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Arts Council - Minutes     
Wednesday, September 14, 2016

 
Call to Order
The meeting was called to order by Chair, An Tootill at 6:40 pm.
 
Roll Call
Members Present:  An Tootill, Karen Kaser, Joy Langley, Rene Stratton and Joy Liechty (joined us at 7:00 pm) & Erin Vivion
Members Absent: Amy Barnes, Suzanne Zahniser
 
City Council:
Council Member Jeff Sanderson was absent
 
Staff:
Amber Britton
Eileen Hemmis Trifts
 
Appearances:
Richard Ronald, Mercer Island Resident and creator of “MI Rocks”.
Varenna Ronald, Mercer Island Resident, daughter of Richard Ronald.
Mr. Ronald indicated a possible interest in applying for Arts Council Membership.  He and his daughter gave a brief explanation of MI Rocks and how it came to be.
 
Following the presentation, the Arts Council determined that they would host and a rock painting party for kids.
 
Approval of Minutes:
Erin Vivion made a motion to accept the minutes as presented.  The motion was seconded and passed unanimously.
 
Chair Report:
An Tootill, Chair
Reminder of importance of submitting agenda items in a timely manner. Items need to be submitted a couple of days in advance of the meeting in order to post an agenda to the website prior to the meeting date.
 
Nonattendance:  An felt that if a member is consistently unable to make it to a meeting or contribute to the Arts Council, that member effectively resigns, since there is already policy on the books regarding how frequently a member can miss meetings and remain on the board. The Arts Council Organization binder was then reviewed.  The Bylaws state: “Arts Council members shall forfeit his/her position by failing to attend three (3) consecutive regular meetings of the Arts Council without being excused by the Arts Council Chair”.  An felt that if a member is consistently unable to make it to a meeting or contribute to the Arts Council, that member should resign. Several other members of the Council felt that a member that is communicating regularly with the Arts Council and/or staff is showing their continued interest and should be allowed to maintain their membership status even if they are temporarily unable to attend regular meetings.
 
Joy Langley will research adding a 7th item, a Removal from Office provision, to Article II, Organization, of the Bylaws.  She will bring her recommendation to the October meeting for consideration.  If approved, a decision to change the bylaws, would have to be approved by the City Council.
 
Promotions: 
An presented the Community Dance flyer that Joy drafted for comments.  The flyer will be displayed at the Farmer’s Market.  It was agreed that a consumer ad in the Mercer Island Reporter should be planned for approximately three weeks prior to the dance though it could go up on Facebook earlier.  It was noted at JCC ads are inexpensive and reach a large Mercer Island audience and should be considered as well.  Amber stated that it can also be submitted to the Mercer Island Reporter calendar.
 
In an effort to promote the Arts Council and attract new members, An stated that she called Katie Metzger at the Reporter to see if she would consider doing an article on the Arts Council.  She is waiting for a response.
 
COMMITTEE REPORTS
 
Literary & Shakespeare:
No Report
 
Mostly Music in the Park
Karen Kaser, Chair
Karen stated that she has researched a number of different ways to handle the alcohol sales at the community dance.  She stated that Patty Spar of the Farmer’s Market is an event planner and is willing to plan and execute the bar and the gate.  The estimated cost would be between $100 and $200, which is much less than other estimates we have gotten.  Karen will refer Patty to Amber.
 
Karen Kaser proposed that the Arts Council hire Patty Spar for an amount not to exceed $200 to manage the liquor sales and gate for the Community Dance.  The motion was seconded and passed.
 
It was determined that dance teacher Art Levitt would be given first shot at giving an exhibition dance during the band’s break at the Community Dance.  It was felt that this would be a fun thing to add to the flyer.  Karen will call him.
 
Karen announced that Joy Liechty has agreed to take the MMIP Chair position.  Karen stated that the Member Roster from the city clerk indicates that her term is over in 2018, but for the record, she will be leaving the Arts Council in May of 2017. 
 
Community Relations
Joy Langley, Chair
Joy reported that she has done outreach for the Community Dance to include the Mercer Island Preschool Association, West Mercer Elementary School, West Mercer PTA, JCC, and the Nanny League. She plans to contact Dan Kezner, operations manager of the Purple Restaurant to see if they might be interested in providing a discount to ticket holders.  She will also reach out to the Jewish Faith Communities, LDS and Presbyterian Church.
 
