Landmark by Sarah Reitz

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Submitted on May 11, 2021 - 11:21am
Murmurations logo and tagline: A Seattle-Wide Arts Collaboration

May brings the launch of Murmurations, a new Seattle-wide arts collaboration spearheaded by six cultural institutions: Frye Art Museum, Henry Art Gallery, Jacob Lawrence Gallery, Northwest Film Forum, On the Boards, and Velocity Dance Center. Together, these organizations will present a series of multidisciplinary projects, including exhibitions, performances, screenings, community conversations, artist talks, and other programs co-developed with cultural organizations across the city.

Murmurations takes its name from the flight patterns of starling birds, whose survival depends on collective movement. The project emerged in 2020 from a shared need to find new structures for engaging and presenting creative practices to the public. Presentations under this umbrella will continue to unfold throughout 2021.


For the latest information on upcoming Murmurations presentations, visit the Murmurations Facebook page or the websites of participating organizations.

MAY 1, 8 + 15, 2021

On the Boards and Henry Art Gallery present Drive-in at On the Boards, a screening series featuring work by artists who use moving images to respond to colonial mentalities and tactics, from surveillance to capitalism.

May 15 + 16, 2021

Jacob Lawrence Gallery, Northwest Film Forum, and On the Boards present a James Allister Sprang screening, held in conjunction with Lux Aeterna, a year-long platform and series of commissions that traces and troubles the currents of technical migration and image circulation.

May – July 2021

Henry Art Gallery and LANGSTON present The Engine Room Residencies in conjunction with the Henry’s exhibition Gary Simmons: The Engine Room. Artist residents include The Black Tones (May) and Ishmael Butler of Shabazz Palaces and Digable Planets (June).

June – August 2021

Henry Art Gallery and Jack Straw Cultural Center present Sonolocations, a three-part series of audio artworks, to be released free and to the public across the summer months. The participating artists were invited to consider the theme of place and its unique resonance throughout the pandemic, to offer directed sonic experiences for audiences to engage wherever they might find themselves. Participating artists include Byron Au Yong and Chenoa Egawa.

June 5 + 6, 2021

The Frye Art Museum, Henry Art Gallery, and LANGSTON present a weekend of family-friendly programming. Featuring a Community Day hosted by the Frye in celebration of the exhibition Black Refractions: Highlights from The Studio Museum in Harlem, an encore musical performance by The Black Tones as part of Gary Simmons: The Engine Room residencies co-organized by the Henry and LANGSTON, and an ArtVentures workshop led by musician and educator Rell Be Free with the Henry and LANGSTON.

July 2021

In conjunction with Black Refractions: Highlights from the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Frye Art Museum and On the Boards present a weekend of drive-in screenings programmed by Black Cinema Collective. With a view to expanding and “refracting” The Studio Museum in Harlem’s focus on contemporary art of the African diaspora, the screenings will include works from artists both in and beyond the exhibition.

July 17 – August 15, 2021

Henry Art Gallery and Velocity Dance Center present an exhibition by dancer, choreographer, and writer Will Rawls, held in conjunction with the Seattle Festival of Dance Improvisation. Working with a group of performers, Rawls will create a stop-motion studio where time and movement slow, offering an opportunity to interrogate tropes of linear narrative and apparatuses of visual capture.


The Frye Art Museum and On the Boards present a special performance by Sadiqua Iman in response to Anastacia-Reneé’s exhibition (Don't be Absurd) Alice in Parts (January 30–April 25, 2021). As a current Artist-In-Residence at On the Boards, Sadiqua is embodying the world of various artworks by Black artists around Seattle through dance starting with Anastacia-Reneé’s fictional character, Alice Metropolis, the central figure of the Frye’s recent exhibition.

Summer 2021

  • Henry Art Gallery presents a public art project of video projections in selected sites in Seattle’s Capitol Hill and Downtown neighborhoods.
  • Henry Art Gallery and Jacob Lawrence Gallery hosts an Emergent Strategy reading group.
  • Henry Art Gallery and Jacob Lawrence Gallery present an audio tour of the most unusual and beautiful spaces to listen deeply on the University of Washington Seattle campus.

Summer / Autumn 2021

Henry Art Gallery, On the Boards, and Velocity present a series of performance and installation events around downtown Seattle.

Autumn 2021

Northwest Film Forum and Velocity Dance Center present selections from their annual Dance Film Challenge, which screens during NWFF's Local Sightings Film Festival.

Participating Organizations

Frye Art Museum

Located in Seattle’s First Hill neighborhood since 1952, the Frye is the city’s only free art museum. The Founding Collection of primarily late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century European art was gifted in perpetuity to the people of Seattle by prominent early-twentieth-century Seattle business leaders and art collectors Charles and Emma Frye. In addition, the Museum owns an extensive collection of artworks purchased or gifted to the Museum since its opening. Today, the Frye reflects Seattle's evolving identity through exhibitions, programs, and outreach, showcasing local and global artists who are exploring the issues of our time as well as contemporary scholarship on historical subject matter. Visit the Frye Art Museum website.

Henry Art Gallery

The Henry Art Gallery is internationally recognized for bold and challenging exhibitions, for being the first to premiere new works by established and emerging artists, and for highlighting contemporary art practice through a roster of multidisciplinary programs. Containing more than 27,000 works of art, the museum’s permanent collection is a significant cultural resource available to scholars, researchers, and the general public. The Henry is located on the University of Washington campus in Seattle, Washington. Visit the Henry Art Gallery website.

Jacob Lawrence Gallery

Situated in the University of Washington’s Art Building, the Jacob Lawrence Gallery is a vital center for social engagement and critical dialogue about the roles of art, art history, and design within the broader context of intellectual life on campus. Through an ambitious and compelling program of contemporary exhibitions, lectures, performances, screenings, and discussions, the gallery is a site of knowledge production and advancing discourses that serves over 8,000 visitors each year. Visit the Jacob Lawrence Gallery website.

Northwest Film Forum

Founded in Seattle in 1995 as an independent film and arts nonprofit, Northwest Film Forum incites public dialogue and creative action through collective cinematic experiences. Each year the Forum presents hundreds of films, festivals, community events, multidisciplinary performances, and public discussions. As a comprehensive visual media organization, the Forum offers educational workshops and artist services for film and media makers at all stages of their development. Visit the Northwest Film Forum website.

On the Boards

On the Boards fulfills its mission by supporting artists from the Northwest and beyond through new commissions and existing work presented online and in person. We provide local artists with residencies that include rehearsal space, development support, project management, dramaturgical and curatorial feedback, and advocacy to create new and exciting projects. OtB’s publishing platform,, is a one-of-its-kind portal that features HD performance films and contextual educational material to deepen audiences’ understanding of the field of contemporary performance. Visit the On the Boards website.


Velocity is Seattle’s center dedicated to contemporary dance, and an essential incubator for new dance in our region. With artist-driven, community-responsive programming, Velocity provides vital resources and advocacy for one of the most active dance communities in the nation. Velocity’s programming includes classes, workshops, residencies, performances, discussions, and two annual international festivals. Visit the Velocity website.