SAM Shop Holiday Gift Guide

SAM Shop is the year-round destination for uncommon objects, including contemporary design for the home, toys for kids, jew​elry by local artists, art and design books, and more. During this festive time of year, we’re sharing some of our favorite gift ideas for anyone on your list.

From upper left-hand corner, clockwise:

From Chaos to Creativity book, $14.95 / Rabbit Carrot Car, $19.95 / Toyo Steel Company Box, $32 / Akashiya Gansai Watercolor Set, $32 / SAM Paintbrush Pencil, $3.50 / Sam Scott Ceramic Mug, $54 / Toyo Steel Company Box, $32 / Melissa Stiles “Picasso” Necklace, $210 / Wallace Sewell Wool Scarf, $82 / Alessi Fior d’Olio Oil Bottle, $70 / Hokusai The Great Wave Reusable Bag and Pouch, $16.99 / Akashiya Ceramic Paint Palette, $20 / Toyo Steel Company Box, $32/ SAM Beanie in Kelly Green, $21.95 / Jonathan Adler Wood Domino Set, $40.

SAM Shop is located on the street level of the Seattle Art Museum, on 1st Avenue between Union and University Streets. Note that some items are available in-store only, but there are also many gems available online. SAM Shop is open during museum hours, and visitors to Hokusai: Inspiration and Influence won’t want to miss related specialty items at the exhibition shop in the fourth floor galleries.

Plus: Don’t miss the After-Hours Shopping Event on Thursday, December 21! SAM Shop & Gallery, as well as MARKET Seattle, will be open until 8 pm for your last-minute shopping needs. Ask about items you found in this holiday gift guide or other ideas the sales associates may have. Perks for this night include free gift wrap services on one item (normally $5 per item) and light refreshments while you shop. And at MARKET Seattle, enjoy a gift card purchase promo and signature holiday cocktails with wintry themes.

This article first appeared in the October 2023 through January 2024 edition of SAM Magazine and has been edited for our online readers. Become a SAM member today to receive our quarterly magazine delivered directly to your mailbox and other exclusive member perks!

Photos: Alborz Kamalizad.

Muse/News: Rising Star, New Leader, and a Wave of Influence

SAM News

Amoako Boafo: Soul of Black Folks opens Thursday, July 13 at the Seattle Art Museum. The Seattle Times’ Margo Vansynghel includes the exhibition—the artist’s first in Seattle—on her list of recommendations for July.

“The star of Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo has risen almost too fast to behold—like the speed of light.”

“Visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art for Free in New York thanks to the Seattle Art Museum.” Terumi Pong of An Emerald City Life and her family make excellent use of a patron-level SAM membership.

Via Denise Sakaki for 425 Magazine: “The Market Fishmonger & Eatery is a Summertime Catch.” We couldn’t agree more, and we recommend you check out our restaurant partner’s eateries at the Seattle Art Museum and for the summer, the Olympic Sculpture Park.

In other Olympic Sculpture Park news, it’s been named one of the ten best sculpture parks by the readers of USA Today. Thank you!

Local News

In her latest ArtSEA post, Crosscut’s Brangien Davis shares a behind-the-scenes of the final preparations for XO23, the forthcoming art space in the old Coliseum Building opening July 13 (hmm, could make a night of it with the Boafo opening…). 

Check out The Stranger’s comprehensive Pride month coverage, with event recommendations, engaging profiles, and reported features. 

The Seattle Times’ Margo Vansynghel also reported the recent news that Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture has named Minneapolis arts administrator Gülgün Kayim its new director.

“Seattle is a city that is known for its world-class artists, creative entrepreneurs, and arts scene,” Kayim continued, “and I look forward to working with them to make the arts more equitable and accessible to all.”

Inter/National News

Howard Halle for ARTnews on “12 LGBTQ+ Artists Having Institutional Shows This Pride Month,” including Jacolby Satterwhite, Keith Haring, and Lauren Halsey.

