West Seattle, Washington
The first of the West Seattle Junction murals to be renovated – the Hi-Yu Parade scene on the south-facing wall of the Post Office – needs a little more work, to repair damage done by a vandal. Sometime recently, someone splashed beige paint across a particular group of parade-watchers depicted in the mural, to the right of the parade royalty – a woman and two children of color, seated on the curb. We heard about the vandalism via a tip, and checked it out this weekend. After we brought it to the West Seattle Junction Association‘s attention – as WSJA has been heading up the mural-renovating efforts these past few years – volunteers have removed some of the vandal’s paint, so the three people are partly visible again:
It will need professional repair, though, and the muralist who’s renovated several other local murals in the past three years, Bob Henry, will be consulted. The mural’s 2007 renovation, we noted at the time, followed tagging vandalism.
As previewed this morning, this year’s first West Seattle Art Walk is happening now! Above is one of the artists you can meet, Edimbo Lekea, the painter who founded Natty Dread Illustration to tell the “Untold TRUstory of the Afro-Diaspora.” You can meet him and see his art at Snip-Its (4506 California SW) until 8:30 tonight. Some other artists are having receptions elsewhere, while some have work you can enjoy online, and others are showing work you can enjoy at local businesses throughout the month – go here for the full lineup.
Thanks to Dan Kearney for the photo. West Seattle artist Desmond Hansen painted that signal box at 35th/Henderson, just north of Southwest Library, this weekend. He wrote on Instagram that the box is dedicated “to children living with disabilities and special needs” – read his full explanation here.
Georgetown-founded Fogue Gallery is expanding to its proprietor’s home neighborhood, West Seattle. Patti Curtis says the new space on the north edge of The Junction, 4130 California SW, makes sense: “I have lived in the West Seattle community for 25 years, I raised my daughter on the very block the gallery is located, I am at home here.”
The two-story Fogue Gallery space features original fine art and jewelry by 15 artists, all over the age of 50: “I’m gonna make old cool!” Curtis promises. She exolains that she lost a job at age 53 – “a lot of people at my company got let go because we ‘aged out'” – and so she decided to put her energy into creating an enterprise for people 50+ to “feel relevant.” The gallery’s name is a play on “(old) fogey.”
Fogue also offers interior design and art consultations by appointment via teleconferencing – you can shop for art that way, too. Fogue’s West Seattle location will have a grand-opening celebration on Saturday, January 2nd, starting at noon – stop by and find out why Curtis and her artists vow they’re “inspiring … not retiring!”
Eight months ago, we featured fiddler Dawn Hepburn joining neighbors in “making a joyful noise” when that was happening during the evenings early in the stay-home days. Today, she brought musical joy to Alki with Christmas songs, and shared a video clip so you could enjoy the serenade even if you weren’t at the beach.
The sun’s setting and Christmas Eve begins in earnest. Want some local music for your holiday cheer? West Seattle’s own Mode Music Studios (WSB sponsor) staff perform an eclectic variety of holiday music in the video above – Mode’s Virtual Holiday Singalong: “We have excerpts from musicals, classic holiday songs, rocking covers, and some original works.” It’ll be on YouTube, free to access, through the end of the holiday season.
This year without events and live performances has left many performers struggling. Among them, a West Seattle festival fixture – The Bubbleman. Among the countless cancellations this year were events presented by the Morgan Community Association and West Seattle Junction Association, which want you to know about crowdfunding for him, writes Phil Tavel, vice president of MoCA:
The Morgan Community Association and the Junction Association want to say THANK YOU to the Bubbleman for all of the good cheer that he has brought to West Seattle over the years.
This is a year when those in the crowd can give back a little something to help the performers who have given so much to us.
Here is a link to give whatever you can to the man with the purple beard, the rainbow car and a million bubbles and a million and one bubble jokes.
Happy Holidays to Everyone!
MoCA and the Junction Association!
With three days to go until Christmas, maybe you’ve already heard the Mariah Carey version of “All I Want for Christmas” a hundred times. Here’s an alternative: Listen to the Leyva Family Band version! Michelle Leyva emailed to tell us about their downloadable Christmas music album, fundraising for Keep Music Live Washington, an advocacy group fighting for the future of live-music venues shuttered during the pandemic. Proceeds will go to that group; the Leyvas are offering their Christmas collection for $5, or anything more you want to pay, explaining, “We miss live music and so look forward to hearing it again soon with all of YOU.” You can find the album, and preview it, by going here.
In case you haven’t seen these in the WSB West Seattle Holiday Guide – two holiday movies-turned-radio-plays will be presented live online by local groups in the next week and a half!
