Central District artist’s sculpture will be part of 23rd/Union redevelopment

James Washington, Jr. (Image courtesy James & Janie Washington Foundation)

A work by an important Central District African American artist will be restored in the midst of coming redevelopment set to reshape the corner of 23rd and Union.

The James and Janie Washington Foundation, a museum and art gallery to commemorate and preserve the work of James Washington Jr, announced the planned restoration of the “Fountain of Triumph” sculpture that has called the MidTown shopping center home since the 1990s.

The sculpture will temporarily move from MidTown to the foundation’s property on 26th Avenue and Denny so the Pratt Fine Arts center can restore it. When the sculpture returns to its original location, it will be part of a major new mixed-use development that will partner a for-profit developer with affordable housing and community nonprofits including Africatown.

James Washington Jr., an African American writer and artist, created “The Fountain of Triumph” in the late 1990s. He passed away in 2000 at 90 years old. Meant to be a community meeting place and focal point for unity in an ever-changing neighborhood, the sculpture will stay true to Washington Jr.’s original intent as it gets restored and placed in Africatown.

“We’re so pleased that LUP is helping to restore and return this meaningful sculpture to its original location,” said Washington Foundation board president Reverend LaVerne Hall in the announcement of the project. “We’re thrilled it will be returning it to its former glory.” Continue reading

Broadway Holiday Pop-Up Market

The Broadway Market Holiday Pop-Up Market features a variety of vendor members from Seattle Made, an initiative to grow and support the area’s urban manufacturing and producer economy. Vendors will be selling a variety of holiday gifts, wearables and handmade merchandise. This event is presented by Broadway Market, Blanton Turner and Seattle Made to celebrate Shop Small Saturday.

Huge Art Estate Sale

Byron Randall Art Estate Sale*

This huge estate sale of 35 oil paintings, 140 block prints,and 300+ watercolors, pastels, ink/graphite drawings is a rare opportunity to enjoy a little-known, West Coast artistic gem. The event has interest for people with limited budgets, in offering over 100 small-scale, signed works in lino, ink and watercolor (nudes, flowers, fruit, landscapes, animals, portraits, street scenes), within the $30-$75 range. There is a 10% discount for purchases of more than one item.The striking range of style and subject ensures that there will be something for everyone to enjoy. Highlights include:

  • Rare South Pacific series of Pacific Islanders, crewmates, landscapes, cityscapes
  • Abundant, varied still lifes: vigorous, delicate, in oil, watercolor, ink, pastel
  • Never-exhibited Mexican drawings, watercolors and pastels: market scenes, domestic life, church processions, landscapes
  • Never-seen erotic ink drawings as well as a major series of nude blockprints
  • Block prints of political critique: satire, allegories of war and peace
  • Major pastel series of Hawaii: people, landscapes and still lifes
  • Surreal late life works: huge oils, small lino prints, inspired by black holes, Mickey Mouse, dolls, and the threat of nuclear annihilation

Prices range from $30 to $4,500. The majority of pieces fall between $30–$750. For more examples of Randall’s work, see


Byron Randall (1919-1999) was a prolific West Coast artist. He produced over 2000 original works in oil, watercolor, ink, pastel, and wood/lino engravings across his 60-year career. A contemporary of artists Pablo O’Higgins, Anton Refregier, Robert ‘Mac’ McChesney and Emmy Lou Packard, Randall shared their left wing beliefs while differing in his use of color, texture and line. His work is held in permanent collections of the Phillips Collection, the California Palace of the Legion of Honour, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Hallie Ford Museum of Art, the Schneider Museum of Art, the Bolinas Art Museum, the Janet Turner Print Collection and Gallery, and the Oakland Museum of California.

