Tag Archives: AMOCAT

2017 AMOCAT Arts Award winners announced

15 Sep

The Tacoma Arts Commission has announced this year’s AMOCAT Arts Award winners: Tacoma Housing Authority (Arts Patron), Monkeyshines (Community Outreach by an Organization), and Michael Haeflinger (Community Outreach by an Individual). The AMOCAT Arts Awards honor the people and organizations that positively impact the community with their passion, innovation and commitment to the arts.

Arts Patron Award

This award goes to Tacoma Housing Authority (THA)  for its sustained commitment to investing in public art in its affordable housing projects.

Established in 1940, THA helps Tacoma meet the growing need for affordable housing. It does this in several ways: it develops and manages real estate; it provides rental housing; in partnership with thousands of landlords, it helps families pay the rent in the private rental market; and it delivers supportive services to help families succeed not just as tenants but also as parents, students, wage earners and builders of assets who can live without assistance. It seeks to do its work in ways that help neighborhoods be attractive places to live, work, attend school, shop and play, and that help its city be safe, vibrant, prosperous, attractive and just.

THA believes that art helps this work in several ways. Art beautifies the landscape, and beauty is contagious. Art helps residents view their neighborhood as a distinctive place, and welcomes others to the neighborhood while allowing them to feel like the community is theirs. Art can do this especially if the residents are engaged in the process.

THA’s commitment to including public art has resulted in three projects at Bay Terrace: Yuki Nakamura’s “TransFORM” benches, Diane Hansen & Jennifer Weddermann’s “Seabranches & Pearls” metal and glass wall sculpture, and Christopher Paul Jordan & Kenji Stoll’s “Home Court” basketball court. It has also resulted in music programming at Bay Terrace led by Will Jordan, and a playground mural at Bergerson Terrace.

Community Outreach by an Organization Award

This award goes to Monkeyshines for mobilizing the public to explore Tacoma and create community through the act of giving.

Monkeyshines began in 2003 as a one-time event with the simple thought that we all have the ability to positively impact each other. In that first year, a small group of individuals created over 200 glass floats, embossed with the face of a monkey, and hid the pieces all over Tacoma. Their hope was that the joy of finding a treasure would ripple throughout the community and uplift it.

The excitement generated that first year spurred the anonymous artists to commit to 12 years of the Lunar New Year cycle. After the first 12 years had passed, the ever-growing band of anonymous Monkeyshiners committed to a second 12-year cycle.

Today, glass studios donate shop time; glass artists, painters, sculptors, writers, elementary school children, and other creatives make gifts for the city; and volunteers wake up early to hide the small pieces of art throughout Tacoma. In addition, the community adds their own art, contributing original photographs and prints, sculptures, jewelry, stories, songs, folklore, laser cut treasures, glass marbles, and more.

Monkeyshiners are proud to be in Tacoma, a city that not only embraces this event, but asks itself, “What can I share?”

Community Outreach by an Individual Award

This award goes to Michael Haeflinger for his commitment to the literary arts and youth of Tacoma.

Haeflinger is Executive Director for Write253, a non-profit literacy arts organization that serves Pierce County youth by providing workshops, poetry festivals, and publishing opportunities, including Louder Than a Bomb: The Tacoma Teen Poetry Festival and The Tacoma Poetry Festival Youth Day.

He began writing poetry in high school under the encouragement and guidance of his junior year English teacher, Ms. Rene Gabbard. Like her, Haeflinger hopes he can help introduce young people to writing that helps them define their lives.

Haeflinger is the author of two collections of poetry: Love Poem for the Everyday and The Days Before, both published by Dog On A Chain Press. In 2016, he released Let’s Don’t Be Crazy, a spoken word album partially funded by the Tacoma Arts Commission.


Kaleidoscope – Tacoma Arts Month opening party and AMOCAT Arts Awards celebration

This year’s awardees will be honored at Kaleidoscope, the annual Tacoma Arts Month opening party, on Oct. 4, from 6 – 9 p.m., at The Spire (710 S. Anderson St.). Mayor Marilyn Strickland along with Council Members Keith Blocker and Marty Campbell will present the awards starting at 6 p.m.

