This summer, Occidental Park will become a showcase for the creative imagination of artists. Using this public space as art space, artists will produce everything from street theater, dance, or temporary sculpture to music, media art, or whatever their imagination might envision, bringing the challenge and spark of art into the day-to-day life of downtown. The end result: Occidental Park becomes a place where art and life intertwine–where one goes to meet the unexpected and catch some of the freshest work from local and visiting artists.
The first installation currently on view in the park is Build Here by artist collective Room4Assembly. All of the artists met while studying architecture at UW, and attention to issues of space, history and use permeate this installation which examines the history of built space on the current space of Occidental Park. Using 2x4s painted a neon yellow, they are framing walls of buildings that previously existed on the site, calling attention to the ever-shifting nature of space. It’s a dynamic piece, and the artists are adding to it as the installation progresses through June 27th. It looks like a fantastic take on minimalist sculpture that is really activating the park with curious onlookers, and people who sit near and around the sculptures during their lunch breaks.
Next up for Artsparks, starting on June 20th, is an installation titled Prismatic Landscape by artist/architect collective MiLa. This project will suspend thousands of prismatic material in the trees surrounding the park, creating a dazzling array of atmospheric effects on the structures and people who use the park.
The installations/events in Occidental Park will continue through September, and were selected by a panel made up of local arts and community professionals which included Scott Lawrimore, Bob Redmond, Scott Vogel and Lane Czaplinski among others.