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Arts Council - Minutes     
Wednesday, October 09, 2013

 
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order at 11:15 am by Chair Jane Ditzler in Council Chambers at City Hall, 9611 SE 36th St., Mercer Island, WA 98040
 
 
Roll Call
Members Present: Bonnie Bradley, Paulette Bufano, Jane Ditzler, Anna Gordon, Linda Iwanyk, Karen Kaser, Mireya Lewin, Susan Szafir and Susanne Zahinser., Members Absent:  An Tootill and Julian Trejo.
 
City Council:
Council Member Jane Meyer Brahm
 
Staff:
Amber Britton & Eileen Hemmis Trifts
 
 
Approval of Minutes
Due to time limitations, approval of the minutes of the September meeting is deferred until the November meeting.
 
Appearances:
There were no appearances.
 
 
Chair Report:
Jane Ditzler, Chair
 
Jane reported that she met with the Jewish Community Center (JCC) to discuss the Russian Chamber Orchestra. The JCC has a large Russian and Ukrainian membership, and they are very interested in working with the Arts Council to put together a concert next September or October.  Jane felt this is a good way to bring more classical music onto the Island and to reach out to another group on the Island (JCC). Jane asked Suzanne Zahniser to ask the director, Natalya Ageyeva-Traficante if the orchestra would be willing to do a no charge event at the JCC similar to their Mostly Music in the Park performance this summer when she meets with her.
 
 
Staff Report
Amber Britton
Luther Burbank Playground Opening
The playground grand opening is scheduled for Thursday, October 10 at 4 pm.  There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony and possibly a band.  Refreshments will be served.
 
Topiary Deer: 
Amber reported that the Nursery has agreed to extend the warranty on the deer until the end of October.  She said the test results indicate that they were not poisoned as originally thought, but were found to have a highly contagious root bacterium. The Parks Department believes that the bacteria came with the deer since there are no other indications that it is present anywhere else on the Island.  They have stipulated that should the council decide to go forward with replacement, the new topiaries would have to be tested prior to being installed.  There is some question as to whether the vendor would do the testing or if the Arts Council would have to pay for it. The Arts Council will also have to pay shipping and installation for the replacements.
 
There was some discussion as to whether or not it is worth it to go forward with getting a new set of topiaries.   The cost to do so would include soil testing, transportation and installation.
 
Anna Gordon made a motion; that the Arts Council spend up to $1,000 to cover the cost of testing, shipping and installation to replace the topiary deer.  The motion was seconded.  The motion failed with a vote of 8 to 1.
 
Susan Szafir suggested that Amber advise the nursery of the test results and ask them to consider at least a partial refund.
 
Dragon update:
Amber reported that the timeline for the dragon installation at Deane’s Children’s Park is between October 26 and November 9.  She will have the dates soon and will let everyone know.  Jane requested that Council Members to try to attend the opening.
 
Susan Szafir thought it would be fun to do a poetry contest or something similar around the dragon theme with Island Books. Perhaps the winner could do something at the opening.
 
There is a great deal of interest and support for the new dragon.  Amber reported that the company that is doing the interpretive sign wants to do it for free!  Normally the sign would cost around $700 plus shipping.  It is hoped that it will be finished and delivered for the opening.  Additionally, Shirley Lafollette, the original donor of the dragon has indicated she will be at the opening and she wants to donate some money towards the interpretive signs.  Additionally, The Mercer has graciously agreed to put the artist up at no charge. They have reserved space for him from October 26 through November 9.  It was agreed they will all be recognized in a public “thank you” as well as the event program.
 
Out of Office 10/14 - 10/23:
Amber advised that she will be out of the office between October 14 and 23.
 
 
Gallery:
Linda Iwanyk, Chair
Linda reported that the current gallery show ends on October 25.  The next show is the MIVAL Holiday Show which begins on October 28.  The show will be hung on Saturday, October 26th beginning at noon.  Jane indicated this is a big show and lots of help will be needed to hang it.  The reception is scheduled for Thursday, November 7 from 6:30 to 8:00 pm.  Linda requested that anyone that is able to assist with the hanging and/or the reception please contact her.
 
