(Image: Weinstein A+U)
Hoping to continue their long relationship with the literary-focused nonprofit, property owners of the under-construction, mixed-use development on 11th Ave and E Olive have offered to sell the nonprofit Hugo House a 10,000 square-foot ground floor space for about half of its estimated market value.
Hugo House, which is temporarily located at 1021 Columbia, made its home in the 1902-built former mortuary at 11th Ave and E Olive until its demolition last June.
The nonprofit has intended to move into the new development since plans were announced in 2014, but the below market price offer to sell the space to Hugo House is an unexpected opportunity. Continue reading
APRIL 2015 (Image: CHS)
(Image: Andi Dean courtesy APRIL)
(Image: Cassandra Bell courtesy APRIL)
By Tim Kukes for CHS
The APRIL Festival and Book Expo is breaking with tradition. For the first time — and the last time — the uniquely Capitol Hill literary festival will be confining its celebration to one day only — April 1st.
The Authors, Publishers, and Readers of Independent Literature festival, traditionally held in the later part of March to honor National Small Press Month, is coming to the end of its tale after a six-year journey of bringing eclectic reading events and diverse small press publishers to the people of Capitol Hill and Seattle.
APRIL Festival & Book Expo
“We feel like this is a good time to end the festival,” Frances Chiem, acting director, said. “We’ve done a lot with it and the small press community is a lot more vibrant than when we first started. We feel there are other community voices that will step in and fill the void.”
The story of the festival starts with Pilot Books, once located on Broadway, and Willie Fitzgerald and Tara Atkinson. The small press bookstore had a reputation as a vibrant community space and hosted a Small Press Festival in 2011 — essentially the first APRIL event and renamed after Pilot Books closed in the summer of 2011. Continue reading
Moving in (Image: Studio Current)
About six months ago Studio Current moved into its new underground home in the basement of the building housing the Annex Theatre at 11th Ave and E Pike.
The space is bigger with more variety — a multimedia room, a furnished dance space, a raw space, a common area, and a kitchen — but the rent has also “less than doubled.”
“It’s a sweet spot for us, and it’s an art-dedicated building,” said Artistic Director kt Shores.
Shores took over as artistic director at Studio Current in January 2016 after founder Vanessa DeWolf, who personally sponsored the space, stepped down.
Shores is now contributing personally to supplement funds from performances, workshops, and nominal artist fees, to support the space. Continue reading
By Tim Kukes for CHS
“I think the Seattle Fringe Festival is really taking on the role of mentoring and offering up opportunities for the artist to learn things,” Jeffrey Robert said.
Robert, who performs as The Gay Uncle, will be part of the 2017 version of the rebooted festival featuring “more than 30 producers of Theatre, Dance, Improv, Burlesque, Musical, Opera, Drag Performance, Solo Performance, Experimental, Clown, and Performance Art” at Capitol Hill’s Eclectic Theater and the Seattle Center Armory. Tickets run between $10 and $15 per show.
Robert is one of many local artists participating in the 2017 Seattle Fringe Festival but he may have gotten a later start than most. A standup comedian turned performance artist/storyteller, Robert didn’t dive into the artist life until his fifties.
“I always wanted to attempt it, but I was afraid to,” Robert said. “I always wanted to do artwork and sort of toyed around with it. I studied it in college, but I never ever made a career out of it.” Continue reading
(Images: Hugo House)
A final party in 2016 before demolition gave visitors license to leave their mark on the old Hugo House’s walls (Images: Hugo House)
Hugo House, these days, operates in exile on First Hill as construction continues on the six-story, mixed-use apartment building on the corner the writing center is slated to return to when the project opens in 2018. But state money lined up to help Hugo House return to Capitol Hill and pay for its new home
is still a question mark, is an unfinished story er, might go to some other worthy project… here, let’s let somebody better with words handle this. Here is a call for support from Hugo House director Tree Swenson:
Please help Hugo House realize a long-held dream to have a permanent facility of our own! We have been recommended for a grant from Washington State through the Building for the Arts program. This funding is critical. However, the State has many funding needs this year, and this grant is far from assured. As a friend to Hugo House, we know you understand that the arts matter. You can make a big difference by contacting your State legislators to let them know why you think it’s important to have public support for a new and permanent home for Hugo House. Below is an example of a note to legislators with a brief statement about why Hugo House matters. Your own words are even more important, but any contact helps. Please take a minute right now to call or email. Time is short; the budget is in progress. You can find your State legislators and their contact information here.