Via Artnet: There’s a new episode of the acclaimed series Art in the Twenty-First Century to check out on PBS. It features contemporary artists including Anicka Yi, Tauba Auerbach, the Guerrilla Girls, and Hank Willis Thomas.

“How Hokusai’s Art Crashed Over the Modern World”: Jason Farago of the New York Times reviews Hokusai: Inspiration And Influence, from The Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Now on view in Boston, it heads to SAM this October!

“[…] one of the greatest of all printmakers appears at the nucleus of a worldwide cultural transformation, in which art became more urbane and more fleeting, and the observed world got flattened out into signs and symbols.”

And Finally

The Seattle Times revisits Sleepless in Seattle locations (and seeks justice for Walter!).

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Photo: Chloe Collyer.

Muse/News: Seeing at SAM, Breaking Labels, and a Museum Lab

SAM News

“Seeing and Being Seen”: Fiona Dang for South Seattle Emerald on Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue at SAM, which closes this Sunday, January 22.

“Bey and Weems act as interpreters and eyewitnesses, asserting Black history as American history. Through their reflection of personal memories and their reimagining of critical sociocultural events, the past reverberates and resonates with the contemporary moment. Economic and institutional forces — racial global capitalism, political divisiveness, and gentrification, to name a few — shape collective ways of seeing and being. Antithetical to these oppressive, isolating processes, ‘In Dialogue’ asks us to pay attention, question, celebrate, and be present.”

Crosscut names the “things to do in Seattle” this week, including the final week to see the work of Bey and Weems as well as Anthony White: Limited Liability, which closes January 29.

The Art Newspaper names its “must-see exhibitions in 2023,” including Hokusai: Inspiration and Influence, from the Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston that debuts in Boston before heading to SAM this fall.  

ParentMap’s Elisa Murray on “How to Visit Family-Friendly Museums Around Seattle for Free,” including how children 14 and under are free every day at SAM.

Local News

Crosscut’s Brangien Davis on “honoring MLK Day with Seattle art,” which mentions the grand reopening of the Northwest African American Museum, a new show at Arte Noir, and more. 

The Stranger’s Charles Mudede thinks about the city’s iconic pink signs and lobster rolls (including those at MARKET Seattle at SAM). 

The Seattle Times’ Jerald Pierce on the early works on paper by legendary sculptor George Tsutakawa, which are now on view at the Cascadia Art Museum. 

“‘This exhibition is a rare opportunity for the public to see a body of work that has mostly been in storage for decades,’ said [curator and author David F.] Martin…‘Contrary to what the public might presume, Tsutakawa’s earlier works are highly informed by European Modernism and not Japanese art or technique, that came later in his career. So, George really transcended labels and was truly an independent modern American artist.’”

Inter/National News

Jerry Saltz of New York Magazine with “7 Art Shows We Can’t Wait to See in 2023”; he mentions a few shows with SAM connections, including Sarah Sze’s show at the Guggenheim (there’s an incredible work by the artist now on view at SAM!) and the Georgia O’Keeffe show at MoMA (which will feature SAM collection work Music–Pink and Blue No. 1).

Via ARTnews’ Maximilíano Durón: “NFL Chooses Chicana and Indigenous Artist Lucinda Hinojos to Create Artworks and Ticket Design for 2023 Super Bowl.”

Artnet’s Eileen Kinsella speaks with Frick director Ian Wardropper on the museum’s fortuitous temporary move to the Breuer Building and how it “sparked a rethink of its iconic Old Master collection.”

“‘While we’re here, it allows us more freedom, in this building that’s kind of a laboratory,’ said Wardropper. ‘It’s almost the antithesis of the Gilded Age mansion, where we can experiment more easily. We’re hoping we develop audiences and ideas here that we can take back to the mansion.’”

And Finally

Join in the fun: @mygirlwithapearl.

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Photo: Alborz Kamalizad.

Muse/News: Fall Art, By the Numbers, and Painting Obamas

SAM News

Pumpkin spice everything and fall arts previews: It’s the best time of the year! The Seattle Times and Crosscut both highlighted Dawoud Bey & Carrie Mae Weems: In Dialogue, a touring exhibition that opens at SAM on November 17! Get excited about exploring the work and friendship of these two powerhouse photo-based artists.

