MÁS – Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle: a Neighborhood Matching Fund profile

MÁS – Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle is an an umbrella organization created by Afrolatino communities and artists which activates and empowers communities through art, raising awareness about the history and cultural contributions of Latinos of African descent.

MÁS received a Small Sparks grant through our Neighborhood Matching Fund to help produce their spring concert, Pregones de Mi Tierra. We recently checked in with them to see how it went.

All photos by Leo Carmona.

From the MÁS Team:

This past Sunday June 9, with the support of 4Culture and the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, MÁS Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle, realized its first spring concert: “Pregones de Mi Tierra.” This event was held in the Plaza Roberto Maestas, the space managed by El Centro de la Raza. In this space, MÁS brought together 10 groups of artists whose work centers Afrolatino and Caribbean culture for a four-hour program that explored and engaged with the theme of the “pregón,” or the street seller’s cry, a genre of musical and artistic traditions inspired by oral street culture. The plaza was converted into a space where artists and the public mingled to playfully celebrate their creativity, humor, and joy while also sharing the particular histories of unique afrodescendent populations across Latin America. The laughter, the voices calling across space, the bodies in movement, and the sound of the drum collectively invaded the public space, converting it into a communal setting with the particular flavor of “home.” We sang. We danced to the rhythms of Candombe, Mapalé, Punta, Samba, Parranda, Capoeira, Tamborito, Festejo, and Bomba. We nourished our hearts as we witnessed each other and felt seen and heard. The energy and joy of the encounter created an urgency to continue the work to unite and come together in events such as this. We are infinitely grateful to 4Culture and the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. Thanks to their economic support we were able to bring into fruition such an important project here in the Pacific Northwest.


Del equipo de MÁS:

El pasado domingo 9 de junio, con el apoyo de 4Culture y el Departamento de Vecindarios de Seattle, MÁS Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle, realizó su primer concierto de primavera: “Pregones de Mi Tierra”. Este evento se realizó en la Plaza Roberto Maestas, el espacio administrado por El Centro de la Raza. En este espacio, MÁS reunió a 10 grupos de artistas, cuyo centro de trabajo es la cultura Afrolatino y Caribeña, para un programa de cuatro horas que exploraba y se ocupaba del tema del “Pregón”, un género de tradiciones musicales y artísticas inspiradas por la cultura oral de la calle. La plaza se convirtió en un espacio donde los artistas y el público se entremezclaban para celebrar con picardía su creatividad, humor y alegría al mismo tiempo que compartían las historias particulares de poblaciones afrodescendientes únicas en toda América Latina. La risa, las voces que llamaban a través del espacio, los cuerpos en movimiento y el sonido del tambor colectivamente invadieron el espacio público, convirtiéndolo en un entorno comunal con el sabor particular de “hogar”. Cantamos, bailamos al ritmo de Candombe, Mapale, Punta, Samba, Parranda, Capoeira, Tamborito, Festejo y Bomba. Alimentamos nuestros corazones cuando fuimos testigos y nos sentimos vistos y escuchados. La energía y la alegría del encuentro crearon la urgencia de continuar el trabajo para unirse y reunirnos en eventos como este. Estamos infinitamente agradecidos a 4Culture y al Departamento de Vecindarios de Seattle porque gracias a su apoyo económico pudimos llevar a buen puerto un proyecto tan importante aquí en el noroeste del Pacífico.

Learn more about the Neighborhood Matching Fund and how you can get involved at seattle.gov/neighborhoods/nmf.

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Historic Georgetown Steam Plant Powers Graphic Novel

An atist works outside the Georgetown Steam Plant.

The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS), in partnership with Seattle City Light has selected David Lasky and Mairead Case to create a fictionalized graphic novel about the historic Georgetown Steam Plant.

Built in 1906, the Georgetown Steam Plant advanced industrial architecture in its time through the early use of reinforced concrete employed on a massive scale. It was also forward thinking in its turbine generator design that greatly increased power generation capability across the nation, and in turn influenced modern power generators.  This project offers the opportunity to bring Seattle history to life, as demonstrated through the development and use of this building.

“We are thrilled to have David Lasky and Mairead Case create a story grounded in the experiences of the people and significance of the steam plant’s history,” says Lynn Best, Chief Environmental Officer Seattle City Light. “Their narrative will reach beyond Seattle and will tell the story of the historic plant as it transitions from retirement into a fully realized cultural space.”

