When peering into the SAM Gallery window display on 3rd and University, one gets a sense of witnessing a moment suspended in time. There are stacks of reference books covered in powdered graphite and ink placed amongst graphics of fallen leaves scattered under hand colored brick walls. It looks as if they’ve been lying around for years, left behind and somehow preserved from deteriorating. The installation is titled BOOK of SHADOWS: A Hidden Hagiography of New Mystics, by artists Dan Hawkins, No Touching Ground and NKO.
Saturday, February 11
Celebrate the opening of Gauguin and Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise at SAM with Tahitian dancing and drumming brought to you by Te Fare O Tamatoa and their peformance group Te’a rama! Be prepared to experience a Marquesan haka (a Polynesian traditional welcome) followed by additional performances.
Contours will be onsite providing temporary Polynesian-inspired tatoos to kids, teens and adults.
- Polynesian temporary tattoos, 11 am–3 pm
- Te Fare O Tamatoa Presents: Tahitian Drumming and Dancing by the Te’a rama performance group
–Haka (welcome and call to performance) in Brotman Forum at 11:30 am & 3 pm
-Performance in Plestcheeff Auditorium at noon & 3:30 pm
Te’a rama in action!
Sunday, February 12
The excitement surrounding the arrival of Gauguin and Polynesia to SAM, the only U.S. stop, continues with a special Tahitian concert performance by Halau Hula O Napualani & Kohala. Get a Polynesian-inspired temporary tattoo from Contours, who will be onsite from 11 am–3 pm.
- Polynesian temporary tattoos, 11 am–3 pm
- Halau Hula O Napualani and Koahala (Polynesian dance performance), in Brotman Forum at 11:30 am & 1:30 pm
And be sure to check out the traditional Polynesian welcome flower arrangement in Sarkowsky Hall.
All of these events on February 2 are free and open to the public. For more information, please visit SAM’s website at seattleartmuseum.org.
Ladies Musical Club Recital
Pletscheeff Auditorium, SAM Downtown
Seattle’s oldest arts organization presents an afternoon of classical music performed by club members and special guests. This month’s performance features Selina Chu (piano), Karin McCullough (piano) and Catherine Treadgold (mezzo-soprano).
KOMO News Meetup
Brotman Forum, SAM Downtown
Join KOMO News at SAM Downtown for drinks, music, prize giveaways and great art! Admission to SAM’s Collection Galleries will be free, including one of our newest exhibitions, Theaster Gates: The Listening Room. Incorporating a vast array of disciplines, Theaster Gates’ solo exhibition at SAM will transform the gallery with cultural ephemera. Coupled with objects and architectural elements that elicit stories through every day practices, the backbone of the installation will be a collection of vinyl records that reflect cultural and social currents of the 60s, 70s and 80s. Every First Thursday, a DJ will be spinning and a volunteer archivist will be recording those mixes.
Theaster Gates: To Play a People’s Music
Kane Hall 120, University of Washington Seattle Campus
The Seattle Art Museum and the University of Washington’s College of Built Environments are bringing Theaster Gates back to Seattle for a free lecture. Gates provided the following description for his talk: “This night, we will play and sing songs. We will reflect and breathe together. We will remember why sentiment was a necessary political tactic. The nostalgic, the desperate and the mundane worked perfectly for love, revolution and trans-national belief accumulation. It is melodic word, not just the spoken, that gives soul-power. Sound all alone has done so much. I want to be funk and gospel and soul. I am curious about yourselves and how the podium might move us all if we ride together. 2 turntables and a mic recomposed. Maybe.”
Food and Faith in Japan Lecture Series
Modernizing Mochi: From Divine Mirror to Frozen Treat
Stimson Auditorium, Seattle Asian Art Museum
Independent anthropologist and artist Julia Harrision will look at the many forms, flavors, and cultural roles assigned to mochi, a traditional Japanese food made of pounded rice, and the technological, historical, and religious factors that influence how mochi is made and consumed.
1. ADJUST TO ISLAND TIME
Starting February 9, SAM Downtown has extended open hours to make it easy to see Gauguin & Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise.
