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Art coming to a park near you

The new Seattle Park District is enlivening the region with more art, more events and more fun with the Put the Arts in Parks program.

The Put the Arts in Parks program is a partnership between the Office of Arts & Culture and Seattle Parks and Recreation, celebrating diversity, building community connections, and energizing parks while connecting with underserved communities. A feature of the program is temporary art installations in public parks throughout the city.

Beginning in June, seven temporary artworks will be installed in four parks, Ballard Commons Park, Cal Anderson Park, Delridge Playfield, Duwamish Waterway Park and Lake City Mini Park.

The first artwork installed is Water-qwuʔ by artist Melissa Koch at Lake City Mini Park.

MKoch‘qwuʔ – ‘WATER’  is a temporary art installation that celebrates the sacredness of water. The project is inspired by the wetlands, marshes and streams found in the Lake City area and honors the Duwamish tribe known as hah-chu-ahbsh (Lake People) who were the original inhabitants of the land with their settlements along Lake Washington.

The artwork consists of imagery that has been cut out of Tyvek and is inspired by local mythologies and the nature of water in its varying forms: raining, coursing, flowing, rippling, rolling, splashing, shimmering, as the element that supports life and connects us to one another and to our environment.


The artwork will hang from the back side of an existing concrete archway in the Lake City Mini Park through August 8, 2016. Funding is made possible through the Seattle Parks District.

For more information about Put the Arts in Parks programs and art installations check out the Put the Arts in Parks brochure.

Melissa Koch combines drawing, painting, collage, printmaking and more recently, mixed media and cut Tyvek installations to create multi layered visual narratives that explore myths and stories. She participated in the Office of Arts & Culture’s 2016 Public Art Boot Camp. Her art practice and creative life are ongoing commitments to innovating and exploring new ideas not only technically and aesthetically, but also on a human and ecological level.

Installation images by Jenny Crooks.


ARTS adds parking… for thoughts, in Ballard


A new temporary art installation, PARK YOUR THOUGHTS by artist Blanca Santander has transformed a slice of Ballard Commons into a public poetry corner as people Park their Thoughts, free of charge. Santander’s artwork consists of a large black monolith with word tiles attached with Velcro on the surface.

IMG_0536This interactive installation encourages visitors to engage and express themselves with street poetry. The words on the tiles spring from the local community’s input and fosters expression, inclusion, acceptance, family, nature and life. The artwork empowers people to compose poems and thoughts to share with the community. Funding is made possible through the Seattle Parks District.

Blanca Santander majored in fine arts and studied painting, drawing, sculpture, engraving, photography, and art history. She was influenced by great post-impressionist and modern masters, Chagall, Modigliani, and Klimt. Santander’s paintings are intimate, spiritual and feminine and connected with Pachamama, or Mother Nature. She has exhibited her work at the Seattle Municipal Tower Ethnic Heritage Gallery, City of Kent Centennial Center Gallery and the Sacred Circle Gallery in the Daybreak Star Cultural Center.

Installation images by Jenny Crooks.



My Home, exploring the meaning of home

For the temporary art installation My Home, artist Elise Koncsek provides a voice for Seattleites experiencing homelessness and a space/forum/outlet to publicly share their needs and ideas for housing solutions. The installation will consist of approximately 15 painted laser cut wood panels suspended from the arch at Lake City Mini Park. The central panel will represent the concept of “Home” and will be surrounded by other brightly painted panels that contain definitions of the concept of home offered by homeless and refugee Seattleites that Koncsek worked with to create the installation.

MyHome-LakeCityMiniPark-2016-3k-7Koncsek’s aim is to spark discussion about homelessness in our city and encourage inclusion of people receiving housing services in the designing of service programs. My Home was created in collaboration with Consuela Thomas, Sylvester Young Jr., Crissy, Haregu Kahsory, JR, Olivia & Hailey, Lwam Tesfay, Mya “Baby Girl” Haggard, Daniel “Bad Boy” Haggard, Tsedale Woldesemaya, Robert M. Stevens, Ayan Ali, Dahlak Andemariam, Karlie Taylor, Willie III, and the staff at Mary’s Place Family Center. Special thanks to Artech for their Public Art Grant which provided installation support and Zot Lasers for laser cutting services.

Funding is made possible through the Seattle Park District.