In addition, there will be live entertainment at this event that includes music by Will Jordan, Smokey Wonder, Travis Barker, Ben Wildenhaus, and Chromatography; West African dance and drumming by T.U.P.A.C.; Taiwanese dance by Asia Pacific Cultural Center; contemporary dance by Barefoot Collective; poetry by Tacoma Poet Laureate Kellie Richardson and Jinx Jones; and a staged reading of “CLOSE” written by Nick Stokes and directed by Jose Amador. Attendees can also experience a series of multimedia art exhibits by Mauricio Robalino, Qin Tan, Gillian Nordlund, and Erika Ray; film screenings and popcorn by The Grand Cinema; hands-on art making with Tacoma Art Museum; and more. The event will include appetizers and a no-host bar.

This free public event is presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma, hosted by Tacoma Musical Playhouse, and sponsored by Northwest Stage and The Grand Cinema. Tacoma Arts Month premier sponsors are Click! Cable TV and The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation. Media sponsors include KNKX, Northwest Public Radio, ParentMap, Sounds Fun Mom, South Sound magazine, Tacoma Weekly and Weekly Volcano.

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Tacoma Arts Month is right around the corner

8 Sep

October 2017 marks the 16th anniversary of Tacoma Arts Month – a community celebration of the arts that includes hundreds of community-hosted arts and culture events, exhibits and workshops for all ages taking place throughout the month. Programming includes music, theater and dance performances, hands-on experiences, visual art exhibits, film screenings, literary readings, lectures, cultural events, and workshops. All events are open to the public and many activities are free.

Tacoma Arts Month is online
Information about all Tacoma Arts Month events, workshops, and exhibits can be found online at TacomaArtsMonth.com. New programming is being added all the time!

E-newsletter
Let us bring the weekly calendar of Tacoma’s arts and culture happenings straight to your inbox so that you can plan out your weekday and weekend social calendar. Sign up for the twice-weekly Tacoma Arts Month e-newsletter and you’ll receive timely information about the multitude of fabulous arts and culture events you can be a part of this October.

#TacomaArts Challenge
Attendees of Tacoma Arts Month events are invited to participate in the #TacomaArts Challenge. Throughout October, those who attend Tacoma Arts Month events and post a photo to social media using #TacomaArts will be entered to win one of three prizes. Make sure your post is public. More information about the Tacoma Arts Challenge is available at TacomaArtsMonth.com.

Signature events include:

  • Kaleidoscope Opening Party
    October 4
    6 – 9 pm
    The Spire, 710 S. Anderson
    Free and open to the public

Start Tacoma Arts Month off with a kaleidoscope of pop-up art exhibits, hands-on activities, music and dance performances, and more at this family-friendly, community festival. There will be appetizers, dessert and a no-host bar. The event will include recognition of the Tacoma Arts Commission’s 2017 funding recipients and the AMOCAT Arts Award winners: Tacoma Housing Authority, Monkeyshines, and Michael Haeflinger. The event is presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma, hosted by Tacoma Musical Playhouse, and sponsored by Northwest Stage and The Grand Cinema.

  • Tacoma Studio Tour
    October 14 & 15
    11 am – 5 pm
    42 locations around Tacoma
    Free and open to the public

You are invited inside the working studios of 70 local artists to learn about the artistic process, ask questions and purchase one-of-a-kind creations. All studios will feature demonstrations or will have hands-on activities for visitors. This is a free, family-friendly, self-guided tour.

Studio Tour attendees are encouraged to pick up a Tacoma Studio Tour Passport and have it stamped at each studio location visited. Once at least eight stamps have been collected, the passport can be submitted for a chance to win one of several prize packages containing artwork handcrafted by a selection of artists on the tour.

Visit the Tacoma Studio Tour website for a complete list of studio locations, an interactive map, and information about the Tacoma Studio Tour Passport.

Start planning now; October is going to be a great month in Tacoma!

Tacoma Arts Month is made possible with the support of these generous sponsors:

Nominations sought for 2017 AMOCAT Arts Awards

29 Jun AMOCAT Arts Award

AMOCAT Arts AwardThe Tacoma Arts Commission is accepting nominations for the 2017 AMOCAT Arts Awards, which recognize the people and organizations that positively impact Tacoma with their passion, innovation and commitment to the arts. Nominations will be accepted through Aug. 2, 2017.

“Our beloved city has dedicated people, organizations and patrons who invest in and help drive our community forward through the arts,” said Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland. “The AMOCAT Arts Awards help recognize them for the energy and passion they have shown in support of the arts in Tacoma.”

