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Pacific Northwest Artists

The Frye Art Museum’s substantial collection of works by artists of the Pacific Northwest reflects the Museum’s transformation from a personal selection of late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century—predominantly European—oil paintings to a museum dedicated to creative practice in its myriad forms. Since opening in 1952 to the present day, the Museum has remained steadfast in exhibiting and collecting artworks by contemporary artists, especially those living and practicing in the city of Seattle and surrounding region. Walser Sly Greathouse, executor of the Frye estate and founding director of the Museum, ensured Charles and Emma Frye's vision for a free, public art museum for the people of Seattle was brought to life. Beginning in 1952, Greathouse was the first of six directors who expanded the Museum’s collection, acquiring new works to enliven and contextualize the paintings bequeathed by the Fryes. Subsequent leaders sustained the Museum’s legacy within the evolving identity of the Pacific Northwest through the ongoing collection and exhibition of works by artists of the region—from Washington and Oregon up to Alaska. The Museum’s extensive holdings of Alaskan art were initially assembled by the Museum’s second director, Ida Kay Greathouse. Between 1969 and 1993, she acquired over 125 paintings and works on paper. Subsequent Frye directors Richard V. West, Midge Bowman, and Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker added 175 more works by artists associated with the northernmost state. Highlights of the Pacific Northwest holdings range from twentieth-century Alaskan landscapes by artists such as Sydney Laurence and Eustace Paul Ziegler, to evocative works by contemporary artists and artist collectives across a broad range of mediums, including Juventino Aranda, the Black Constellation, Alison Bremner, Degenerate Art Ensemble, Ellen Lesperance, Jeffry Mitchell, Buster Simpson, and Ko Kirk Yamahira, among others.

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Title Artist Medium Date
Ecdysis   Butler, Ishmael   Audio, 24:51 min.  2015 
Eclipse Tower 1   Crowell, Web and Stacey Levine   Digital video of stop-motion animation (color, sound); 3:43 min.  2015 
Cuckoo Crow: Hatchling   Degenerate Art Ensemble   DVD video (color, silent); 14:44 min.  2007 
Cuckoo Crow: Transformation   Degenerate Art Ensemble   Digital video (color, sound); 7:14 min.  2011 
Be the First To Review The B83   Fisk, Steve   Four-channel audio installation  2015 
An Agnostic Manifesto   Hazleton, Lesley   Text installation  2015 
Avatar: Fanon & Decca   Ingram, C. Davida   Digital video (color, sound); 19:23 min.  2015 
Still Lives: Exposure   Lee, Susie J.   Digital video (color, silent); 30 min.  2010 
Sonnet Manifesto   Mullin, Paul   Text installation  2015 
Tsunami Capable Tide Stations > West Coast   Pan, DK   Digital video (color, sound); 38:58 min.  2015 
Ode to Octavia Part 12: (Sparkles)...Recollections of the Wraith   The Black Constellation   Digital video (color, sound); 4:49 min.  2012 
El Sisifo (The Sisyphus)   Valenzuela, Rodrigo   Three-channel digital video (color, sound); 12 min.  2015 
Prole   Valenzuela, Rodrigo   Digital video (color, sound); 8:48 min.   2015 
This Is Who We Are   Wokoma, Inye   Two-channel digital video (color, sound): 16:13 min.   2016 
Frank in the 3rd Dimension   Woodring, Jim   3-D digital video (color, silent); 5:15 min.   2015 
Occasional Poems   Zaher, Maged   Text installation  2015 

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