‘IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE’: Tomorrow (Friday) night at 7:30 pm, Seattle Lutheran High School presents the radio-play version of this classic:
Seattle Lutheran Drama is proud to present a rare holiday-themed performance! It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play by Joe Landry is an adaptation of the classic film interpreted as a 1940’s-style radio drama. Clarence, an Angel 2nd Class, is given the daunting task of teaching George Bailey about all the good he has put into the world in order to prevent George from taking his own life. George sees his hometown and the changes that would have occurred if he had never been born. Our talented actors will each perform from their homes, assisted by live practical sound effects. Filled with all your favorite characters and lines, this heart-felt Christmas classic is sure to please! Streaming ONE NIGHT ONLY! Friday, December 11th = Tickets: $15 per device: Purchase tickets here.
‘MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET’: Twelfth Night Productions will perform this radio-play “version of the classic 1947 film ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ … based on the holiday movie favorite of the same name and presented as a live 1940s radio broadcast. ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ tells the timeless story of an old man who calls himself Kris Kringle and is hired as the Macy’s department store Santa. His claim to be the real Santa Claus becomes a court case and a young child’s belief could make all the difference.” It’ll be live online at 7:30 pm Saturday, December 19th, and 3 pm Sunday, December 20th; your pay-what-you-can ticket (donate here) will allow you to watch either or both, and/or to view it later.
Two West Seattle Junction Hometown Holidays updates:
HOLIDAY PLAYLIST: The Junction welcomes your suggestions for the “Accidental Island” holiday playlist on Spotify:
Join in the easily accessible music playlist you can use as a backdrop for all your winter holiday celebrations. The Junction would love to know what your favorite holiday song is, and songs by local artists are definitely encouraged. Drop your song/artist suggestions in email. The Junction can’t wait to hear your suggestions! Four lucky winners will receive a Hometown Holidays box too!
Email song suggestions to email@example.com.
SHOP ‘LIVE’ ONLINE: Instead of Shop Late Thursdays this season, The Junction is spotlighting local retailers in a live Holiday Gift Guide event the next two Thursday nights. Here’s what you’ll see tomorrow night:
Personal gift guides straight from your favorite Junction business owners to you – on your couch! It’s the holiday shopping event of the season – the virtual Junction gift guide. Get your favorite beverage, then sit back and enjoy the absolute best of the best gifts brought to you by the people who hand-curated them – the business owners!
Tune in to hear all about gifts from:
Watch live via the Junction Facebook page or each business’s Instagram TV feed. During the event, you’ll be able to shop via comments, direct messages, and/or email.
P.S. If Thursday night doesn’t work, dozens of local independent businesses offer online shopping 24/7 – see the list in our West Seattle Holiday Guidel
As noted in our West Seattle Holiday Guide, we’re spotlighting decorations again this season. Not just lights – this year, so many other types of displays have been created in windows and yards and on balconies, as we all look for ways to brighten our pandemic-constrained lives. Above and below are photos sent by LC in Admiral, who wanted to share the story of her painted window. The artist is known as The Deco-Meshin’ Mama:
She explains her technique via email: “I hand-draw each design with expo marker. I then paint a base layer with inter paint, with a eggshell or satin finish. Then I do all the details! I do a lot of deco mesh 3-D work, window painting, and murals.” She is a relatively recent arrival to Seattle – just before the pandemic – and while she had done a lot of work on business windows, she’s pivoted to residential, and it’s been a hit – she says she’s booked up for the next three weeks. You can see more of her work here.
Mid-morning music break! Brent Amaker & The Rodeo, electric country-rockers fronted by an Admiral entrepreneur, have a new music video, mostly filmed at Hiawatha Playfield. Starring with Brent and his band in the video “Ugly World” is his dog Frida. The accompanying announcement explains that it’s “the title track from their new EP. “Ugly World” is something of an ode to 2020, with the Rodeo keeping one eye on turning the page to a new year, new horizons, and yes, getting the Rodeo back to a town near you.” The band’s been performing for 15 years.
The pandemic won’t stop ArtsWest Playhouse from presenting a holiday show. It’s happening online, starting in less than a week. Here’s the announcement:
In its World Premiere, Justin Huertas’s new holiday mini-musical A VERY MERRY KRAKEN TEA PARTY will be available for digital access beginning November 27, and is on sale now at www.artswest.org.
Featuring five new songs from powerhouse playwright/composer/lyricist Justin Huertas, A VERY MERRY KRAKEN TEA PARTY follows the characters of Justin’s 2019 ArtsWest hit THE LAST WORLD OCTOPUS WRESTLING CHAMPION. As winter hits, the octopus Nia and Lee formed together has mysteriously separated and both have come ashore just as Todd and David are getting ready to celebrate their first Christmas together. With a new problem to solve, and with Grace away on tour in Thailand, all try to figure out how to celebrate holiday love with each other while they remain apart.
