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July Art Walk @ 1120 Creative House

15 Jul

13626632_1142265942501551_6407125374022938559_nHyper Stimulation
Third Thursday July 21, 2016
1120 Creative House
1120 Pacific Ave. 2nd floor
FREE and open to the public
Event on Facebook
Event on Instagram

Ian Wheelock presents “Hyper Stimulation” with Mr. Motorcycle at 1120 Creative House (1120 Pacific Ave; 2nd Floor). The opening night for Wheelock’s third solo art show is Thursday, July 21, 2016 from 7PM to 11:20PM. The exhibition will run until Sunday, July 24, 2016. Wheelock is a recent graduate from Tacoma’s School of the Arts and currently attends the California College of the Arts.

The “Hyper Stimulation” installation, unlike his last two gallery showings, is the artist unleashed. Without the constraints of a theme, viewers will get access to the wide breadth of work Wheelock creates through cartoons, clothing, comics, portraiture, and poster art. This art show is an all-ages event and everyone is welcomed. So, please join us at 1120 Creative House, enjoy the refreshments, stay to see the band Mr. Motorcycle perform, and to meet the artists. Artwork, prints, t-shirts, buttons, holographic stickers, and a new Anime Goth comic by Ian Wheelock will be available for purchase.

Hyper Stimulation Poster 2


Spaceworks Announces Stocklist Grand Opening

13 Jul


Stocklist Grand Opening Celebration
Saturday, July 30th, 2016, 11am-5pm
1936 Pacific Ave.
Event on Facebook

Spaceworks is excited to announce the grand opening of Tacoma’s newest gift store, Stocklist, opening on July 30th. Located on the University of Washington’s campus in the heart of Downtown Tacoma, Stocklist promises to delight Tacoma residents and visitors alike with a unique mix of stationery, jewelry, accessories, home décor, & souvenirs.

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Creative Community Projects in Lincoln

6 Jul

Tacoma Arts

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The Tacoma Arts Commission is offering a free workshop and $500-$5,000 grants for creative community projects in the Lincoln District. Any Tacoma resident with a creative idea for a community project is welcome to attend the workshop and apply for the grant, including neighborhood activists, teachers, creative professionals in the arts (visual artists, filmmakers, designers, performers, musicians, etc.), do-it-yourself entrepreneurs, storytellers, and practitioners of folk art, outsider art, healing arts, culinary arts, martial arts, or gardening arts.

The workshop will be held Saturday, July 30, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Lincoln District Project Office (750 S. 38th St. in Tacoma). Workshop attendees will learn more about community engagement and creative projects, see inspiring examples, take a neighborhood walk, meet possible collaborators, and participate in brainstorming sessions for their own projects. Lunch will be served.

RSVP to Asia Tail at or (253) 591-5206 for the workshop. Grant

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Info Sessions for Creative Enterprise Application

26 Jun

Spaceworks Training Class #1.jpg

Start Creative Business in Tacoma with Spaceworks, Learn How

Spaceworks matches artistic entrepreneurs with vacant spaces, while providing business training to help them develop a sustainable path to economic growth and fulfill their creative potential.

Our application is open to artists, designers, crafters, techies, makers, consultants, organizations, community groups and other entrepreneurs working in any creative field (for-profit or non-profit).

Learn more about what this training program offers or about what Spaceworks does and join us at one of our open information sessions. You will get a Creative Enterprise Program overview, review of application guidelines, tips to create a strong application, Q&A, and an opportunity to get to know the Spaceworks staff.

Upcoming Info Sessions:
June 28 or July 12, 2016
5:00 – 7:00 PM
1120 Creative House (1120 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402)

No RSVP Required.

Office Hours:

If you need help outside of these sessions, you can schedule “office hours” with Gwen Kohl, the program coordinator to answer questions and review your application materials.
Location: Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber, 950 Pacific Avenue, Suite 300, Tacoma, WA 98401

Gwen Kohl, Spaceworks Creative Enterprise Program Coordinator,

Tacoma Arts Month is coming. What do you have planned?

23 Jun

Tacoma Arts


Call for Arts Activities
15th annual Tacoma Arts Month
October 1 – 31, 2016

Will you be hosting an arts event in October? Do you want to contribute to the arts programming offered in Tacoma, build community, and benefit from free publicity? Submit your arts activity for inclusion in the 2016 Tacoma Arts Month online calendar!

The Tacoma Arts Commission is seeking submissions of arts activities happening during our 15th annual Tacoma Arts Month this October. We are looking for a variety of activities spanning all categories of art and culture including but not limited to music, visual art, literary art, dance, theater, and film.

If you will be hosting an exhibition, performance, class, workshop, reception, lecture, tour, artists’ market, celebration, meeting, presentation, or any other programming, let us know. We will list your arts event in an interactive and searchable online calendar of events on There is no cost to…

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Apply to Creative Enterprise, Tier 1

17 Jun

Spaceworks participants, top left: Yoshiko Yamamoto of Arts & Crafts Press. Top right: Bradley Castillo of Fametakers and Puget Sound Printing. Bottom left: Isaac Martinez of Pointline. Bottom Right: Rebecca Solverson of Tacoma Tool Library. Photos by Patrick Hagerty.