Born in Tacoma, Randall was raised in Salem, Oregon, where he trained and subsequently taught at the Salem Art Center, part of the WPA Federal Art Project. At 20, a solo show at the Whyte Gallery in Washington D.C. launched his career. In 1940 he moved to Mexico; the country was to play a major role throughout his life. A Merchant Marine in World War Two, Randall was stationed in the South Pacific. His watercolors of ship life, Fiji, Tonga, New Guinea, Australia—many painted on wrapping paper—are a rare chronicle of the era. Shortly after the war, Randall travelled to devastated Yugoslavia and Poland, producing etchings of Jewish survivors and the rebuilding of Polish Ghettos. Randall co-founded San Francisco’s Graphic Arts Workshop, affiliated to Mexico’s Taller Grafica Popular and to the San Francisco Labor School; this produced an illustrated Communist Manifesto in 1948.

In 1953 Randall moved to Canada to escape McCarthyism, where he produced large-scale mixed media and caseins. In 1956 he returned to California, marrying the print-maker and muralist Emmy Lou Packard. Between 1959 and 1969 Randall and Packard ran a Guest House and Art Gallery in Mendocino, California. During this highly productive period, Randall created three major series of oils, ‘Doomsday’ (on nuclear war), the Abraham Lincoln series and the Philo Barn series (exploring country life and labor). Strongly interested in sea life, Randall created a found-art collage series about shipwrecks, at this time, as well as two large wood cut series of nudes and still lifes. His multi-media allegorical ‘American Beauty Queen series’, highlights the nexus of militarism, spectacle, and the US beauty industry; his horror and fascination with mass entertainment and empire led in later years to surreal oil and print series ‘Mickey Skull’, ‘Flotsam and Jetsam’, ‘Gladiators’. In 1972, Randall established a guesthouse/art gallery in Tomales, California, where he continued to work prolifically, in all media and many genres, until his death age 80.

Randall was an expressionist whose art was strongly responsive to physical environment. Of his paintings he wrote: “the look of them might have been different if I’d grown up anywhere but in Oregon. Brilliant sunlight nursing the green valleys after a long rainy winter . . . there’s a powerful bit of environment that would show in a man’s work all his life. I’ve seen that creative communication has a vitality all its own. It’s not a refuge from life, but an intensification. It’s the practice of humanity. In painting I think the approach that best affirms life is expressionism, and that’s why I became and am now an expressionist.” His aesthetic influences include Kokoschka, Rouault, and the artists of Mexico’s Taller de Gráfica Popular (of which Randall was an Associate Member).

Randall saw the human condition as a dynamic struggle for justice or at times simply the struggle for survival, captured in his scenes of boxers and wrestlers. Randall’s art also revels in the joyful, sensuous and whimsical aspects of everyday life. It celebrates both male and female nudity, and the hedonistic satisfactions of leisure: surfing, drinking, dancing, lounging, making music. A professional cook (and boxer), Randall loved to depict food. From early on, Randall’s love of tools—from potato mashers, lanterns, pitchers, candles, to saws and plows–showed in his work. Still lifes—mixing flowers, fruit, utensils, toys and nude humans—were a continuous feature of his output across all media. Randall created unsentimental yet tender portraits of friends, lovers and working people—cooks, housekeepers, hewers of coal and wood, housepainters, gravediggers, laundry women, stevedores, sellers of bread and chickens. The landscapes of Oregon, California, Hawaii, Canada, Mexico and Scotland prompted vivid watercolors and pastels.


Unwritten: An Immersive Experience of Childhood Denied

Please join us for

Unwritten: An Immersive Experience of Childhood Denied

a fundraiser unlike any you’ve encountered. We know the numbers: 11 children under the age of five die every minute. We know these deaths can be prevented. But have we ever wondered who these children might have become if they had gone on to not only survive, but to thrive? What authors, revolutionaries, scientists, athletes, artists or groundbreaking inventors would they have become?  

The evening will take guests through thrilling performances and awe-inspiring immersive installations all to support UNICEF’s tireless work towards a day when no children die of preventable causes. Not in Syria. Not in Mexico. Not in Puerto Rico. Not anywhere. 

