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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

What Do We Want? Fighter Jets!

posted by on June 10 at 10:28 AM

Tomorrow night (Wednesday) from 5:30 to 7:30 at Capitol Hill Arts Center (1621 12th Ave) is your chance to stop the madness.

It’s the second public meeting about the large installations by Brooklyn artist Mike Ross and Seattle artist Ellen Forney that will go inside the Capitol Hill Sound Transit station.

The first public meeting resulted in a steaming pile of idiocy, of small-mindedness and xenophobia (including catcalls to Ross of “You’re not even from here!”). I wrote about it a few weeks ago:

Brooklyn artist Mike Ross is proposing to entomb, in the underground Capitol Hill Sound Transit station, two vivisected fighter planes that are painted pink and hung nose-to-nose to look like they’re kissing. Last month, after a public meeting in which Ross presented his idea to a firestorm of criticism, the 43rd District Democrats condemned it. The Democrats passed a resolution calling for “more culturally sensitive themes for public art… instead of warplanes.”

If purchasing said planes means sending money to the Defense Department to fund more war, then Ross might want to reconsider his methods. But a wholesale ban on the “theme” of warplanes in deference to a neighborhood’s projected vision of itself? Why? So that if a war, god forbid, is ever fought on pristine Capitol Hill soil, at least we can say we never saw it coming because we’re just so, you know, different and interesting and peace loving?

Tomorrow is your chance to drown out the dum-dums.


Here’s the deal: Ross’s project has plenty of promise. (It makes me think of a sort of ’00s public-art version of Claes Oldenburg’s lipstick tank.) He’s working in the most impossible medium (public art), in a completely impossible space (an underground cavern choked with architectural cross-beams), and yet he still has managed to come up with something that has poetic potential.

Much will depend on the details—it’s never possible to judge a sculpture before it’s built—but Ross’s idea has legs, and that’s saying a lot in the usually deadly-awful category of public art. His piece, working in tandem with Forney’s playful murals, could even actually succeed down there.

But not if it’s not built. It is possible that Ross’s proposal could be killed by a few dimwits.

I’m not the only one driven crazy by this possibility. Ellen Forney is, too.

Forney’s proposal has been completely overlooked because of the fighter-jet controversy, and yet she’s spending her time not hawking her own deserving work but throwing her weight behind Ross.

Here’s what she wrote in an email titled “knee-jerk jerks”:

Personally, I like it. Mike’s piece has a lot of interesting interpretations (transformation, gender, aggression and non-aggression, fragility and strength), plus I think it looks pretty cool. I hope my neighbors can relax and think beyond a knee-jerk reaction to fighter jets. (Please!!) FYI, there’s some well-regarded precedent for deconstructed war machinery in Seattle—Magnuson Park has those half-buried nuclear submarines that are arranged to suggest orcas, Seattle artist Charlie Krafft has his Delft machine guns and hand grenades. I also think Mike did a great job with the limitations of the space—it’s so full of crossbeams and metal mesh that it’d be a monster project for anyone to design art in that space.

I’ll be painting big murals in the entries, which I designed to relate to Mike’s piece in the main station. I’m totally excited about it, for a bazillion reasons. And as I told David Schmader and Jen Graves, they have my “signature feel-good flair,” playful and welcoming, which I hope will add another interesting dynamic to the art in the station overall.

So, look: Get out there. If you don’t, you deserve this.

RSS icon Comments


Why do we "deserve" fighter jets - pink or blue or whatever?

I'd rather see a Grizzly Bear and a Panda frolicking with Bunnies, thanks.

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 10, 2008 10:36 AM

The knee jerk opposition to fighter jets reminds me of people in the 80's who assumed that "I Want Your Sex" was a song promoting promiscuity, too hung up on the most superficial element to even see the work as a whole, much less appreciate it.

Disclaimer: This is not an endorsement of George Michael or of anything he has ever done.

Posted by lostboy | June 10, 2008 10:44 AM

I love the concept. Phallic shaped death machines deconstructed and feminized (is that even a word?). I'm no art guy, but I am shocked at the neighborhoods reaction to the piece. What the fuck cap hill?

