The Great Northern

Rick Araluce

Open Studio

October 1, 2015 – January 16, 2016

Exhibition Period

January 17 – February 27, 2016

Local artist and former Guggenheim fellow Rick Araluce hand-built a large replica of Seattle’s Great Northern train tunnel inside MadArt Studio. When the real tunnel opened in Pioneer Square in 1905, it was the highest and widest in the U.S.

Rick’s version was half-scale, filling MadArt’s studio and immersing visitors in a multi-sensory experience. Using forced perspective and the subtle light and sound of an oncoming train, he created an unexpected illusion of mystery and suspense.

As a practicing artist, Araluce has worked for many years in the realm of miniatures, though his former position as lead scenic artist for the Seattle Opera also allowed him to create on a larger scale. Araluce’s captivating sculptures and installations often emphasize themes of nostalgia, emptiness, tension, darkness, suspense, and hidden narrative.



Precise Replica

CityArts Magazine
January 26, 2016

No Bertha required for Great Northern Tunnel replica

The Seattle Times
January 22, 2016

CityArtist Program: 30 Artists Granted Funding for 2016

Vanguard Seattle
November 19, 2015

View a Replica of the Great Northern Train Tunnel

Seattle Magazine
October 1, 2015

See More
Photo by James Harnois
Video by Vincent Pierce for Art Zone with Nancy Guppy