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  • Frye Art MuseumFrye Art Museum Seattle, Washington
    The Frye Art Museum is sitting in the First Hill district of Seattle, Washington, that contains outstanding examples of paintings and sculptures of the 19th centuries to the current time. Its inventory nucleus came from Emma and Charles Frye, owner of a local meatpacking plant, that had set aside moneys to build a museum that would house his excellent collection of more than 230 paintings. The Frye Museum opened in 1952, and became the first free art museum in the city, being designed by Paul Thiry, but there have been some changes over the years. Frye's will, said that the majority of his collection should be always displayed in rooms of a particular size, the lighting had to be specific and cement floors needed to included; and the admission should always be free. His collection was mostly made up of representational works, leaning more to the "dark, dramatic and psychological", other than the "genteel", and the museum's permanent collection reflects that conservative artistic style. The museum has continued that idea, and has become devoted to representational artworks. The newer, more professional management of the museum has become somewhat more adventurous, and is compared to Seattle's Henry Art Gallery. The collection showcases many variations of prints, sculptures, paintings and works on paper, with artists included like; Franz Stuck, Eugene Boudin, Ludwig von Zumbusch, Felix Ziem, Hermann Corrodi, William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Fritz von Uhde, Eugene Isabey and Franz von Lenbach.  One of the featured artists on show now is Friedrich August von Kaulbach who painted the gifted Spanish dancer and actress, Rosario Guerrero in 1908. Rosario first danced in Madrid before going to Paris, where she would debut in the Folies-Bergere, and in 1903 performed as Carmen in London's Alhambra Theater. Florence Ziegfeld would hire her to perform in the Lyric Theater in New York and up until 1919, she would head to New York for the performances there. Friedrich, was a well known German painter, had studied at the Munich Academy of Art in 1872 before going to Italy and then France. In 1888, he left Paris to become head of the academy, and in 1903-1904, finished at least six paintings of Guerrero plus drawings and studies.  It seemed that artists during the latter years of the 19th century were considered to be "stars" in their own rights and would look for opportunities to paint other famous people. Many such paintings are here, done by von Lenbach, von Stuck and Kaulbach. Besides the Frye collection, the museum has many artworks that were purchased or donated since it opened in 1952, although Walser Greathouse, the first curator, bought 19th and 20th century American paintings that would complement the original collection; and these included works by William Merritt Chase, Geri Melchers, Albert Bierstadt, John H. Twactman and Frank Duveneck. 

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  • Nordic Heritage MuseumNordic Heritage Museum Seattle, Washington
    The Nordic Heritage Museum sits in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, Washington, which is the heart of the Scandinavian community in the city, that was started in 1980. It is devoted to the heritage of the Nordic immigrants that came here and settled in the early days of the city. Nordic immigrants include those from Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Norway. The museum has become a public gathering spot and depository of the Nordic culture that showcases objects, arts, as well as preserving their collections and artifacts, and giving cultural and educational experiences to this people. The red brick structure that was constructed in 1907, was the Daniel Webster Elementary School until 1979, when the student enrollment was too small and now houses the Nordic museum, with fundraisers and plans to build a more modern structure to house all the antiquities. The museum is dedicated to sharing the Nordic culture, history and traditions of those groups by showcasing artworks, and other collections that help people from all backgrounds to learn more about their Nordic neighbors. In the long term displays, there are five ethnic galleries, plus one about the emigration to the Pacific northwest, called Dream of America, others are Sweden Room, Iceland Room, Finland Room, Norway Room and Denmark Room. In the temporary gallery, the present exhibit is My Paradise: 100 years of Finnish Architects Summer Homes. One of the many exciting opportunities at this museum include the craft school where you can learn about knitting for kids, Nordic knitting cafe, Danish cooking, Nordic woodcarving, Viking cooking, Rosemaling, and Nordic cooking. There are also adult programs, teacher programs, parents and their children programs,

January 11, 2011