Reimagined Bellwether launches Sept. 14

Bellwether artist Tariqa Waters with one of her works, "Quilted Northern."

Reimagined Bellwether launches Sept. 14

What happens when you take a three-month sculpture show, squeeze it down to 10 days and add live music, poetry readings and other kinds of performances? A reimagined Bellwether, of course. Bellevue’s long-time biennial exhibition returns Sept. 14-23 in a concentrated, high-energy format.

Curated by Seattle-based artist collective SuttonBeresCuller, Bellwether convenes over 50 regional and internationally acclaimed artists responding to the theme of connectivity and connections with original, site-specific works in locations around downtown Bellevue.

“The new Bellwether sets out to discover how artists interact with and respond to the public and private spaces that make downtown Bellevue unique,” said Ben Beres, one third of the collective, along with John Sutton and Zac Culler. “It offers a breadth of creative connections to experience.”

Sites for artwork and events include the Bellevue Arts Museum (free admission during Bellwether), City Hall, Compass Plaza and Bellevue Downtown Park – all in the downtown core. A free opening celebration will be on Friday, Sept. 14, 6-9 p.m. at the museum (RSVP is required to attend.) Each day will feature a set of performances, and special events are planned for Sept. 15 and 22, both Saturdays.

The shift in scope and programming is the result of a yearlong study of the arts downtown and a desire to ensure the Grand Connection pedestrian corridor (now in the planning stages) is culturally vibrant.

“We seek to position Bellevue as the cultural hub of the Eastside,” Beres explains. “The shorter time frame will allow more temporary, time-based works to occur, bring a groundswell of people from the region to interact with cutting-edge, contemporary art, and show off the wide range of Bellevue’s cultural spaces.”

From its beginnings in 1992, Bellwether has attracted artists from around the region to contribute creative vitality to downtown Bellevue every other year. Starting this year, the event will be held annually to harness the city’s rapid growth and encourage artistic innovation year-round.

More information about Bellwether, including a schedule of all events and a list of all the artists, is available at

Bellwether is produced by the City of Bellevue in collaboration with Bellevue’s arts community, with guidance from the city’s Arts Commission. Event partners include Bellevue Arts Museum, the Bellevue Downtown Association and Madison Marquette. Support is provided by the Port of Seattle, and media sponsors include 425 Magazine, Crosscut and 91.3 KBCS.

Published on 09/14/2018
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