Posted by Rotten666 | June 10, 2008 10:46 AM

How about we skip the art in the station and use the tax dollars for something that serves a legitimate purpose?

Posted by john cocktosin | June 10, 2008 10:47 AM

Just because we can do worse doesn't mean we can do better. I think the jets are ugly.

Posted by JC | June 10, 2008 10:47 AM

1. I heart Ellen Forney.

2. She's absolutely right. Haters, quit your bitching. Yeah, yeah, deconstructed fighter planes and all that jazz, but that piece is still better than 95% of the public art in this city.

Posted by Hernandez | June 10, 2008 10:48 AM

Pink fighter jets? Count me in.

Posted by Jeff | June 10, 2008 10:49 AM

Yes, the knee-jerk reaction *is* lame, but frankly pink fighter jets "kissing" is stupid, and I think the complaints about not finding a local artist are legitimate.

Posted by w7ngman | June 10, 2008 10:49 AM

Will @1, you put "deserve" in quotes, but nowhere does Jen's post say that we deserve fighter jets (nor even imply it).

Her headline asserts that we want fighter jets.  You're welcome to opt yourself out of the sentiment.

Posted by lostboy | June 10, 2008 10:49 AM

I'll be one of the dum dums.

Posted by keshmeshi | June 10, 2008 10:56 AM

@8 That's part of the problem.

There's all these people saying the concept is "stupid", "lame", etc. None of those people have actually put forward any kind of concrete idea or suggestion as to what would be preferred (exception: Will @1).

And then there's all these people who complain because it's not a local artist. I haven't heard a single one of those people suggest a local artist to replace him with.

So my question to you and the other objectors is this: What should the art concept be and/or which local artist(s) should be chosen to do it?

Posted by Hernandez | June 10, 2008 10:59 AM

I say we go with ecce homo's idea, the one that involved the smell of piss and shit and smugness.

Posted by Greg | June 10, 2008 11:04 AM

1. replace it with nothing as you may have noticed we need money for transit not art this shit costs a ton of moolah people are filling up the busses put it towards bus hours, for starters.

2. if you want art go to Aaron's and buy a Picasso reprint for $50 and put it on the fucking wall.

3. Or how about a picture of a lake with Geo Wash. and kidds plalying and sailboats for $50.

4. Or how about posters for movies in the neighborhood, earn some revenue.

5. It's just afucking transit station you think the Coney Island stop in NYC has fucking $XXX,XXX art?

You are hopefully only standing there 4 minutes. If we need art there why don't we have to have art on every fucking sidewalks because gee that would be "nice" too.

One reason we don't have more transit in this town is everyone wants to make a transit station a unique architected "experience" just build the transit folks and if you want, hang a few posters or ads or what not later.

Posted by PC | June 10, 2008 11:05 AM

@13: 1% for art means that you get art. the key is to get GOOD art. not crap like the POS apache-scultptor discs on the north tower of Seahawks stadium.

seattle LOVES the blue angels. seattle LOVES the gays. so, gay fighter jets? i have no issue with this proposal.

Posted by max solomon | June 10, 2008 11:10 AM

so, YOU like it, so we all should like it?


The lovely jets can go in a station where it would have relevance, say, closer to Boeing Field.

I'd rather see the J.P. Patches statue go in there than these damn jets.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 11:15 AM

#11, I actually like the idea of deconstructed military hardware, I just feel that painting them pink and making them "kiss" is shoving it down our throats a bit much. I realize he's making a point about how they are no longer war machines, but I think a simple deconstruction is more elegant and would get the point across just fine.

As for your second point, you're right, but I'm not knowledgeable enough about local artists to begin to suggest someone. I just relate to the argument, because the art budget is a lot of tax money to just ship out of the area, and a local artist might have avoided this whole scuffle over local sensibilities in the first place.

For Christ's sake, the guy used Google and all he could come up with is that it rains in Seattle and that we used to make planes (the other kind of planes).

