Seattle is rich in art and artists, and special once-a-month art walks — when neighborhoods’ galleries, artists’ studios and museums are open to visitors — are a great way to see cutting-edge and established artists’ work.
Here’s a sampling of some of the bigger art walks by geographic areas. Most art walks are held in the evenings, most of these run year-round, but always check websites for updates.
First Thursday Art Walk (Pioneer Square): Almost three decades old and centered around the historic Pioneer Square on the south edge of downtown Seattle, this is the city’s major art walk. It includes more than 100 art galleries and businesses, with a wide range of artists and exhibits. And the nearby Seattle Art Museum is free on First Thursday (and open until 9 p.m.)
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Noon-8 p.m., first Thursday each month (some venues may be open later),
Belltown Art Walk: On the north edge of downtown, the Belltown neighborhood, known for its high-rise condos and busy nightlife, has a monthly art walk in which several dozen galleries, cafes and bars showcase artwork.
6-9 p.m., second Friday each month,
Blitz Arts Walk: This art walk in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, on the east edge of downtown, might be the most eclectic of Seattle’s art walks. Participants include art galleries, photo studios, coffee shops, tattoo parlors and a sex shop. It’s a neighborhood packed with restaurants, bars and nightlife.
5-8 p.m., second Thursday each month,
Many North Seattle neighborhoods have art walks, and are a quick drive or bus ride from downtown. Among them:
Fremont Art Walk: Fremont’s art walk includes a variety of media, music and munchies in the eclectic neighborhood. There’s also quirky public artwork including a big statue of a troll (gripping a real VW Bug) under the Aurora Bridge plus a Soviet-realist statue of Lenin.
6-9 p.m., first Friday of each month,
Ballard ArtWalk: Trendy galleries, cafes and shops in Ballard’s lovingly-restored brick buildings on Ballard Avenue (and nearby streets) showcase artists’ works. Make a reservation at one of the neighborhood’s excellent restaurants to make an evening of it. For suggestions, see restaurant critic Providence Cicero’s story on Page 3.
6-9 p.m., second Saturday each month,
Art Up (Phinney Wood): More than 40 venues — including lots of cafes and pubs — join in “Art Up & Chow Down” in the Greenwood-Phinney neighborhood, hanging new artwork on their walls and serving food and beer.
6-9 p.m., second Friday of each month,
University District Art Walk: This art walk near the University of Washington takes place on and around “The Ave,” the main commercial street by the campus, with cafes and shops showing artworks.
6-9 p.m., third Friday each month,
SOUTH OF DOWNTOWN
Georgetown Art Attack: Off-the-beaten track and cutting-edge, Georgetown is home to artists’ studios and adventurous galleries in what was once an industrial hub of Seattle. Don’t miss The Georgetown Trailer Park Mall, with its vintage and artisan shops (in vintage trailers) and pop-up food kiosks. During Art Attack evenings, there’s music and entertainment (the Trailer Park Trannies are a popular act).
6-9 p.m., second Saturday each month,
West Seattle Art Walk: Dozens of West Seattle merchants feature artworks and artists. Most are clustered in “The Junction,” the thriving area’s main business district (see wsjunction.org).
6-9 p.m., second Thursday each month,