Damp days of January are a create time to visit Longfellow Creek. The water is flowing, the birds are singing, and the days are getting a little longer. Nearby you can stop by the Delridge Library and see a rotating display of "postcards from the creek" created by local artists and community members.www.spl.org/hours-and-locations/delridge-branch
Here is a sampling of some of the postcards from the creek created by community members at the Arts in Nature Festival at Camp Long, sponsored by Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association. https://dnda.org/
Meet Your Creek will be offering Postcards from the Creek art activities and walks at the Arts in Nature Festival!
Delridge Neighborood Development Association presents the 19th annual Arts in Nature Festival at Camp Long in West Seattle AUGUST 25-26. The festival celebrates art, nature & neighborhood with diverse programming from music, visual art, poetry, puppetry, food trucks, merchants and more. Come to Camp Long and Meet Your Creek!
Meet Your Creek invites professional artists from the community to design unique Postcards from the Creek relating to the Longfellow Creek watershed. Our first featured artist is Akira Ohiso. Learn more about the artist at www.ohiso.com
Akira Ohiso's postcards bring attention to the history of the river as a fertile fishery for the Duwamish Native tribe. The shallow banks of Longfellow Creek once supported smelt, but they slowly disappeared with the Industrial Revolution and the subsequent proliferation of chemicals and toxic waste. The smelt are depicted swimming upstream through steel pipes, which highlight recent environmental efforts to protect the Longfellow Creek and its habitat from future contamination. There is an irony in steel pipes as it was the steel industry that contributed to the contamination of the creek in the first place. The hope is that one day smelt will forge their way back to the Longfellow creek.
Last year Akira's work was featured in a public art project in Delridge called “Smelting” that was funded by the Office of Arts & Culture. Here is the description of the project:
Akira Ohiso's art installation brings attention to the history of the river as a fertile fishery for the Duwamish Native tribe. The shallow banks of Longfellow Creek once supported smelt, but they slowly disappeared with the Industrial Revolution and the subsequent proliferation of chemicals and toxic waste. Ohiso created drawings of native smelt - in red, yellow, black, and blue - that were then digitally printed onto white windsocks to create fish kites. In the artist's Japanese culture, fish kites (Koinobori) are flown on poles to celebrate an annual national Children's Day - symbolizing hope for a healthy and prosperous future for children. This year also marks the 75th anniversary of the Japanese-American internment camps, adding poignancy to the installation.
Second grade students carefully observed plants growing along Longfellow Creek.
Many community members painted and mailed postcards inspired by Longfellow Creek and our neighborhood pollinators at the West Seattle Bee Festival.
In January, 2nd Graders at Louisa Boren STEM K-8 made "Postcards from Longfellow Creek." Their classes have been visiting the Creek monthly and learning about watersheds and their community. They used plant samples collected along the creek for inspiration. Later, they wrote and mailed their cards to friends, family and neighbors.
Meet Your Creek connects art, water, ecological literacy, exploration, education, salmon, beavers, storm water, the US Postal Service and more with funding from Seattle Public Utilities 1% for Art administered by the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture.