Genius / 21 Century / Seattle

September 26, 2015 – January 10, 2016

Genius is an unprecedented, large-scale celebration of exceptional multidisciplinary and collaborative artistic practice in Seattle in the twenty-first century. It features over sixty-five visual artists, filmmakers, writers, theater artists, composers, musicians, choreographers, dancers, and arts organizations. The exhibition and its more than forty events will run from September 26, 2015, to January 10, 2016.

Genius has no limiting paradigm. It relinquishes the idea of an exhibition that does not change, that has a beginning and an end, and embraces instead the idea of a living exhibition that is in constant transformation.

During the sixteen weeks of the exhibition, Genius features twenty-five commissions and premieres, immersive installations, durational performances, and collaborations across disciplines, and also presents film and literary festivals. A specially designed, shape-shifting environment in the Frye's largest gallery space will host live music, dance and theater performances, literary readings, video exhibitions, public forums, and rehearsals.

The installations, works of art, performances, workshops, events, and festivals in Genius offer a variety of perspectives on the social, political, and cultural flux shaping Seattle and the global community. They address the complexities, discrepancies, and contradictions of issues such as unrestrained urban growth, social and racial inequity, and the threat of natural catastrophe. Genius expresses the shared concerns of the artists and citizens of Seattle while imagining alternative visions for the future.

Artists participating in Genius were selected by leading arts writers and the Seattle artistic community to be recipients of The Stranger Genius Award. The Frye Art Museum is itself a recipient. Genius continues the Frye's inquiry into the role of the museum in the twenty-first century and its place in the cultural and intellectual life of the city.

Among the distinguished artists, collaborative groups, and organizations participating in Genius are (in alphabetical order): Sherman Alexie, Sarah Bergmann, Matt Briggs, Rebecca Brown, Drew Christie, Web Crowell, Valerie Curtis-Newton, Robinson Devor, Steven Fisk, Ellen Forney, Frye Art Museum, Lori Goldston, Wynne Greenwood with K8 Hardy, Megan Griffiths, Gary Groth, Yussef El Guindi, Victoria Haven, Lesley Hazleton, Implied Violence, Industrial Revelation, C. Davida Ingram, The Intelligence, Chris Jeffries, Marya Sea Kaminski, Eyvind Kang, Ben Kasulke, Jessika Kenney, Lead Pencil Studio, Susie J. Lee, Stacey Levine, James Longley, Heather McHugh, Jeffry Mitchell, Zia Mohajerjasbi, Cary Moon, Charles Mudede, Paul Mullin, On the Boards, John Olson, John Osebold, Pacific Northwest Ballet, DK Pan, Mary Ann Peters, Linas Phillips, Jonathan Raban, Susan Robb, Sarah Rudinoff, David Russo, Scarecrow Video, Alex Schweder, Seattle School, Michael Seiwerath, Shabazz Palaces with Nep Sidhu, Lynn Shelton, Cherdonna Shinatra, SuttonBeresCuller, Rodrigo Valenzuela, Velocity Dance Center, Jim Woodring, Maged Zaher, Jennifer Zeyl, and zoe | juniper.

Curated by Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker, director of the Frye Art Museum, and Erika Dalya Massaquoi, an independent curator, Genius builds and expands upon the principles of past Frye cross-platform projects such as Mw [Moment Magnitude], 2012, and Your Feast Has Ended, 2014, and imagines and makes real a museum that not only exhibits art, but also supports its production.

An interactive microsite and scholarly catalogue will accompany the exhibition and together provide, for the first time, a comprehensive overview of individual and collaborative artistic practice across all disciplines in 21 Century Seattle.

Genius / 21 Century / Seattle is a Raynier Institute & Foundation exhibition organized by the Frye Art Museum and curated by Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker and Erika Dalya Massaquoi. The exhibition is funded by the Frye Foundation and the Raynier Institute & Foundation through the Frye Art Museum | Artist Trust Consortium. Generous support was provided by The Hugh and Jane Ferguson Foundation, Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, 4Culture/King County Lodging Tax, Douglas Smith and Stephanie Ellis-Smith, Riddell Williams P.S., Nitze-Stagen, and Frye Art Museum members and donors. Seasonal support provided by ArtsFund. Print media sponsorship provided by The Stranger. Broadcast media sponsorship provided by KUOW 94.9 FM.

C. Davida Ingram. Still from Avatar: Fanon & Decca, 2015. Single-channel digital video with audio. Courtesy of the artist.
Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo: Lead Pencil Studio. Thereafter, 2015. Steel, concrete, wood, light, dirt, stump. 48 x 75 ft. Commissioned by the Frye Art Museum and funded by the Frye Foundation. Courtesy of the artists. Photo: Charles Peterson.
zoe | juniper. We were., 2015. Installation and performances. Commissioned by the Frye Art Museum and funded by the Frye Foundation. Courtesy of the artists. Design, Concept and Installation: Zoe Scofield and Juniper Shuey. Choreography: Zoe Scofield. Performers: Brittani Karhoff, Jim Kent, Kim Lusk, Erin McCarthy, Alexander Pham, and Zoe Scofield. Sound: Julian Martlew.
Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo: Lead Pencil Studio. Under the Surface, 2008. Charcoal graphite and paint on paper. 71 x 58 in. Courtesy of the artists.
Shabazz Palaces with Nep Sidhu. Malcolm's Smile, 2015. Concept and design: Nep Sidhu. Wool, poly-cotton, aluminum. 150 x 96 x 15 in. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Mark Woods.
DK Pan. Still from Tsunami Capable Tide Stations > West Coast, 2015. Single-channel video with audio. Courtesy of the artist.
Victoria Haven. Still from Studio X (detail), 2015. Two-channel durational digital video. Courtesy of the artist.
Jim Woodring. Still from Frank in the 3rd Dimension, 2015. 3-D digital video. Pen drawings: Jim Woodring, 3-D conversions: Charles Barnard. Courtesy of the artist and Fantagraphics Books.