Head to Garfield Community Center and find two projects, both on the outside of the building, created in 1995 by Beliz Brother and Mark Calderon. The center was one of five replaced under an 18-million-dollar Community Centers and Seattle Center levy passed by Seattle voters in 1991. Functioning as a central meeting point for a multicultural community, the facility incorporates works of art that highlight the neighborhood’s unique cultural diversity
In Proverbs and Icons (1995), 14 proverbs and quotations greet visitors making their way up the stairs of the community center. The quotations were culled from hundreds submitted by community residents and include phrases such as “He that helps another helps himself” and “We fear things in proportion to our ignorance of them.” Inlaid in the stair risers, the phrases are made of cast-aluminum recycled from cans donated by the community. Local teens worked with Brother and Calderon to create the various shapes of aluminum icons that separate the quotations.
Above the center’s main entry doors is Calderon and Brother’s untitled cast-aluminum grille, also created in ’95. The design is based on traditional textile designs of the Kuba people of Zaire.
Both projects by Brother and Calderon were funded by Seattle Parks and Recreation Department 1% for Art funds.
IMAGES: Beliz Brother and Mark Calderon, Proverbs and Icons, 1995, cast aluminum (from recycled cans donated by the community), and Untitled, 1995, cast aluminum. Located at Garfield Community Center in Seattle’s Central District, 2323 East Cherry St.
Weekly Art Hit is featuring artworks every week from the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s and 2000s to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the city’s public art program.