David Lasky

Mairead Case

Lasky and Case will write and illustrate a compelling fictionalized graphic novel that incorporates aspects of the Georgetown Steam Plant’s history. Lasky will serve as the illustrator and bring his skill as a comic book artist with fine art sensibilities’.. Case, serving as the writer, will develop storylines that bring in historical information with a fictionalized narrative to ignite wonder and joy about this special building. Both have works previously published including Carter Family: Don’t Forget This Song, by Frank Young and David Lasky and See you in the Morning by Mairead Case.

Lasky and Case were selected from an open call inviting comic writers, artists, and illustrator teams from Washington, Oregon, Idaho and British Columbia to apply. Seventy-one applications were reviewed by a selection panel that included Taneka Stotts, editor, comics artist, and creator of award winning anthologies; Kelly Froh, comics artist and co-founder of Short Run Comics and Arts Festival; and Larry Reid, Fantagraphics Bookstore Manager and President of the Georgetown Merchants Association.

The team will begin work immediately with in-depth research.  As part of the project, they will be sharing progress throughout the next year in a combination of online updates and in-person events.

The finished book will be printed and made available free of charge through regional libraries, museums, and schools in 2019.  The Georgetown Steam Plant graphic novel is commissioned by the Office of Arts & Culture and is funded by Seattle City Light 1% for Art funds.

One of the generators inside the Georgetown Steam Plant.

Mayor Murray announces nearly $1.3 million in matching fund awards for community-based projects

Mayor Ed Murray announced an investment of $1,299,520 to support 27 community-initiated projects across the City. The awards are from the Neighborhood Matching Fund’s Community Partnership Fund which offers matching funds of up to $100,000 to community organizations committed to fostering and building our community. These awards range from $12,000 to $100,000 with the 27 organizations pledging a total of $1,282,518 in community match resources of volunteer hours, locally raised money, donated materials, and in-kind professional services.

The Neighborhood Matching Fund consists of two funds: the Community Partnership Fund, which is offered three times a year with cash awards up to $100,000; and the Small Sparks Fund, which is offered on a rolling basis throughout the year with cash awards of up to $5,000. The next Community Partnership Fund application deadline is September 25.

The Neighborhood Matching Fund (NMF) provides more than $3 million each year to local organizations. Over its 29-year history, more than 5,000 projects have been funded in partnership with the NMF Program, and its investment in neighborhoods can be seen across the city. For more information about NMF, visit seattle.gov/neighborhoods/nmf/. 

2017 Community Partnership Fund Awards – Summer Cycle

Citywide (Across all Districts)

  • $50,000 to Sea-Mar Community Health Center to produce Fiestas Patrias, a free 2-day cultural festival which provides opportunities for the community to come together to celebrate Latin American arts, culture and heritage through music, dance, food and more. (Community match: $29,500)
  • $14,500 to Festa Italiana to produce the 30th Annual Italian Festival, a free community festival that celebrates the joy of ‘All Things Italian.’ With an average attendance of 25,000, it features art, music, dance, food, and activities for the entire family. The dates this year are September 22 – 24. (Community match: $20,760)
  • $15,000 to Seattle Latino Film Festival to host three free events in October to include a screening of Chronicles of Narnia: Prince of Caspian, a panel on Latin-American Women in Film who will discuss issues facing women filmmakers; and a screening of seven short documentaries produced by universities in Mexico. (Community match: $20,040)
  • $36,520 to Skate Like A Girl and Youth Employment Skateboarding to organize a youth service learning project using skateboarding as the vehicle. Youth ages 12-18 will take part in weekly trainings on such topics as financial literacy, creating safer spaces, career paths, etc. (Community match: $125,000)


District 1

  • $100,000 to Gatewood Elementary School PTA to rebuild the existing one-half acre grassy field area within the playground. Improvements are based upon the Master Plan and full construction documents created with community input. The physical improvements will occur this fall. (Community match: $78,185)
  • $60,000 to Delridge Neighborhood Development Association to organize the Delridge Neighborhoods Let’s Talk Race Series. The 12 events will use film, dialogue, restorative justice, and storytelling to transform the narrative around institutional and historic racism and build stronger relationships between community organizations, individuals, and groups. (Community match: $47,860)
  • $27,500 to Longfellow Creek Neighborhood Path for 24th Ave SW to create a more intentional Longfellow Creek Trail connection along 24th Ave SW between SW Willow St. and SW Graham St. This project will coordinate with a design project by the Mid Sound Fisheries Enhancement Group to reduce flooding, improve drainage, and restore habitat along Longfellow Creek. (Community match: $27,047)


