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Seattle Culture

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Showcasing the Unique Culture of

Seattle Art Museum

With an impressive collection of more than 21,000 objects, including Old Master paintings, African masks, and contemporary Northwest art, SAM offers artistic experiences for visitors of all ages.

SAM provides a welcoming place for people to connect with art and to consider its relationship to their lives. SAM is one museum in three locations: Seattle Art Museum downtown, Seattle Asian Art Museum at Volunteer Park, and the Olympic Sculpture Park. The Museum collects and exhibits objects from across time and across cultures, exploring the dynamic connections between past and present. SAM views art as a reflection of the human experience in all its forms.

Frye Art Museum

The Frye Art Museum acquires, preserves, exhibits, and interprets visual art of the highest quality, celebrating the grand tradition and contemporary practice of representational art, with an emphasis on painting and sculpture from the nineteenth century to the present. Recognizing that art is not limited by geographical boundaries, the museum will include works by regional, national , and international artists in its collections and present them in exhibitions. As a visual arts institution, the museum is committed to stimulate, challenge, and educate the community in all that it does. In the belief that art should be accessible to all who wish to enjoy it, admission to the museum shall be free to the public at all times.

Seattle Opera

Founded in 1963, Seattle Opera has developed into one of the leading opera companies in the United States. The company is recognized internationally for its theatrically compelling and musically accomplished performances. Seattle Opera's summer presentations, particularly of Wagner's Ring des Nibelungen, have been acclaimed often and widely as among the Pacific Northwest's premier cultural events.

Seattle Opera performs five operas per year. General Director Speight Jenkins leads the company, supported by a full-time professional staff of approximately 65. The orchestra is drawn from Seattle Symphony, and Seattle Opera engages its own professional regular chorus.

Seattle Symphony

Founded in 1903, the Seattle Symphony is one of the oldest and largest cultural institutions in the Pacific Northwest. Under the direction of Music Director Gerard Schwarz, the Symphony is recognized for its adventurous programming and tradition of performing music by contemporary composers. The Seattle Symphony is one of the world's most recorded orchestras, represented on more than 80 compact discs and recognized with 10 Grammy nominations. From September through July each year, the Seattle Symphony is heard live in Benaroya Hall by more than 300,000 people.

Center of Contemporary Art

CoCA serves the Pacific Northwest as a catalyst and forum for the advancement, development, and understanding of contemporary art. CoCA provides opportunities for the art audience in this region to view new and experimental artwork firsthand in exhibitions which show the work of international, national and local artists. CoCA is committed to exploring issues, media, and concepts relevant to the world and times in which we live. Site-specific installations, performance art, multi-media and multi-disciplinary programs, and gallery exhibitions of visual art are all within the focus of the organization. CoCA is committed to commissioning new work and providing exposure for emerging artists in a variety of media. CoCA's galleries serve as an artistic proving ground resulting in programming that is experimental in nature--an important distinction between CoCA and other visual arts institutions and organizations in this region.

Pioneer Square

Pioneer Square is the cultural heart of Seattle featuring over twenty city blocks of historic buildings, over thirty galleries, a vibrant retail sector, and Seattle's most exciting nightlife.

It's rich in history and lore, examined in spirited detail on the popular Underground Tour which visits the eerie sunken storefronts of what was ground-level Pioneer Square before the Great Fire of 1889. Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park is a small museum recalling the crazed days a century ago when rough-and-ready gold-seekers converged on Pioneer Square on their way to the Yukon. Smith Tower, which overlooks the square, was the tallest building west of the Mississippi when it was completed in 1914.

Chinatown Discovery

Just minutes away from downtown Seattle, it's possible to discover the traditions, spirit and soul of a 7,000 year old culture. You can see Asian museums, markets and historical sites, smell the fragrance of incense, Chinese herbs, hom bows & roast duck and hear the many Asian languages on your personally guided tour that will let you experience the daily cultural life of the Asian community.

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