Trippy Seattle - Art and Museums
Art, art, art - lots of it (and museums) in Seattle. Check 'em out:
- Seattle Art Museum - Classic and Northwest art, plus revolving exhibitions. Look for Hammering Man out front, but no longer look above for former sponsor WAMU. On 1st Ave. N.
- Seattle Asian Art Museum - In Volunteer Park on Capitol Hill, this has a bunch of, uh, mostly traditional Asian art...
- Waterfall Garden Park - on Main in the Pioneer Square area. A freakin' waterfall in downtown, at the birthplace of the UPS company, oddly enough. (Actually this is not so odd: they donated the thing.)
- Olympic Sculpture Park - On the north end of the Seattle downtown waterfront. Generally modern sculpture with a great setting.
- Klondike Gold Rush National Park - This used to boast being the U.S.'s smallest national park, but it's a bit bigger - and much better - than it used to be. Get into the spirit of the Great Greed - I mean Gold! - Rush, with artifacts, video, pictures, and more. A couple of other museums - for firemen (Last Resort Fire Department Museum) and police (Seattle Metropolitan Police Museum) - are nearby, too.
- Wing Luke Museum - another Asian museum, but focused specifically on Seattle's history with respect to its (original) Asian-based population. In the International District, in a larger building and different location than of old.
- Frye Art Museum - on First Hill, and free, the Frye offers an eclectic sequence of exhibitions. Mark Ryder's showing here was stupendous.
- Museum Of History And Industry (MOHAI) has exhibits focused on Seattle's History. In the Arboretum area, soon to be at the South Lake Union Park (in the old Naval Reserve building).
- Children's Museum has exhibits that are all about the doing. This is a hand's-on place for kids far more than a deep learning experience, but learning is in the doing. At the Seattle Center (Lower Queen Anne).
- Roq La Rue - In Belltown, this is a favorite of mine - a mix of street, hipster, and surreal art.
- Experience Music Project - Jimi Hendrix is the inspiration of this museum dedicated to rock n roll, the Northwest music scene in general, and (of course) Jimi Hendrix. At the Seattle Center, it has free first Thursdays from 5-8p.m.
- Science Fiction Museum - In the same building as the Experience Project at the Seattle Center, this one's focus is obvious. Someday I will meet one person that has stepped inside.
- International Fountain - big, and timed to music. Great on a summer day to hang out, read, and get wet in the mist. And listen to zillions of kids running through it. At the Seattle Center.
- Olmsted Parks - yep, THE same Olmsted as a zillion other great parks in the country. Talk about influence on the country's open, green spaces!
- Sound Garden - at Sand Point (the north end of Magnuson Park, on NOAA grounds), these sculptures make an eerie sound. Go when no else is there (not terribly hard). An inspiration for the group of the same name.
- Magnuson Park sculptures - 26 old nuclear sub fins planted in the ground to look like whales, sort of. Swords into plowshares. I mention these because, well, they're awfully BIG!
- The Troll, Lenin, Waiting For The InterUrban, The Rocket, Patches The Clown - Stumble around Fremont and check out the iconic sculptures which gave rise to its claim to being The Center Of The Universe... even if its soul has already been sold out. Better yet, do it at the Summer Solstice Parade around June 21st with a million other people (including naked cyclists).
- Archie McPhee's - So it's a kitsch store, sure, but it's also something of a museum to all of those things that made American Culture the envy of the world: rubber chickens, squeezable martians, etc. In Wallingford these days - unless it moves yet again!
- Did you know that commercial buildings have to devote 1% of their budget (or somesuch) to public art when they are constructed? Look around, or ask/thank the Seattle Art Commission. Better still, get the brochure about where you can find all of this art (a good display is at the Panama Hotel Cafe on the north side of the International District, with many quality/useful brochures beyond mere art.)
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