“…explores their overlapping efforts to reflect the experience of Black people and issues around systems of power.”

“What connects their work, besides a friendship and a medium, is a shared timeframe and understanding of the power of photography as a way to explore — and celebrate — the experiences of Black people.”

And there’s lots on view right now! Seattle Met includes SAM exhibition Indigenous Matrix: Northwest Women Printmakers on their “things to do” list, and Crosscut’s Brangien Davis shouts-out Ryan Molenkamp’s show Ascendant, which “emphasize[s] the beauty of geologic strata and tectonic action” and is on view at SAM Gallery through October 2.

Puget Sound Business Journal is out with their “40 Under 40” list, and Chef Shubert Ho is on it! His Feedme Hospitality & Restaurant Group includes MARKET Seattle at SAM, bringing lobster rolls and other seafood offerings that can only be described as high art. Congrats, Shubert!

Local News

Grace Gorenflo and photographer Daniel Kim of the Seattle Times were there to document the recent opening of Arté Noir, a nonprofit focused on uplifting Black arts and culture founded by Vivian Phillips and directed by Jazmyn Scott.

As part of their fall arts preview, Crosscut’s Margo Vansynghel profiled “four rising Seattle artists to watch”: Moses Sun, Angelique Poteat, Ana María Campoy and Luther Hughes.

Vansynghel also conducted a survey of local arts and culture venues to find out whether attendance is recovering since the pandemic shutdowns. SAM contributed our stats and reflections on the complicated issues——and opportunities—for cultural organizations.

“We are still working to recover from the effects of the closures and attendance numbers alone don’t tell the whole story,” said Seattle Art Museum director and CEO Amada Cruz. “The bigger question we are asking is: Who is being served by, represented in and engaged with the museum and its mission? And who is not?”

Inter/National News

The New York Times recently delivered its fall arts preview, including a feature by Jason Farago on blockbusters and Will Heinrich’s list of exhibitions to see across the country.

Artnet’s Caroline Goldstein reports on the recent unveiling of the official portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama by Robert McCurdy and Sharon Sprung, respectively.

And Will Heinrich of the New York Times interviewed Sprung to learn about her experience and goals when painting Michelle Obama.

“Asked why she was chosen, Ms. Sprung replied, ‘I didn’t ask! I didn’t want to put any shred of doubt in their mind that they picked the right person.’”

And Finally

“Quick, I wanna see a Rothko before Sean poops.”

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Harlem Street, 1976–77, Carrie Mae Weems, American, born 1953, gelatin silver print, 5 5/16 x 8 15/16 in., Carrie Mae Weems, courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

Muse/News: Examining Water, City Blocks, and Taurus Artists

SAM News

The annual Museums section of the New York Times landed yesterday, with stories from the field and exhibition round-ups. Ted Loos included SAM’s current exhibition, Our Blue Planet: Global Visions of Water, on their list of exhibitions on view this spring and summer across the country. Also mentioned: the major Alberto Giacometti exhibition now on view at the Cleveland Museum of Art and headed to SAM this summer!

“[The works] range from comforting, more familiar depictions from the 19th century—like an Albert Bierstadt beach painting and a Hiroshige woodblock print of a whirlpool—to challenging contemporary works that examine water as an endangered or desecrated resource.”

Alison Sutcliffe of Tinybeans has a list of “10 Fantastic Activities to Make Your Mother’s Day Special,” including taking the mom and mom-figure in your life to a museum! At SAM, you can gift a visit (or membership!) and grab brunch at MARKET. As always, entry for kids 14 and under is free.

It’s May! Celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with this list from Tinybeans of 19 Asian American-owned businesses and organizations to support, including the Seattle Asian Art Museum (and our friends at The Wing Luke!). 

