The Hydrant Connects Seattle-Area Youth to Arts World

Interview with Nancy Chang and The Hydrant at Northwest Folklife Festival. Written by TeenTix Press Corps writer Nolan DeGarlais.

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The 2019 Northwest Folklife Festival featured a new exhibit that put youth arts at the forefront. Fitting with Folklife's 2019 cultural focus of "Youth Rising," the A/NT gallery at Seattle Center featured the showcase of The Hydrant Lounge, a collective of youth arts leaders who came together to promote their work and form lasting partnerships within the art world. With an entrance facing the International Fountain, the central location of The Hydrant Lounge greatly facilitated the Lounge's popularity.

The Hydrant, the organization behind the Folklife display, is a youth-created and youth-led artistic "think tank" that seeks to promote emerging figures in the Seattle arts community. Urging young art creators of all kinds to "tap the Hydrant," the organization gives priority to young creators who, without a platform, may feel isolated in artistic fields that are often dominated by the older generations.

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The Warnings and Possibilities of What’s “About to Happen”

Review of "About to Happen" at Henry Art Gallery.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Erin Croom, and edited by Teen Editor Lily Williamson!

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“About to Happen” at the University of Washington’s Henry Art Gallery marks the first time Cecilia Vicuña’s collection of sculptures, drawings, films, and other art pieces are exhibited alone in the United States. Vicuña is a Chilean-born artist whose career spans over fifty years, and her unique body of work has only gained relevance as time passes and climate change (often alluded to in her art) worsens. This exhibit combines a wide variety of media, largely composed of repurposed materials, in a unique and visually compelling compilation that invites thoughtful consideration from viewers.

Upon entering the gallery, visitors are greeted by dozens upon dozens of tiny sculptures dotting the walls and a raised platform on the floor. These are “precarios” (“uncertainties” in Spanish), or, as Vicuña sometimes refers to them, “basuritas” (“little garbages”). These tiny masterpieces, pinned to the wall like insect specimens, are entirely made of objects Vicuña collected from the shores of northern Chile, where she grew up. The oldest “precarios” are from 1966, and she has continued to create them in the decades since. Just as other pieces in the room float from the ceiling, the “precarios” seem to swim in the vast white expanses of the walls upon which they are mounted. They range in complexity, from singular pieces of wood to intricate assemblies of thread, netting, and other flotsam. Vicuña’s clever hand has taken seaside trash and created beautiful works of art that are captivating in their detail."About to Happen" by Cecilia Vicuña at Henry Art Gallery. Photo by Alex Marks.

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School’s Out, But Art Never Ends

Teen Editorial Staff June Editorial

Written by Teen Editor Lily Williamson!

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It’s June, and as the weather gets warmer and we finally get a break from Seattle rain, most TeenTixers are looking forward to one thing: liberation—from school, homework, teachers, and the dreaded SBA. So, the Teen Editorial Staff has curated June’s shows around the theme of liberation. We’ve picked art events that demonstrate the complex positivity of this theme in celebration of summer. For visual art lovers, MoPOP’s A Queen Within liberates femininity from traditionally associated beauty standards through fashion. If you’re in the mood to see a live show, ACT Theatre’s Pass Over and Whim W’Him’s This is Not the Little Prince reinvent classic pieces of literature, and Strawberry Theatre Workshop’s Take Me Out takes a swing at raising awareness of the constraints homophobia places on a community through baseball. In addition, CUDDLE: The Series at Seattle International Film Festival and later at Northwest Film Forum explores how something as simple as a hug can be liberating. This month’s lineup is incredibly diverse, so, as summer approaches, get out there and see some art!

Photo credit: Ethan Robertson from Unsplash

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The Art of Interpretation

Review of Laser SZA at Pacific Science Center.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Greta Herrington, and edited by Teen Editor Hannah Schoettmer!

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Music, with all its genres, styles, and variations, often portrays a common understanding among listeners; so when paired with celestial visuals such as lasers, it becomes clear how one song can contain infinite meanings. Laser SZA, an ongoing laser light show at Seattle’s very own Laser Dome, offers the opportunity to discover these personal interpretations through a visual aid.

Set to Grammy-nominated artist SZA’s groundbreaking album Ctrl, this hour long show aims to redefine how one listens to, perceives, and internalizes music.

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Like a Hammer: Commanding Presence and Claiming Identity With Bold Color, Pride, and Expression

Review of "Like a Hammer" at SAM.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Sumeya Block, and edited by Teen Editor Joshua Fernandes!

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Jeffrey Gibson’s loud, emotional, and thought-provoking exhibit "Like a Hammer" is filled with pops of color, ornate beading, chaotic shapes, celebrations of Choctaw-Cherokee culture, and nods to the LGBTQ+ community. Gibson creates a space for viewers to celebrate what makes them different and recognize the hardships society creates.

