Square Feet 2013
The Square Feet convenings are a chance to explore cultural space issues with the community, to present recent work, and to hear feedback about new directions for the office. In November 2013 we hosted a day-long event exploring the idea of Cultural Districts in Seattle. Anne Gadwa Nicodemus from Metris Consulting presented the keynote address, available below.
Cultural Overlay District Advisory Committee (CODAC) Report
In 2009, Seattle City Council adopted a resolution accepting a set of recommendations to preserve and foster cultural space in Seattle's neighborhoods, which was proposed by the Cultural Overlay District Advisory Committee (CODAC). The CODAC is a volunteer citizen group convened by the Council in 2008 in response to the rapid loss of arts-related spaces and activities in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle.
Cultural Space Seattle
The Office of Arts & Culture and Seattle Arts Commission hosted Cultural Space Seattle, a two-day event (Dec. 6 and 7, 2011) to help shape policies to keep and create affordable space for artists and arts organizations to work, rehearse and perform in Seattle. National and local cultural space leaders discussed policy, funding and program models and current cultural space projects.
Nearly 150 people attended a public forum at Town Hall on Dec. 6, where artist and cultural planner Theaster Gates delivered the keynote address followed by a panel discussion and audience Q&A.
The panel discussion, moderated by former Seattle Arts Commission Chair Randy Engstrom, featured Theaster; Jacqueline Gijssen, senior cultural planner, city of Vancouver, B.C.; Cathryn Vandenbrink, regional director, ArtSpace; and Susan Seifert, director, Social Impact of the Arts Project, University of Pennsylvania.
Following the evening forum, participants in workshops on Dec. 7 rolled up their sleeves and worked together toward a plan to advance an agenda for cultural space initiatives. The working sessions involved artists, government leaders, arts administrators, investors, real estate developers and brokers and interested citizens.
Cultural Space Seattle Update Brown-Bag
Several months after the Cultural Space Seattle event, the convening's Final Report was published, and presented at a brown-bag session at City Hall. Updates on the city's arts and cultural space initiatives were presented, and work-sessions were conducted in support of the city's Artists' Space Assistance Program (ASAP).
Artist Space Assistance Program (ASAP)
The Office of Arts & Culture launched the Artist Space Assistance Program (ASAP) in January 2012 to provide relocation and placement services for artists and arts organizations. Administered by Shunpike with support from 4Culture, the pilot program ran through March 1, 2012.
ASAP is for artists working in all genres and arts groups seeking long-term affordable arts space. Shunpike assessed artist needs and space opportunities and offered direct services to a pilot group of artists and arts groups. The pilot program focused on the Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District neighborhoods. The goal is to develop a model for expanding the program to other Seattle neighborhoods.