Spaceworks invites creatives* who have a plan for a creative/innovative business that benefits Tacoma’s community and are seeking to develop a thriving business to apply to participate in its Creative Enterprise Program.

*Creatives can be artists, designers, crafters, techies, makers, consultants, organizations, community groups and other entrepreneurs working in any creative field (for-profit or non-profit).

Spaceworks’ Creative Enterprise Program – Tier I provides relevant and meaningful business training and peer-to-peer support to the participants to systematically grow Tacoma’s creative class and generate destination quality activity that will engage and transform our community. Affordable space is also provided, dependent on availability, to serve as a training ground to test new ideas, products and services with a safety net of technical assistance and mentorship.

Selected participants will start Spaceworks’ Creative Enterprise Training in August 2016 and pitch a full business plan for review in November 2016. Dates: 6-9 PM every Tuesday from August 23 – November 22, 2016

Questions? Office hours and Information Sessions

Spaceworks will offer information sessions and “office hours” for potential applicants prior to the deadline to present ways to build a strong application and provide feedback to applicant’s proposals.

Information Sessions:
June 28 and July 12, 2016
5:00 – 7:00 PM
1120 Creative House (1120 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402)

Click here to sign up for a meeting with the Creative Enterprise Coordinator during “office hours”.

Examples of current Creative Enterprises:

  • Retail space for hand-made items (i.e. jewelry, fashion, art, etc.) – example: Do The Extraordinary
  • Services (i.e. art or dance classes, design advice, etc.) – example: Fabitat
  • Merchandising a creative product – example: Grit City Grindhouse
  • Art Galleries/Museums – example: Mod Curio
  • Creative home-based businesses testing their product in a retail environment – example: The T-shirt Men Company
  • Office space (individual or co-working) for creative business, for example: digital media company or photographer with a digital darkroom – example: Turtledust Media
  • Long-term artist studio space/sole proprietor artist – example: Nate Dybevik Piano & Co.

Selected participants in the Spaceworks’ Creative Enterprise Program – Tier I must agree to the following: Continue reading

New Communications Intern Dmitry Mikheyev

16 Jun


Dmitry Mikheyev developed skills in graphic design, performance, and fashion to bring big visions to life. In his position as Spaceworks Communications Intern he will use his philosophy of connectedness to communicate Spaceworks’ mission through vivid imagery and content.

Managing and marketing small businesses in Tacoma, he learned first-hand the rewards and challenges of building a retail audience and creating a culture. A Tacoma resident since 2006, he has gained recognition in the local nightlife scene as his drag persona Dominique D’Amour and more recently in his burlesque expression as Mylo Precious. For the last 5 years he’s performed with the cast of AB Pure Entertainment, a company that produces variety shows at local bars.

Whether under stage lights or in customer service positions, Dmitry loves engaging people on an emotional level and has been involved in our community since PLU where he studied fine arts. Outside of classes he led a student club called Harmony (now QUASU) to create a series of education and awareness programs promoting LGBTQ causes as well as fundraisers for charities like PCAF and Tacoma Rainbow Center earning him Leader of Distinction and Spirit of Diversity awards. Later he served for two years as secretary of the board of directors of The Imperial Sovereign Court of Tacoma 501(c)(3), a non-profit with a 40-year history of fundraising events in Tacoma and Pierce County. He continues volunteering at Tacoma Rainbow Center and promoting annual holiday food drive at AB Pure Entertainment.

From a tiny pebble to a legendary person, every particle in the universe has a story to tell and Dmitry searches for intersecting threads of ideas to weave a fabric of new experience. In this new position he hopes to bring a unique voice to Spaceworks, joining our work on transforming vacancy to vitality.

Why Neon?

10 Jun

In order to throw a remarkable fundraiser, Spaceworks asked local event-planner-extraordinaire Lisa Fruichantie to be our event consultant. Lisa knows how to tell a story, and she knows how to throw a legendary party! The following paragraphs are Lisa’s remarks on how she came to realize that the art of neon can be a powerful metaphor for the impact of Spaceworks Tacoma.  


Downtown Tacoma on Pacific Ave. looking north – 1972


By Lisa Fruichantie, Spaceworks’ 2016 fundraiser consultant

In considering a theme for Spaceworks’ first major fundraiser, I was pondering ideas that would capture the creativity and transformation of our city, that would be a metaphor for vibrancy, and that would showcase all the amazing talent we have.

Having graduated from being an admirer and supporter of Spaceworks Tacoma, to be being an involved participant as a local artist, to consulting on their small private fundraiser in 2015 – lingering was the knowledge that their organization’s next step was to host a large public fundraiser to expand their fundraising efforts. The challenge was how to do so while still holding on to the integrity of highlighting the arts and artists first, while educating participants and donors of Spaceworks’ need to ask the community for support. There had to be a cool factor. Something deliciously enticing.