The Tacoma Arts Commission will review all nominations and select one finalist in each award category based on the breadth and depth of the nominee’s community impact as well as the quality of the work being done by the nominee. Mayor Strickland will present the 2017 AMOCAT Arts Awards at Kaleidoscope, the Tacoma Arts Month opening party on Oct. 4, 2017.

Award Categories:

  1. Community Outreach by an Individual – Community outreach, engagement and involvement in the arts in Tacoma by an individual
  2. Community Outreach by an Organization – Community outreach, engagement and involvement in the arts in Tacoma by an organization
  3. Arts Patron – A community partner who significantly supports or contributes to the arts in Tacoma

To Make a Nomination:

Fill out the online nomination form via Submittable: https://tacomaarts.submittable.com/submit.

Past Award Winners:

In the category of Community Outreach by an Individual, past winners include: Lynn Di Nino, Jared Pappas-Kelley and Michael S. Lent, Laura and Matt Eklund, Lance Kagey and Tom Llewellyn, Linda Danforth, William Kupinse, Oliver Doriss, Stella Haioulani, Katy Evans, David Domkoski, Jessica Spring, Connie K. Walle, and Christopher Paul Jordan.

In the category of Community Outreach by an Organization, past winners include: Tacoma Art Museum and Museum of Glass Education Programs, Arts Impact, Tacoma School of the Arts, Barefoot Studios, Victory Music, King’s Books, Hilltop Artists, Fab-5, D.A.S.H. Center for the Arts, The Grand Cinema, Puget Sound Book Artists, Asia Pacific Cultural Center, Tacoma Public Library, and Tacoma Youth Symphony Association.

In the category of Arts Patron, past winners include: Sound Transit Art Program, Pierce Transit, Sixth Avenue Business District, The Weekly Volcano, Hotel Murano, City Arts, Urban Grace Church, The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Key Bank, Erivan and Helga Haub and family, ArtsFund, University of Washington Tacoma, and Metro Parks Tacoma.

More Information:

More information about the AMOCAT Arts Awards is available at cityoftacoma.org/amocat.

Let’s party this Thursday!

26 Sep

opening-party-invite-image-composite

Get out and have some fun while helping kick off the 15th annual Tacoma Arts Month with a kaleidoscope of arts and culture.

Tacoma Arts Month Opening Party & AMOCAT Arts Awards
Thursday, September 29
6 – 9 PM
Asia Pacific Cultural Center, 4851 South Tacoma Way
Free! No RSVP required

We’ll keep you entertained with:

20151001_tacoma-arts-opening-night_dsc01646Enjoy appetizers and no-host bar while we honor the 2016 AMOCAT Arts Award winners and funding recipients. It’s all free and open to the public – pack up the family, invite your friends and come help us celebrate! Presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma; hosted by Asia Pacific Cultural Center. Thanks to the Opening Party event sponsors: NW Stage, Artist & Craftsman Supply, and The Grand Cinema.

Additional free parking available across the street at Habitat for Humanity Store, 4824 S Tacoma Way.

Presentation of the 2016 AMOCAT Arts Awards and recognition of the 2016 funding recipients begins at 8 pm.

Tacoma Arts Month is made possible by our generous sponsors!
Premier Sponsors: The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Click! Cable TV
Media Sponsors: Crosscut, KNKX, Northwest Public Radio, ParentMap, Sounds Fun Mom, South Sound magazine, Tacoma Weekly, Weekly Volcano
Social Media Sponsor: ARCADE

2016 AMOCAT Arts Award winners announced

19 Sep

The Tacoma Arts Commission has announced this year’s AMOCAT Arts Award winners: Metro Parks Tacoma (Arts Patron), Tacoma Youth Symphony Association (Community Outreach by an Organization), and Christopher Paul Jordan (Community Outreach by an Individual). The AMOCAT Arts Awards honor the people and organizations that positively impact the community with their passion, innovation, and commitment to the arts.

Play in Peace program at Wright Park on Friday May 20 2011 followed by a Peace March to McCarver Elem. School in Tacoma, Wa. Photo By Russ Carmack

Play in Peace program at Wright Park on Friday May 20 2011 followed by a Peace March to McCarver Elem. School. Photo By Russ Carmack

Arts Patron – Metro Parks Tacoma

This award goes to Metro Parks Tacoma for its ongoing commitment to serving and partnering with the greater Tacoma community.

