The Fremont Arts Council (FAC) is a community-run organization that supports arts and artists. The Council resides in the Fremont, Seattle, Washington, but its members are from throughout the city.
The FAC believes that art establishes a bond between people. When people feel connected to their community, the community thrives. It serves the needs of local artists and community members by fostering a cooperative, collaborative environment for the creation and celebration of art.
There are three distinct areas of public programming: events, art and workshops. In turn, the community supports the FAC through partnerships with government, local businesses, and schools. It is an established and integral part of the neighborhood's business community and has healthy relationships with the Fremont Chamber of Commerce, Fremont Rotary Club, the local Seattle Public Schools and the Fremont Sunday Market.
The Fremont Arts Council was founded in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, Washington, in 1979 with the belief that art establishes a bond between people and their neighborhood.
The Fremont Arts Council sponsors several annual events including the Summer Solstice Parade and Pageant, May Day, Troll-a-ween, and the Winter Solstice Feast.
The FAC's signature event is the annual Fremont Summer Solstice Parade & Pageant, which has grown over 25 years to become one of the premier outlets for public artistic expression in Seattle. The Solstice Parade is an outpouring of creativity and community during which hundreds of volunteers and tens of thousands of spectators transform the streets of Fremont into a roving theater.
Luminata is a community-based event. Lanterns are made at the Arts Council Studio (The Powerhouse) through classes and open workshops. Held annually on the autumnal equinox, participants meet to walk around Greenlake with their lanterns at dusk, creating a long line of beautifully crafted light around the lake. Anyone in the community is invited to the classes, the workshops, and the event itself. Workshops and classes usually require a small fee.
FAC has been responsible for the installation and maintenance of several public artworks in the Fremont area. These include the Fremont Troll and Waiting for the Interurban.
One of Seattle's most popular public artworks, the Fremont Troll, is a mixed-media megalithic statue, located on N. 36th Street at Troll Avenue N., under the north end of the Aurora Bridge. (Troll Avenue was renamed in its honor in 2005.) It is clutching an actual original Volkswagen Beetle, as if it had just swiped it from the roadway above. Somewhat amusingly, in light of Seattle P-I columnist Emmett Watson's periodic promotion of the KBO, the vehicle had a California license plate.
The piece was commissioned by the Fremont Arts Council in 1989, and built in 1990. The Troll was sculpted by four local artists: Steve Badanes, Will Martin, Donna Walter and Ross Whitehead. The Troll is interactive—visitors are encouraged to clamber on him or try to poke out his one good eye (a hubcap). The Troll is 18 feet (5.5 m) high, weighs two tons, and is made of steel rebar, wire and ferroconcrete.
"Waiting for the Interurban" is a 1979 cast aluminum sculpture collection in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. It is located on the south side of N. 34th Street, just east of the northern end of the Fremont Bridge. It consists of six people, to say nothing of the dog, standing under a shelter and waiting for public transportation—specifically, the Seattle-Everett Interurban. (In actuality, the six figures would have waited for a very long time, as the Interurban ran on Fremont Avenue and never turned east on 34th.)
The sculptor, local resident Richard Beyer, included several subtleties in the sculpture which reward close viewing. There is also some gentle needling of a local Fremont political leader and pioneer in municipal recycling, Armen Napoleon Stepanian. People living and working in the Fremont neighborhood often dress the characters with apparel appropriate to the season (termed "art attacks" by some) to the extent that, when those unfamiliar with the sculpture drive by, it is not always immediately obvious as they pass that the characters waiting are actually statues. The most imaginative displays are memorialized at History House.
The sculpture is a few blocks west of Troll Avenue N., the location of the Fremont Troll.
The FAC regularly schedules events with local and international professional artists who give lectures and teach workshops to the community. In the past five years, the FAC has hosted artists from England, carnival experts from Trinidad, a performer and costume maker from Liberia and a sculptor from New York City. These artists have furthered the technical skills of the community and have significantly improved the quality of art the FAC produces. The FAC understands that involving local and international artists is invaluable in inspiring and empowering the community."ParentsConnect". gocitykids.com. Retrieved 25 August 2015.
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