Posted by w7ngman | June 10, 2008 11:23 AM

uh, no. The majority of people on Capitol Hill fucking HATE the Blue Angels. Four days of noise, rattling windows and freaked out pets does not incline us to feel much love for the Angels.

Here's a suggestion: put Forney together with a sculpture/metal artist to design 3-D versions of her work. A series of Forney hands hovering erotically and pleadingly in the air would be cool.

Regardless, find some LOCAL artist to support. It's Washington tax dollars being spent and there's plenty of starving and talented artists in this state. I have nothing against this Ross guy but his art seems a bit lazy. It's like he looked up Seattle on Wikipedia, saw that it was the home of Boeing and went "Eureka: I'll do jets!" Maybe we're just lucky we didn't get deconstructed coffee beans, computer chips or Kindles...

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 11:27 AM

@11, Regarding point 5, NYC has plenty of public transit art:

@15, We shouldn't all like it. It is provocative.

Regarding local artists- most of the public art commissions in Seattle do go to regional artists.

Posted by fARTing | June 10, 2008 11:29 AM

In principle, Jen Graves is right In this particular case, michael strangeways is right.

Posted by elenchos | June 10, 2008 11:30 AM

Well that seems ironic... don't hipsters love irony?

Posted by the Uke | June 10, 2008 11:32 AM


I have nothing against this Ross guy but his art seems a bit lazy. It's like he looked up Seattle on Wikipedia, saw that it was the home of Boeing and went "Eureka: I'll do jets!"

Funny you should say that, because, uh, that *is* what he did.

"The first time I came to Seattle was to work on this project," Ross told the group.

"I did a Google search on 'I love Seattle because' and found people mentioned clouds and rain," he said, noting that many mentions of the weather were gripes. "It's [an area] at the leading edge of technology," he said, noting Boeing and Microsoft.


To capture the regional qualities, Ross wanted to build on themes of clouds and rain and planes. To capture the strength, he chose military fighter jets.

Posted by w7ngman | June 10, 2008 11:35 AM

You might want to rethink your Coney Island just-transit-no-frills example.
Aside from the fact that the entire NYC subway system is full of murals, mosaics, and sculpture, the new, highly-designed Stillwell Avenue station (which cost over $250 million to build) marries the architectural elements of European railway stations with Coney Island history:
The other Coney Island station at W 8th St is itself a piece of sculpture:

Posted by krzysz | June 10, 2008 11:42 AM

I'm confused. When you click on the link at the end of Jen's rant, it takes you to a post by she suggesting that if we don't like these dumb planes that the alternative would be to have Charles entombed in the new station? Or, at least a lifelike wax effigy?

Maybe in a glass case like Jeremy Bentham...

That would be some art worth seeing.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 11:53 AM

It's disingenuous to suggest that the opposition to his piece has anything to do with opposition to militarism. It's more of an objection to ugly, inappropriate, crappy art.

Fighter jets have nothing to say about Seattle, which is what he was tasked with. We don't make fighter jets here, we make commercial jets -- and we don't make them on Capitol Hill. Mike Ross has admitted that he knows nothing whatever about our city.

Honestly, I'd rather just give him the 1% money and have him go away without doing anything. His art is a net minus.

I want light, risque Ellen Forney murals everywhere, the sexier the better. Screw the installation art.

Here's an idea: find out what they did with the totem pole they took down at Northgate Mall before their last remodel and never put back. There's a northwest icon for you, and if it hasn't been chopped into firewood or chipped into mulch, put that in there.

Posted by Fnarf | June 10, 2008 12:07 PM

@9, that was in response to the close of the rant by the SLOG poster that ...

So, look: Get out there. If you don’t, you deserve this.

I agree with Fnarf - let's have more Ellen Forney and less Outsider Artists who know shite about the neighborhood and have a "vision".

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 10, 2008 12:12 PM

I hated it at first but now I really like it. As long as it ends up looking nothing like actual jets.

Posted by art expert | June 10, 2008 12:13 PM

@23 I was picturing Charles on a soap box endlessly pontificating...

