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My daughter's Christmas gift to me was a trip to Seattle. We live in a small town but we are originally from a big city, so every now and then we love to return to a large metropolitan center, either Vancouver BC or Seattle WA. My favorite image from the trip:

refers to oil slicks on the water
"Oiling" 2012, hand-knotted carpet by Faig Ahmed, Azerbaijani, born 1982.
Showing at Seattle Art Museum,
"Quite different from the traditional prayer rug shown in this gallery, "Oiling" is nevertheless part of the same regional tradition. The artist Faig Ahmed uses his knowledge of ancient carpet-making designs and techniques in decidedly contemporary images such as this. Appearing as though a traditional rug's pigments are melting on the wall, "Oiling" refers to both the artistic flexibility of oil paints as well as the swirling patterns of an oil slick on water."
More than that there's the order into chaos as the rigid pattern which turns into a flow of color.

7:45 PM arrival at Pier 69 Seattle via the Victoria Clipper
This was taken through a misty window while the ship was still vibrating. For most of the 2 hr 45 min trip all we could see was the moon shining starboard and it was a pretty smooth ride. Most passengers were sleeping.

After dinner on our first evening we walked around downtown heading first to Macy's Christmas window.

Macy's Christmas window at night.
Macy's Christmas Window, daytime
Macy's Window
A Macy's arrangement
Macy's Art Deco Ladies Room
Enough about Macy's. We walked through the store without buying anything and when we got to our hotel, my daughter had an email on her phone from Macy's "Thank you for visiting Macy's blah, blah." The store had tracked her iPhone and linked it to a 5 year old unused account to get her email address. It was creepy. But they do have nice windows.

The highlight of the trip was our visits to the Seattle Art Museum (SAM) and the Frye Art Museum. The blockbuster exhibit at SAM was PERU Kingdoms of the Sun and the Moon. No photographs were permitted. It was an extensive well-described show, worth at least 3 hours time to get the full benefit of it. More interesting for us was the Robert Davidson show. He is a First Nations artist from British Columbia, Canada. His contemporary work is exquisite. He uses the traditional colors and forms of Haida art.

Robert Davidson show
Robert Davidson has been a pivotal figure in the Northwest Coast Native art renaissance since 1969, when he erected the first totem pole in his ancestral Massett village since the 1880s. For over 40 years he has mastered Haida art traditions by studying the great works of his great-grandfather Charles Edenshaw and others. More recently, Davidson has interjected his own interpretation of the old forms with forays into abstraction, explored in boldly minimalistic easel paintings, graphic works and sculpture, where images are pared to essential lines, elemental shapes and strong colors.
Helen Frankenthaler on the left, Frank Stella centre and right.
Seattle Art Museum (SAM) permanent collection.
Downtown Decorations
Downtown star
from our window
Night Street Scene
The Red Coat
Horse & Carriage
Afternoon Shoppers

Morning Street Scene, Daycare Parade
1000 5th Avenue
Seattle Central Library, 1000 4th Avenue
Downtown Seattle
Late Afternoon
looking southp
Looking south, James St. &  8th Ave.
Red Door, James St. & 8th Ave.
Up at 7:00 am, packing, checking out and grabbing a taxi to the Clipper. Because of the morning snow the driver had to go out of his way to avoid the steep hills and also a slow moving train. Crossing "the border" boarding the Clipper is pretty easy going. It was a bumpy ride home with plenty of white caps. We could see the islands and the captain gave descriptions on the way. We were home by 10:45 am.
Snowy Friday Morning
8:00 am Leaving Seattle
Last view of Seattle and we agreed we needed another day, so much more to see. It's a very interesting city with friendly people. One needs to watch for the very steep hills, from the waterfront up to 9th Avenue. I think it's better to walk along the avenues but take a bus up the hills.

Originally posted to The Outer Boundaries on Mon Dec 23, 2013 at 06:57 AM PST.

Also republished by Canadian Kossacks, The Medium and the Message, and Seattle & Puget Sound Kos.

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