Joy reported that the Art Reflections Program is looking for local, district and state level leadership. If you know of anyone that might be interested, please pass this information along.
 
Joy reported that she has a prospective new member (no name given).  She is a board member for the Seattle Film Festival.  Joy felt she would bring an interesting perspective to the Arts Council.  She has capacity and time and Joy felt she would be a good fit for the Arts Council. She is interested and has indicated that she will apply.
 
Indoor Gallery:
Joy Liechty reported Saturday’s gallery hanging went well.  Thanks to all who helped!  It was felt that earlier delivery of the artwork would be desirable for future shows. To facilitate this, delivery of artwork for future shows will be requested between 10 and 11 am instead of 10 am and noon.  Hanging could then commence at 11 am instead of noon.
 
There was a short discussion about general dissatisfaction with the current meeting room chairs at the Community Center.  It was noted that other boards and councils meet at City Hall in Council Chambers, where the chairs are much more comfortable. Amber stated that the Arts Council could meet there, but would need to change their meeting night as the Design Commission meets there on Wednesday evenings.
 
Public Art & Outdoor Gallery:
Erin Vivion, Chair
Erin reported that Ingrid Lahti has requested consideration of a sculpture for the Outdoor Gallery.  There is some question as to whether it is for sale or if she is looking for the City to purchase it.  Erin has requested clarification.
 
Erin noted that Shawn Johnson has not yet responded to the question of an extension for her two sculptures in the Outdoor Gallery.  Amber said it sounded like she is open to leaving them there for a while, and she recommended doing so since we don’t have anything ready to replace them right now.
 
Special Projects
Rene Stratton
Rene reported that an email went out to 80 prospective entrants for the Artist Directory.  Six applications have been received to date.  An Tootill will post it on Next Door.  Amber will have it posted on Facebook.
 
Replacement of Arts Council Banners: Rene proposed that the new series of banners represent a broader range of interests beyond Arts Council Programs.  If this is the direction taken, it might make sense to expand the geographic area for the call for artists from just Mercer Island residents to the entire Puget Sound area.  Amber recalled that there are some rules around this from the last banner project. She will check into it. 
 
Amber recommended sticking with a total of 80 banners since that is the number of brackets we currently have.  She said that a proposal, selecting topics for the five designs, the amount of the honorarium, amount to be spent on banners, call for artists detail etc., would need to go to the City Council for approval in order to take the money from 1% for the Arts since this was not in the Arts Council 2016 Work Plan. She felt that if it was approved by February, they could do a Call for Artist in March and April and have them up in time for Summer Celebration.  She indicated that the proposal should include paying a company to take down the older banners and put up the new ones. Rene will start putting together a proposal.  
 
Staff Report:
Amber Britton
Amber reported that the Gateway Art is in the way of the Sound Transit Light Rail project construction. They would like the Arts Council to either allow them to temporarily store and return the artwork to its same location or have them move it to a new location.  The Arts Council determined that they would like more information before making a decision.  It was further determined that the Arts Council will spend the next month looking for an appropriate location should they decide to move it.  They will decide whether or not to put it in storage at next month’s meeting.
 
Amber spoke to the fact that the MI Light Rail Advisory Committee, which has met three times since its inception, will be meeting on October 6th.  Original committee members were An Tootill, Suzanne Zahnizer and Paulette Bufano.  An agreed to continue on the committee.  Erin Vivion and Joy Langley agreed to replace Suzanne and Paulette and attend the meeting with An.
 
Amber reported that an invitation postcard for the YFS Open House on October 2 stated that attendees could view the new Luther Burbank Playground Mosaic and meet the artists.  It was premature since the Arts Council hadn’t voted on the date yet.  However, the artist and Sandy Glass have both agreed to attend.  The Arts Council agreed to combine resources and take advantage of this opportunity to have a rock painting party.
 
Joy Langley moved to co-sponsor (the event) and have a rock painting party for which the Arts Council allocate funds within reason.  The motion was seconded and passed. 
 
Erin and An will meet with Amber to iron out the details.
 
Amber reported that we have a staff member who is a graphic artist and is willing to work on a new design for the Arts Council Logo.  She would like to go back to her with their ideas. An Tootill stated that she thought it should say “Arts Council”, be legible at any size, and be clean.  Amber will ask her to create several designs for Arts Council review and approval.
 
Adjournment
The meeting adjourned at 9:00 pm
 

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