But maybe she meant the weird fork art?

Posted by PopTart | June 10, 2008 12:16 PM

Can we think about this in the historical context of David Cerny's pink tanks ( Capitol Hill seems like it ought to be down for political statements.

Posted by losboats | June 10, 2008 12:24 PM

I want to see an installation of furniture sex.

Posted by Greg | June 10, 2008 12:26 PM

The fact that this piece pisses so many people off just makes me want it all that much the more.

And Fnarf, while WE may not make military aircraft HERE, our good friends at teh Boeing Co. generated revenue of 7.9 BILLION DOLLARS in the first quarter of 2008 alone in their "integrated defense systems" division, which includes, among other things the F-15 Eagle, the apparent basis for Mr. Ross' design renderings.

You-all can scream about this piece not being "culturally sensitive" or whatever, but I for one would welcome this as a constant reminder that, while we CapHillters may pride ourselves on our Politically Correct, Socially Conscious, Cultural Sensitivity, we nevertheless simultaneously rely to a large extent on a regional military-industrial complex to provide a level of economic stability that allows us the luxury to develop such "enlightened" attitudes.

You can try to ignore that fact, but you do so at the risk of blinding yourself to the reality of our situation here. And maybe encountering an occasional, unsettling reminder of that reality is exactly what we need.

And THAT my friends elevates this piece - literally - head-and-shoulders above the sort of innocuous, inane, innoffensive "public art" that usually gets installed in these kinds of projects.

Posted by COMTE | June 10, 2008 12:47 PM

Considering this station is going on the block where The Crypt used to be, I think it would be appropriate to install some of those pieces where Jeff Koons is boning Cicciolina in the boo-tay...

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 12:48 PM

Comte, Boeing isn't headquartered here, it's headquartered in Chicago. The warplane makers aren't here -- not the engineers, not the line workers, not the management.

What this piece actually says is "we are required by law to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on art, but we know nothing about art and so were unable to locate any artists with any kind of a connection to the region, so we plumped for this guy instead. Lookie! It's art!"

Sorry, I think it's shit.

Posted by Fnarf | June 10, 2008 12:55 PM

back to being serious for a (very brief) moment, I have to say it's odd that there's quite a few people on here attributing a lot of meaning to a piece that the artist freely admits he spent about 5 minutes researching on Google...

and frankly, who needs or wants a fuckin' liberal guilt trip when they're spending 5 minutes in a shitty train station? I don't work at Boeing and the money that I and the majority of my neighbors earn and spend tends to come from more relevant employers like Amazon and Microsoft and Real Networks and Starbucks. Boeing is Old Seattle and has little connection with Capitol Hill. And shouldn't a piece of art displayed on Capitol Hill reflect on the lives of the people that live there? I'd much rather see a local artist's ode to sex, drugs and rock n roll than the lazy attempts of a distant artist who's out to make a quick buck and a flaccid, banal, cliche ridden political and artistic statement.

Oh, and disagreeing with someone's (dubious) taste in art, doesn't make them a "dum-dum".

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 1:14 PM

I think the Northgate Mall totem pole would look great in there.

Posted by Hernandez | June 10, 2008 1:22 PM

This is one of the best, most provocative public art pieces I've seen in a long time. Taken together with his BigRigJig he did for Burning Man last year (, you can see how he's taking otherwise heavy, powerful pieces of our everyday world and making them play and frolic. It's a juxtaposition that doesn't get old, and I wholeheartedly welcome it to Capitol Hill.

The reaction against the piece doesn't seem to be anything more than knee-jerk reaction. He's not local, and they're fighter jets. Um, so?

It's like saying you don't like the Mona Lisa because it glorifies poplar and ol' Leo wasn't American. Grow some perspective, people.