And finally, never stop learning: Jing Culture & Commerce interviews Jason Porter, SAM’s Kayla Skinner Deputy Director for Education and Public Engagement, and his co-writer Mary Kay Cunningham about their new book, Museum Education for Today’s Audiences

“‘We see museum educators on the frontlines addressing urgent social issues, acknowledging historical inequalities in museums, innovating for accessibility, and leveraging partnerships with communities to maintain their relevance in a changing world,’ say Cunningham and Porter of the work currently being done.”

Local News

A five-minute listen: Kim Malcolm of KUOW interviewing Amanda Ong of the South Seattle Emerald on spring arts events to look forward to.

The Stranger’s Jas Keimig reports the announcement from Cornish College of the Arts, who has named this year’s Neddy Award winners, Myron Curry and Priscilla Dobler Dzul.

Don’t miss the Seattle Times’ new special project, “This City Block,” which takes the “powerful corner” of 23rd and Union as its first subject. Wrap-around coverage from their team includes stories on Arté Noir, Wa Na Wari, Communion, and so much more.

“What can we learn from This City Block? ‘The lesson of 23rd and Union is that there’s a way,’ [K. Wyking] Garrett said.”

Inter/National News

The New York Times and other outlets report that “Ukraine says Russia looted ancient gold artifacts from a museum,” just one heist among the many examples of damage and destruction to cultural sites.

Via Artforum: “A Diego Rivera mural that was in danger of being sold to help fund the shrunken endowment of its owner, the beleaguered San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI), will instead be restored, thanks to a $200,000 grant issued for the purpose by the Mellon Foundation.”

Artnet talks to Bri Luna, AKA Hoodwitch, about “How to Critique the Art of a Taurus Without Getting in a Brawl.” (SAM has an unnervingly high number among our ranks!)

“Tauruses have a love of texture and color and just a fine eye for detail and luxury. Those are things that bleed into our aesthetic as artists.”

And Finally

A worthy Twitter thread: “MY BACKYARD’S BIGGEST NIGHT.”

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Image: Chloe Collyer.

Muse/News: Kusama Memories, Glass in Tacoma, and Giacometti’s Secrets

SAM News

Our Blue Planet: Global Visions of Water ripples at SAM! Seattle Met includes the exhibition on their list of things to do in Seattle right now.

Seattle Met’s Zoe Sayler rounds up “10 Mother’s Day Gifts for Your Mom Friends,” including the SAM Shop exclusive “NO” tote by artist Tariqa Waters. 

Via Eater Seattle: Shubert Ho’s restaurants—including MARKET Seattle at SAM—are donating 10% of sales on select days to World Central Kitchen, an organization “that’s helping provide hot meals to Ukrainians suffering from the Russian invasion of their country.”

And here’s Artnet’s Eileen Kinsella on the many complexities of Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Rooms; Catharina Manchanda, SAM’s Jon & Mary Shirley Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art, was among the art world voices sharing their experiences showing these works–including before the blockbuster editions. 

“Like some great works of art, the Infinity Rooms were not immediately and universally appreciated. Manchanda recalled visiting one at the Whitney Museum (which also owns one) as part of a biennial more than two decades ago, while she was a student in New York. ‘The biennials were always crowded, but I was the only person in line wanting to see it. There was no interest whatsoever.’”

Local News

Via Crosscut’s Brangien Davis: “Remembering Seattle print artist and muralist Kristen Ramirez.”

The Stranger’s Charles Mudede on the “world-class” Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley.

“Ever seen Cheetos made of glass?” The Seattle Times’ Jerald Pierce asking the tough questions–this one about Tacoma Art Museum’s show of glass art by the youth of Hilltop Artists.

“Those who have been through the Hilltop program have seen its ability to teach students invaluable teamwork and leadership skills, with one person taking the lead as a gaffer (who will lift the molten glass) and one or two assistants helping to shape that glass into whatever the gaffer is working on. Keith equated it to a sort of dance, where everyone needs to learn their part and anticipate the moves and needs of others.”

Inter/National News

Art & Object pours out a slideshow of “10 Wineries that Every Art Lover Should Visit.”

