Recently, as I was scrolling through my Facebook feed, I came across some colorful images that caught my eye. A post in a local group from an artist, reaching out to the community offering her services to paint a Black Lives mural on any blank walls or boarded-up windows. She asked that in lieu of compensation a donation would be made to BLM, the Minnesota Freedom Fund or another nonprofit chosen by the proprietor.
As someone who has been drawn to graffiti art for quite a long time, I was excited to learn more about this local artist. It turns out that Emily Gussin recently moved to Edmonds in October, coming here with her wife, who got a job in the Lake Washington School District. Emily currently teaches in Seattle’s Montlake neighborhood but hopes to be part of the Edmonds School District someday.
Emily’s style is traditional New York City-influenced graffiti. She has painted all over the world, and even spent time as a member of an all-female collective of graffiti artists. Through the collective and her personal travel, her art can be seen in many U.S. states, plus in Mexico, Germany, Israel, Italy and Belgium.
Emily is interested in bringing her art to more individuals and to her new community. “I’m interested in combining my art and my passion for promoting conversations around social justice to decorate the community with art that brings people together,” she shared. “We all engage in different ways with the world around us. Using art to promote messages of equity and love allows me to reach those for whom art is a conversation starter.”
When asked about her experience in Edmonds, Emily said that she has felt very welcomed and has had the opportunity to engage in some powerful conversations about equity and privilege. “There seems to be a collective desire to make this world a safer and more welcoming place for everyone,” she said.
I am grateful to have met this new artist in our community and look forward to seeing her work around town. If you would like to work directly with Emily, you can reach her on email or on Instagram.
Virtual Swedish Midsommarfest
Skandia Folkdance Society and the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission are co-sponsoring a special virtual Swedish Midsommarfest celebration this weekend, featuring music and dance performances, costumes, dance tutorials and even a traditional pole-raising ceremony. There will be activities like making a flower crown at home with a demo (paper versions available to download as well). The website will be available starting at 9 p.m. Friday, June 26 through 9 p.m. Sunday, June 28. The link is here.
More ways to support the Edmonds arts community – as shared by the Edmonds Arts Commission
- Make a donation to a favorite organization
- Donate the cost of your ticket for a canceled show instead of requesting a refund
- See a show or view “virtual galleries” online
- See if you can purchase goods or service online from a local artist or gallery
— By Rachel Gardner
Rachel Gardner has a heartfelt appreciation for art in all forms and believes everyone is an artist, some just don’t know it yet. A dedicated and involved Edmonds resident, she can often be spotted onstage cracking jokes between sets or in the audience enjoying local live performances. She enjoys being playful with her art and finding unique ways of expression, like forming a boho-grunge-folk ukulele trio with local Edmonds moms.
Love Emily’s work. So many ugly, blank walls around.
Public art in various forms is fine but lets leave political messages out of it.
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