From historic statues in Wright Park, and cultural pieces gifted from Tacoma’s Sister Cities that grace Point Defiance, to contemporary works that inspire visitors and beautify non-traditional mediums ranging from concrete walkways to conversation benches, amphitheater seats and community center exteriors, Tacoma’s parks provide an array of public art experiences throughout the community.

While performing and visual arts have long been part of the park system, opportunities for individuals to hone their personal skills through classes has expanded greatly since the inception of the Metro Arts program. Beyond individual exploration and development in the arts, the program provides access for the entire community to participate in free events and coordinates community projects to unite diverse audiences through shared art experiences.

Metro Parks’ contributions to our creative culture in Tacoma is evident in its commitment to making sure all forms of art can be experienced and enjoyed by our community. Their commitment to access is demonstrated by the Board’s recent adoption of a 1 percent for public art policy on all capital projects totaling more than $100,000, helping ensure even greater access to arts, as well as increasing opportunities for artists in our community.

Tacoma Youth Symphony string trio

Tacoma Youth Symphony string trio

Community Outreach by an Organization – Tacoma Youth Symphony Association

This award goes to Tacoma Youth Symphony Association for its deep and ongoing commitment to nurturing and serving youth across the region.

For over 50 years, the Tacoma Youth Symphony Association has provided nurturing, all-inclusive programs for young musicians. What started as one orchestra of less than 100 students in 1963, has grown into an internationally recognized youth orchestra organization comprised of five orchestras and over 400 students from all over Western Washington. The members of the Tacoma Youth Symphony Association range in age from seven to 21, and represent more than 100 schools in 20 communities. One of the largest youth orchestras in the United States, the Tacoma Youth Symphony Association also offers theory classes, a chamber music program, brass and woodwind ensembles, summer music camps, and harp and bass training programs.

Tacoma Youth Symphony Association is also committed to serving the surrounding community. Each year, the Tacoma Youth Symphony, the top orchestra, offers Discover Music Concerts for fourth graders from around the greater Tacoma area. These free concerts are designed to introduce school children to classical music and reach nearly 2,000 students. In addition, the Tacoma Young Artists Orchestra and Tacoma String Philharmonia do annual school tours, performing for underserved student bodies throughout the community. The Tacoma String Symphony performs each year in retirement communities and the Tacoma Junior Youth Symphony performs at the Victorian Country Christmas.

Committed to education, the Tacoma Youth Symphony Association education specialist and several Tacoma Youth Symphony Association conductors visit schools throughout the school year, where they coach and conduct in band and orchestra classrooms and provide musical demonstrations in classrooms. Tacoma Youth Symphony Association also offers a String Orchestra Festival each March for middle and junior high school string programs. The String Orchestra Festival draws approximately 1,200 students each year from schools all over the Puget Sound area for a day of performance in a non-competitive environment. Schools also have the opportunity to play together in a festival orchestra.

Christopher Paul Jordan in studio.

Christopher Paul Jordan in studio.

Community Outreach by an Individual – Christopher Paul Jordan

This award goes to Christopher Paul Jordan for his work in bridging audiences through the fusion of art and community organizing.

Jordan’s documentary, MEANWHILE: The Lasting Impact of Juvenile Records, was instrumental in provoking legislative change to state policies that previously allowed the selling of records of system-involved youth to private for-profit companies, often blocking access to housing, education and jobs for Washington’s most vulnerable youth.

Today, Jordan co-directs the grassroots youth organization Fab-5, which empowers young people as creative leaders who inspire change in their surroundings. He co-founded FABITAT which, for five years, has served as a drop-in interdisciplinary creative lab for youth year-round.

Jordan’s collaboration with Tacoma Action Collective through the #StopErasingBlackPeople  campaign built partnerships among Black artists, archivers, and HIV prevention organizers nationwide to give visibility to the impact of the U.S. AIDS Crisis on African Americans.

Jordan’s efforts this year include co-establishing Hue Collaborative, a cohort of 10 artists of color working in public art and currently completing an 1,800 square foot mural commission for the People’s Community Center; co-founding the Breaker Studio Gallery to highlight and support artists of color and community organizers in Tacoma with exhibition and convening space; and using social sculpture to advocate for increased affordable housing in the Hilltop neighborhood, where Jordan was born and is based.

Jordan is currently working on a statewide visioning project with the League of Education Voters, striving to push for progress in the dialogue about the future of education in Washington state by convening the voices of those who stand in the opportunity gap.


