Browse Exhibits (13 total)

Artists' Books Collection


Formalized in 2016, the Seattle Art Museum Libraries Books Arts Collection encompasses artists’ books, zines, and prints. This digital exhibition represents only some of the artists’ books in our Book Arts Collection; view a full list of these holdings. These works of art make use of the book as a format; their structures and techniques support and/or enhance the content of the work. This selection represents many regional artists, but has an international scope. Themes of identity, place, and community run through many of the works. Multiple images are included for each work. This digital collection was conceived of and produced as an MLIS capstone project for the University of Washington Information School.

Documents Northwest: The PONCHO Series

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Documents Northwest: The PONCHO Series (DocsNW) presented 43 solo, 5 two-person and 14 group exhibitions at the Seattle Art Museum over a 21-year period (1983-2004). The series, supported by a local philanthropic arts organization, PONCHO (Patrons of Northwest Civic, Cultural and Charitable Organizations), highlighted predominantly mid-career artists born or living in the Pacific Northwest. For each exhibition, the Seattle Art Museum published a four- to eight-page printed brochure which included: introductory essays by curators and guest writers, photography, biographical and bibliographical information, along with an exhibition checklist. The physical collection of brochures is held at the Seattle Art Museum's Dorothy Stimson Bullitt Library.

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Ex Libris Collection of the Seattle Art Museum Libraries


This collection is one of the Seattle Art Museum Libraries' hidden collections. Rather than a standalone bookplate--or ex libris--collection, these works were all found in situ inside books. These little gems are works of art themselves and give us important information about a book's ownership, purpose, and the journey each made to eventually reach the Seattle Art Museum Libraries.

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Fritzsche Porcelain Collection


This exhibit showcases the Dr. Ulrich and Stella Fritzsche Collection, which consisted of eighteenth-century porcelain masterpieces created by the Vincennes and Sèvres Porcelain Manufactories,  assembled by the Fritzsches from the 1970s through the 1990s. Several of these pieces are now in the Seattle Art Museum collection, while others are in museums and collections around the world. The exhibit highlights the history and significance of these objects, covering topics such as color, décor, teacup shapes, biographies of the porcelain painters and gilders, and porcelain marks. It also discusses the Fritzsches' approach to collecting, based on an interview conducted with Dr. Ulrich and Stella Fritzsche in 2019.

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International Exhibition of Northwest Printmakers, 1929-1971

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The International Exhibition of Northwest Printmakers was an annual exhibition begun at the Henry Art Gallery at the University of Washington in 1929, that then transitioned to the Seattle Art Museum in 1934. The exhibition continued at SAM until the 1971 Seattle Print International: Northwest Printmakers 42nd Annual Exhibition, its final exhibition. Similar to the Northwest Annual Exhibitions (painting and sculpture) and the Northwest Watercolor Society Annual Exhibitions, the International Exhibition of Northwest Printmakers featured many prominent and upcoming regional artists, but also included  printmakers from outside the region and around the world. This exhibition includes checklists, photographs, and other ephemera spanning the years of the exhibition, 1929-1971.

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Northwest Annual Exhibition and the Seattle Art Museum, 1914-1977


The Northwest Annual Exhibition (NWA) was a yearly exhibition of work by artists from the Pacific Northwest, held first by the Seattle Fine Arts Society, then the Art Institute of Seattle, and finally the Seattle Art Museum. Its first recorded exhibition was in 1914, and it continued for over sixty years until its final show in 1977. Its intention was to exhibit high quality works in a wide variety of artistic expressions, with a focus on painting and sculpture, and to give recognition to new talent in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana.

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Northwest Watercolor Society at the Seattle Art Museum: Annual Exhibition Publications, 1942-1976


This collection consists of the catalogues (or checklists) from the Northwest Watercolor Society annual exhibitions hosted by the Seattle Art Museum. This collection spans the years 1942-1976, covering the 2nd through 36th annual exhibition. Catalogues may include: artist name, home town, title of work, and sale price; jury names; cash award winners and honorable mentions; and/or sponsors. Questions about publications after 1977 (37th annual exhibition), can be directed to the Northwest Watercolor Society.

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Richard E. Fuller Travel Slides: Art and Architecture of Mexico


Dr. Richard E. Fuller (1897-1976), Director of the Seattle Art Museum from 1933-1973, made an array of personal excursions to Mexico between 1944 and 1948. These were in addition to the research trips he was also carrying out at that time as Chairman of the U.S. Committee for the Study of Parícutin Volcano. Over the course of his travels, Fuller took numerous photographs of Mexican architecture and sculpture, which he later had transferred to glass slides. This collection documents several historic Toltec sites, detailed interiors and exteriors of many Colonial Period buildings, various monuments, civic structures, and works of art, and other rural and urban scenes of early 20th century Mexico.

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SAM Next Publications


The Seattle Art Museum's SAM Next was a program that presented contemporary art exhibitions by emerging artists. Launched in 2008, SAM Next issued a series of six brochures that detailed each unique exhibit through 2012.

Seattle Art Museum Annual Exhibitions of Residential Architecture, 1950-1980


Starting in 1950, the Seattle Art Museum featured tours and exhibitions of residential architecture. These tours featured architecture ranging from traditional and classic homes from the turn of the century to modern architecture designed by nationally and locally prominent architects. The tours visited many neighborhoods of Seattle, providing access to homes of prominent Seattleites and art collectors. The general public were invited into gated communities and private enclaves, welcomed, and served tea and cookies. The tours continued until 1980.

Developed and run by the Art Museum Guild, these tours document the changes and growth of both the museum and the city. These tours opened the doors of prominent civic figures, from industrial magnates to university deans and presidents, and provided an intimate portrait of them through architecture, interior design, and art collections.

Seattle artists were featured in the exhibitions both through the art on display and tours of their own houses. Works from artists including Mark Tobey were on display, and local artists such as Jack Stangle, David Checkley and Walter Isaacs participated in the tours.

This collection includes the descriptive brochures and maps, photography, and promotional materials related to the tours.