A Free, Artists At The Center Painting Pop Up

Seeking the participation of individuals to collaborate with strangers in 9 relational art performances

On the Mural Amphitheater Stage in The Seattle Center
Sunday, June 16th 6pm to 7:30pm

This painting event invites the visitors to Seattle’s Center, families, strangers and outliers to participate in a common project, accomplishing a series of large-scale paintings together on a Collaborative Landscape. Set on the Mural Amphitheater Stage, a 16 foot elevated canvas stretcher functions as a table, a locus of gathering. A painting will be produced every 20 minutes, with 20 to 30 people participating in each composition; 100 people can participate in 90 minutes. As a temporal art, each painting is washed away so a new group can form. The creation of these paintings can be done anyone, regardless of age, physical or artistic ability.

Applying pigment is as simple as pouring liquid from a cup. It is meeting with nature, the other, and the responsibility of the forces at hand which change the scale of our actions on this landscape.

Distributed by welcoming assistants, groups of 20 strangers will receive cups of iridescent mica flakes in solutions of water. In simultaneous corporations, each group pours a painting together. Compositions form as individual flows of color move toward weighted holes in the center of the canvas. Cups are returned to the assistants and painters move to take pictures on their phones, pronouncing iridescence at different angles, sharing their personal perspective with those next to them.

The paintings are transitory and will exist only during the time they are painted, captured via photos and videos before being wiped away via an ecological and earth-friendly process.

No sign-up or reservation is needed. Anyone and everyone can step or roll upon the Mural Amphitheater Stage and take part in this shared opportunity.

About Jesse Higman

Jesse Higman began his creative career by painting album cover and poster imagery for Seattle’s rock bands, including Heart, Mother Love Bone, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Candlebox and Blind Melon.

Higman’s work has been presented at Lollapalooza, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Experience Music Project, The Smithsonian Museum, Kennedy Center for The Performing Arts and on MTV. He has received numerous grants supporting his public paint pours throughout King County, including this 2023 Artist At The Center opportunity from Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture and Seattle Center.

About the Process, illuvium

A 2009 Mayor’s Arts Award recipient, Higman developed a system of painting he calls illuvium, named after the geologic term for particles flowing across a floodplain. A quadriplegic in a wheelchair, his need for help to accomplish larger paintings evolved into a social practice. Leanne Mella, a consulting curator for The Smithsonian said, “Higman’s work, with its communitarian and convivial ethos, exhibits many of the tendencies associated with Relational Aesthetics, a theory of art practices that takes the whole of human relations and social context into consideration as a point of departure for the production and presentation of the work of art.”

About the Collaborative Landscape Events

This celebration of our affinity to collaborate is made possible by a grant from Climate Pledge Arena and Seattle Kracken. Artists At the Center is a multi-year partnership between Seattle Office of Arts & Culture and Seattle Center, with support from Uptown Arts & Culture Coalition and the communities adjacent to Seattle Center campus. A 4Culture Art Projects grant helped to fund the building of the painting structure. It was designed by Jesse Higman using the 3D software, Maya. Then, laser cut by Art and Industrial. It was fabricated by Timothy and Patrick Dolan of Dolan GC, and Jeff Fernald of Bannister Construction.

Collaborative Landscape Instagram
• Use hashtags #CollaborativeLandscape #JesseHigman #ArtistsAtTheCenter #SeattleCenter #SeattleOfficeofArts #ClimatePledgeArena #SeattleKraken #UACC #PopUpPerformances

People to Tag:
FB, IG and Twitter: @jessehigman @seattlecenter
FB: @SeattleArts IG: @seaofficeofarts FB: @UptownACC IG: @uacc_seattle FB, IG: @seattlekraken
FB, IG: @ClimatePledgeArena


• Do I need to RSVP or reserve a spot? ~ Nope! This is a first come, first serve activity. We’ll see you on the Mural Amphitheater Stage!

• What if I got paint on me/my clothes? This rarely happens, but, if it does, simply rinse with water before it dries. Water will be available. Garden sprayers will also be present, keeping the canvas wet so it does not dry in the sun. Just ask for spray! The paint is a solution of mostly water, mixed with 2 teaspoons per cup of Golden’s Interference fluid acrylics. They appear translucent milky-white in the cup, with no visible color until poured onto the black canvas. Then, as the tiny mica flakes settle, they align in similar angles to produce an architectural color, refracting light, as apposed to a color produced by staining pigment.

Live stream https://www.twitch.tv/jessehigman

We will broadcast for a wider outlook, appreciating ourselves within different levels of magnification simultaneously, suspended in a universe of scales. Our team of visual artists will multiplex perspectives, editing them live to present correlations between particles in motion and ourselves as individuals in a co-creational whole, as we all participate in generative social systems.

Higman says, my sense of possibility and scale were formed around the mural amphitheater with our local music idols presenting their work. In the light of this stage we will perform a new idea of painting, elevating our relationship with the stranger and the other as art.

Building of the Canvas Stretcher

Paint Water Disposal Plan