Awards Celebration

Awardees will be honored at the annual Tacoma Arts Month Opening Party on Sept. 29, from 6 – 9 p.m., at Asia Pacific Cultural Center (4851 South Tacoma Way). Deputy Mayor Ryan Mello and Council Members Keith Blocker and Marty Campbell will present the awards starting at 8 p.m.

In addition, there will be live entertainment at this event that includes contemporary dance by the Barefoot Collective, cultural dance performances by Asia Pacific Cultural Center, poetry by Tacoma Poet Laureate Cathy Nguyen, music by Champagne Sunday, cirque and aerial performances by Vuelta la Luna, and juggling by Saylor Purtle. Attendees can also experience an exhibit of Wayzgoose steamroller prints and a series of multimedia art exhibits by Matanofo Porter, Denis Maina, Saiyare Refaei, Jorge Garcia, and Kristin Giordano; film screenings by The Grand Cinema and Spaceworks Tacoma; a life-sized kaleidoscope installation by Tinkertopia; hands-on art making with Tacoma Art Museum; an interactive photo booth with Metro Parks Tacoma; and more. The event will include appetizers and a no-host bar.

This free public event is presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma and hosted by Asia Pacific Cultural Center. Event sponsors include Northwest Stage, Artist & Craftsman Supply and The Grand Cinema. Tacoma Arts Month premier sponsors are The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation and Click! Cable TV. Media sponsors include Crosscut, KNKX, Northwest Public Radio, ParentMap, Sounds Fun Mom, South Sound magazine, Tacoma Weekly and Weekly Volcano. The social media sponsor is ARCADE.

Celebrate 15 Years of Tacoma Arts Month

7 Sep

artsmonth_foremailOctober 2016 marks the 15th anniversary of Tacoma Arts Month – a community celebration of the arts that includes hundreds of community-hosted arts and culture events, exhibits and workshops for all ages, taking place every day throughout the month. Programming includes music, theater and dance performances, hands-on experiences, visual art exhibits, film screenings, literary readings, lectures, cultural events, and workshops. All events are open to the public and many activities are free.

Tacoma Arts Month is online
Information about all Tacoma Arts Month events, workshops, and exhibits can be found online at TacomaArtsMonth.com.

E-newsletter
Let us bring the weekly calendar of Tacoma’s arts and culture happenings straight to your inbox so that you can plan out your weekday and weekend social calendar. Sign up for the twice-weekly Tacoma Arts Month e-newsletter and you’ll receive timely information about the multitude of fabulous arts and culture events you can be a part of this October.

Tacoma Arts Challenge
Attendees of Tacoma Arts Month events are invited to participate in the Tacoma Arts Challenge. Throughout October, those who attend Tacoma Arts Month events and post a photo to social media using #TacomaArts will be entered to win one of three prizes. More information about the Tacoma Arts Challenge is available at TacomaArtsMonth.com.

Signature events include:

  • 2015_openingparty_dance2Tacoma Arts Month Opening Party and AMOCAT Arts Awards
    September 29
    6 – 9 pm
    Asia Pacific Cultural Center, 4851 South Tacoma Way
    Free and open to the public

Start Tacoma Arts Month off with a kaleidoscope of pop-up art exhibits, hands-on activities, music and dance performances, and more at this family-friendly, community festival. There will be appetizers, dessert and a no-host bar. The event will include recognition of the Tacoma Arts Commission’s 2016 funding recipients and the AMOCAT Arts Award winners: Metro Parks Tacoma, Tacoma Youth Symphony Association and Christopher Paul Jordan. The event is presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma, and hosted by Asia Pacific Cultural Center.

  • 2014_studiotour_loisyoshidaTacoma Studio Tour
    October 15 & 16
    11 am – 5 pm
    34 locations around Tacoma
    Free and open to the public

You are invited inside the working studios of 57 local artists to learn about the artistic process, ask questions and purchase one-of-a-kind creations. All studios will feature demonstrations or will have hands-on activities for visitors. This is a free, family-friendly, self-guided tour.

Studio Tour attendees are encouraged to pick up a Tacoma Studio Tour Passport and have it stamped at each studio location visited. Once at least eight stamps have been collected, the passport can be submitted for a chance to win one of several prize packages containing artwork handcrafted by a selection of artists on the tour.

