SusieJ. Lee

video artist

Susie J. Lee

From the moment you set foot in Seattle, you can feel it: art is everywhere.

The thriving arts scene is a priority in this city—in fact, Seattle has been recognized for having more arts-related businesses and organizations per capita than any other metropolitan area in the U.S., according to Americans for the Arts. Video artist Susie J. Lee is one of the contributors to this creative city. Read on for a look at the city through her artistic lens.

Q&A with Susie J. Lee

Do you have a favorite neighborhood?

Rather than entire neighborhoods, I think there are just moments in neighborhoods that I like. Some of my favorite walks are from my house on 11th Avenue East to Century Ballroom on Pine, around the Seattle University campus, and from 1st and Virginia (where Le Pichet and Virginia Inn are) down to the Pike Place Market.

I also like the walk in the Eastlake neighborhood, from Louisa Street to Boston Street, and from Fairview to Eastlake Ave E, which encompasses Pete’s Wine Market, the houseboats, the old working maritime shops, and Voxx Coffee (ed note, now Eastlake Coffee, but you can still find Voxx downtown). I also love the trees and windiness of Aloha Street in Capitol Hill around 18th Ave East.

Do you have a favorite place to work?

My projects have been made for particular places lately, all locations I have loved working in: Theatre Off Jackson, New City Theater, the Washington Care Center, The Project Room, The Frye Art Museum, The Jacob Lawrence Gallery at the UW, and Cornish College of the Arts.

Outside of the visual art world, what do you enjoy doing?

One could argue that most of what I do and see and eat is not in the visual art world, but I would say that these are all part of the art I make. So going to Town Hall or Jazz Alley, eating at locally owned restaurants, going to On the Boards, seeing dance at Spectrum and Velocity—or devouring oysters—is all part of that. I also follow Stephen Stubbs’ Baroque music company Pacific Musicworks.

What do you find especially inspiring about Seattle?

If one can figure out how to find equilibrium financially, Seattle is a town where work really does get done. Most of my work is collaborative and I prefer to work closely with my partners, so I arrange lots of meetings at Vivace, which is a block from my condo. I love Cal Anderson Park—it’s a really successful urban park because it feels like a public space where a lot of different populations can come together. I would bring visitors to the Olympic Sculpture Park on a hot day because the pavilion is air-conditioned! It’s also one of those spaces that connect what people love about Seattle: the water, the skyline, and the mountains.



Interview by Jess Van Nostrand, 2012.

Photo taken at Louisa Boren Park.



Susie J. Lee discusses a video project in her Seattle home.



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