Tuesday–Sunday 10 am–5 pm
Thursday & Friday 10 am–9 pm
First Thursdays (March 1 & April 5) 10 am-midnight
(except Presidents Day & select Members-Only Mondays)
After the exhibition closes on April 29, the museum will resume Wednesday–Sunday open hours.
Want to avoid crowds?
It’s likely the museum will be busiest during First Thursdays (when ticket prices are reduced) and on Saturdays and Sundays. For a quieter experience, we encourage you to visit during the week after 2 pm (school groups tend to visit between 10 am and 2 pm), or on Thursday or Friday evenings.
2. BEAT THE LINES, BUY ONLINE
Online ticketing, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
- Guaranteed admission for your reserved day and time.
- No waiting in line. Just print your online ticket at home or show us on your phone as you enter and you can go immediately to the special exhibition galleries.
- No online ticketing fee.
Okay, so that’s only three, but you have to admit, they’re pretty good!
Sold out online? Don’t worry!
If your preferred time is already sold out online, you may still be admitted by showing up in person. A limited number of day-of tickets will be available— first-come, first-served—at the Ticketing Desk.
Visit seattleartmuseum.org/gauguin to check ticket availability. SAM’s Facebook page and Twitter feed will also have updates about tickets, lines and other exhibition news.
3. SAVE SAVE SAVE
Regular-priced Gauguin & Polynesia tickets include entrance to the SAM Collection Galleries Downtown and FREE admission to the Seattle Asian Art Museum within one week. There are no extra fees for online orders.
SAM Members, Children (12 & under) FREE!
Seniors (62+), Military (with ID) $20
Students (with ID), Teens (13–17) $18
Visit First Thursdays and Fridays & Save
Admission price discounts on First Thursdays and First Fridays will be available during Gauguin & Polynesia. Visit seattleartmuseum.org/gauguin for details.
Avoid the Crowds & Save
On Thursday and Friday nights, 5–9 pm, ticket prices are reduced by $3 for everyone and lines are likely to be shorter.
Bring your Friends & Save
Receive discounted ticket prices and group benefits when you purchase 10 or more tickets in advance. For more information call 206.344.5260 or email email@example.com.
Park at 3rd and Stewart Garage & Save
Discount parking is available at the Third and Stewart Parking Garage—entrance is located on Stewart between 2nd and 3rd Avenues. Ask for a voucher at the SAM Ticketing Desk and park for up to four hours for only $6.
4. GO! GAUGUIN & SAVE MORE
When you buy your tickets online, you’ll get a link in your confirmation email leading to an online coupon good for great discounts from participating retailers, restaurants, and art and cultural institutions. It’s a city-wide celebration of Gauguin & Polynesia which means fun offers and super savings for you.
5. ARRIVE EARLY AND STAY AS LONG AS YOU LIKE
Gauguin & Polynesia is in the Simonyi Special Exhibition Galleries on the Fourth Floor. Please arrive 10–15 minutes before the time listed on your ticket. You must enter the galleries no more than 20 minutes after your specified time, or your reservation will be released. There is no re-entry into Gauguin & Polynesia, but once admitted you may stay as long as you wish.
You are welcome to explore the 35 international SAM Collection Galleries before or after your visit to see Gauguin & Polynesia. And, remember to bring your special exhibition ticket within one week to the Seattle Asian Art Museum and enjoy FREE admission to our recognized Asian art collection.
6. DOWNLOAD FOR FREE
The Seattle Art Museum and Acoustiguide have developed an insightful audio guide with commentary about selected works in the exhibition. Download the podcast or iPhone/Android application to your digital device at seattleartmuseum.org/gauguin prior to your visit to the museum.
Don’t have your own digital device?
FREE audio wands are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Audio guides for no and low vision visitors are also available.
7. SHOP ‘TIL YOU DROP
Want to pick up a bit of the Pacific Islands? Or maybe find that special gift? Expect the unexpected at SAM SHOP, where playful, modern and worldly wares are the norm.
8. FEED & WATER REGULARLY
Don’t forget to fill up beforehand—food and beverages are not allowed in the galleries. May we suggest TASTE Restaurant? TASTE features artistic, locally-focused food, including menu items inspired by Pacific Island cuisine. Reserve your table to coincide with your gallery visit at opentable.com.
