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Broad Street Green Sculpture Garden

Broad & John Street The Seattle Center landscape is dotted with art and architectual works that together form urban vistas of mixed form and scale. The Sculpture Garden is framed by the retro-futuristic backdrop of the Space Needle and the post-modern Experience Music Project building. The Sculpture Garden is made up of four unique pieces. Ronald Bladen's Black Lightning, a black-painted steel sculpture currently sited in the Sculpture Garden southeast of the Space Needle. Alexander Liberman's Olympic Iliad, orange-red painted steel sculpture, installed in 1984 on the lawn southwest from the Space Needle. Doris Chase's Moon Gates, a bronze sculpture of three parts, located in the Sculpture Garden just south of the Space Needle. Installed in 1999. Tony Smith's Moses, a black-painted steel sculpture located just northeast of the base of the Space Needle. It has been on the Center's grounds since 1975.
Chihuly Garden and Glass will feature many of Chihuly's most popular series works and architectural installations highlighting the wide-ranging breadth and scope of Dale's career to include new, existing and archival works by the artist.
Chihuly Garden and Glass Website

Donnelly Garden at Theater Commons

Donnelly Gardens and Theater Commons is a 1.6 acre open space adjacent to the Seattle Repertory Theater at the north end of the Seattle Center campus. Donnelly Gardens showcases native Cascadia plantings among a series of bio-retention ponds and a mix of hardscapes. The entire Theater Commons site was designed using an integrated approach to landscaping and engineering that considers environmental sustainability. Large bio-retention gardens collect and filter on-site storm water. Interpretive signage explains about the hydrological functions and the plants growing in the gardens.

Kobe Bell Meditation Garden

Unknown. 1962 Bagley Wright Theatre near the south wall of Cornish Playhouse Housed within a small, traditional temple pagoda, the cylindrical Kobe Bell hangs on the Seattle Center grounds. The bell is a tribute to the goodwill and friendship fostered by Seattle's sister-city partnership with Kobe, Japan. The partnership was formed in the decades immediately following World War II, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower called upon governments at a municipal level to reach out to cities around the world in order to develop ties with both traditional friends and recent enemies. Seattle's Mayor Gordon Clinton and a committee of citizens chose to extend an invitation to the city of Kobe, Japan based on its rich history as a seaport and historical commitment to the arts. In 1957, Kobe's Mayor Haraguchi accepted, forming Seattle's first sister-city relationship. In 1962, Seattle hosted the World's Fair on the Seattle Center grounds. Kobe sent the wooden structure and cast bronze bell as a commemorative gift. Unlike traditional western-style bells, the Kobe Bell has no clapper inside. Instead a large log suspended at a right angle strikes the metal exterior, ringing the bell from the outside. The bell is also richly ornamented with bands punctuated by rosettes partitioning its surface. Bronze studs and a curled dragon decorate the upper portion, while bas-relief designs of drum- and flute-playing Japanese gods adorn the lower portions. The middle section contains a dedication written in both Japanese and English: "Presented by the People of Kobe to the People of Seattle as a Symbol of Friendship. May this bell ring forever signifying friendship between the nations of the United States and Japan." Kobe Bell was a gift to the city of Seattle from the city of Kobe, Japan.

Neototems Children's Garden

Gloria Bornstein. 2002 East of Seattle Children’s Theatre Gloria Bornstein based the concept of the Neototems Children's Garden on a Native American legend of whales swimming underground, connecting the salt water of Elliott Bay with the fresh water of Lake Union. The whale whose tail appears in the Children's Garden is part of a pod represented in Bornstein's first Seattle Center sculpture Neototems (1995) which features two large bronze whales located on the west side of the International Fountain. The Neototems Children's Garden features a maze of paths through landscaped gardens leading to a bronze, five-foot tall baby whale tail fountain enhanced by water rolling over and cascading down the rounded lip of the tail, mimicking a breaching or surfacing whale. The gardens surrounding the central fountain figure provide a place of discovery for children, including a series of "tidal pool" sculptures featuring small bronzes of a seahorse, an octopus, a flying pig, a hermit crab, and a family of three blowfish. Bornstein says, "On a simple level my work tells stories of a place, its people, its culture, land, and geology. On another level, I explore the thresholds between the public and the private. My work is also psychoanalytically based in that I chose the labyrinth design as a symbol of psychological challenge, where girl and boy heroes learn to explore, play and take risks on their journeys through life." Neototem's Children's Garden was funded by Seattle Center 1% Percent for Art.

Peace Garden

The Peace Garden is located in the southeast portion of the campus near the base of the Space Needle. It is also directly south of the Chihuly Garden and Glass facility. It was conceived and built in 1996 by Seattle Center staff. The central feature of the garden is an International Peace Pole. This is one of many such poles placed around the world and is inscribed on its four sides in different languages with the message “May Peace Prevail on Earth”. Other peace related features include an inscribed boulder honoring Seattle peace activist Aki Kurose (1925-1998), and the Middle East Peace Sculpture by artist Sabah Al-Dhaher, 2003. The garden is composed of many large boulders and cobble stone paths winding through an eclectic collection of trees, shrubs and perennials. Plants of interest in the garden include Pterostyrax corymbosa or Epaulette Tree, Davidia involucrata or Dove Tree and Ceonothus impressus ‘Puget Blue’ or California Lilac (a big favorite with tourists in early summer, when it is covered with tiny blue flowers).

Poetry Garden

The Poetry Garden was created in 2006 and is located in the heart of the Seattle Center campus, on 3rd Ave, west of The Armory building. The small garden is composed of crushed granite paths punctuated by twelve sculpted, polished, pink granite boulders engraved with an eclectic selection of poems by various authors. The boulders were sculpted and sited by artist/sculptor John Hoge. The entire site is shaded by a high tree canopy of London Plane and Zelcova trees. Curving seat walls define the inner edges of the beds of shade loving plants. A relatively unknown and rare tree in Seattle, the Medlar, grows on the west edge of the garden.
Enjoy a self-guided walk around Seattle Center and learn about the rich variety of trees across our campus.
Download Tree Walk Map

September 11 Memorial Garden

This garden is located on a slope, near the west side of the Fisher Pavilion, bordered by 2nd Ave North on its west side. It was created early in 2002 to commemorate the lives lost in the terrorist attacks in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania on September 11, 2001. It is part of a larger garden space that also includes a collection of flowering cherry trees. Compost made from the millions of flowers brought to the International Fountain during the days after the attack was placed in the garden area. Originally, tulips were planted that had been especially grown in the compost. Over time the tulips have disappeared, replaced by ornamental grasses and flowering perennials. Boulders are inscribed with quotes from Martin Luther King and Anne Frank, as well as a dedication to the purpose of the garden. The Kwansan cherry trees on the site were donated to Seattle Center in 1995 to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the end of World War II. The Mt. Fuji cherry trees in this area were also donated in 1995 to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Cherry Blossom Festival, held in April at Seattle Center each year.

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