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Hope Corps, Artists at the Center, & Youth Arts Awards for 2023 – 2025

Indigenous band Khu.eex' performing at Artists at the Center in December 2021. Photo courtesy of Jenny Crooks.

$1.13M for Downtown and Neighborhood Parks Murals, Seattle Center Performances, and Arts and Cultural Experiences for Seattle Youth

SEATTLE (October 2) – The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture continues investing in the city’s creative future, awarding $1.13 million to more than 75 local artists and organizations. Through the Hope Corps Downtown Seattle and Seattle Parks and Recreation Mural Projects, Artists at the Center, and Youth Arts grants, the arts will touch each corner of Seattle. By investing in creative workers these resources also beautify neighborhoods, captivate audiences, and nurture the artistic aspirations of youth and contribute to the economic vitality of the City. As early as this month, a surge of artistic programming will pop-up in communities across the city. 

“There can be no art without artists and creative workers – that’s why our administration is advancing programs like Hope Corps that invest in creatives and arts organizations, delivering needed artistic programming throughout Seattle,” said Mayor Harrell. “More public art means a more vibrant, welcoming city for all, and I’m excited to see how these local artists further enhance our city’s beauty and showcase its creativity.” 

“Seattle’s arts community is the heart of our economy and cultural identity. By supporting the creative sector through a diverse range of grants, we not only empower our artists to thrive but also to enrich our communities,” said Gülgün Kayim, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture interim director. “I look forward to working together to ensure that art continues to flourish, resonating with the diverse voices that make Seattle truly unique.” 

Hope Corps

Hope Corps, an artist employment and COVID-19 recovery initiative, continues to connect under- and unemployed artists and cultural workers with invaluable creative career advancement opportunities. Nearly 60 murals—temporary and permanent—will dot the city landscape beginning later this year and into 2024. The following awarded projects are in alignment with Mayor Harrell’s Many Hands Art Initiative, not only pumping art into the heart of Seattle but also combatting graffiti with paid opportunities to transform neighborhoods throughout the city. With a total investment of $877,000 directly to artists and organizations, these projects will represent the city’s rich cultural history and community visions for the future.  

The Downtown Seattle Mural Project, a component of Mayor Harrell’s Downtown Activation Plan, represents a partnership with the Office of Economic Development and six trusted downtown neighborhood organizations. The collaboration will create approximately 40 murals spanning from SODO to Belltown, to celebrate Downtown Seattle’s vibrant arts, culture, and entertainment. Organizations will contract with local artists to create more pedestrian-friendly experiences for residents and tourists in the heart of the city.  

Hope Corps Downtown Seattle Mural Project – $700,000 
Organizations Neighborhoods Murals 
Belltown United Belltown 10-14 
Downtown Seattle Association (DSA)Central Business District
Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority (SCIDpda) Chinatown-International District 
SODO Business Improvement Area (SODO BIA) SODO  
Visit Seattle Downtown 8-10 
Wing Luke Memorial Foundation  Chinatown-International District 

Seattle Parks and Recreation Mural Project will fund 18 talented artists who will bring temporary murals to life at parks public restrooms throughout the city. The mural locations span areas outside the Downtown Activation Plan. Seattle Parks and Recreation’s (SPR) equity tier system was used for parks selection to ensure traditionally underserved parks first receive project dollars and services. Projects are scheduled for design and installation in 2023 and 2024, with artworks maintained through at least 2025 and into 2026. Awards are based on the size of the mural, range from $6,000 to $15,000, and reinforce ARTS vision of “a city driven by creativity that provides the opportunity for everyone to engage in diverse arts and cultural experiences.”   

Hope Corps Seattle Parks and Recreation Mural Project – $177,000 
Projects listed alphabetically by park name.  
Awardees Parks 
Dozfy Nguyen Alki Beach Park
Craig Cundiff Bayview Playground 
Baso Fibonacci Cascade Playground 
Abraham Hailemichael Awalom Cowen Park 
Rohena Alam Khan David Rogers Park 
Victor MelendezDr. Blanche Lavizzo Park 
Scott Méxcal Georgetown Playfield 
Juliana Kang Robinson High Point Community Center 
Angelina Villalobos Soto, (onesevennine) Jefferson Park 
Claudia Villalobos John C. Little Sr. Park 
Thomas Blayney Judkins Park 
Ari Glass Lakeridge Park 
Addison Karl Lincoln Park 
Devin Finley Magnolia Playfield 
Carolyn Hitt Rogers Playground 
Angie Hinojos Yusuf Roxhill Park 
M. Curry Designs Sandel Park 
Blanca Santander Woodland Park  

Artists at the Center 

In its third year, Artists at the Center offers a year-long slate of pop-up performances at Seattle Center featuring up-and-coming artists. The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, and Seattle Center, along with funders Climate Pledge Arena and Seattle Kraken, have partnered to produce Artists at the Center 2024 —an opportunity for emerging artists and the community to enliven the campus and celebrate Climate Pledge Arena’s commitment to the arts. The Uptown Arts and Culture Coalition will continue to partner with Artists at the Center for promotion, community engagement, and year-end celebrations.  

The program is designed to offer campus visitors a surprising and delightful array of arts and cultural experiences, encountering performances as they make their way to a Climate Pledge Arena event, pop by for a Seattle Center Festál festival, head to a resident organization production, stroll through Seattle Center, or visit businesses in the surrounding Uptown neighborhood. Twenty-six performances will take place from November 2023 to September 2024. 

Artists at the Center – $106,000 
Awardees  Awardees 
206 Universal (206 Zulu) Leanna Keith 
A Personal Point of View, LLC Lex Ramirez Bookings 
Akoiya Harris Orquesta Northwest 
Alan Bryant Penguin Productions 
Big World Breaks LLC Piyali Biswas 
Das Biest Performance Project  Rachell Wong 
David Holden Jr The Rhapsody Project 
Edward Randolph Bowles Surrealized and Blazinspace 
House of Kala Trivia Puppet Company, LLC 
James Stewart TLALOKAN 
Jarman Hauser Urgent Africa 
Jesse Higman VCBynum Arts and Education 
Juul Divaakhuu Windz of Change Alliance  

Youth Arts  

The Youth Arts (YA) grant, is a two-year funding program that champions equitable access to arts and cultural learning experiences for the diverse youth of Seattle. Designed to provide enrichment opportunities for middle and high school-aged youth, this grant transcends classroom boundaries by offering arts and cultural programs outside of school hours. Led by experienced artists and teaching artists with deep community connections, YA is expanding access to arts and cultural opportunities for young people from diverse racial and socioeconomic backgrounds. 

With a commitment to creative youth development, Youth Arts disburses a total grant amount of $12,000, distributing $6,000 annually over two years, to 24 art and culture organizations. From 2023 – 2025, these programs will span the creative spectrum, offering young minds avenues for self-expression and exploration. 

Youth Arts – $144,000 
First Year Awardees 
2023-2025 cycle
Second Year Awardees 
2022-2024 cycle
British-American Youth Festival Theatre  206 Universal 
Gage Academy of Art Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association 
The Key to Change Eritrean Association in Greater Seattle 
Pongo Publishing Extraordinary Futures 
Rain City Rock Camp Haida Roots 
Sawhorse Revolution Jack Straw Foundation 
Seattle Arts & Lectures Lauren Holloway 
Seattle Public Theater The Rhapsody Project 
Totem Star South End Stories, fiscally sponsored by Intiman Theatre 
Velocity Dance Center Urban Artworks 
Young Shakespeare Workshop Wing Luke Memorial Foundation 
Youth in Focus Youth Speaks Seattle