Visit the Tacoma Studio Tour website for a complete list of studio locations, an interactive map, and information about the Tacoma Studio Tour Passport.

 

Start planning now; October is going to be a great month in Tacoma!

 

Tacoma Arts Month is made possible with the support of these generous sponsors:

Nominations sought for 2016 AMOCAT Arts Awards

27 Jun AMOCAT Arts Award

amocat_award_color_v2The Tacoma Arts Commission is currently accepting nominations for the 2016 AMOCAT Arts Awards.

Since 2004, the AMOCAT Arts Awards recognize those in our community who provide distinctive contributions to the arts. The honorees work hard to support and build our community by innovating in artistic excellence. Each exhibits vision, dedication, and action in creating a lively arts community in Tacoma.

The three award categories are:

  1. Community Outreach by an Individual – Community outreach, engagement and involvement in the arts in Tacoma by an individual
  2. Community Outreach by an Organization – Community outreach, engagement and involvement in the arts in Tacoma by an organization
  3. Arts Patron – A community partner who significantly supports or contributes to the arts in Tacoma

“Arts, culture, and creativity are essential keys to Tacoma’s distinctive identity. They enrich people’s lives, enhance communities, and have a significant economic impact on our city.  Nonprofit arts and culture is a $64.72 million industry in Tacoma – one that supports 1,735 full-time equivalent jobs and generate $6.58 million in local and state government revenue,” said Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland. “The AMOCAT Arts Awards recognize the people, organizations, and patrons in our community who invest their energy and passion into building a vibrant future through arts and culture.”

To make a nomination, simply fill out the online nomination form. Nominations are due by July 31, 2016. The Tacoma Arts Commission will review all nominations and select one finalist in each award category based on the breadth and depth of the nominee’s community impact as well as the quality of the work being done by the nominee, not by the number of times the nominee has been nominated. Mayor Strickland will present the 2016 AMOCAT Arts Awards at the Tacoma Arts Month Opening Party on September 29.

In the category of Community Outreach by an Individual, past winners include: Lynn Di Nino, Jared Pappas-Kelley and Michael S. Lent, Laura and Matt Eklund, Lance Kagey and Tom Llewellyn, Linda Danforth, William Kupinse, Oliver Doriss, Stella Haioulani, Katy Evans, David Domkoski, Jessica Spring, and Connie K. Walle.

In the category of Community Outreach by an Organization, past winners include: Tacoma Art Museum and Museum of Glass Education Programs, Arts Impact, Tacoma School of the Arts, Barefoot Studios, Victory Music, King’s Books, Hilltop Artists, Fab-5, D.A.S.H. Center for the Arts, The Grand Cinema, Puget Sound Book Artists, Asia Pacific Cultural Center, and Tacoma Public Library.

In the category of Arts Patron, past winners include: Sound Transit Art Program, Pierce Transit, Sixth Avenue Business District, The Weekly Volcano, Hotel Murano, City Arts, Urban Grace Church, The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Key Bank, Erivan and Helga Haub and family, ArtsFund, and University of Washington Tacoma.

Additional information about the AMOCAT Arts Awards can be found online.

2015 AMOCAT Arts Award winners announced

14 Sep

The Tacoma Arts Commission has announced this year’s AMOCAT Arts Award winners: University of Washington Tacoma (Arts Patron), Tacoma Public Library (Community Outreach by an Organization), and Connie K. Walle (Community Outreach by an Individual). The AMOCAT Arts Awards honor those who provide distinctive contributions to the arts in Tacoma.

Arts Patron – University of Washington Tacoma

"Maru" by Gerard Tsutakawa on the University of Washington Tacoma campus. Photos courtesy of UW Tacoma.

“Maru” by Gerard Tsutakawa on the University of Washington Tacoma campus. Photos courtesy of UW Tacoma.

This award goes to University of Washington Tacoma for its ongoing commitment to serving and partnering with the greater Tacoma community. UW Tacoma’s contributions to the arts in Tacoma began 25 years ago at the campus’ founding, when 15 faculty members were hired to create an interdisciplinary liberal arts curriculum. Since then, the university’s impact on the community can be measured by the work of its faculty, students and alumni; a dense network of partnerships and collaborations; and a growing public art collection.