District 2

  • $23,000 to Friends of Detective Cookie Chess Park to develop 30% construction drawings by early 2018 and complete a site survey for permitting. (Community match: $11,541)
  • $49,700 to Rainier Beach Link2Lake Open Space Steering Committee to create schematic design for improvements at Be’er Sheva Park. Possible improvements include greater shoreline access, walkways, and art installations. Extensive community involvement will occur. (Community match: $25,315)
  • $55,800 to Friends of Hawthorne PTA to lead an extensive community engagement process to design a more welcoming and engaging exploration and play-space at Hawthorne Elementary School. (Community match: $47,745)
  • $17,000 to Xbot Robotics to organize a series of STEM robotic workshops for upper elementary and middle school students in Southeast Seattle. Open to all youth, recruitment for the workshops will target underrepresented students, especially immigrants and refugees, who may lack access to STEM activities and robotic kits. (Community match: $26,960)
  • $100,000 to El Centro de la Raza for physical improvements to the building which houses community projects, cultural programming, and activities. The improvements consist of replacing the outdated boiler control system, thermostats, and fan motor system. (Community match: $70,000)
  • $100,000 to Mount Baker Community Club to make internal and external improvements to the clubhouse which will increase energy efficiency and security, reduce noise impacts, and enhance the building’s ability to house community programs and events. (Community match: $50,721)


District 3

  • $100,000 to Madrona PTSA to renovate the playground at Madrona K-8 School, creating an engaging play space that will allow the grounds to be open to the public outside of school hours. The project will redesign landscaping, improve transitions, and replace the play structure. (Community match: $162,600)
  • $70,000 to the Anniversary Committee of the Seattle Chapter of Black Panther Party to celebrate the Party’s 50th Anniversary this fall through outreach activities that share the challenges and successes of the organization. The activities will lead to a three-day public conference next April featuring panels, workshops, and discussions on issues related to human rights, activism, and social justice. (Community match: $117,520)
  • $20,000 to Montlake Community Club to design, fabricate and install signage for the business district. (Community match: $20,525)
  • $26,400 to Low Income Housing Institute to produce Upbeat on Jackson, a monthly concert series at Ernestine Anderson Place. It will feature local jazz, blues, world music, folk, and rock to brings community members together for entertainment that pays tribute to the history of the neighborhood. (Community match: $15,120)
  • $84,000 to Seattle Children’s PlayGarden for Pathway for Play, a project to renovate the playground and improve the landscaping to make the space more accessible for visitors of all abilities. (Community match: $42,925)
  • $29,000 to Renaissance 21 to pilot The Coder’s Club, a 10-week after-school training program for 10 youth to develop mobile/desktop game and website applications. STEM professional, college, and high school volunteers will serve as mentors to the participants. (Community match: $23,188)
  • $30,000 to Panama Folklore to produce a five-week series of workshops to celebrate the rich cultural and artistic heritage of Panama. The workshops will feature dance, music, carnival traditions, and other cultural expressions. (Community match: $26,138)
  • $25,100 to Madison Valley Parents & Neighbors for Calmer Streets to install a traffic circle at 26th Ave E & E Mercer Street. After construction, community volunteers will landscape the circle and once completed, will hold a community celebration in August 2018. (Community match: $14,990)


District 6

  • $12,000 to Sustainable Ballard to launch a tool library in Ballard that will promote community learning and help build skills of self-sufficiency and empowerment around crafting, repair, and general tool operation and safety procedures. The goal is to open by the end of 2017. (Community match: $42,446)


District 7

  • $15,500 to Cascade P-Patch to replace its existing tool shed and garden equipment to provide better services to gardeners and meet ADA requirements. (Community match: $14,790)
  • $25,000 to John Hay Foundation to create construction documents, estimates, permit applications and survey work for the playground area at John Hay Elementary School. This phase of work will be based on the existing conceptual plan created with community input. (Community match: $25,970)
  • $65,500 to Shunpike to produce Uptown, Upfront, a three-phase public art project that includes artist residencies, the Artists of Color Expo & Symposium (ACES) at Seattle Center, and community-generated and youth-created murals surrounding the Seattle International Film Festival’s Uptown Cinema. (Community match: $85,895)
  • $100,000 to Friends of Capehart to construct two public trails through the Capehart section of Discovery Park to enhance human-nature interactions and improve hiking. (Community match: $57,558)
  • $48,000 to Pike Pine Urban Neighborhood Council to support the Central Hills Triangle Collaborative (CHTC) as it continues the Lid I-5’s effort to cover Interstate 5 that divides Downtown from First Hill, Capitol Hill, and Denny Triangle. CHTC will hold charrettes and report the results to community members. (Community match: $52,180)

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Art Brightens Up Windows of Historic Lincoln Reservoir Gate House

Installation of art at the Lincoln Reservoir Gate House

Washington Middle School students at work on the project

The historic Lincoln Reservoir Gate House at Cal Anderson Park just got a lot more colorful. Fourteen original temporary artworks created by nine Washington Middle School students now grace the windows of the gate house and feature images inspired by the four seasons.