When I first walked into "Like a Hammer," I was met with bright colors, bold lettering, and various household items that had been repurposed into vibrant and chaotic installations. What immediately caught my eye was an ironing board covered in slashes of neon pink, yellow, and green and a massive flag sewn with patches of different textured fabrics. When I walked into the exhibit I could feel the energy of Gibson’s work animating the room. I could taste the joy, hardship, and care exuded in every stitch and pop of color. What particularly caught my eye was a bright colored travois or parfleche, a large container pulled by horses that is most commonly made by Native American Women. Jeffrey Gibson's "Like a Hammer" exhibit at SAM. Photo by Natali Wiseman.

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Art That Isn’t Theater

Teen Editorial Staff May Editorial

Written by Teen Editor Anya Shukla!

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It’s the final stretch: only one more month until school ends! We on the Teen Editorial Staff are right there beside you, crossing off the days on the calendar. But with the end of school comes testing—every teen’s worst nightmare. At terrible, terrible times like these, we have to turn to our only source of happiness: procrastination. And we have a great lineup of art for you this month, guaranteed to help you forget about the mountains of homework you have waiting for you at home. To really change things up, we’ll be exploring the various types of art Seattle has to offer—music, visual arts—sans theater. That’s right. No theater. Crazy, right? That’s because May also means getting ready for Mother’s Day… AKA perfect gift time. What can you give someone who already has it all? Well, there’s nothing better than spending time together at a show: what other gift could give your mom the night of her life and show her how cultured you are? Luckily, we’ve got you covered with classics, guaranteed to appeal to your mother’s more…elevated artistic sensibilities. Shows like Handel’s Samson with Pacific MusicWorks, Cecilia Vicuña: About to Happen at The Henry, or Like A Hammer at SAM will be surefire parent-pleasers. And, if you want to get your mom pumped, try Laser SZA at the Laser Dome at Pacific Science Center. Best of all, you can give your mom the Mother’s Day she’s been dreaming about, all while pretending your schoolwork doesn’t exist. That’s what we call a win-win.

Lead photo credit: Mariya Georgieva on Unsplash.

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SPECIAL OFFER: Tour Merch & Destroy with the Artist @ BAM

​Bellevue Arts Museum has a special offer for TeenTix Members!

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Visual arts: cool. Tours of exhibits: cooler. Tours led by the artist themselves: the COOLEST.

On Saturday, April 13, BAM is offering 10 spots to TeenTix Members in an extra-special tour with Clyde Petersen, the artist behind Merch & Destroy. Clyde himself will be leading the 45min tour through his exhibition that’s currently on view through April 14, so it will be one of the last days to view the exhibit!

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Stop-Motion Animation Extravaganza!

​If you've ever dreamed of becoming a stop-motion master, now's your chance.

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Calling all stop-motion animation fans! Have you ever wanted to make your own short film? There's no time like the present! TWO of our Partners are offering opportunities in this field just for teens.

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Stories of the Past Connect to our Future

Review of Lore Re-imagined at the Wing Luke Museum.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Eleanor Chang-Stucki, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Hannah Schoettmer!

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“i hope the honesty of my searching and unknowing feels like a palpable thing a viewer could hold. because my experience, this sensation, is not unique. it is, sadly, so many of ours to share. and i hope we can sit here with it, here, in the quiet of this room, with this work’s embrace of its precarity and incompleteness—its recognition of its own insufficiency as an archival object—and know that maybe we, in our flawed unbelonging and unknowing diasporic selves, are also enough.” -Satpreet Kahlon

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Edgar Arceneaux Provokes Thoughts on Race in America

Review of Edgar Arceneaux: Library of Black Lies at the Henry Art Gallery.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Sofia Gerrard, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Lily Williamson!

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Sitting in an empty corner of The Henry Art Gallery is a small shack made from wooden slats no more than an inch thick. There are slivers of space between each board, and, despite the gallery's tall ceilings, the shack is hardly more than six feet tall. It seems almost like a relic of history, maybe the crowded house of a family on the frontier, or a shed containing hidden fugitives, but certainly not the exterior of "Library of Black Lies," one of the most thought provoking and unique pieces of modern art created by artist Edgar Arceneaux.

As you step inside the shack, you are greeted by a partially obscured mirror reflecting back an image of yourself. Shelves with books—some old, some wrapped in black tarps and tied together with string—create a labyrinth, one that is purposefully disorienting, but guides you to the center. As I walked through this labyrinth, the shack seemed to become larger, and my reflection peeked back at me, wondering where I would turn and where my path would lead. As I finally approached the center of the shack (shortcuts through the circuitous route are impossible), the books on display were no longer covered with drab tarps—instead, they sparkled, a warm yellow light glinting off the sugar crystals erupting from the pages.