UW Tacoma’s connections to the Tacoma arts community include glass art classes hosted at the Museum of Glass, Tacoma School of the Arts classes held on campus, and a partnership with Spaceworks Tacoma to support creative entrepreneurs. Recent collaborations include an innovative community-based theater production by UW Tacoma faculty and Toy Boat Theatre, and the hosting of a portion of the City of Tacoma and Tacoma Art Museum’s Pop-Up Art Putt! golf course.

UW Tacoma’s investment in developing the campus and Prairie Line Trail, with a commitment to aesthetic design and adaptive re-use, has encouraged a more walkable and beautiful community. The campus proudly displays a diverse art collection including works by Pablo Picasso, Dale Chihuly, Gerard Tsutakawa, Dawoud Bey, Buster Simpson and many others.

Community Outreach by an Organization – Tacoma Public Library

William Kamkwamba, author of The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind, at Tacoma Public Library. Photo courtesy of TPL.

William Kamkwamba, author of The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind, at Tacoma Public Library. Photo courtesy of TPL.

This award goes to Tacoma Public Library for its deep and ongoing commitment to creating opportunities for interactive and dynamic lifelong learning through the lens of arts and culture.

Tacoma’s public libraries are hubs of community activity where citizens can gather together to tell and create stories, listen to and create music, experience art, play chess, access the internet, and escape with a great film. The libraries bring readers and writers together to share a love of stories through book talks and signings, discussion groups, and the community-wide reading program: Tacoma Reads Together.

The Handforth Gallery at the Main Library provides an opportunity to experience visual art created by local, regional, national and international artists, as well as to hear artists talk about their work and learn more about the art forms through demonstrations.

The Tacoma Public Library provides free performing arts opportunities for the public including music concerts, puppet shows, magic acts, silent movies, jugglers, clowns, and acrobats. The Main Library’s StoryLab encourages students to expand their digital creativity through workshops in sound production, voice-over, film production and editing, beat-making, digital drawing, and song writing.

Community Outreach by an Individual – Connie K. Walle

Connie K. Walle.

Connie K. Walle reads from her poetry.

This award goes to Connie K. Walle for her commitment to elevating the literary arts in Tacoma and the South Sound. Walle is a poet, the founder and president of Puget Sound Poetry Connection (PSPC), and facilitator for the Distinguished Writer Series, which has been a staple of Tacoma’s literary arts community for 25 years and counting.

The Distinguished Writer Series provides a platform where poets of national regard share their work with the South Sound community, and where local writers of all levels and backgrounds can share their work in a constructive and supportive environment.

Under Walle’s leadership, PSPC has spearheaded multiple projects including literary publications, a teen writing contest and poetry workshops. She also hosts poetry critiques and produces a weekly e-newsletter promoting poetry-related opportunities throughout the region. PSPC, along with collaborating partners, are producing the first ever Tacoma Poetry Festival on October 16 and 17, 2015.

“What do I get out of this? Great poetry. Good friends. Good teachers,” said Walle. “Our group is the most generous and friendly reading in the state. No matter what the level of writing or reading, our people always make newbies feel welcome and encourage them to return. I set pretty high standards for our group and somehow they find a way to exceed it.”

The Distinguished Writer Series meets at 7 p.m. on the second Friday of every month at King’s Bookstore (218 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma). The event is free and open to the public. All ages and levels of writing are welcome.


Awards Celebration

Awardees will be honored at the annual Tacoma Arts Month Opening Party on Oct. 1, from 6 – 9 p.m., at the historic Tacoma Armory (715 S. 11th St.). Mayor Marilyn Strickland will present the awards starting at 7:45 p.m.

In addition, there will be live entertainment at this event that includes music by Ken Jacobsen, contemporary dance by the BareFoot Collective, Samoan Village Dance by Asia Pacific Cultural Center, poetry by Tacoma Poet Laureate Cathy Nguyen, and more. Attendees can also explore a series of pop-up multimedia art exhibits by Christopher Jordan, Isaac Olsen, Jennifer Chushcoff, Nichole Rathburn, Janet Marcavage, Tim + April Norris, Terese Cuff, Elizabeth Gahan, Diana Leigh Surma and Judd Cohen. The event will include appetizers, dessert and a no-host bar.

This free public event is presented by the Tacoma Arts Commission and Spaceworks Tacoma with support from the Historic Tacoma Armory and is sponsored by Click! Cable TV, The Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Tacoma Weekly, Northwest Public Radio, KPLU, Weekly Volcano, South Sound magazine, and ARCADE.

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