9. VISIT AGAIN FOR FREE
Become a member today and visit as many times as you like for free. Enjoy members-only benefits including exclusive access times for Gauguin & Polynesia, free admission at all SAM sites for a year and discounts at SAM SHOP and TASTE Restaurant.
Already purchased your ticket?
Stop by the Ticketing Desk to apply the price of your Gauguin & Polynesia ticket towards a membership!
10. SNEAK A PEEK
See a preview of the works and learn more about Gauguin’s life, his art and his search for the exotic at seattleartmuseum.org/gauguin
Photo credit: Madeline Moy
A fascinating series of lectures will be offered at the Seattle Asian Art Museum on two topics that have increasingly entered the purview of art historians across the world: food and ritual in relation to art.
Japanese culture, both ancient and modern, is rich in elements of ritual display. Foods, drink, implements for ceremonial performance, and a wide range of display objects such as lacquer and ceramics are found on temple and shrine altars. Paintings extoll the sins and virtues of various foods—often in encoded visual subtexts. Mochi, which many of us know as a frozen ice cream treat, traces its origins to secular rituals for harvest or the New Year and religious rites in ancient Japan. Paintings in the Seattle Art Museum collections transport us back in time to the days when wrongly accused courtiers and statesmen took vengeance on the perpetrators of injustice and were pacified only by regular ceremonies at court or posthumous enshrinement at Shinto jinja.
Professor Cynthea J. Bogel (East Asian visual culture and art history, University of Washington) has organized colleagues, community, and students to form a creative collaboration that explores ritual, foods, objects of display, and medieval Japanese painting side by side. Working with the Simpson Center for the Humanities, the Seattle Art Museum, Seattle artist and cultural anthropologist Julia Harrison, and input from Seattle’s Asian-American artist and confectionary-making community, four lectures will be offered at the Seattle Asian Art Museum free of charge.
The new incarnation of Here and Now, the museum’s new acquisition space, focuses on recently acquired contemporary ceramics. The works now on view reveal their desire of bridging the past and present. These hybridized vessels express their synthesizing of visual histories from Eastern and Western cultures.
Focusing on the intermingling of stylistic traditions, Brendan Tang’s Manga Ormolu blends cultural references. Here, a dynamic robotic form seems to discard the skin of its prior form as a Chinese Ming dynasty vessel. The artist has said, “this narrative is personal: the hybridization of cultures mirrors my identity as an ethnically-mixed Asian Canadian. My family history is one of successive generations shedding the markers of ethnic identity in order to succeed in an adopted country—within a few generations this cultural filtration has spanned China, India, Trinidad, Ireland and Canada.”
Manga Ormolu version 5.0-h, 2010, Brendan Lee Satish Tang, Canadian, born in Ireland, 1975, ceramics, mixed media, 16 1/4 x 11 x 7 1/2 in., Margaret E. Fuller Purchase Fund, 2011.27, © Brendan Lee Satish Tang. Now on view in Here and Now, new acquisition gallery, third floor, SAM downtown.
Everybody at SAM is in a flurry to get the Gauguin & Polynesia exhibition ready to open to the public on February 9. Of course you know that we must hang paintings on walls, but what else is there to do? The answer is, lots! The Communications department is responsible for all printed materials at the museum (from the quarterly members newsletter SAMconnects, to invitations sent to 50,000 households, to the Map & Guide that get when you arrive), advertising and museum signage, so there’s no lack of things to do! Below you’ll see a big sign going up on the outside of the building, the tools we use for selecting the perfect color for our billboards, and one of our designers working away at her desk. What other behind-the-scenes images do you want to see?
-Calandra Childers, Communications Manager
Photo credits: Carlos Garcia
Top photo: Here you can see the special lift that is required to install this huge sign on the outside of the building at 1st Ave and Union St. The sign is 45′ x 36′ when it is complete! The image is of Gauguin’s Three Tahitians, a stunning work that’s become the signature piece for the exhibition promotion.