For those of you in the 43rd, you’ll want to fire up your email machine for email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com.
Here is somebody else good with them words at the Seattle Review of Books to help inspire you:
You can find a sample email and a link to a site that will tell you who represents you in the state legislator right here. If you’ve bemoaned the loss of important institutions during the Seattle real estate boom, this is your chance to speak out, to ensure that one piece of Seattle that’s been around for decades continues to have a new life in the decades to come. Go make yourself heard.
(Image: Weinstein A+U)
(Image: Weinstein A+U)
In 2018, Hugo House is slated to return to Capitol Hill in a new 10,000 square-foot writing center on the ground floor of the six-story apartment building under construction at the site of its longtime home at 11th and E Olive St. The new new center will include six classrooms, offices, two performance spaces, and space for writers to, um, write.
The interim Hugo House is located at 1021 Columbia. You can learn more at hugohouse.org.
Velocity Dance will celebrate the final days of the old Capitol Hill Value Village as temporary Capitol Hill art space V2 Saturday night.
The Last Dance V2 Farewell Performance Party starts at 9:30 PM at the 11th Ave venue:
Say good-bye to V2 with a special one-night-only performance party. Dance happenings by an emerging generation of artists take-over V2. Meet, greet, drink + DANCE. Join the send-off!
“All proceeds keep affordable community art space on the hill,” organizers say.
The project to put the building to use as a temporary performance, rehearsal, gallery, and community meeting space came together to begin 2016 as the redevelopment slated to change the block continued its final planning phases. Continue reading
V2’s day as a temporary arts and events venue are numbered (Image: CHS)
CHS broke the news earlier this year about just how temporary the temporary arts space V2 really is as the project bought a year for dance and performance on 11th Ave. We know what the planned preservation and development project set to replace the old Value Village will eventually look like. Now we know how the auto row-era building that housed the popular vintage store will go out before the demolition and preservation process sets in.
The Punk Rock Flea Market announced this week it is planning a final three-day, music-soaked blowout for the old VV space: Continue reading
Gowdy in front of the Comet earlier this week (Image: Alex Garland for CHS)
The 2016 presidential election has us all questioning what we see and hear. Through the sometimes bizarre race, Seattle photographer Nate Gowdy’s starkly contrasted images of the candidates have found a wide audience. What truths can we find in the lines of Donald Trump’s face that we can’t find in his words? How deep of a sympathetic response can we form from the turn in Hillary Clinton’s lips? Thursday night, a new exhibition of Gowdy’s works will go on display inside E Pike’s Retail Therapy as part of the storm-defying October Capitol Hill Art Walk. CHS talked with Gowdy about his start chasing drag queens and documenting gay events and culture in the neighborhood while trying to pay the bills as a working photographer. Stop though to see the images in person and buy a Gowdy photo mug or two to help keep the close-ups coming.
Any experiences shooting around Capitol Hill prepare you for your experiences with the campaigns? Yeah, definitely. I learned photography in this neighborhood. I got in with Seattle Gay News as staff photographer at the start of 2011. As a straight cisgender man from Indiana, Seattle’s LGBTQ scene was so new and different for me. I didn’t see anyone else documenting it passionately, and so it was under-represented at an important time, when marriage equality was just beginning to make the rounds across the country. I regret not having the means to cover the movement beyond Seattle, so I focused on developing my style and aesthetic here and, in doing so, was able to create a niche and community for myself. Continue reading