Renovated third floor of King Street Station opens as a dynamic art space with inaugural exhibition offering collective portrait of Native America

 yəhaw̓, on view at ARTS at King Street Station March 23 to Aug. 3, 2019,
highlights contemporary Indigenous creatives
Opening celebration Saturday, March 23, 2019, noon – 7 p.m.
Admission is free

SEATTLE, Jan. 31, 2019 – An exciting new arts and cultural hub opens in Seattle on March 23, 2019, when ARTS at King Street Station debuts with the dynamic exhibition yəhaw̓, which presents some 200 works showcasing contemporary Indigenous creatives.

ARTS at King Street Station was conceived as an innovative, community-powered arts and cultural hub that encompasses art, artists and culture through the lens of racial equity. The exhibition space provides a holistic view of art and the people who make, consume and live it. Informed by an extensive community input process, ARTS at King Street Station was conceived to reflect the creativity and talents of people that continue to create the fabric of Seattle.

On view through Aug. 3, 2019, the inaugural exhibition yəhaw̓ (pronounced yee-hout) will open ARTS at King Street Station, an historic space now dedicated to increasing opportunities for communities of color to present work. “It is fitting that we inaugurate the space with a nod to the incredible artistry of the Coast Salish peoples, on whose land the City of Seattle is built,” says Randy Engstrom, director of the Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS).

The exhibition title yəhaw̓ is drawn from the Coast Salish story that tells of Native people from all tribes uniting around a common cause and lifting up the sky together. Appropriately, yəhaw̓ reflects a nuanced, inclusive narrative that firmly establishes Native creatives as belonging in the here and now.  Prior to the culminating exhibition that opens March 23, yəhaw̓  has encompassed satellite installations throughout the region, performances, artist-in-residence, a publication, art markets, in an expansive, yearlong project.

All Indigenous creatives living in the Puget Sound region were invited to participate in the yəhaw̓ project, and all who applied had the opportunity to have their work represented in the programming. Conceived and curated by Tracy Rector (Choctaw/Seminole), Asia Tail (Cherokee Nation) and Satpreet Kahlon, the resulting yəhaw̓ project features the work of some 200 creators of all backgrounds and experience, in disciplines including sculpture, photography, design, printmaking, woodworking, film, metalwork, glass and textiles.

Several artists were commissioned for site-specific artworks, including Chai Adera, Natalie Ball, Demian DinéYazhi´, Malynn Foster, Sara Siestreem, Adam Sings in the Timber, Timothy White Eagle, Christine Babic and more. In addition, 10 emerging artists, such as Priscilla Dobler, Randi Purser and Asa Wright were selected to participate in a mentorship program, receiving artistic guidance from established Native artists.


The new ARTS at King Street Station space responds directly to feedback from community focus groups with an emphasis on people of color. Located on the third floor of the 123-year-old train station, the 17,500 square-foot cultural hub was designed by Schacht Aslani to provide flexible, co-use areas for community gathering in addition to professional office and gallery space. The design contains a large multi-disciplinary arts presentation gallery, a public “living room” lobby, a multi-use conference room for large meetings and public presentations, an artist-in-residence space, offices and meeting rooms. In the presentation space kinetic gallery walls designed by Olson Kundig enable community and artists to reconfigure the displays as needed for changing exhibitions and events. Throughout, new architectural interventions emphasize transparency, highlighting and revealing historic elements of the original building such as the historic masonry and steel structural system, ornamental stairway and original terrazzo floor. ARTS at King Street Station is located at 303 S. Jackson St., third floor, Seattle, WA 98104. Open Tuesday – Saturday,
10 am – 6 pm, and First Thursdays, 10 am – 8 pm. Admission is free.