Angelica Villa for ARTnews reports: “$30 M. Phillip Guston Painting Could Set Auction Record Amid Long-Awaited Retrospective.”  Hot tip: You can see two Guston paintings, made more than 20 years apart, in Frisson: The Richard E. Lang and Jane Lang Davis Collection in SAM’s galleries.  

“America may finally be ready for Alberto Giacometti’s uncompromising art”: The Washington Post’s Sebastian Smee on the Giacometti traveling retrospective that just debuted at the Cleveland Museum of Art–and heads to SAM this summer!

“But it’s only when you stand in front of them, or in some way stand with them (from the side or directly behind can be just as effective) and focus in on them that they give up their devastating secret (which is also your secret and mine): that we’re alone, that no one else knows what’s in our heads and that we will cease to exist.”

And Finally

Capturing murmurations.

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Image: Natali Wiseman.

Muse/News: Gods & Bods, Remover Art, and Maus Banned

SAM News

“Gods, bods, and power at Seattle Asian Art Museum”: Here’s Crosscut’s Brangien Davis on Embodied Change: South Asian Art Across Time.

“When I visited the show last weekend, I was thrilled to learn about contemporary artists who were entirely new to me.”

And Seattle Met’s Allecia Vermillion names the “best new restaurants: takeout edition,” including SAM’s new spot, Market Seattle, the second location of the beloved Edmonds restaurant.

“…this Market sits inside Seattle Art Museum, where you can now tear into a fried soft-shell crab in a bag amid ample lights and white-backdrop gallery vibes.”

Local News

Lunar New Year festivities in the region kicked off on Saturday; Seattle Times’ Vonnai Phair has a round-up of all the ways to welcome the Year of the Tiger.

The Locals Going to the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics in 2022”: Malia Alexander for Seattle Met with all the local names to cheer on.

The Stranger’s Chase Burns catches up on Sundance flicks; Matt McCormick’s short 2002 film the subconscious art of graffiti removal, narrated by Miranda July, is the one that sticks with him.

“The relationship between tagger and remover is an ongoing one. Often, a remover will cover an original tag, only for the tagger to return and tag on top of the remover’s masking. This back-and-forth can continue for years, with the remover coming back and using different shades of paint, creating a layered, more colorful image. This can be accidentally beautiful.”

Inter/National News

If you’re still loving jigsaw puzzles, the at-home hobby that swept the world during the pandemic, Culture Type has a round-up of puzzles featuring the work of celebrated Black artists, including Jacob Lawrence, Derrick Adams, and Faith Ringgold.

Tessa Soloman for ARTnews on a coyote-man sculpture discovered years ago in Tacámbaro, an area in central Mexico, which archeologists are now studying. They believe the sculpture may represent a dynasty that once ruled the area.

Artnet reports: Art Spiegelman has spoken out about the banning of his Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel Maus by a Tennessee school board.

“The district’s decision to censor the book, because it said the material was inappropriate for students, ‘has the breathe of autocracy and fascism about it,’ Spiegelman told CNN.”

And Finally

On Artnet’s podcast: “The Nazis Stole Her Family’s Art. Here’s How She Got It Back.”

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Photo: Natali Wiseman.

Muse/News: Cunningham’s BFF, Nomura’s Moment, and Exiting 2021

SAM News

Imogen Cunningham: A Retrospective is now on view at SAM! Jas Keimig of the Stranger falls for the friendship between Cunningham and sculptor Ruth Asawa, which is explored in the show via portraits and a dynamic installation of Asawa’s “floppy, organic” works.

Misha Berson wrote for Oregon ArtsWatch about the “many faces” of Imogen Cunningham on view in the exhibition, sharing some memories of spotting the artist herself out and about in San Francisco, too.

Seattle Met shares their picks for the best seafood in Seattle, including SAM’s favorite new friend, MARKET Seattle.

Local News

Patheresa Wells for South Seattle Emerald on the meanings of Kwanzaa and how to celebrate the holiday this year, including in-person or virtual events at Wa Na Wari and the Northwest African American Museum.