Posted by NaFun | June 10, 2008 1:28 PM

@15 you'll get the J.P. Patches statue when you rip it from Fremont's cold dead troll hands ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 10, 2008 1:31 PM


That's just historical revisionism. Boeing was BORN here, it still maintains a strong manufacturing presence in this region, and much of the economic benefit we derive from their existence is fueled to a large extent by the company's sales of military hardware. Not to mention the fact that many of their most famous military aircraft (e.g. the B-17, B-52 & KC-135) were built just down the road. In addition, Boeing Space Division (which also has strong ties to DoD) still maintains facilities in Renton. It's all one, big, world-spanning, multi-national conglomerate, and to suggest that just because the "bad" planes are built in Wichita, or Long Beach, or Shanghai, or Nagoya, that absolves those who build the "good" planes here of any moral responsibility for the overall actions of their company is just head-in-the-sand myopia.

And conversely, what I would say this piece actually says is, "let's pull you, the viewer, out of your safe little bubble of self-absorption for just a moment, and make you consider the fact that you live in a region that benefits to a significant extent from the existence of a military-industrial complex that profits from the creation of machines of war. BUT, that YOU have a CHOICE - you can subvert the paradigm, or give in to it; which shall it be?"

Or, we can have yet another example of bland, meaningless public art that says nothing, that speaks no truth to anyone about anything, that people can pass and ignore without giving it a second thought.

Because we're going to get either one or the other no matter what.

Posted by COMTE | June 10, 2008 1:31 PM

@32 and @34 win. But maybe a statue of Charles with a large Pink Fur Fork in his left hand would be better ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | June 10, 2008 1:35 PM

Will @25, yes, I grasped that Jen's closing line was the source of your one-word quote, but the implication of the question you press the word into--

Why do we "deserve" fighter jets - pink or blue or whatever?
--is a non sequitur.

Posted by lostboy | June 10, 2008 1:44 PM

Boeing may be "old", but it's still relevant to our local economy. If the Dreamliner fails to get off the ground (literally), a lot of folks around here are fucked (figuratively).

I'm with Fnarf. This is just bad art. Within 5 years of its installation, there's going to be a recall/replacement initiative underway.

The Northgate totem pole is a great idea. Better yet, someone should repurchase the Lelani Lanes sign and throw it on the wall.

Posted by laterite | June 10, 2008 1:58 PM

wow, i'm confused our options are the fucking fighter jets or "bland, meaniningless public art"? There are no other artists living in the world who can make good public art except Mike Ross?


And I'm sure the artist who did those dumbass coatwire sculptures next to the Paramount, put as much "meaning" into their pieces as Ross put into his Google inspired masterpiece.

And if I need to be reminded that we live in a society dependent on the military-industrial complex, I'll turn on my TV and flip to my local G.E./NBC affiliate and check out the Today Show or 30 Rock...

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 1:59 PM

It's not revisionism, Comte, it's fact: they moved. We DON'T get any economic benefit from warplanes around here anymore (except out at McChord). Those planes you mention were built here -- but this isn't them, and isn't intended to represent them. The fact is, we're just a manufacturing outpost of the Chicago company now. Virtually of the money from the military side flows to here.

You keep trying to make this some kind of moral issue, it seems, but it's just not going to fly. I think the proposed installation is profoundly illiterate, and illiterate in a way that a particular type of artist (one with no connection to the community) seems to specialize in. "War planes! Look, they're pink! It's a Statement" It's a statement of vapidity is what it is.

Surprise me a little for a change.

Posted by Fnarf | June 10, 2008 2:01 PM

To me hanging fighter jets in the Capitol Hill station is akin to hanging a side of beef in a vegan commune. Sure you can do it. Sure it makes a statement. But, whether intended or not, a big part of that statement is: "fuck you and your beliefs".

Posted by sallie | June 10, 2008 2:03 PM

Yes, Boeing IS relevant to the Puget Sound economy. (It's also not the only game in town anymore, like it was for 60 years...)

It's also NOT very relevant to Capitol Hill.

Microsoft or Amazon or Starbucks laying off large quantities of people would have a far greater effect on the Hill, than a similar downturn at Boeing.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 2:04 PM

Recurring objection: Fighter jets have nothing to do with Capitol Hill!