Above all, Unwritten will bring to life the beauty that children bring to the world when they survive and thrive. Your participation supports UNICEF’s work rewriting countless children’’s futures. Join us

https://events.unicefusa.org/event/unwrittenInline image 1 

All proceeds benefit UNICEF USA’s tireless efforts to protect and advocate for the children around world. 

We hope to see you there. Please RSVP here. 

Free Haiku Workshop at the Seattle Japanese Garden

Free Haiku workshop at the Seattle Japanese Garden lead by Michael Welch of the Haiku Northwest. Haiku is a traditional form of poetry from Japan. In English, they are typically written in three lines with no titles and include an objective description that suggests a season. Be ready to focus on your five senses and stroll through the Seattle Japanese Garden for inspiration for your poetic expression!

For more information, visit https://www.seattlejapanesegarden.org/events-calendar/2017/11/4/haiku-workshop-by-haiku-northwest

Sad about the ghosts of Capitol Hill? Ghost Gallery making best of lost lease

We’re just going to warn you right now. The end of any year typically brings a pulse of sad news as businesses new and businesses old lose or give up their place on Capitol Hill. With a boom economy, surging real estate market, and destructive capitalism coursing through Seattle’s veins, 2017 will probably be rough on your nostalgia.

Maybe we can all learn something from Hill business owner and Ghost Gallery founder Laurie Kearney. Her announcement of a lost lease and one final holiday season in the shop’s seven-year home was downright positive and hopeful: Continue reading

Seattle Weavers’ Guild Annual Sale

The Seattle Weavers’ Guild Annual Sale offers an opportunity for the greater Seattle community to experience over 3,500 original textiles and purchase unique handwoven items from local weavers. There will be demonstrations of weaving, spinning, and other fiber arts through out the Sale. Parking and entrance to the sale are free.

Thursday, October 26, 2017     5pm – 8pm

Friday, October 27, 2017         10am – 8pm

Saturday, October 28, 2017     10am – 5pm


Lower Level, Bloedel Hall – St. Mark’s Cathedral

1245 10th Ave. E. Seattle, WA 98102

(Capitol Hill)


Botanical Watercolor

7 Tuesdays, January 23-March 6th, 7-9:30pm, 2018

Learn the basics of classical botanical watercolor painting, which will include techniques in measurement, drawing, and understanding how light reveals form, along with practice in color mixing.  The application of controlled washes and dry-brush technique will contribute further, producing an image that is three-dimensional, accurate, and aesthetically appealing–the goal of botanical painting–and equally effective in painting other subjects realistically.
Beginners are welcome, and students with previous instruction can take on new subjects under supervision.  It is recommended that you take Botanical Drawing as a prerequisite. A list of supplies will be provided with the confirmation email.

Botanical Drawing

7 Tuesdays, September 25-November 6, 2018, 7-9:30pm

 The pencil is an effective tool for producing beautiful botanical works, and skill in pencil rendering is also a good basis for ongoing study of botanical art in other media, such as watercolor.

Beginning with measurement techniques, observational skills, and the unique requirements of botanical art, the class teaches use of line to accurately portray plant subjects, then moves on to understanding light’s effect on form and the use of shading for three-dimensionality.

While focusing on plants, skills acquired apply to any realistic drawing effort. All levels welcome; intermediate students can take on more advanced plant subjects.  A short list of materials for the first class will be provided with your confirmation email, and a more complete list of supplies will be discussed in the first class.
This class is recommended as a prerequisite to Botanical Watercolor.

AMDEF X: The 10 Year Anniversary

Looking for a hot event this Saturday night? Seattle’s most explosive annual fusion of Art, Music, Dance, Entertainment and Fashion returns to Neumos for our 10 Year Anniversary! A mashup of live music, cabaret show, and dance party, you’ll catch some of the hottest performers the Pacific Northwest has to offer, selected from AMDEF’s 10 year history of memorable shows in Capitol Hill. Get your tickets now and come celebrate with us!
Tickets: http://www.neumos.com/event/1510381-amdef-x-10-year-anniversary-seattle/
Event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1358785997474754/