Crosscut’s Margo Vansynghel looks back on “10 Seattle artworks that exemplify 2021.”

Jade Yamazaki Stewart on the much-deserved recognition of Seattle painter Kenjiro Nomura in a new book and an exhibition at the Cascadia Art Museum. (Hot tip: You can also see Nomura’s work on view at SAM in the collection installation Northwest Modernism!)

“But [Cascadia Art Museum curator David F.] Martin…said he’s had issues getting major museums to accept Nomura’s work, always getting the same response: that the paintings would better fit in a Japanese historical museum. This bothers Martin, who views Nomura as an American artist. ‘He was integrated in the art society here,” he says. “Why should I separate him by his ethnicity?’”

Inter/National News

The trailblazing thinker bell hooks passed away last week. Janelle Zara for Artnet celebrated hooks’ wide-ranging work, including her art criticism and how the writer was “instrumental in cracking open the white, western canon for Black artists.”

New York Times critics Holland Cotter and Roberta Smith offer their Best Art Exhibitions of 2021.”

“Exit this year through the museum gift shop,” says the New Yorker’s Rachel Syme in her detailed list of recommendations, including the “thank you” tote from SAM Shop, which is open during museum hours and online for holiday needs!

“Although each shop shares its sensibility—and its profits—with the larger institution it is attached to, many of the smaller and funkier museum shops stuff their shelves with eccentric trinkets that echo the museum’s aesthetic more in spirit than in substance.”

And Finally

The story behind Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas.”

– Rachel Eggers, SAM Associate Director of Public Relations

Image: Ruth Asawa, Sculptor, 1952, Imogen Cunningham, American, 1883–1976, sepia toned gelatin silver print, 9 1/2 × 7 1/2 in., Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Gift of Ruth Asawa and Albert Lanier, 2006.114.1, Photo: Randy Dodson, © 2021 The Imogen Cunningham Trust.

Muse/News: Gramming SAM, Dance Language, and Eco Immersion

SAM News

You love to ’gram it: Lindsay Major reports for Seattle PI that SAM is “one of the most Instagrammed museums in America.”

Seattle Met’s Allecia Vermillion joins the chorus welcoming MARKET Seattle, Chef Shubert Ho’s seafood cafe, to SAM.

And stay tuned for Imogen Cunningham: A Retrospective, SAM’s special exhibition opening November 18. Seattle Met previews the show, which features over 200 genre-spanning examples from the pioneering modernist photographer.

“This show is worth seeing not only for the consensus masterworks, but also for the stunning versatility of Cunningham’s lens, from nudes to street shots to portraiture.”

Local News

Crosscut’s Brangien Davis devotes much of her weekly ArtSEA letter to the new show at the Henry Art Gallery, Packaged Black, a duo show for Derrick Adams and Barbara Earl Thomas, whose cut-paper portraits are also on view at SAM.

“Filastine Spent the Pandemic Sailing an Artsy Rustbucket Across the Pacific.” I don’t know what these words mean, either! Gregory Scruggs for the Stranger is here to elucidate.

Moira Macdonald of the Seattle Times: UW’s Chamber Dance Company celebrates 30 years of preserving and performing modern dance masterpieces.”

“[Mary Ann Santos] Newhall noted that just as languages can be lost from oral tradition, dances can likewise disappear. ‘It has to be passed on from body to body, or we lose our language.’ she said. ‘What Hannah [C. Wiley] is doing is preserving our language of dance.’”

Inter/National News

The New York Times’ Holland Cotter is “Looking Close at the Fragile Beauty of Chinese Painting,” on the occasion of 60 landscapes going on view at the Met.

Sarah Cascone for Artnet on Really Free: The Radical Art of Nellie Mae Rowe, now on view at the High Museum of Art, with national touring dates to be announced.

Louise Bury for Art in America on Sun & Sea (Marina), the Lithuanian opera about climate change that recently had its US debut at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

“The performance can be understood as artistic consciousness-raising, which has been one of two main historical rationales for eco-oriented art (the other being more direct environmental remediation). Yet it’s a quite particular kind of consciousness-raising, one that offers sensory immersion rather than abstract information.”