I admit it, I am an avid podcast listener. As a creative myself, I spend many hours alone listening to one podcast after another while I puzzle through my projects. Last December, I was in the middle of designing and constructing costumes for an upcoming dance performance for the series ‘Tacoma Spaces’. As I worked I began pondering the theme of Tacoma Spaces and reflected on the artistic renaissance our city has taken and how this transformation now surges with an injection of new energy.

At that moment I was listening to 99% invisible, by Roman Mars, based out of Oakland, California, the episode they were featuring was titled “Tube Benders” about the art of neon. Now, before I go into my lightbulb moment, I will preface this by saying that for years now I have preached to any who would listen about how in love with Oakland I am and how much the City of Tacoma could and should learn from a city that mirrors our beautiful struggle. Tacoma and Oakland are like twins raised in different households, I will spare you from the tangent many others have been subjected to over the years but at this very moment when I heard Roman Mars’ description of Oakland past and present, my imagination was joyriding between my time spent in Oakland and my memories of Tacoma in the 90’s and early 2000’s, prior to organizations like Spaceworks creating visible change to the energy and attraction of our downtown.

So there I was, surrounding in blankets of white stretch fabric, playing with light and ironing on fractal patterns of safety tape onto these costumes when I had my very own light bulb moment. I realized that a beautiful neon sign really was the most perfect metaphor for Spaceworks as an organization. Take a step back and remind yourself the way Tacoma used to look, empty streets, severely cracked sidewalks, smelly, signs in nearly every building and window pleadingly advertising available space. Downtown was someplace you passed through, it was not a destination. Now, picture an old neon sign completely unlit, a rough and raw industrial frame juxtaposed behind slender glass curvature of color. Once you power that sign it instantly turns to something otherworldly. Bright, vibrant, beautiful and that neon glow can be seen at a remarkable distance. That image of illumination truly captures Spaceworks slogan “Vacancy to Vitality”. Spaceworks curating our vacant storefronts, organizing art shows and entrepreneurs, Artscapes murals decorating our abandoned architecture brings the same instant visibility to our downtown core. Truly bringing light to dark places.

Envisioning neon as the theme to Spaceworks’ annual fundraiser, my mind was racing. Would this event attract artists I admired like Galen Turner, a local neon artist, to participate in this event? Would Spaceworks’ Creative Enterprise participants be commissioning neon signs for their businesses based on the success of this event? Could we grow this theme? What could future sub-themes become? Can we cultivate a love for the art of neon and actually use this as a tool to brighten our city? Then I had it – “NEON: Making Tacoma Brighter”. It married my ideas of what Spaceworks is and does, with the art of neon and provides that metaphor to grow on.

Some of you may be aware that neon has another history in this town that was not always supportive of the creative class. Little did I know, that once I pitched my ideas to Spaceworks that I was inadvertently digging up some serious longstanding history in our city between the art of neon and the City of Tacoma. I discovered that this event, NEON, is more than just Making Tacoma Brighter, the art of neon is truly seeing a new day in the City of Destiny. On that note, I invite you to join us on Saturday, June 11th to hear Amy McBride, founder of Spaceworks and Arts Administrator for the City of Tacoma, speak more about the history of neon, and Spaceworks Manager Heather Joy discuss the future of Spaceworks.

Bust out those day-glo socks and white trousers, 80’s attire highly encouraged. The party starts at 6pm, I’ll see you then!

For tickets & details visit 

NEON Art Party: Full Event Program

7 Jun

This Saturday, June 11th is the NEON Art Party. Over 75 Spaceworks artists and entrepreneurs are showing off their work, creating a gigantic Tacoma-spectacle that will illuminate the Carpenters Building. Check out the full event program below. Buy your tickets in advance and save money! There are only a few days left! Tickets at
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Neon Dion on Spaceworks’ NEON Art Party

27 May

Spaceworks NEON Art Party Fundraiser is going to be awesome and we are thrilled to have Mr. Dion Thomas, aka Neon Dion, join us for the event and share his Spaceworks story.

Dion is an integral thread in the creative fabric of Tacoma and Spaceworks is grateful to have had the opportunity to have worked with him in three different ways: as a Creative Enterprise when he participated in our business training program and launched it’s brick & mortar Gallery of Ambition at 313 S. 9th Street back in 2013, plus Gallery of Ambition hosted the first Shoot the T contest in Sping 2014; as Spaceworks’ Summer Events Intern in 2014 where he helped rock some amazing Spaceworks’ events; and in early 2016 as an artist in our Artscapes program with his Sides of the Town installation.

We appreciate Dion and all his efforts to make Tacoma strong and vibrant! We hope you will join us and Dion on June 11th at our Art Party Fundraiser! Get your tickets today!


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