Visual Art

The Top 10 Pioneer Square Art Shows to Check Out in September 2019

The Best Shows of First Thursday Art Walk on September 5 and Beyond
September 4, 2019
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Play with mathematics and light in SPACEFILLER's Fantasy Parameter Spaces.

On the first Thursday of every month, Seattleites flock to the streets of Pioneer Square for the city's central and oldest art walk, which offers opportunities to stroll, sip on wine, and attend as many gallery openings as possible. But, in most cases, the shows are up for longer than just one night, and the historic neighborhood is a great place to check out art any day of the year. So, below, we've compiled the most promising exhibits that are having opening receptions on September 5—complete with a Google map at the bottom. You can also find more options on our First Thursday calendar, including one-night affairs like Ian "Bub" Davis's Antiheroes Add to a List and second receptions like for Girlfriends of the Guerilla Girls Add to a List . For art in other neighborhoods, check out our complete visual art calendar.

Heading to Portland or Tacoma? Check out EverOut to find things to do there and in Seattle, all in one place.

Ann Leda Shapiro: Diagnosing Disasters Add to a List
Acupuncturist Shapiro is not an outsider artist—she attended the San Francisco Art Institute and the University of California, Davis in the '60s—but her cut and painted works on paper have that brut but beautiful look. She combines fanciful depictions of human anatomy with equally inventive riffs on nature, animals, and microbes.
Gallery 4Culture

Coley Mixan, Liz Mputu, and Richie Brown: Re-Thinking Digital Nature Add to a List
Curated by art critic, curator, and occasional Stranger contributor Leah St. Lawrence, A Digital Nature brings together three artists who explore themes of “health, humor, the body, and emotional prosperity” and our experience of “the digitized” in our daily life. Coley Mixan is a musician and an artist, creating trippy and thought-provoking work. Liz Mputu is Very Online, using digital platforms to grapple with topics like white privilege, sexuality, and digital embodiment. And Richie Brown—an animator who calls himself the hypothetical son of Walt Disney, Robert Crumb, and Andy Warhol—brings his kooky and unconventional animations to the show. JASMYNE KEIMIG
SOIL

Dale Chihuly: Baskets, Persians, Macchia, and Seaforms Add to a List
See works by one of the most famous glassmakers in the world, Dale Chihuly.
Vetri Gallery

James Castle: Drawings Add to a List
Castle was born deaf in 1899 and was not truly recognized for his talents until the 1950s. As a young artist, he worked with soot, spit, and homemade implements. 
Greg Kucera Gallery

Jed Dunkerley and Cable Griffith Add to a List
Former Stranger critic Jen Graves has written that Dunkerley's drawings of machines erase "the nature/human binary and [replace] it with a new mixture that did not separate human activity from other processes in nature." In this series, he paints scenes wherein "technology and human ingenuity overwhelm the natural world," in the words of the gallery. Cornish professor Cable Griffith's abstract landscape paintings are similarly concerned with the melding of the natural and artificial realms.
Linda Hodges Gallery

Melinda Hurst Frye: The Forest Floor Add to a List
In The Forest Floor, Hurst Frye probes the symbioses of plant and animal ground-dwellers (and subterranean creatures), using photographs and tableaux.
Core Gallery

Michael Dailey: Discoveries Add to a List
Michael Dailey's absorbing, glowing abstractions play with figure/ground perception using washes of color. Jen Graves has written: "In person, Dailey's paintings glow and gleam and sparkle and transport. Their references are basic in the extreme: land, sea, and sky—mostly sky." 
Greg Kucera Gallery

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Michelle Anderst: Queen Cell Add to a List
Local artist Michelle Anderst returns to the gallery with a tapestry of gold and silver metallics representing the moon, the sun, and the vibration of bees. 
Mortlake & Co.

SPACEFILLER: Fantasy Parameter Spaces Add to a List
For Seattle-based duo Alexander Nagy and Alexander Miller, their collective name, SPACEFILLER, is a reference to both their role as artists (one who fills space) and Conway’s Game of Life, a mathematical model. (A “spacefiller” is a pattern that wants to spread out indefinitely.) In Fantasy Parameter Spaces, the duo will be taking over the white cube and installing interactive “mini universes” that invite the viewer to “play with the parameters of algorithmic simulations in order to reveal the complicated relationship between order and chaos.” Expect light projection, sounds, sculptures, and tactile electronics. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Glass Box Gallery

Whiting Tennis: New Work Add to a List
Tennis's colors cohabit uneasily, and even the symmetrical designs look unstable. He favors compositions that don't allow the gaze to rest, but jostle it from shape to shape: intestinal tangles, chaotic patchworks, smudgy mazes, indefinable objects in confrontation. But this graphic agitation also appeals to the viewer's sense of play and freedom. Far from severe, the forms he invents are variously insectoid, childlike, flailing, drooping, and prowling. JOULE ZELMAN
Greg Kucera Gallery

Heading to Portland or Tacoma? Check out EverOut to find things to do there and in Seattle, all in one place.

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