And Finally

“The Curious Case of the British Telephone Booth in Madison Park.”

– Rachel Eggers, SAM’s Associate Director of Public Relations

Photo: Installation view of Barbara Earl Thomas: The Geography of Innocence at Seattle Art Museum, 2020, © Seattle Art Museum, Nina Dubinsky.

Muse/News: History at SAM, Overheard at the Frye, and Sculptures with the Blues

SAM News

“SAM picks new board chair, making national history.” That’s the Seattle Times headline announcing that Dr. Constance W. Rice is the museum’s new board Chair. She is believed to be the first Black woman to assume the role at a major US art museum. ARTnews, Artdaily, The Seattle Medium and others also shared the news.

“She says she wants to ‘keep doors wide open’ in the museum to communities that might not see the museum as a place they belong, in the way she felt comfortable roaming the halls of MoMA when she was younger. ‘For me, every citizen of Seattle owns the art museum,’ Rice says. ‘I want them, when they walk in, to feel like I felt years ago as a kid: welcome.’”

The Seattle Times’ Tan Vinh reports on restaurant openings, including MARKET SEATTLE, SAM’s new restaurant partner.

“Arguably the most popular seafood spot in the North End…expands to downtown Seattle with a 60-seat restaurant inside the Seattle Art Museum. All of its greatest hits are here: lobster rolls, fried soft-shell crab, seafood chowder and fish and chips.”

Local News

All aboard: Brangien Davis of Crosscut on the new public art debuting along with the expanded light rail. Also mentioned: The Frye Art Museum’s new exhibition of recent acquisitions, including a work by SAM’s 2021 Betty Bowen Award-winner, Anthony White.

The Stranger’s Jas Keimig on Alden Mason: Fly Your Own Thing, now on view at the Bellevue Arts Museum through October 10.

The Seattle Times’ Brendan Kiley has their “A&E Pick of the Week”: Duane Linklater’s new exhibition at the Frye Art Museum. Kiley dives deep with five of the works on view.

“There are stories and ideas in “mymothersside,” currently occupying several rooms at Frye Art Museum, but we only catch fragments and echoes, like we’re overhearing something — or being permitted to overhear little bits of something that isn’t ours to fully comprehend.”

Inter/National News

Artnet’s Melissa Smith has the first major interview with Naomi Beckwith since she became chief curator and deputy director of the Guggenheim; Beckwith talks about why she’s exactly where she needs to be.

The MacArthur Foundation named its 25 new fellows (yep, “geniuses”), including visionaries from the art world such as painter Jordan Casteel, art historian/curator Nicole Fleetwood, and sculptor/painter Daniel Lind-Ramos.

“Woody de Othello’s ceramic sculptures give Funk art a musical twist.” That’s Glenn Adamson for Art in America on the artist’s “heartbreaking” sculptures that have roots in face jugs, the blues, and the Funk art movement.

“Pathos is very much the point, but the effect is anything but delusional: one object, one figure at a time, Othello is making a world that’s almost too true to bear.”

And Finally

White lines.

– Rachel Eggers, SAM’s Associate Director of Public Relations

Image: Courtesy of MARKET Seattle.

Muse/News: Nature Calls, Still Here, and An Art Rx

SAM News

Katie White for Artnet: These 6 Fall Museum Shows Will Make You Rethink the Way You Look at the Natural World.” On the list? SAM’s special exhibition, Imogen Cunningham: A Retrospective, which opens November 18 and explores the photographer’s seven-decade body of work, including her pioneering modernist botanicals.

“I mean, rightfully.” Meg van Huygen understands why people are obsessed with the lobster rolls from The MARKET in Edmonds. You can indulge very soon when they arrive at SAM’s restaurant space.

Local News

Ann Guo for the Seattle Times on Gerard Tsutakawa’s sculptures, which are now on view at the Wing Luke Museum alongside those of his father, George.