Recurring solution: Install the totem poll from Northgate Mall!

It's not necessarily the same people asserting both, but the juxtaposition still amuses me.

Posted by lostboy | June 10, 2008 2:05 PM
and frankly, who needs or wants a fuckin' liberal guilt trip when they're spending 5 minutes in a shitty train station?

I know I don't. I'm by no means an art expert, but as far as I'm concerned there has to be some concern for aesthetics in a public art piece. Maybe I'm more irritable than most, but when I see ugly shit day in/day out, particularly during a stressful part of the day like during a commute, I get annoyed. Really annoyed. Annoyed enough that if an initiative came up banning the use of public funds for public art, I might just vote for it.

This thing should be tossed because it's ugly. And people who are doing the right thing and using public transit every day deserve better.

Posted by keshmeshi | June 10, 2008 2:12 PM

Fighter planes do gracefully dance in the air. Making them float above you is not inspired, and not comparable to the dancing semi trucks. If anything, it indicates a hackery and repetition.

Posted by elenchos | June 10, 2008 2:22 PM

Classic local government - make a bad decision, get ripped a new one by a rightfully annoyed public, proceed as originally planned.

I'm with everyone else here who wonders why we couldn't find a (more talented) local artist to hand our 1% dollars over to.

I fully support public art, but why is ST digging their heels in over this particular piece (of shit)?

Posted by Mr. X | June 10, 2008 2:32 PM

@44 : Do you have data to back up that assertion? Other than your preconceived mindset that no one who lives on sleek, exciting, modern Cap Hill could possibly work at old, stodgy, ancient Boeing? I'm not saying you're totally wrong, but I do think you are underestimating its impact. Amazon has a fraction of the employees that Boeing has; a 10% RIF at Boeing would definitely be more widely felt around the region (including Capitol Hill, I'd wager) than a 10% RIF at Amazon.

Posted by laterite | June 10, 2008 2:46 PM


Oh, you mean the pieces by Ross Niemi - a local artist? I guess you're arguing then that out-of-towners don't have any monopoly on "dumbass", "meaningless" public art then, eh?

Um, Fnarf when was the last time you visited Renton or Everett, or that airstrip south of downtown still colloquially refered to as "Boeing Field"? You can't swing a dead cat in this area without hitting something with the name "Boeing" on it.

They may have moved the HQ, but Boeing itself, employing roughly 70,000 workers in the greater Puget Sound region (representing 45% of its total world-wide workforce - hardly an "outpost"), and second only to - wait for it - the U.S. military in terms of number of people employed in the region MAKES it relevent.

A LOT of Boeing's profit from its IDS Division DOES in fact "flow back here" in the form of new materials and computerized manufacturing and command-and-control systems, originally developed for the military and now utilized in their civilian aircraft manufacture, not to mention the actual military hardware used and maintained at places like McChord, Ft. Lewis, NAS Whidby, Everett Homeport, et al.

Anybody around here who still believes that the entire Puget Sound region doesn't rely heavily on the crutch of military largesse - including those of you who think CapHill is somehow a pristine little bubble of innocence in the midst of all this jingoistic economic development - are probably reason enough why you SHOULD have to be reminded of it on a regular basis.

Posted by COMTE | June 10, 2008 3:00 PM

That this guy made something for Burning Man should disqualify him from being hired for a public art project.

Posted by Greg | June 10, 2008 3:02 PM

It's based on the fact that of the couple hundred people I know, or am familiar enough with to know their occupation, that live on the Hill, none of them work at Boeing but I know many people who work at Microsoft/Amazon/Starbucks/Real Networks.

I do know people who work at Boeing. None of them live on the Hill. I'm not saying that no one on the Hill works at Boeing. I'm saying that impact-wise, a massive Microsoft layoff would impact the Hill far more than a Boeing layoff.

