Now in its fifth year, the Seattle Art Fair comes to Century Link Field for a packed weekend of programming and activities Thursday, August 1st through Sunday August 4th. International in scope, the annual event draws gallerists and collectors from around the Pacific Rim and beyond. It’s a great opportunity for locals to view art typically only seen in museums and to learn about new artists.
The heart of the show is the exhibitor booths by over 100 local, national, and international galleries. There is strong representation from Tokyo galleries as well as galleries from the Philippines, Taipei, and Seoul. Some highlights for galleries showing work by emerging and mid-career artists internationally include BLANK SPACE in New York, KOKI ARTS from Tokyo, Ever Gold [Projects] in San Francisco, and Over the Influence with locations in Los Angeles and Hong Kong.
A number of Northwest galleries will be there including Elizabeth Leach Gallery from Portland, i.e. from Edison in the Skagit Valley, and Shift Gallery from nearby Pioneer Square.
This is the second year Nato Thompson, Artistic Director of Philadelphia Contemporary, has provided additional curation and programming throughout the Fair. Organized around the theme of Wunderkammers (Wunderkammers were 16th century curiosity cabinets), the work tends to be eclectic and highly conceptual. While it doesn’t appear the artist will be there, an interactive installation by Bread Face (known for her ASMR oriented social media presence) is one of the curiosities. Swedish duo Bigert & Bergstom’s “Incubator for Earthquakes” is timely: a table set with china rattles intermittently, mimicking an earthquake.
Perhaps most fitting with Thompson’s theme is local 78-year-old artist Gregory Blackstock’s four banners that will hang throughout the show. A self-taught artist, Blackstock’s work obsessively catalogues topics ranging from piranhas to train stations. Presented with Greg Kucera Gallery (who also has a booth at the Fair), the banner themes are The Boxers, The World War II Lavochkins Russian Fighters, Colorful Egg Pattern Favorites to Go For, and The U.S. American Palaces – Historic.
When you’re ready for a break from the Fair, check out satellite programming at sites nearby and throughout the city. Museum of Museums, Greg Lundgren’s latest project is hosting an open house of his new space at 900 Boylston on First Hill on Saturday and Sunday from noon – 6:00 pm. Yəhaw’, an indigenous-centered exhibition, holds its closing weekend at The Office of Arts & Culture King Street Station. Festival:Festival is a free event featuring local artists happening at several locations.
These are just some of the highlights – there’s a lot more happening over the weekend. So throw on a good pair of walking shoes, stay hydrated, and stuff your eyeballs with art from both nearby and faraway!
- Premium Experience Package $150
- Preview Package $90
- 3-Day Ticket $55
- 1-Day Ticket $35
- Student Ticket $10
Purchase your tickets here.