Nancy Chew and Jacqueline Metz, MuseAtelier
bamboo, luminous
2008

LOCATION
Fire Station 10 and Fire Alarm Center/Emergency Operations Center
Planting strip on 5th Avenue South between South Yesler Way and South Washington Street

FUNDING SOURCE
Fleets and Facilities Department Fire Facilities and Emergency Response Levy 1% for Art


bamboo, luminous is a stand of seven resin "bamboo shoots" that marks the entry to the Emergency Operations Center. Lit internally by energy-efficient LEDs, the slender yellow-green reeds transmit and pulse light in the evening and pull the viewer along the street.

According to the artists, "Bamboo is an element common to the landscapes and traditional arts of Asia and the Pacific—the homelands of many of the immigrants to the International District. Graceful and powerful, bamboo symbolizes the qualities of enlightenment - resilience and adaptiveness. bamboo, luminous is a metaphor for the strength and endurance of the immigrants to the International District and the service personnel of Fire Station 10, the Emergency Operations Center and the Fire Alarm Center... The various Asian communities and the service personnel of the International District are linked and honored by the metaphor of the enduring bamboo clustered together. bamboo, luminous—a gesture evoking a remembered landscape, and a symbol of strength and survival—is transformed into a glowing new urban landscape."

In 2003, voters approved a $167 million Fire Facilities and Emergency Response Levy to build 12 replacement fire stations and seismically upgrade the remaining 19 stations. The Office of Arts & Culture, working with the Fleets and Facilities Department and the Seattle Fire Department developed a program to incorporate site-specific art at Seattle's new neighborhood fire stations. bamboo, luminous is one of three artworks at Fire Station 10, for which Gloria Bornstein wrote an art plan, Different Voices, One Community.