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SEATTLE, August 13, 2020 ¾ Friends of Waterfront Seattle (Friends) and the City of Seattle’s Office of the Waterfront and Civic Projects (OWCP) have announced a call for artists to activate Pier 62 with temporary installations. The call is led by Future Forward Artist In Residence, Takiyah Ward. In response to the economic stresses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and in an effort to support artists, the City of Seattle, through #SeattleTogether, is assisting partner organizations to provide funding for artistic endeavors. Friends of Waterfront Seattle is supporting this effort with an artist residency and additional artist opportunities as part of its role in activating Pier 62 slated to open later this year.

The Future Forward Virtual Artist In Residence, Takiyah Ward, designed a framework for engaging artists with a range of opportunities to activate the Seattle waterfront. These activities, activations, and installations will occur throughout 2020. Multiple artist calls overseen by the residency are funded by a partnership between Friends and OWCP, and dedicate a total of $100,000 in support of the #SeattleTogether initiative, a partnership between the Office of Arts & Culture, Office of Economic Development, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, Seattle Public Library, and the Mayor’s Innovation and Performance Team, which has come together to build a city-wide COVID-19 community response plan. This project aligns across all partnerships to elevate the voices of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities. Half of these dollars derive from the City’s 1% for Art funds generated by the waterfront project.

With the 2012 Waterfront Arts Plan as a foundation, resident artist Takiyah Ward developed a framework to guide artistic responses designed to engage artists in a range of opportunities to activate the Seattle waterfront in the coming months. This framework focuses on creative projects that invite exploration of stories and experiences focused on insights of the past, engagement with the present, and vision for the future — PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE. In this context, three distinct projects will be implemented with activities, activations, and installations to illuminate each theme.

The first call announced today is for Pier 62 and seeks an artist collective (a group of two or more artists) to explore the theme of PRESENT in two installations: the creation of a temporary light sculpture and up to 40 lanterns or luminaries. Artist installations will be placed on Pier 62 in October 2020 and are expected to be in place through November 2020.

Takiyah said, “My hope is that this call reaches artists far and wide with connection to the Seattle waterfront and incites them to reach within and bring forth those thoughts and ideas you felt might not be accepted in any other circumstance. I want Pier 62 to be not only a safe space, but a space of bravery as we face the immense adversities of this time.”

The budget is $30,000 for the current call to be allocated among five artist teams. Artist collectives consisting of members matching the following criteria are encouraged to apply:

Artists who self-identify as the “Wedge” Generation: those caring for elders and children. Broadly, this covers Gen X and Gen Y/Millennials Artists residing in or with direct connections to the greater Seattle region, including a direct connection to the heritage of the surrounding waterfront Artists with multi-disciplinary experience and interest in becoming part of an artistic community where new norms are being created Artists whose adaptive creativity is responsive to new guidelines governing public gathering.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Friends and the City recognize the importance of participating in economic recovery for the arts community while leading strategies supporting the long-term vision for Seattle’s future Waterfront Park. The Artist-In-Residence Program embraces a process for employing a creative waterfront arts program that is artist-driven and audience-minded, inclusive and welcoming of a diversity of thought and approaches, and responsive and adaptable to changing public gathering norms. The program brings to life the significance that the arts play in our daily lives as well as in our ability to be “in community.” The residency is also a template for the process Friends plans to develop and deploy to create temporary waterfront art installations in Seattle’s future Waterfront Park slated to open in 2024.

Friends of Waterfront Seattle (“Friends”) is the nonprofit partner to the City of Seattle responsible for helping to fund, build, steward, and program the park – today and into the future. In addition to raising $110M by 2024 to fund park construction, Friends will provide funding and manage the programming and operations of the future Waterfront Park through a joint-delivery partnership with Seattle Parks & Recreation. Park construction has begun following the Viaduct's removal and the first piece of the park — Pier 62 — is planned to open later in 2020.

The Office of the Waterfront and Civic Projects is pleased to support this project that aligns with the City's Seattle Together program, a series of initiatives responding to communities impacted during these unusual and challenging times. Future Forward: Artist In Residency will provide opportunities quickly to artists and arts groups for activation of the waterfront for the benefit of everyone. Seattle Together is a partnership of city departments that includes the city's Office of Arts & Culture, which in turn collaborates with the Office of the Waterfront and Civic Projects to bring arts and culture to the waterfront.



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