State of emergence (2021) film

(2021) film 

STATE OF EMERGENCE VIDEO
This is a short film created by Austin Wilson, produced with Overall Creative during the summer of 2020. Features John Richards, Kathleen Warren and the creation of murals by Barry Johnson and Ezra Dickinson. It is a look at the thoughts and messages behind the works, during the summer when everything was boarded up and artists began to paint in the streets.
Additionally works shown by Amaris O. Hamer, Vivid Matter Collective, Paulina Cholewinski, Crystal Barbre, Casey Weldon, Zach Rockstad, Anne Siems, Baso Fibonacci, Zach Takasawa, Robert Tardiff, Connor McPherson, Evann Strathern, Billie Avery. Music by the Polyrhythmics.

 

 

Photos Austin Wilson

AMONG US (2021)

(2021) poster

 

Poster painted and placed in Seattle. This work is 14’x7’. This location has been at the center of the recent ongoing protests/marches in response to the police murder of George Floyd. 

 

During the spring and summer of 2020, protesters held an occupation of the area around the police precinct/neighborhood. The local police precinct is directly across the street. The first poster $TATE OF EMERGENCY was speaking to the crisis declared in Washington state in regards to homlessness. This new poster is speaking to the need for safe and humain sites for individuals dealing with addiction, under the supervision of care workers offering support and resources to help folks find a new path towards an addiction-free life. In a broader sense both of these posters speak to the current state of humanity as we deal with the covid pandemic. 
In the constant rush of the everyday world, we may overlook the hardship that we as a society have endured not just for the last two years but more so as a way of life. The expectation that the act of living, keeping a roof over your head, feeding yourself, healthcare, education, all are things we must work to have. If you don’t want to, or for one reason or another you can’t, what are your options? How do we care for one another? How do we take care of our own mental health? I’m constantly asking myself these questions.

 

YOU ARE NOT ALONE (2020)

(2020) Commissioned public art mural. Life on Mars, Seattle WA. 

 

This mural was organized by Overall Creative, who sourced five muralists that worked to paint one of four walls on the facade of record store and eatery, Life on Mars. This work was a response to both the smashing of Life on Mars’ window and a public service message of support during the covid crisis. Part owner of Life on Mars/KEXP DJ John Richards spoke the words “you are not alone” while broadcasting during Covid-19. Photography by Austin Wilson.

 

This mural was also featured in Viral Murals. Published by Chatwin Books, 2020.

Stories (2020-present)

Stories from the Streets or Being Seen (working titles) (2020-present)

 

This is the seed project for what will become a much larger, interactive, citywide performance experience. To begin, I have been awarded funding from 4Culture to collect interviews from people living on the street experiencing homelessness. My aim is to find individuals who would like to talk with me about their experience living on the street. I have found myself gravitating to these folks for two reasons: 1) My mother lived on the street for a period of time after I began living on my own, and before she ultimately was committed to Western State hospital; and 2) I can’t help but see a clear correlation between out of control rental prices and the rapid increase in the homeless population in the northwest.

 

 

Through this funding I will compensate the individuals interviewed. I want to collect these interviews and geo tag the locations where the interviewees are living. In Seattle currently the people living on the street are routinely dislocated or swept from their established homes on the street, a practise that is both inhumane and, given that we are still in the grips of a worldwide pandemic, is all the more absurd an action to be taken against an already extremely vulnerable population. 
Once I have collected as many interviews as funding will allow for, I will create a website which houses all of these stories and cross references each one with a QR code that will be placed at the location of past residence for each individual I interview. This will create both a visual link to the inhabitants that occupied these street homes–prior to being displaced yet again–and determine a walking tour through Seattle that someone could follow to see these stories activated from one QR code to the next.
This first step will lay the groundwork for the larger piece. I will endeavor to fill in the path that is created from these stories with installation, both site specific and gallery. There will be sound that will accompany the viewer through this journey. There will be pre recorded performance that lives as a sort of ghost along this path. All this will come together to create a walking tour that can be entered at any point, at any time.

 

Walk with us (2020)

(2020) painted banner

 

I felt compelled to respond to the conflicts between Black Lives Matters marchers and the violent provocations of the police. Inspired by seeing a few police officers in different cities choosing to walk with demonstrators as they marched. I aimed to tell Seattle Police officers to embrace the community and its vulnerabilities, stand up for the underserved, walk with us and choose to hear the voices of the people.

 

Mother Father (2019)

(2019) Commissioned public art mural, Mosquito MT, Leadville CO.

 

Painted with the assistance of artist NKO while in residence at Artville in Leadville CO. 13,000 feet up in the mountains on an old abandoned radio shack, this message speaks to past generations asking them how have they cared for the world that is being handed off to younger generations? Painted with Enamel paint, the message will stand as a visual voice in the cold high land of the mountains. 

 

Bring Back The Salmon (2019)

(2019) Commissioned public art mural, Art in Parks, Seattle WA.

 

Working together, Nahaan and I designed a native formline salmon, as a rain-activated, ground stencil. Working with the Office of Arts and Culture Art in Parks, we settled on Alki Beach Park as our project site. We used RainWorks to stencil a temporary non toxic clear coating which is only visible during Seattle’s rainy weather. The stencil design we created was roughly 4’ long and 2’ tall. This installation is meant to bring attention to the loss of native salmon in this region as a result of overfishing, dam’s blocking salmon runs and pollution. We possess the power to change the fate of the northwest salmon.
 

Abortion is Freedom (2019)

(2019) designed and hand painted poster

 

In anticapation of the LA Women’s March, Shout Your Abortion commissioned No Touching Ground and I to create this large two section poster to be displayed in Pershing Square nearby the start of the march. We designed and hand painted this work to fit perfectly into the media advert display case shown here. It is an unquestionable right that women have access to legal abortions and be able to choose for themselves what’s best for their body. Men and religious beliefs have no place imposing their expectations on any woman’s ability to make a choice.

 

photo NTG

XEIGAA LATSEEN (2019)

(2019) poster collaboration

 

Created with my best friend Nahaan. This poster speaks to the sad reality that indigenous women continue to be murdered and go missing. Inadequately investigated, this heartbreaking reality pulls at the backbone of culture and strength in native families, communities, and ceremonies. The words XEIGAA LATSEEN in Tlingit  translate to “TRUE POWER”, true power and wealth come from strong women.

 

Ol’Burgdishy (2018)

(2018) Commissioned public art mural, Seattle Center Sculpture Walk, Seattle WA.

 

For this mural I received a public art grant from the Office of Arts and Culture and Seattle Center Art Interruptions. Initially I wanted to work with a rain activated clear coating that would break down over the course of four months to a year and is biodegradable in the Seattle center fountain. I could not get clearance for the location, which kicked off a lengthy back and forth regarding what location could be used. Ultimately, we settled on the steps of the Key Arena and I got to work on a draft. The final design took into consideration the shape of space and how color would cascade down and direct the eye of the observer while traveling over the massive work. I painted the whole mural using rollers over the course of two days with the help of Taylor and Natan.