Charred is a temporary installation on the facade of MadArt’s new home at 325 Westlake Avenue North in South Lake Union. A collaborative, multimedia piece by Kathleen Warren and Jon Gentry, with contributing artist Kat Larson, Charred is a burned and etched wood-paneled wall with a video component. “Featuring Charred on the temporary wall during construction, gives MadArt an opportunity to introduce itself to the neighborhood,” said Tim Detweiler, Director of MadArt.
Following the traditional Japanese wood preservation practice of Shou-sugi-ban, the wood is burned, cleaned with water, then oiled. Just as fire allows room for new growth, these singed cedar panels mark the building’s renewal. Tree rings are etched into the panels, recalling the past lives of the building and surrounding neighborhood. A bright green color behind the boards alludes to the burgeoning life of the space. Adding to the experience, visitors can view a video through a knothole in the tree rings.
Architect Jon Gentry of goCstudio and artist Kathleen Warren of Urban Artworks formed a unique collaboration to create Charred. The video component in the piece was created by Kat Larson, a Seattle-based cross-disciplinary artist. Charred will remain on view while the MadArt space is under construction. MadArt’s new space, opening early 2014, is designed by Graham Baba Architects and will consist of a studio for artists to make large scale objects. The building also houses the newly constructed Lofts At 325 apartments.
Since its beginning in 2009, MadArt has fostered community engagement in the arts through novel installations. MadArt’s new home at 325 Westlake will provide an opportunity for artists to make large scale objects, with the potential for interaction with the public. This street level studio continues MadArt’s efforts to provide emerging artists space for creating and showing art. MadArt’s mission is to support emerging artists in our community, to incorporate art into our lives in unexpected ways, and to create community involvement in the arts.