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Posts Tagged ‘public art’

This was once the second most photographed object in the world. Author Steven J. Pickens said that in its heyday, only the Eiffel Tower attracted more shutter snaps.

This is the green and grey rusting metal sitting on the side of a trail in Kirkland. People ask when the unsightly “junk” will be removed or muse about a new outhouse.

This is the Kalakala, or what remains of it. Born as the Peralta and originally running on routes in the San Francisco Bay, the Kalakala literally arose from the ashes of its original incarnation.

This Art Deco ferry carried people across the Puget Sound from 1935 to 1967. Post-1967, she went to Alaska to serve as a fish processor and cannery.

An effort to bring her back to Washington succeeded, but the money needed to bring her back to life never materialized. She sat disintegrating in various locales until the decision was finally made to auction off pieces of her instead of trying to save the whole boat.

The City of Kirkland successfully bid to save large pieces of the ferry and will be preserving it as part of an art project.

It’s fitting that the “mother ship” (above) has come home to Kirkland. The Kalakala was built in Kirkland and after decades of wandering around, will live on, resurrected for a second time.

The sun may be setting on the remains of the Kalakala, but right now it’s like a seed in the ground, waiting to pop up in the spring.

I see you! The portholes look like the eyes of a giant spider.

I believe these are the car doors. You can see a list of the parts that were salvaged here. You can also see a beautiful picture of the Kalakala on the wall of Kirkland City Hall outside of the Peter Kirk Room.

The Kalakala could carry thousands of passengers and many vehicles. People liked to hang out of these futuristic windows as they cruised across the water. Since the Kalakala was still operating at the time of the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, its photographic popularity that year was only eclipsed by the Space Needle.

Here is another look at what was saved.

Nearly a century after its construction, the Kalakala eagerly awaits a place in the public eye again.

There are many photos and videos of the Kalakala online including this one-minute video showing the ferry in motion.

Could you imagine riding this during the Great Depression? You must have felt like you were on a spaceship.

This is another short video that shows some of the interior as well. There is more on YouTube.

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Steven J. Pickens, author of Ferries of Puget Sound, plans to release an update to that book soon. The original follows the lives of Puget Sound ferries up to 2006. You may be shocked at what has happened to some of the boats we’ve commuted on for decades.

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©2019 H. Hiatt/wildninjablog.com. All articles/posts on this blog are copyrighted original material that may not be reproduced in part or whole in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from H. Hiatt/wildninjablog.com.

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Kenmore Mural 5-12-16 1

Today I chanced upon a mural going up on the west side of the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store in Kenmore, Washington. According to the Arts of Kenmore site:

The Kenmore Mural Project at St. Vincent de Paul is a community collaboration involving artists A Gaul Culley, Staci Adman, the City of Kenmore, St. Vincent de Paul, The Kenmore Heritage Society, as well as many local community partners.

The St. Vincent de Paul wall is 188 feet long by 12 feet tall and located near the intersection of 73rd Ave NE and Bothell Way.  This heavily traveled arterial gives the mural clear visibility from both vehicles and pedestrians.

The City of Kenmore and St. Vincent de Paul launched this project idea in the spring of 2015 and began working with the artists in the summer of the same year.

The Kenmore Mural project at St. Vincent de Paul celebrates and tells the story of the cultural history of Kenmore.  Our hope is that the mural will deepen the community’s sense of place.  We also hope it will contribute to Kenmore’s 20-year vision of “a community that is inclusive and family friendly, with a small town feeling that fosters a sense of belonging and pride and supports local arts, culture and history.”

Kenmore Mural 5-12-16 2

Kenmore Mural 5-12-16 3

For those who don’t know, Kenmore has a seaplane port, Kenmore Air, borders one of the coolest state parks ever, St. Edward, and a history tied to local hydroplane racing.

Hopefully this wall will somehow be graffiti-proofed. As a longtime public employee I can attest to how often various assets are vandalized. They can be expensive to clean. The funny part is, no one cares about a self-important tag; its meaning is lost on the general public.

But the meaning of this mural is not. It seems to be part of a larger movement to fully develop Kenmore’s identity. What a fantastic idea!

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©2016 H. Hiatt/wildninjablog.com. All articles/posts on this blog are copyrighted original material that may not be reproduced in part or whole in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from H. Hiatt/wildninjablog.com.

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