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Visual Arts & Spectacle Announced

Commemorating “The Past, The Present and The Future,” this year’s Bumbershoot Visual Arts and Spectacles showcase talented artists with an eye for imagining the future. Programming pays homage to the Festival’s home, Seattle Center, and its celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1962 World’s Fair.

Whether your interests lie in glass art, vinyl records, The Jetsons or improvised theatre, there is an experience for everyone!


Curated by Shelly Leavens and Jana Brevick

Shelly Leavens and Jana Brevick want to learn to fly. Leavens, currently a curator at Gage Academy, has worked at interpreting ideas and presenting them to the public for years. Brevick, an artist trained as a metalsmith, is a member of Soil Gallery and shows at Facere Jewelry Art Gallery.  “Skyward!” is a play on the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair in conjunction with the popular cartoon, The Jetsons, depicted through sculptures, installations and interactive works.


Curated by Dylan Neuwirth

Dylan Neuwirth, a Seattle resident, is a site specific neon multimedia installation artist. When it comes to his visions, Dylan collaborates with diverse teams of designers, engineers, fabricators, filmmakers and musicians. For his electronic light-based pieces, he works exclusively with Western Neon to produce his work. “NOW” is a large-scale suspended neon sculpture moving from grayscale to a select color spectrum. Neon is comparatively energy-efficient when it comes to power consumption in relation to the brightness the light puts out. How bright exactly will Neuwirth’s piece be? Take in and enjoy this glowing installation from Queen Anne at night.

Sketch of Dylan Neuwirth's "NOW"

Christopher Martin Hoff Remembered

Curated by Beth Sellars

Christopher Martin Hoff was a much-loved urban plein-air painter who was contracted for Bumbershoot 2012 before his pre-mature death in March. Christopher described his style stating, “… my work has explored the poetic stillness of the mundane through the lens of observational painting.” Born in Atlanta, GA, Christopher graduated with a BFA Summa Cum Laude from Savannah College of Art and Design, then lived and painted in Seattle, WA. Bumbershoot is proud to honor the curatorial commitment made to Hoff before his passing.

Work from Christopher Martin Hoff

Work from Christopher Martin Hoff

Work from Christopher Martin Hoff

7 Minutes in Heaven

Curated by EXITheatre

EXITheatre is an improvised theatre production, bringing speed dating to the Bumbershoot grounds. Watch a cast of characters simultaneously on dates, trying to find that someone special. Actors are unaware of each other’s characters and motives, creating a completely unique performance each time. Audiences are encouraged to get up and close as the speed daters chat and get to know each other a little better.

Speed dater "Trudy" from EXITheatre

This is Glass

Curated by Sarah Traver and Grace Meils

“This is Glass” has been pushing the boundaries of glass art for 50 years. Both the exhibit and its artists will challenge what visitors know about the studio glass movement and compel viewers to reconsider glass as an artistic medium. Works in the exhibit feature a balance of historic and current pieces created by established as well as emerging artists.


Curated by Marlow Harris and JoDavid

All thing Elvis will be celebrated at Bumbershoot in honor of the 50th anniversary of the World’s Fair, Seattle Center and the filming of It happened at the World’s Fair (in which Elvis starred). With over 50 professional and amateur Elvis tribute artists, this event will not only include visual art, but Elvis artists wandering the grounds, a traveling Elvis museum and Elvis karaoke for festival-goers.

Elvis tribute artists on Evening Magazine

SAM Record Store

Curated by Seattle Art Museum and Olson Kundig Architects

This record shop acts as a “storefront of ideas” fueled by the belief that these records will act as means in which people will be brought together. Curator-led listening parties will happen throughout the festival, focused on the special collection of vinyl available in the exhibition space.

SAM Record Store storefront

Inside the SAM Record Store

Where can you check out these awesome visual experiences? Visit the Seattle Center Pavillion, Fisher Pavillion or simply roam the grounds throughout Bumbershoot to soak up these exhibits and spectacles. Want a sneak peak before the festival? There will be a free visual arts preview Friday, August 31st at The Mayor’s Arts Awards.