“One of the beautiful things about the way Justin writes is that, even though he writes stories that have extraordinary given circumstances, he writes deeply human stories within that context,” said Artistic Director and THE LAST WORLD OCTOPUS WRESTLING CHAMPION director Mathew Wright. “I’m so excited that Justin has chosen to revisit the world and characters he created in OCTOPUS and find out what happens to them during the holidays – and amidst a global pandemic!”
“We learn from so many stories that love is the bow wrapped around the neatly wrapped Christmas gift, but what I’ve learned over the years is that love is also the wrapping and the box—the very act of tearing the present open in anticipation of the unknown is also love,” said creator Justin Huertas. “I was excited to bring these characters that I love so well back to the page and imagine what happens after their Happily Ever After. Setting it in present day 2020 also allowed me to explore what it means to connect at a time when connection is at its most challenging.”
The cast features the return of the original cast of THE LAST WORLD OCTOPUS WRESTLING CHAMPION – Rachel Guyer-Mafune (M. BUTTERFLY, ArtsWest), Christian Quinto (OFFICE HOUR, ArtsWest), Tyler Rogers (HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, Book-It Repertory Theatre), and Porscha Shaw (NINA SIMONE: FOUR WOMEN, Seattle Repertory Theatre; SAINT JOAN, ArtsWest).
The Creative Team features creator Justin Huertas (LIZARD BOY), musical arrangements and musical direction by Steven Tran (HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE, Book-It Repertory Theatre), and production design and editing by Cameron Lee (FOUND AMONG THE PAPERS OF THE LATE ICHABOD CRANE.)
All that glitters is … jewelry art! The annual Jewelry Invitational at Click! Design That Fits (4540 California SW; WSB sponsor) is part of what’s in the spotlight during tonight’s West Seattle Art Walk. Click! says the “Invitational features work from new artists Twyla Dill + Heather Kraft, new work from Jennifer Graves, and expanded collections from Ann Chikahisa and Adia Mei Jun Bobo.”
The shop is open until 7 tonight, but if you miss it, the jewelry will be featured all month and into December – some of it will be available for online shopping too. See this page on the WS Art Walk website for the rundown of every business participating this month, from North Admiral to Arbor Heights, and scroll through to enjoy the artists’ work even if you aren’t going to see it in person. (WSB is a WS Art Walk community co-sponsor.)
Thanks to WestSide Baby for the photo of that brand-new mural on the north-facing wall of the nonprofit’s White Center HQ. It’s by artist Angelina Villalobos, who painted it last weekend. The organization explains:
The mural is the end result of many conversations for many years, but was pushed forward by the organization’s desire to communicate their values of Humanity, Resilience, and Intention OUTSIDE of their huge warehouse walls in response to the murder of George Floyd in late May and the continued fight for justice in our community and beyond. The building has been tagged with graffiti a number of times over the last couple months, with messages of support for Black Lives and racial justice, and it was important for WestSide Baby to honor that sentiment.
The artist elaborated on her work:
I centered a circle and honed in on shapes growing out, emulating pages of an open book. From the open book I filled it with words of justice, love, and equity, and more words brainstormed by WestSide Baby staff, including their values of Humanity, Resilience, and Intentionality. This design color and type was pulled from 1960s-styled protest posters, reminding us of the fight for civil rights and love during that time, and now in 2020.
WestSide Baby has distributed more than 1.6 million diapers to local families so far this year, and says that’s more than during any other full year in the organization’s 20 years of work. You can support them in two ways: Donate dollars or diapers. For online donation info, go here; for in-person donating, they’re accepting boxes or packages of all sizes of diapers and pullups, plus wipes and other hygiene items, 10 am-2 pm Wednesdays at the White Center HQ (10002 14th SW).
Next time you go to The Junction, you might see orcas. These are newly painted outside Flying Apron (4709 California SW) by West Seattle artist Desmond Hansen. Earlier this month, he painted another nature-celebrating mural in a less-visible spot:
You can see that along the western section of the Thistle Street stairway, between Gatewood and Lincoln Park.
The trailside tribute to a bizarre chapter in West Seattle Bridge history is back. Announced by Lars:
It is with tireless dedication, that your Delridge Maritime Historical Society, in conjunction with the CFGA, is relieved to announce the return of Rolf Neslund to his memorial shrine The new and improved 2021 model Rolf bust is twice as heavy, with a lower center of gravity, and features state-of-the-art lo-jack technology and exploding dye packs to foil those without a sense of humor. As our world quickly grinds itself to an oily paste before our very eyes, we will once again have the rock-steady hand of our pilot, Captain Rolf Neslund on the tiller, headed straight for the bridge! Full speed ahead!
