On February 12, 2015 the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture will officially launch Spacefinder Seattle, a new website designed to connect artists and artspaces. Spacefinder Seattle is a database that will eventually include every rental space in the region that’s available to artists, and arts and cultural organizations. Spacefinder Seattle can be found online at www.SpacefinderSeattle.org.
The site’s database includes presentation spaces, such as theaters, galleries, cinemas, and museums, and the relatively invisible artists’ creative spaces, such as studios, rehearsal rooms, and offices. There will be event spaces, meetings spaces, and even raw retail and warehouse spaces for lease. The site is launching with approximately 200 spaces, and will grow over time. Spacefinder Seattle allows artists to search the database by dozens of variables, including price and availability. There are no fees associated with using the site, which is underwritten by the City’s Office of Arts & Culture. It is envisioned as a tool to connect artists and arts organizations to available spaces for development, rehearsal, or presentation of their work, and encourage the regional artspace marketplace.
Spacefinder Seattle was created under the aegis of the Cultural Space Agency in the city’s Office of Arts & Culture. Through this program, the Office of Arts & Culture’s goal is to support, strengthen, and expand cultural square footage in the city of Seattle. To achieve this goal they work with artists and arts organizations to strengthen their role in charting the future of their creative spaces, work with developers and builders to incorporate arts and culture into new projects, and work with property owners to incentivize the preservation and expansion of arts and culture uses. The Office of Arts & Culture also promotes the economic activity generated by arts and cultural activities, and educates citizens, property owners, and developers on the importance of the arts to property values and neighborhood character.