in your office or a medicine man in search of a charming owl skull replica on a chain, a visit here is worth your while. But, no matter “which doctor” you are, quell your curiosity and check out quaint curios in this eccentric emporium and definitely bring the kids. They will love it.

The website for The Belfry is

Singing on the Square

May 8, 2015  |  Alley, Art, Fun, Residents  |  No Comments

By Sarah NortonCherryBlossoms

It’s spring and there’s music in the air — your neighbors are singing this coming Monday, May 11th, at Café Paloma, just across from the Pergola. The program will begin at 7:00 pm with two young pianists, and then moves to a menu of jazz, swing, and latin favorites, sung by Pioneer Square residents and one friend who admits to living in Everett. Two ensemble numbers will round out the program.


The director and vocal coach is Nile Norton, a retired singer and choral conductor who hasn’t figured out what “retired” means. He was the force behind the Pioneer Square Caroling group last winter — and is recruiting more singers for this coming fall.

If you haven’t visited it yet, the Mediterranean menu at Café Paloma is outstanding — you must try Sedat’s Falafel, which is the best in town! The restaurant is usually closed for dinner on Mondays, but Sadat loves to use his stage and venue to entertain, so drinks and food will be available — there’s no cover charge.

Come and join in on the fun!

The New Foundation Seattle

March 5, 2015  |  Art, First Thursday, PI  |  No Comments

by Courtney Crockett

This March First Thursday Art Walk is the perfect time to share discovery of The New Foundation Seattle. Having passed by the location at 312 2nd Ave S on any number of occasions since its opening 6 months ago, I made my way through the unassuming doors to find an organization run by 3 outstanding women, all with serious and longtime commitment to the arts.

NFS Founding DIrector, Yoko Ott and Associate Director, Jessica Powers

TNFS Founding DIrector, Yoko Ott and Associate Director, Jessica Powers

The powerful forces behind non-profit TNFS are its President, Shari Behnke, a longtime art collector and benefactor having introduced the Neddy award program to Cornish College of the Arts and the Brink award in conjunction with the Henry Art Gallery. She is a former board trustee for Artist Trust. The Founding Director, Yoko Ott brings her background as both curator and educator having developed programs and initiatives for Bumbershoot, the Frye, the Hedreen Gallery and Open Satellite, and Associate Director, Jessica Powers, is a founding member of curatorial collective TARL and former curator of Seattle University’s Hedreen Gallery.

Yoko and Jessica acted as my guides and it was refreshing when told that TNFS chose Pioneer Square as their destination. In learning about the space I indulged in the glimmer of nostalgia, briefly transported to the way back days when the Square was a center for Seattle’s arts community. Home to the city’s most prominent galleries and replete with artists living and working out of their slightly illegal and affordable studios.

The New Foundation Seattle emphasizes Seattle-based contemporary artists, it contributes to the contemporary art dialogue as well as nurtures the art community through shared events at Town Hall Seattle, University of Washington Jacob Lawrence Gallery and Henry Art Gallery, and On the Boards. For Pioneer Square, TNFS is a cultural resource center providing to the public free events and services in both the library and presentation rooms.

The Library offers access to regularly updated arts and culture periodicals and trade journals inside a comfortable reading room with plush pillows and chairs. Reading material complimentary to current art programming is available as well as suggested reading relevant to works on display throughout the city including the Seattle Art Museum.

The Presentation Room is a collective laboratory for contemporary art featuring exhibitions, lectures, performances and workshops.

Image Still from HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN? Courtesy of Artists

Image Still from HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN? Courtesy of Artists

Screening Now – 28 March and 5 March First Thursday Art Walk until 8pm. HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN? Artist Christa Bell and YAMS added to the dialogue of “subjective authenticity” in part by withdrawing their operatic video from the Whitney Biennial in 2014. The central question posed, “What happens to the black body when it is haunted by ‘a blackness’ outside of it?

The New Foundation Seattle Presentation Room

The New Foundation Seattle Presentation Room

Literary Event Tuesday 10 March at 7pm. Readings by Poets Chris Nealon and Robert Mittenthal. Introduction by Maged Zaher.

Literary Event Friday 27 March at 7pm. Topic Ecopoetics: An Evening of Poetry with readings by Rob Halpern, Angela Hume, Gillian Osborne, Joan Retallack, Evie Shockley, and Jonathan Skinner.

The New Foundation Seattle is open Thursdays – Saturdays from 11am to 6pm. For more information on programs and events visit

Neoillusion Teaism event tomorrow night

September 25, 2013  |  Art, Event, PI  |  No Comments


Join ArtXchange Gallery and Neodandi for a multi-sensory art experience
Neoillusion Teaism
Thursday, September 26, 2013

At this one-of-a-kind event, audience members will sip artisan, hand processed teas, as Tea Artist, Guitian Li performs a celebration of deliberate living through studied motion and conveyance of the Art of Tea. Set to contemporary music with the backdrop of paintings by Ullie De Osu and William Song, the half-hour performance will begin at 7:30, with a reception afterwards for mingling, tea and snacks.

Doors open at 7pm, Performance begins at 7:30
This event is free to attend and guests are welcome.
Please RSVP to and indicate how many guests in your party.