Spotlight Shorts: City Arts Fest, 100 Ways & more

Local art that matters

 ARTS FESTS

Two new arts events erupt all over town this month

Just when you thought it was time to crawl into your winter cave, gloomy October is proving itself to be quite the festive month for artsy goings-on in Seattle. The first City Arts Fest (10/20–10/23; times, prices and venues vary; cityartsfest.com), helmed by Michael Hebb (of One Pot) and Steve Severin (of Neumos), consists of 30 individual music and arts events across 18 city venues (a nifty $60 wristband gets you into all club and theater events). The awesome music lineup includes such famous pairings as Belle and Sebastian, She and Him and The Head and the Heart, plus local faves the Maldives, Blue Scholars and Macklemore. Other arts on the docket include dance (the Pat Graney Company and Pacific Northwest Ballet), burlesque (Atomic Bombshells) and fireside chats with local artists (Chase Jarvis, Sarah Rudinoff, John Roderick) in the cozy Sorrento Hotel. Not enough arts for you? This month also brings the inaugural arts Crush (10/1–10/31; times, prices and venues vary; artscrush.org), which expands the annual Live Theatre Week (aka Free Theatre Week) beyond the stage to more than 150 local arts organizations, including Intiman Theatre, Bellevue Arts Museum, Elliott Bay Books, the 5th Avenue Theatre, Richard Hugo House, Henry Art Gallery and Northwest Film Forum. Each week of October will showcase a different genre—visual arts, music/books, theater and dance—and feature heavily discounted and free events. Plan to spend November nursing your arts hangover. B.D.

MEET YOUR MAKER
ARTIST: Gala Bent, Seattle
EXHIBIT: Kaleidoscope. Through October 16. Steele Gallery at Gage Academy of Art, 1501 10th Ave. E, #101; galabent.com
MEDIUM: Graphite and gouache on paper, plus installation

BD: What are you exploring with this new body of work?
GB: I’m thinking about leaks and cracks in closed systems, and how they are expressed by explosions and expulsions. Elements of this can be seen in older work...the overgrown hairpieces can be easily linked to this idea of overspilling boundaries. The newer work is a little more geological and architectural, to make links between different systems that we see. (Both natural and manmade systems have points of critical mass and tipping points.) I’m interested in both the terrifying versions of this and the satisfying breaks of tension. It’s fun to play with the room, anthropomorphizing, in some cases, the building itself. I imagine that it’s undergoing a minor tragedy.

PHOTOGRAPHY
100 Ways
Seattle photographer Chase Jarvis captures our city’s spirit with his gorgeous new book, Seattle 100: Portrait of a City (New Riders Press, $39.99). The award-winning artist spent two years on this personal project, taking black-and-white portraits of “people who are driving culture in Seattle,” including chefs (Matt Dillon of Sitka & Spruce; Molly Moon Neitzel of ice cream fame), artists (filmmaker Lynn Shelton), writers (Charles Mudede of The Stranger) and behind-the-scenes folks who have a big effect on the spring in our city’s cultural step (such as Mayor’s Office of Film and Music director James Keblas). If you find yourself thinking, “Why didn’t he include so-and-so?” don’t fret. Jarvis is quick to point out that a better title might have been “A Seattle 100,” as he’s well aware this collection of local notables, while impressive, is merely a snapshot.