Boeing is a very important part of Puget Sound. (Just not important enough for the company to keep it's head offices here anymore...) But we're no longer a one-company town and we've long since passed the need for anyone to put up a "Will the last person in Seattle, turn out the lights?" sign when Boeing inevitably has its next layoff.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 3:08 PM

Of COURSE Boeing is relevant. Lots of Boeing employees on the hill, too. Still doesn't have anything to do with fighter jets.

Posted by Fnarf | June 10, 2008 3:10 PM

Comte, I'm reminded of the might of the military-industrial complex and aviation in particular everytime I step outside my front door to have a cigarette and attempt a conversation with my neighbor and have to scream at him or her to make myself heard over the constant stream of jets that fly over Capitol Hill in their landing approaches to Sea-Tac and Boeing Field. I don't need lazy, vapid art to remind me of their dominance of the local economy.

Posted by michael strangeways | June 10, 2008 3:16 PM

i love the idea and i love energized folks are around this. love it or hate it -- y'all sound passionate!

Posted by joey | June 10, 2008 4:46 PM

“Tomorrow night from 5:30 to 7:30 at Capitol Hill Arts Center is your chance to stop the madness.”

Yeah, the same way the Capitol Hill nutcakes tried to stop the Blue Angels from flying at SeaFair, the Navy from entering Elliott Bay, and Eastern Washington farmers from watering their crops with fish-killing hydroelectric dams.

Are you guys trying to prove to right wing assholes like Rush Limbaugh and Dori Monson that they are RIGHT?

Is the point to cement the loony left moonbat stereotype? Is that what you clowns are all about?

Pick an issue that matters. Please. I bet the band of whiners who went nuts over this "insensitive" art don't lift a finger to keep McCain from getting elected (sorry, guys, an Obama sign in the apartment window is meaningless in ultra-blue WA) Leave this meaningless “values voters” John Ashcroft censorship crap to the Republicans. Since when did “progressives” decide image was more important than substance????????

What a goddamn embarrassment the lazy left has become.

“I hope my neighbors can relax and think beyond a knee-jerk reaction to fighter jets. (Please!!)”

Good luck with that. Knee jerk is all they’ve got these days in the land of sensationalist-grade activism.

Posted by Blarg | June 10, 2008 7:24 PM

I actually like the jet sculpture idea. What I don't like is that so many of the pieces of art that are paid for with this 1% rule are from out of town. If there was an additional rule to make 10% of that 1% be local art, I know MANY local artists that would be able to fill the niche right off the bat and spread the wealth around getting their friends ad colleagues to help on their large scale sculptures.

Seattle is full of a lot of great artists, as well as a lot of boring, normal ones. I just wish some of them were given a bit of thought about in decisions like this, and say, the sculpture park.

#56 - I get angry, livid, in fact, every time the Blue Angels suck up fuel in order to scream over my head. I think pink jets are a fine counter-statement to the awe and amazement that we are supposed to have for these death machines. After rereading you comment, I don't even understand what your point is. You're against the right wing assholes AND the loony left moonbats? Who are you for then?

Posted by Ian Page-Echols | June 12, 2008 2:41 AM

My name is Ries, not Ross.

And I am relishing my new role as the art boogeyman- Rich Beyers was getting old, anyway.

As a factual point, the vast majority of public art in the northwest, including Seattle, King County, Washington State, and Sound Transit public art programs, are by local artists.

Very very few public projects actually go to those feared and hated New Yorkers.

We should just beat up people as they exit the plane at SeaTac, if you ask me.

In point of fact, Seattle public artists are disproportionately represented countrywide- of the top 100 or so heavy hitters in public art, a good 20 of em are from Seattle, for whatever that's worth.

So this xenophobia is a bit misplaced.

What actually happened at the meeting last night?
Me, tasteless boor that I am, I actually really like the Mike Ross sculpture, and have been a big supporter of it, writing letters to the relevant authorities.
I did live on Capitol Hill for over 20 years, and would have no problem standing up at a meeting and stating my opinion, but to do other obligations, could not make the meeting last night.

So did the Joy Fulmer's of the world come out last night and Nimby their way to blandness?

Anybody go?

Posted by Ries Niemi | June 12, 2008 6:48 AM

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