Celebrate the Olympic Sculpture Park’s 5th Birthday with Cupcakes, Caramels and Some Seriously Cool Hats
It’s hard to believe, but the Olympic Sculpture Park is already 5 years old! By the numbers, that’s:
- 5 seasons that salmon have been able to rest in a protected area just off our beach after hatching
- 60 months of growth to the native plants, 1,800 sunsets over the Olympic Mountains
- About 2.5 million people walking (and running!) through the park.
And that doesn’t even account for the art in the park – over 20 pieces of monumental sculpture sited on 9 acres, with new and temporary works installed regularly.
To celebrate this milestone, we’re inviting everyone to a FREE birthday party at the Olympic Sculpture Park’s PACCAR Pavilion on January 21 from 11 am – 3 pm!
- Handing out cupcakes and chocolate caramels (courtesy of TASTE Restaurant)
- Giving away Olympic Sculpture Park T-shirts for kids (to the first 400)
- Making birthday hats (with Mark di Suvero’s Bunyon’s Chess as inspiration)
- Giving special tours of the park
What do we want for our birthday, you ask? Most importantly – you! But if you must, we’re accepting $5 donations to SAM’s Annual Fund, which helps SAM put on great exhibitions and programs. Come join us for fun and festivities!
Here’s vintage coverage by the Seattle Channel of the Olympic Sculpture Park’s opening day festivities on January 20, 2007.
-Madeline Moy, Digital Media Manager
Photo credit: Sean Fraser
Top photo: From left to right: SAM staffers Madeleine Dahl, Emily Eddy and Carlos Garcia model the birthday hats guests will have the opportunity to make at the Olympic Sculpture Park’s 5th birthday party.
Finally a New Year’s resolution that will be fun to try and keep–come experience the art at SAM Downtown, the Seattle Asian Art Museum and the Olympic Sculpture Park! Here are our top five picks for what to see and do with SAM in January.
1. Walk through Do Ho Suh’s Gate.
Luminous: The Art of Asia closes January 8, which means there are only five more days to see Do Ho Suh’s magnificent multimedia installation and to take in this gorgeous exhibition representing 5,000 years of Asian art.
2. Take a spin in Theaster Gates: The Listening Room.
Visit the “church of wax” at SAM Downtown and touch, feel and play the records (yes-vinyl records!) in this installation at SAM Downtown. The Listening Room also extends beyond the walls of the museum to a storefront in Pioneer Square called the Record Store, where you can be part of a listening party.
3. See a unique perspective of 1930s Seattle.
Painting Seattle at the Seattle Asian Art Museum features two painters, Kamekichi Tokita and Kenjiro Nomura, known in 1930s Seattle for their American realist style of landscape painting. They shared the cultural legacy of Japan and the active cultural life of Seattle’s Japantown, while they found a public audience for their work in mainstream art institutions and participated alongside the city’s advanced artists, such as Mark Tobey, Ambrose Patterson and Walter Isaacs.
4. Get ready for Gauguin & Polynesia: An Elusive Paradise.
Seattle Art Museum presents the only United States stop for this landmark show highlighting the complex relationship between Paul Gauguin’s work and the art and culture of Polynesia. The exhibition, on view at SAM Downtown February 9 through April 29, includes about 50 of Gauguin’s brilliantly hued paintings, sculptures and works on paper, which are displayed alongside 60 major examples of Polynesian sculpture that fueled his search for the exotic. Organized by the Art Centre Basel, the show is comprised of works on loan from some of the world’s most prestigious museums and private collections. Buy your advance tickets now!
5. Celebrate the Olympic Sculpture Park’s 5th Birthday Party.
Five years ago Seattle’s waterfront was transformed forever. Come to the Olympic Sculpture Park on January 21 to help us mark this very important milestone with food, art and other activities.
Combine some of your other New Year’s resolutions with art. Trying to exercise more? Take a walk through the Olympic Sculpture Park or ride your bike to the Seattle Asian Art Museum. Looking to save money? Take advantage of First Thursdays or SAM’s suggested admission, which allows you to pay what you can. Art can even help you decrease stress.
SAM is always happy to connect art to your life, and we look forward to seeing you more in 2012!
-Madeline Moy, Digital Media Manager