Art as Adventure, a Conversation with KeseyPollock

Event date: Tuesday, July 9

8 to 9:30 pm

2231 First Avenue

As always, the conversation is free. Tell your friends.


We’re back, a little sooner than planned, with a one-off, non-Vermillion conversation. Read on….

Regular readers of these notes know that earlier this year I had my head, shoulders, and chest cast in wax. The experience was part of a huge project by artists Steph Kese and Erin Pollock. The two worked for months casting people, sometimes just a mask, but more often a partial figure or a full body. They would select and cast someone, and then they would paint the resulting sculpture to create a figure who was often strangely different from the person cast. They would place each figure into that character’s backstory and photograph the scenario created. Then they melted each figure and recorded the process. Jen Graves wrote a good description of the project for the Stranger, at (My sad doppelganger is at For more background, see

The resulting exhibit, filled with photos, videos, paintings, and drawings, opened in Belltown over the past weekend and runs through July 14. The show brings up many questions, and I asked the two if we might do a conversation.

I like the work a lot. But I think that what has impressed me especially is the two women’s passion, their devotion to a practice, to a set of ideas and an aesthetic. It’s the extent to which they turned their art into a deeply experienced adventure, marked by ingenuity and exploration, with a willingness to work long and often grueling hours to produce the current show.

So there’s a lot to talk about: the artist as entrepreneur, the whole idea of lavishing huge amounts of work on an artifact, only to destroy it and thus create another artifact; the role of the voluminous notes and topographical drawings in the process; the passion for vivid color; the exhausting value in cross-disciplinary art; the insertion of narrative in the process, and so on.

(The discussion begins at 8, but the space will be open from 4 to 8 for regular hours, so come early to get a look at the work.)

Wine will be served.

Do come.


And of course, one plug: The Acrobatic Conundrum opens next weekend, (, fusing acrobatics, aerial performance, dance, and theater. In July, with “The Way Out,” Conundrum artistic director Terry Crane and managing director Joselynn Engstrom join forces with choreographer Elizabeth Rose, who has also worked to bring together dance and aerial in such projects as TickTock and Physical Graffiti.

The show happens weekends in July at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center on Delridge in West Seattle. Info and tickets: Here is a video pulled from past work: Here is a wonderful piece that the group put together as part of a video contest sponsored by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis: They didn’t win, but were runners up, and the video has had more than 25,000 views.


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