The Rolf Neslund Memorial Shrine and Garden of Commuting Despair is open daily on the lovely Delridge bike path, near the now defunct “Onramp to Freedom”. Please bring flowers, candles or small stuffed animals in an expression of futility that you will ever get to work on time again.
This comes one month after this work’s predecessor was sculpture-napped, barely a week after it was placed. (That original story has links explaining Rolf Neslund’s place in peninsula history – piloting the freighter that hit the old West Seattle Bridge in 1978, breaking a longstanding logjam over building the new one.)
Seattle musician and School of Rock West Seattle teacher Payge Turner wowed the coaches during her blind auditions on season 19 of NBC’s The Voice and joined Team Gwen! Originally from Trinidad and Tobago, Payge has lived and performed in the Seattle area for a few years and teaches part-time at The School of Rock in West Seattle. An electric performer, Payge sings and plays keyboards and guitar. She is known for her emotion-filled vocals and her passionate approach to singing and teaching.
Still an independent artist, Payge’s music can be found on Spotify, YouTube and other outlets. Visit her website at www.paygeturnermusic.com for more information.
:”The Voice” is a musical-competition show that airs on NBC Monday and Tuesday nights. Here’s how it works.
(Seattle Municipal Archives photo of what’s described as the Highland Park-Burien line’s Hillside Station – possibly in Riverview – 1915)
What is currently a busy bridge-detour route now, with thousands of cars passing each day, held trolley tracks a century ago, and Highland Park Improvement Club is honoring that with its newest streetside sandwich-board art. The four boards, installed this afternoon along SW Holden east of 12th SW, say this to westbound drivers/riders/passersby:
Those traveling eastbound will see H-P-I-C.
And yes, the boards are secured:
The artists also put together the display we showed you back in August.
The streetcars that traveled nearby were part of the Highland Park-Lake Burien Railroad, in service from 1912-1929.
That video shows a sample of what kids can learn, perform, and enjoy with Mode Music and Performing Arts classes this fall – here’s the announcement:
We are excited to offer a full roster of music, theatre, art, and dance classes for all ages! There are two ways to learn with MMPA this Fall: a full schedule of live online classes and pre-recorded video lessons that give you the flexibility to experience our lessons when it’s convenient for you.
Information on rates, classes, and scheduling is available at:
Please ask about our partial and full scholarships!
You can also donate to our programming and support our nonprofit so we can continue to provide education and offer our scholarships in this time of limited funding.
Mode Music and Performing Arts is a nonprofit arts organization offering innovative arts-education programs promoting confidence, social awareness, equity and empathy in our students and community.
“Stay Inside the Lines” started as a project to offer free coloring pages, created by area artists, to enable more artistic expression by kids during the pandemic. The organizer is a Gatewood resident, Galen Driver, who tells WSB the project is now growing into a full-scale coloring book, with sales to benefit kids in a second way:
At the start of quarantine in March I noticed a lot of parents at work complaining the schools were not providing art activities and they were running out of things for their children to color. I’d also seen a staggering stat about adult coloring books and mental health. I decided to pull together a bunch of local artist friends to create a bunch of free print-at-home coloring pages under the project name Stay Inside The Lines Seattle. After launching, I continued adding more new pages and artists and got a lot of press around the project, driving thousands of downloads.
I’ve recently partnered with ArtsEd Washington to launch the ‘Color for the Arts Fund,’ dedicated to providing art supplies for local Title 1 schools with high numbers or percentages of children living in low-income households which tend to be predominantly BIPOC communities. To launch the fund, we’ve put physical copies of the coloring book up for pre-sale, donating one book for each book sold along with 100% of profits to the art supplies fund.
To pre-order the benefit book, go here. You can also still explore the Stay Inside the Lines site to find free downloadable coloring pages right now, and to see the list of contributing artists (you’ve probably already some of their work, Galen notes, around West Seattle).
Another way to support local arts/crafts creators, who also have been hard-hit by the pandemic, while doing early holiday shopping – Judy Pickens sends word that what would usually be an in-person event is happening online this year, and it’s already begun!
COVID has edited but not deleted the Fauntleroy Fine Art & Holiday Gift Show from the calendar of community activities at Fauntleroy Church, United Church of Christ. The show that has been an annual fall event for more than a decade is happening online this year, through November 30.
Visit the church website to see samples and details from each of the 13 participants, including SML Design (handcrafted home-decor products), Tom Costantini (below – watercolors), Johanna Lindsay (above – woven earrings/pendants), and Angel Luna (skincare products).
Entries include websites to see more and contact information to purchase directly from the artist or crafter.