Gallery Exhibit Applications for 2014 will be reviewed on November 18.  Linda will email everyone to see who can help.  It will probably be at the Community Center.  We will know as the date gets closer.
 
Amber announced that Suzanne Zahniser is taking the lead on the 2014 juried show.
 
Literary:
Susan Szafir, Chair
Susan reported that the Spy Series Films are going well.  Jane asked Susan to put out an email to members to so that they can let her know if there is a date(s) that they will be available to be at Aljoya to make announcements prior to the films.
 
 
Mostly Music in the Park
Paulette Bufano, Chair
Paulette indicated that she will need to know what agreement the council and Natalya come to about a Russian Chamber Orchestra performance before the committee starts putting things together.  Jane Ditzler requested that this be put on hold until the November meeting.
 
 
Community Relations
Chair, Bonnie Bradley
Bonnie emphasized how valuable she feels the 4Culture meetings are to the Arts Council. She felt attending these meetings is a great way to find out what other communities are doing and planning.  Additionally, 4Culture is not only a local arts agency supporter, but is also a great resource for grants.  She reminded everyone that the Arts Council will be hosting on December 5.  Bonnie announced that on Monday, October 14, she plans to attend the Fine Arts Advisory Council as liaison from the Arts Council. 
 
 
Public Art
An Tootill, Chair
In An’s absence, a written report was distributed to the members.  Much of the contents of the report were covered in earlier reports.  Updates not discussed or reported earlier are as follows:
Dog Park Sculpture: The sculpture if finished and is scheduled to be installed in a planter outside of the dog park, in front of the bulletin board in mid-October.
NEW PROJECTS:
Mosaics for Luther Burbank Park: The Public Art Committee has identified three primary and three secondary sites for mosaic. The three primary sites include 1) The walls behind the jungle gym by the bathrooms and the playground wall beneath; 2) The east square by the arrow, and 3) The top of the freestanding cement panels (this is an exception to the border and the mosaic should cover at least the top 2’ or a complete square at the top covering the exposed walls.  The three secondary sites include:  1) The west entry walls; 2) Fill in the blue rectangle on the central cement structure; and 3) East border wall by the square.  Any features beyond these listed, should be presented as a new proposal and not a continuing phase or extension of the mosaic.
Donation Policy:  An recommended a donation policy pre-determining what is acceptable criteria for donating and donated artwork to the City.  It was noted that the Parks Department does currently have such a policy.
Online Interactive Map: An suggested that an online map be created with locations of public art around the island.  Additionally, there would be pop-up trails to bike/hike the collections, such as downtown, Aubrey Davis (previously known as The Lid) Park, and Luther Burbank Park.  The purpose would be to raise awareness and viewing of Public Art. The map could be a link from Parks and Rec. and/or Arts Council on the city site.
 
 
Collection Management
Mireya Lewin, Lead
Mireya reported that she and Amber are looking at three potential candidates to take what we have, digitally speaking, and develop other applications such as an online art map and QR code.  Consideration is being given to Artech, STQRY (pronounced “story”),  and one other online candidate.  Mireya felt that STQRY is the best that she has found at a reasonable cost.  They offered $800 (regular price $1,000) as a limited offer. The Arts Council would need to make a decision prior to year-end to benefit from the discount. It could be paid in for in 2014 in installments if that is more convenient. The lower price tag means that the Arts Council will have to do the work.  The modules are available, but we need to determine if we have enough support to undertake the task of getting everything online and keeping it current.  4Culture has worked with the other online company.  They are more expensive by several thousand dollars.  Finally, there is Artech.  Artech recently completed the first part of Collection Management by cataloging all of the public art on Mercer Island and posting it to an online database for the Arts Council.
 
Mireya reported that stqry is willing to work with the Arts Council.  If funding isn’t available until the next budget year, stqry would be willing to begin working on the site.  Mireya asked the Arts Council to discuss this at their next meeting.  She will not be in attendance at the next two Arts Council meetings. She will email detailed information regarding this project to Arts Council members.
 
 
Adjournment
The meeting adjourned at 12:11 pm
 
 

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