The project, titled Seasons All Around, is a collaboration between the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, Seattle Parks and Recreation’s Out of School Time program at Washington Middle School, Seattle Public Utilities, and our own Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Historic Preservation Program. Students worked with teaching artist Nate Herth over 15 weeks to design and create the 14 original paintings, which reflect on the park and the vibrancy of Seattle. The classes took place at Washington Middle School and the students, representing the many races and ethnicities of Seattle, drew upon their varied prior experience with art, color, and Seattle’s neighborhoods to create this public art installation.

Our Historic Preservation program was involved in this project as the Lincoln Reservoir and adjoining Bobby Morris Playfield were designated as a Seattle Landmark in November 1998. The reservoir, built after the Great Seattle Fire of 1889, was put to use in 1901. In 2000 the reservoir was taken out of service and replaced by underground tanks, but the gate house remains. The park reopened in 2005 with four additional acres of useable open space.

This Sunday, May 22 from 11 a.m. to noon you can join the students, teaching artist Nate Herth, and City departments as we host an opening celebration of the temporary artworks.

Seattle Channel receives 17 Emmy nominations

Originally Posted April 4, 2016 by Seattle Channel

Seattle Channel is honored to receive 17 Northwest Regional Emmy-award nominations from the Northwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS). The station’s nominations include overall station excellence with the channel competing against some of the region’s commercial and public television stations.

The 2016 nominations were announced Friday night and highlight the quality of several Seattle Channel series, including public-affairs program City Inside/Out; documentary series Community Stories; weekly magazine show CityStream and several Art Zone segments.

“These nominations underscore Seattle Channel’s commitment to helping Seattle residents connect with their city from its history, to its artists, to its public policies,” said John Giamberso, Seattle Channel general manager. “I congratulate the staff on its work.”

The Northwest regional Emmy awards will be announced June 4. The NATAS region includes five states: Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.

Here is a listing of Seattle Channel’s 17 Emmy nominations:

Overall Excellence – Seattle Channel
• Seattle Channel • John Giamberso, general manager

Arts/Entertainment – Feature/Segment
Art Zone: Ernie Sapiro: Musician Project:  Ralph Bevins, producer/photographer; Valerie Vozza, photographer
Art Zone: Glenn Rudolph: Ralph Bevins, producer/photographer/editor

Arts/Entertainment – Program/Special
Community Stories: Enfu: Ian Devier, producer; Shannon Gee, senior producer

Historic/Cultural – Feature/Segment
CityStream: Taiko!: Ian Devier, producer
CityStream: Georgetown Steam Plant: Ralph Bevins, producer/photographer/editor
Art Zone: Louie Gong: Valerie Vozza, DP/editor; Kathy Tuohey, producer

Historic/Cultural – Program/Special
Community Stories: An American Hero: Shiro Kashino: Shannon Gee, producer/director; Randy Eng, animation; Stephen Thomas Cavit, audio engineer/sound designer; Lawrence Matsuda, writer

Health/Science – Program/Special
CityStream: Science Fun: Megan Erb, senior producer; Shannon Gee, producer; Randy Eng, photographer/editor; Roberta Romero, host

Politics/Government – Program/Special
City Inside/Out: Juvenile Justice: Susan Han, senior producer; Brian Callanan, host/producer; Matt Peterson, photographer/editor

Interview/Discussion – Program/Special
Art Zone: Duff McKagan Interview: Nancy Guppy, senior producer/host; Ralph Bevins, photographer/editor; Peggy Lycett, editor
City Inside/Out: Rental Rules: Susan Han, senior producer; Brian Callanan, host/producer; Matt Peterson, photographer/editor

Seattle Channel: It’s Not What You Think: Ian Devier, producer/editor/photographer; Kevin Patnik, creative director; Lori Patrick, producer/communications manager; Bryan Cox, art director; Judy Stuhmer, senior designer; Molly Beier, project manager

Photographer/Video Essay
Art Zone: Hak Bo Lee: Valerie Vozza

Community Stories: Enfu: Ian Devier
Art Zone: Ernie Sapiro: Musician Project: Ralph Bevins
Community Stories: An American Hero: Shiro Kashino: Shannon Gee and Randy Eng