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The Past in Polaroids

Review of “Polaroids: Personal, Private, Painterly" Photographs from the Collection of Robert E. Jackson at Bellevue Arts Museum.

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Soren Kopp, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Lily Williamson!

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Human beings are constantly categorizing. “Polaroids: Personal, Private, Painterly" Photographs from the Collection of Robert E. Jackson, showcases a variety of Polaroids separated into the aforementioned categories. Out of the 13,000 photos in his collection, about 300 are Polaroids, 150 of which were selected and curated by Jackson in conjunction with Ben Heywood, chief curator at the Bellevue Arts Museum.

“Personal” refers to portraits. These images capture individuals, and the essence of who they are—the focus is on the photo’s subject rather than their actions or environment. There are certain parallels to be drawn between these portraits and selfies in our age of instant, digital cameras—they serve the same purpose. The importance doesn’t rest in what’s happening in the photo, but in the subject. However, when one thinks about photos as documents of history, even if they’re not depicting a well-known historical event, one can think about not just what’s going on inside the photo, but what’s going on in the world around that photo. Compiling photos from similar time periods can help you piece together foreign places. Social and political movements can cause people to make similar art and take similar photographs—the shared experiences of a group can influence a whole generation and their ways of thinking. Textbooks can easily miss out on depicting the way history has impacted individuals, but experiencing history through a lens makes the intangible, tangible, and the inaccessible, accessible. Conversely, capturing individuals in the context of different societies shows the universally human responses to situations, despite the circumstances. Two pieces framed together in this section portray two couples: one from the early 2000’s of a young pair posing by a fountain with flowers, and the other of a middle-aged couple posing on the beach, superimposed above the ocean. Although the individuals are from different worlds with different historical settings, they both display the same human response to being in love: a desire to capture their bond as couples.

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The Jimi Hendrix We Didn’t Know

Review of Bold as Love: Jimi Hendrix at Home at the Northwest African American Museum

Written by TeenTix Press Corps Newsroom Writer Lark Keteyian, and edited by Teen Editorial Staff Member Anya Shukla!

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Jimi Hendrix is a Seattle icon. Or so I'm told. Before going to see Bold as Love: Jimi Hendrix at Home at the Northwest African American Museum, I had never really gotten around to listening to his music. I'm also terrible at museums; I expect them to be stagnant and awkwardly informational. So the combination of a museum with a Seattle superstar I knew next to nothing about was mildly terrifying. I slunk into the exhibit with my head down, afraid all the fans would see the Hendrix-ignorance in my eyes, and prepared to be bombarded with trying-too-hard inspirational quotes.

The exhibit, guest curated by Jackie Peterson, is set up like a timeline, snaking chronologically around the edges of the room. Photographs and glass-encased objects—postcards, the sofa Hendrix slept on while home from tour, his grandmother's hats—drew me in with their quiet connection to this icon. I ended up learning about Hendrix's history almost accidentally: from Seattle, where he was born and spent his childhood, drawing comics and pretending to play guitar on a broom, to mid-60s London, where he almost immediately became a guitar star.

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Challenging Viewers in a New Way

Review of “Between Bodies” at Henry Art Gallery.

Written by Eleanor C, during TeenTix’s arts criticism training workshop, the Fall 2018 Press Corps Intensive.

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Art has one true purpose, to evoke feeling, to cause a reaction within someone.

The enigmatic art exhibit entitled "Between Bodies" conjures up complex, even contradictory, responses. At times the immersive installations made me feel as if I was both in our recognizable world and beyond it, leading me to reconsider ideas about representation, humanity, and the environment.

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“Between Bodies” Encourages Interconnected Ways of Thinking

Review of "Between Bodies" at Henry Art Gallery.

Written by Ali R, during TeenTix’s arts criticism training workshop, the Fall 2018 Press Corps Intensive.

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Imagine you’re standing in a dark room with mirrors scattered across it. TV screens hang from the walls and bubbles come across them every couple seconds. On one screen, a fisherman talks about his tradition of fishing. It’s very trippy, like you could be in "The Matrix." This mind-numbing experience is a work of art, “Glistening Troubles” by Susanne M. Winterling, just one part of the exhibition “Between Bodies” at the Henry Art Gallery.

The entirety of the exhibit felt like this. It didn’t seem to fit with other art exhibits. It stood out for its differences, mostly because of its tackling of environmental, social, economic and political issues from a perspective we don’t always see get a voice. Many of the artists use their experiences as members of LGBTQ communities to present these global issues in alternative ways, ways that promote collaboration and unity. It left the viewer thinking long after seeing it, trying to figure it out.

