— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) November 20, 2016
West Seattle artist Troy Pillow (below) has the most visible art in The Junction – the kinetic sculpture “Transpose,” dedicated today (above) – and more on the way, as he has designed art you’ll see all around the peninsula’s biggest project, The Whittaker.
Some of the backstory for the new installation stretches to a project across the street from that one.
As explained at today’s ceremony (11 minutes, recorded in its entirety in the video above), the roots of this public art are in the project at 39th/Fauntleroy/Alaska, first known as Fauntleroy Place, then as “The Hole” when it stalled for years after excavation, and then as Spruce, after it was sold at a foreclosure auction and completed. $25,000 was part of the “public benefit” package that development owed because of its alley vacation, approved by the City Council.
The importance of “public benefits” was discussed briefly during the ceremony by the West Seattleite who was on the council then, Tom Rasmussen. Also present but not speaking, City Councilmember Lisa Herbold. Because of the years it took for this to become reality, there were other sets of then-and-now – former West Seattle Junction Association executive director Susan Melrose and her successor Lora Swift, former Junction Neighborhood Organization leader Erica Karlovits and her successor René Commons. While Karlovits didn’t join the ribbon-cutting lineup, her son Connor helped:
The sculpture, for its part, spun gently in the breeze; it was created from concepts originally shown to the public at an open house in The Junction last February. The day’s intermittent rain kept itself on pause for the 20-minute event, in which Seattle Parks reps also participated – Robert Stowers, a former West Seattleite, and Pam Kliment. You can see the sculpture, standing against what had been considered West Seattle’s biggest blank wall, in the park on the northwest corner of 42nd and Alaska.