Stories from The Square: Neighborhood Artists

Stories from The Square: Neighborhood Artists

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The art community has long been a integral part of the historical identity of Pioneer Square. Pioneer Square is proud to present a series that shines a spotlight on the many artists in the neighborhood and their contribution to the Seattle art scene.

Get a glimpse into what each artist does and their perspective on Pioneer Square.

M&N Works, @pioneersquarediary

Why do you choose to be in Pioneer Square?

After living in many different places and cities and most recently in West Seattle, we chose to live in Pioneer Square because of it’s architecture, history and walkability, as well as for the vibrant food, art, and culture scene. We moved here last summer during the pandemic, so we haven’t been able to experience the neighborhood fully open yet, but we love all the people we have met in person (masked and physically distanced) and via zoom, and their dedication towards this neighborhood.

How would you describe what you do?

We document our neighborhood through photography and post a photo to our @pioneersquarediary IG every day. Our focus is usually on architecture, street scenes, nature, and art, but we also try to find the small treasures, the nooks & crannies, and special items hidden in plain sight. We started our project to remind people about many of the positive and interesting aspects of Pioneer Square and as an antidote to some of the struggles the neighborhood has experienced this past year. We hope that our photos are bringing people pleasure and expanding their ideas and assumptions about Pioneer Square.

What is your favorite memory in the neighborhood?

The spontaneity of Pioneer Square. We loved a recent trip down 1st Avenue where we heard a saxophonist practice some tunes on a sunny day. We have noticed that when we explore a little every day there is always something new and unexpected to discover and appreciate. The Lusio Lights exhibit in December was really cool, too.

What is something unique you wish more folks knew about Pioneer Square?

That there is a vibrant community of residents here who are deeply engaged in championing the neighborhood.

What’s a neighborhood business that you admire and why?

Honestly, we appreciate everyone who has a business here, but to call out a few: We admire Adam Tailor, on Jackson St. for his good work and for his long tenure in Pioneer Square. We admire Division Road, the clothing store, on 1st Ave for their great customer service and admire them for their commitment to the local Pioneer Square community. And we admire art galleries such as Linda Hodges, FosterWhite, and Greg Kucera for being her 40+ years!

Sam Horine, @samhorine

Why do you choose to be in Pioneer Square?

I was initially drawn to the history and architecture of the neighborhood and grew to love the people and businesses that made it a community.

How would you describe what you do?

I’m a photographer, working mostly in the commercial, editorial and documentary fields.

What is your favorite memory in the neighborhood?

Honestly it’s getting to know all of the people who live and work here - so a lot of small moments but if I had to pick one it was when the Sounders won the MLS cup in 2019 and after the game the neighborhood was just one giant street party.

What is something unique you wish more folks knew about Pioneer Square?

I personally love the history. Around every corner there’s some remnant of Seattle history, a relic of times past that’s just unique and awesome.

What’s a neighborhood business that you admire and why?

I love Damn The Weather - truly a neighborhood institution, they were one of the first places we went when we moved to the neighborhood and they’ve quickly become like family. Sitting at the bar, having some oysters and cocktails watching the revolving cast of neighborhood characters come through is like having the worlds most interesting living room.

Carol Rashawnna Williams @k_love_4art

Why do you choose to be in Pioneer Square?

Pioneer Square has long been a neighborhood for artists and offers affordable spaces for the arts and arts-friendly organizations in Seattle.

How would you describe what you do?

I would describe myself as a social sculpture, experimenter and innovator.

What is your favorite memory in the neighborhood?

The night art markets is something I quite miss. It was such a great way to meet many artisans in one place.

What is something unique you wish more folks knew about Pioneer Square?

Our neighborhood is the arts district of Seattle!

What’s a neighborhood business that you admire and why?

It was sad to see many beloved businesses close down because of the pandemic, like the old bakery I really loved, but Pioneer Square has plenty more to discover and enjoy.