Seattle Met says, get yer tickets now! To this fall’s best events and performances.

“We were here, and we are still here, and we will be here.” Reporting by Margo Vansynghel and photos by Matt McKnight for Crosscut on the wave of Black art in Seattle’s Central District.

“It also sends an important signal, [Vivian Phillips] says. ‘With the severe reduction of Black residents in the Central Area, part of what this represents is that we were here, and we are still here, and we will be here, in some form. We’re making our mark … through art, to make sure that people cannot forget or erase us.’”

Inter/National News

Carlos Aguilar for the New York Times looks back at Alfonso Cuarón’s Y Tu Mamá También, 20 years after its release, speaking with the filmmakers and actors.

Marc Garrett and Ruth Catlow with an opinion piece for Hyperallergic: “What Public Art Might Look Like After the Pandemic.”

Artnet’s Caroline Goldstein on the doctor’s orders: museum visits. That’s right: Doctors in Brussels are prescribing visits to museums for patients coping with pandemic-related stress. (So, everyone?)

“Numerous studies have confirmed the benefits of art in raising patient’s spirits, even when they are confined to hospitals. The World Health Organization even operates an entire program dedicated to the study and support of arts as vital components of maintaining well-being.”

And Finally

Michael K. Williams’s Black joy.

– Rachel Eggers, SAM’s Associate Director of Public Relations

Image: Two Callas, 1925/1929, Imogen Cunningham, American, 1883–1976, gelatin silver print, 11 13/16 × 8 7/8 in., The Art Institute of Chicago, Julien Levy Collection, Gift of Jean Levy and the Estate of Julien Levy, 1988.157.24, 2021 © The Imogen Cunningham Trust

Muse/News: Artist Mini-Golf, Untold Histories, and Kerry Can Do

SAM News

Patti Payne of Puget Sound Business Journal devotes her latest column to “two uplifting programs to celebrate,” including SAM’s upcoming Par-Tee in the Park series at the Olympic Sculpture Park. This year, our annual fundraiser in support of SAM programs features an artist-designed, nine-hole mini-golf course! Tickets are still available for the cocktail night on August 21.

Lobster roll with it: Seattle PI and Eater Seattle both reported on the new chef and caterer, Shubert Ho of The MARKET, headed to the café space at Seattle Art Museum. Stay tuned for an opening date, and prepare yourself for seafood, noodles, and frosé.

Local News

“After a lapse of two years, the Seattle Art Fair will resume next summer under new management,” reports Megan Burbank of the Seattle Times. Art Market Productions (AMP) Events is taking over for the event, so save the date for July 21–24, 2022.

Also in the Seattle Times: Crystal Paul on the “new generation of Asian American artists… expanding Bruce Lee’s legacy.”

Taha Ebrahimi for Crosscut on a “stunning survey of Black arts and culture” at the Tacoma Art Museum, featuring works from the Kinsey Collection.

“The [Kinsey] family began researching and seeking out objects, original art, artifacts, and historical documents that gave voice and expression to obscured and often untold stories of African American achievement and contribution. Fiercely committed to sharing the full narrative of our nation’s history, the collection is not restricted by medium, and pieces are both by and about Black Americans.”

Inter/National News

Dushko Petrovich Córdova for Art in America on the state of art book publishing.

The latest episode of Artnet’s “Art Angle” podcast explores Martin Johnson Heade, Thomas Cole, and Frederic Church, “three of the greatest visionary artists America has ever known”; Church’s A Country Home is in SAM’s American art collection and on view now.

A lovely long read on Kerry James Marshall, who can do anything, by Calvin Tomkins in the New Yorker.

“He also wanted to be a painter of social and political history, and the question he asked himself was: ‘How do you address history with a painting that doesn’t look like Giotto or Géricault or Ingres, but without abandoning the knowledge that painters had accumulated over the centuries?’”

And Finally

“This is the house that Whitney built.”

– Rachel Eggers, Associate Director of Public Relations

Photo: Kimisha Turner
SAMBlog