Second Shot Photo Report: PSFK At Seattle’s Bumbershoot Festival

Second Shot Photo Report: PSFK At Seattle’s Bumbershoot Festival
Arts & Culture

PSFK visits Seattle to check out an international music and arts festival.

Joyce Chou
  • 16 september 2011

On labor day weekend PSFK attended the Bumbershoot festival — the annual international music and arts festival held in Seattle, Washington. This is one of the largest urban festivals in America and takes place in Seattle Center, which was built for the 1962 World’s Fair. Although we went for the spectacular music lineup, there were many other events in the festival like films, comedy, spoken word, dance, theatre, performance, and visual arts. This year, there was truly something for all ages and interests — there were big music headliners, like Hall and Oates, and family-friendly activities, like a Blue Man Group Drumming Station.

The most breathtaking part was the Bumbershoot grounds, with venues both indoors and outdoors. One of the most beautiful venues is the Sky Church inside the EMP museum, designed by Frank Gehry. It was a rare opportunity to gaze at the curves of the ceiling, as we danced to some of our favorite bands. The stage’s incredible screen display allows the artists to deliver powerful performances with evocative light shows. At the WD4D show, the DJ had light effects that created a beautiful cave-like visual, making the space feel intimate and otherworldly.

At the outdoors stages, we got to frolic with the Space Needle as a backdrop while listening to bands like YACHT and at the Head Like a Kite show, even the performers seemed caught up in the festival mood and were playful with the audiences. During the YACHT show, the lead singer invited people to join them onstage to dance. It got so crowded that the band members had to play their songs at the edge of the stage. At the Head Like a Kite show, the crowd loved a costumed Panda that danced around the lead singer. During a hilariously dramatic moment in the show, the Panda ceremoniously shaved off the lead singer’s mustache onstage. With such a heady mood and eclectic mix in the audiences, we enjoyed the people-watching almost as much as the music.

Although they are often overlooked in favor of the music, the visual arts shows are also amazing. We wandered around the Flatstock 31 poster show and got to chat with the designers. The show drew international talent and some of the posters were being printed onsite, so people could watch the screenprinting process happen and then buy the work afterward.

In the end, we had the best time just doing nothing in between the events. The festival was a great place to sit and relax, with the city skyline and Seattle Center’s fountain as the perfect backdrop for an arts and music playground.

Bumbershoot Festival

This post was created with the kind support of Canon Powershot:

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