Eight New Storefronts Now on Display in South Lake Union

Shunpike proudly presents eight new installations in South Lake Union as part of its acclaimed Storefronts program, on display through November 2017. The theme of the current exhibition is “Honoring life and humanity in the urban wilderness.”

All SLU Storefronts Locations are at the corner of Terry or Boren on given cross streets:

South Lake Union Storefronts Locations

ARTIST: Mimi Sturman

WORK: The Transmigration of Stinging Souls Returning To Roost In Halcyon

LOCATION: Mercer East Storefront


The Transmigration of Stinging Souls Returning To Roost In Halcyon is my version of reincarnation. Each one of these portraits and sculptures represent a human that had heartbreak and difficulty in life, health, and circumstances. Some were not liked and some did not like themselves. All return in the form of things they loved or had a passion for, but all returning transformed and healed. Each portrait has a biography – their life as a human and how they returned as a new being in afterlife.”


ARTIST: Sofia Babaeva

WORK: We Go Wandering Forth

LOCATION: Mercer West Storefront


“We Go Wandering Forth” is my love letter to the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. As a Washingtonian watching our region change and grow rapidly in recent years, I wanted to explore my relationship with the natural beauty of my home. I am interested how my identity was shaped by my natural surroundings, and how it can continue to shape the lives of people for generations to come.
With this installation, I wanted to remind viewers to appreciate and protect the unique environment that surrounds us, which is threatened by urban sprawl, overpopulation, and corporate interest. I was inspired by my research of microscopic cell patterns in plants such as fiddlehead fern and yellow cedar, and marine organisms like sea urchins, anemones, and algae. I wanted to create a visual representation of our flora and fauna on a macro-scale, in sumptuous materials like hand-felted wool, fabric, and other found materials that urged the viewer to want to touch them. By mimicking microscopic details in such a large scale and in unexpected materials, I hope to inspire the viewer to take a closer look at the natural world around them and to pay attention to our effect on our environment.



ARTIST: John Smither

WORK: Wilderness Peak- Fall Equinox

LOCATION: Republican Storefront


Over many years my work has evolved into installations which incorporate video, and various 2D media. These installations pay tribute, as altar pieces, to a memory of time and place. The videos serve as the first layer of memory or mind’s eye, while the traditional 2D images become further abstracted recollections. Overlaid on the memories are even further abstracted post-event thoughts which appear as negative space within the 2D imagery. Finally, I overlay a continually changing collection of stencils from the 2D imagery back over the video to tie all the work into a single unit with its source. This installation, “Wilderness Peak Trail – Fall Equinox”, is based on a trail on the back side of Cougar Mountain in Issaquah. In this piece, you can also pick out the abstracted versions of herons (which nest in the area) and hear them in the sound track.


ARTIST: Karey Kessler

WORK: Primeval Waters

LOCATION: Harrison East Storefront


My Storefronts installation includes recent works on paper that concern the rapid development in Seattle and the effects of climate change on our planet.

“Primeval Waters” contains the iconic image of a sky scraper as the symbol of capitalism, but also, the invisible scaffolding that holds up the universe.

“Vanishing Places” concerns the rapid development of South Lake Union, about the geological terrain it is built upon (fault lines and unstable ground), and about the people who have been displaced.

“Climate Change is Real” depicts the world map, re-envisioned in light of climate change. I wrote true facts about the effects of climate change and also poetic reactions to the changing landscape and ecosystems of the world.


ARTIST: Shannon Tipple-Leen

WORK: Begin, Show, Fade

LOCATION: Harrison West Storefront


This installation, “Begin, Show, Fade” is a first for me. As a traditional matte and frame photographer, I have found it so exciting to break out of my comfort zone and work with my imagery in a completely different way.

The work is made by transferring the printed imagery with an acrylic medium onto fabric panels. By doing this, I can use one botanical form over and over to create a larger form. It is a very freeing process. Where my traditional images need to be very crisp and clear, these are loose and imperfections are welcome.

The three panels represent the three cycles of a plant (or living being) – the bud or youth, the bloom or midlife and the fade or end of life and death. There is beauty in all of it and I hope to represent that in the work and have the viewer take a few minutes to reflect on their own place in the cycle.


ARTIST: Tara Tamaribuchi

WORK: Craft Abstracts

LOCATION: Thomas East Storefront


My art practice draws from the uncomplicated act of being and living, while contemplating the past, present and future. The past brings connection to my ancestors by studying traditional visual language, to fill a cultural void in my western art training. In the present, as a mother, I choose not to separate my artist life from my parenting life, and thus my concepts spring from simply being with my daughter. This past year, my work has been interested in political activism, with concerns for social justice in the future. Over the last several years, I have shifted media from painting to its outermost parameters into installation, so that media choices are rooted in the concepts of my work.


ARTIST: Colin Curry

WORK: Thrive

LOCATION: Thomas West Storefront


In images, a lone being is a portrait. Two beings begin a visual dialogue, and three, a story. However, with each addition after, a mere feeling eventually overwhelms any clear narrative of meaning. Attempts to count or identify individuals fail. In Thrive, a typically alarming vision of vileness becomes instead a soothing pattern. Our relationship to rodents is unique, as our very efforts to vilify and eliminate them from our spaces has left only survivors best equipped to evade us. If there is a narrative in Thrive, it is an endless story in which life flourishes despite oppression, not in the colorful open air, but in the grey hidden spaces between gleaming buildings, colorful walls, or the more comforting thoughts in one’s one mind. The creatures above may have the privilege of clear meaning illuminated in the sun, but the creatures below have the strength of being impossible to truly count.


ARTIST: Melissa Koch

WORK: Winged Migrations

LOCATION: John Storefront


“WINGED MIGRATIONS,” is a mixed media art installation created from found and up-cycled paper, handmade paint. The imagery is inspired by butterfly wing patterns as seen under a microscope. The work is intended to be uplifting and to bring us back into an awareness of our connection with nature, its beauty, its ability to adapt, transform and for rebirth that is also a part of the natural cycles of destruction and recreation. The process of creating this work comes from my fascination with this adaptability of nature to transform external influences including using what it has found in creative ways.


About storefrontsseattle

Activating neighborhoods and overlooked spaces by filling vacant urban spaces with art installations, pop-up boutiques, galleries, and community groups since 2010.
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