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Join us at Seattle Art Fair this weekend!

​The PNW's most impressive gallery showcase is back!

One of our favorite events of the year is THIS WEEKEND--join us for Seattle Art Fair from August 2 - 5. Stop by and enjoy more than 100 local, national and international galleries alongside the vibrant arts community of the Pacific Northwest!

Speedy Graphito, The Dream of Roy, 2017

We're stoked to offer our teen members exclusive access to $5 TeenTix tickets per day, in addition to a 20% discount on all ticket types for adults. Click here to purchase tickets online, or use your TeenTix Pass at the door!

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Humanity and Imperfection

​Review of MUSE: Mickalene Thomas Photographs at Henry Art Gallery, written by TeenTix Press Corps Member Lily W.!
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Mickalene Thomas’s most recent exhibition, MUSE: Mickalene Thomas Photographs at the Henry Museum and tête-à-tête is a reminder of the importance of community in the process of creating and experiencing art. The collection features Thomas’s photography and film—both lesser known aspects of her artistic repertoire, but ones that deserve just as much appreciation as the imposing rhinestone-studded paintings she’s best known for. The exhibit, based on a book of the same title released in 2015, is embellished with a tête-à-tête of works curated by Thomas of artists she knows and takes inspiration from, including the work of Derrick Adams, John Edmonds, and Carrie Mae Weems among others.

Derrick Adams. Crossroads. 2012. Courtesy of the artist.

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Forgotten Black Brilliance

​Review of Figuring History at Seattle Art Museum. Written by TeenTix Press Corps Member Will S!

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I’m skeptical about art exhibits, I enjoy them enough, but find trouble in writing reviews for them. The art of painting has never been a breathtaking experience for me, in creating or viewing, and so when visiting paintings I find that my perspectives can be more negative and unappealing than most. But with "Figuring History," I was surprised—it felt new and different. The exhibit features three different artists, who all portray black America and forgotten black figures.

George Washington Carver Crossing the Delaware: Page from an American History Textbook, 1975, Robert Colescott

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Strategically Highlighted in Glitter

​Review of Figuring History at Seattle Art Museum. Written by TeenTix Press Corps Member Lily W!

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“Figuring History,” - a powerful new exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum- insists on representation for the underrepresented. “Figuring History” features the cross-generational work of three artists—Robert Colescott, Kerry James Marshall, and Mickalene Thomas—whose paintings highlight the ways in which people of color have been traditionally left out of art and history. This exhibition changes the subject of the rich history of painting, and tells the stories of people of color from their own perspectives. This, combined with the exuberance of each artist’s work, makes this exhibition a must-see.

The exhibit begins with the paintings of Robert Colescott (1925-2009), who invokes a dream-like quality through warped figures that meld into each other in large mural-like paintings where you don’t quite know where to look. His work highlights people of color in history who many have never heard of, often juxtaposing these little known but important figures with less noble caricatures of black people. One of the first paintings in the exhibition, “Knowledge of the Past is the Key to the Future: Matthew Henson and the Quest for the North Pole,” depicts Matthew Henson, a black man who played a major role in the first team of explorers who reached the North Pole in 1906. This painting, and others in the series, highlight the lack of knowledge about the vital role people of color have played in history, and points out how detrimental that is to today's youth of color who don’t see themselves represented positively in history or popular culture.

Souvenir I, 1997, by Kerry James Marshall

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Your art could be featured!

Apply now to see or perform your art in the all-teen-curated Teen Arts & Opportunity Fair!
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One of our favorite things about The New Guard: Teen Arts Leadership Society is that it opens doors for teens to create and curate the art they want to see in the world. In true youth arts leadership fashion, New Guard members Abbey S. and Esme D. are piloting a brand new annual program: the Teen Arts & Opportunity Fair, happening May 6th at Washington Hall!

From Abbey: "This is an event where teens can come with their friends and families to check out the different arts opportunities that our city offers through TeenTix & our partners. We are calling this an ‘Opportunity Fair’ and not a ‘Career Fair’ to promote exploration of the many various opportunities to engage in as a teenager in our community."

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New Guard Visits: Wing Luke Museum

Get all the deets on The New Guard's trip to the Wing Luke Museum!

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One of our favorite things about The New Guard is that teens get opportunities throughout the year to take trips to TeenTix’s Partner Organizations! A few months ago, The New Guard used their time to take a formal outing to the Wing Luke Museum. Not only did they get to enjoy a personal tour of the museum and learn about its history in in Seattle’s lively International District, but New Guardians also had a couple hours to spend with the art, and followed up the whole experience with dim sum at a local restaurant! And, since they were closeby, the group took a jaunt to Seattle Art Museum’s Teen Night Out—overall, a fantastic night of fun, friends, and food.

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