Thank You for an Artful Showcase!

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DNDA’s Arts In Nature Showcase at Westcrest Park was the place to be on Saturday August 28th, part of the week-long Created Commons event happening there through September 5th. Kids and adults alike created paintings on DNDA-provided canvases under the guidance of local artists Kimisha Turner and Yvad Campbell. Park-goers soaked in the sights and sounds of performances held under the wings of Interspecies Communication, a giant kinetic sculpture connected to the stage, built by LelaVision, the artist collective orchestrating the whole Created Commons event at Westcrest. The DNDA Showcase was a distilled version of DNDA’s long-running Arts In Nature Festival, adapted this year due to Covid. In partnership with LelaVision, Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture, and 4Culture, our focus was highlighting BIPOC-led (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) art and performances.

Seattle Capoeira Studio got things moving early in the day with music and dance for the people, and Danza Symbiosis kept things eclectic with movement-based roaming performances throughout. Emcee Lash, and DJ Phenohype kept things moving between acts on stage. Jennifer Moore set the tone for the Showcase, submersing the audience in a sound bath using a homemade instrument and her voice to breathe meditative music into the crowd. Troy Osaki followed with powerful poetry weaving together family, politics, and personal narrative to honor and celebrate the Filipino diaspora. Next, incredible cellist Gretchen Yanover layered beautiful cello lines to create her own symphony of sound, while Noelle Price danced in collaboration on several songs. The audience was mesmerized, many highlighting the beauty of the performance. Boka Kouyate & the Djeliyah Band took the stage next, pumping out African rhythms and music that fit perfectly in the pleasant warmth of the afternoon sun. Many got up to dance with them, and in addition to the music they spoke of the griot tradition – storytelling to spread news and keep decision-makers informed, a perfect message for our crowd as DNDA continues to blend arts with civic discourse. Supercoze followed with a young rock sound to keep things lively. Holy Pistola closed out the Showcase with an electric performance blending hip-hop, funk, and R&B. Frontwoman Momma Nikki’s voice soared over the crowd and throughout the park as the sun set on a magical day.

The following photos were taken by Catherine Anstett. For more photos, please click here.

Big shout out to DNDA’s own Erika Bell for curating the Showcase, to all our performers and artists, and to LelaVision for partnering with us and taking on organizing the full Created Commons event. Big thanks also to DNDA’s Showcase sponsors NUCOR and Verity Credit Union, and Showcase funding partner 4Culture.

Created Commons continues with daily activities at Westcrest Park through Sunday, September 5th. More photos to come, so stay tuned. In the meantime, be sure to get out there, catch some art and science in the park, and flap the wings of the bird sculpture!