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225. Scratch Night 2023: Presentation from Our Scholar-in-Residence, Sally James

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Release Date: 05/04/2023

253. Sloane Crosley with Ben Gibbard: Grief Is for People show art 253. Sloane Crosley with Ben Gibbard: Grief Is for People

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Have you ever lost something or someone dear to you? Though it ranges in severity and impact, loss is a shared human experience – an inevitable, inescapable part of life. Praised for her humor and sharp wit, essayist and novelist Sloane Crosley delivers her first memoir Grief is for People, exploring how loss can take many forms. After the pain and confusion of losing her closest friend Russell to suicide – which occurred only a month after also losing prized possessions and her sense of safety following a burglary – Crosley looks for answers, even where they may be elusive....

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252. Eric Klinenberg with Margaret O’Mara: A Year Which Will Live in Infamy show art 252. Eric Klinenberg with Margaret O’Mara: A Year Which Will Live in Infamy

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

You’d be hard-pressed to find a person whose life went unchanged in 2020, arguably one of the most consequential years in human history. It marked an unprecedented time, left indelible memories in our minds, and set off ripple effects we still feel even today. Disruption of normal life was nearly universal; however, the ways in which we experienced disruption were varied. Acclaimed sociologist and bestselling author Eric Klinenberg’s latest work 2020: One City, Seven People, and the Year Everything Changed offers an account of a single year in modern history told through the...

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251. Robots Who Paint: What’s Next with AI and Art? show art 251. Robots Who Paint: What’s Next with AI and Art?

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Three expert guests discuss the implications of AI and the fine arts in a conversation moderated by Steve Scher.  Scientist and founder of the Artists and Machine Intelligence program at Google, Blaise Agüera y Arcas, will offer his “news from the front” about the latest developments in AI capabilities, and what he foresees ahead.  Alex Alben, technology executive, author, and law professor, will review the implications of AI to the artist from the point of view of intellectual property: is anything on the internet up for grabs, or is compensation for image...

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250. James Miles - Gotta Stay Fresh: Transforming Learning with Hip-Hop Education show art 250. James Miles - Gotta Stay Fresh: Transforming Learning with Hip-Hop Education

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Hip-hop education is more than just music; it’s a dynamic tool for fostering student success and intellectual growth. James Miles, known as the Fresh Professor, is renowned for his engaging teaching style. By infusing lessons with content that’s inspirational, intellectually engaging, and relevant to students’ lives, Miles demonstrates how teachers can use hip-hop education to help students better retain information and think critically about concepts inside and outside the classroom. Miles will be joined by a panel of experts with backgrounds ranging from educators to artists who will...

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249. Alexis Devine with Sarah Stremming: How a Talking Dog Could Teach You How to Be Human show art 249. Alexis Devine with Sarah Stremming: How a Talking Dog Could Teach You How to Be Human

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Many of us talk to our pets daily, but what would you do if your pet could talk back? What do you think they would say? When Bunny, a fluffy, black-and-white sheepadoodle, was eight weeks old, her guardian Alexis presented her with an odd gift: a button programmed to say “outside” when pressed. Within a few weeks, Bunny was using it all the time, and Alexis, encouraged by Bunny’s progress, continued to introduce more buttons and more words. Three years later, Bunny can now communicate using over one hundred buttons, stringing together important, relatable, philosophical phrases such as...

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248. Misha Berson: Seattle Theatre Lives! show art 248. Misha Berson: Seattle Theatre Lives!

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Seattle’s theatre community demonstrated resilience and adaptability, navigating through challenging times to envision a new era for the performing arts. Arts journalist and educator Misha Berson will moderate an open discussion about Seattle’s current theatrical landscape with the respected artistic directors of three of the city’s most popular stage companies: John Langs, head of the long-running ACT Theatre; Karen Lund, producing artistic director of Taproot Theatre in Greenwood; and Dámaso Rodríguez, the new artistic...

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247. 2022 Town Hall Seattle Writer-in-Residence Sarah Salcedo and Washington State Poet Laureate Arianne True: Neurodivergence and Art show art 247. 2022 Town Hall Seattle Writer-in-Residence Sarah Salcedo and Washington State Poet Laureate Arianne True: Neurodivergence and Art

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

Join us for a conversation between former Town Hall Seattle Writer-in-Residence Sarah Salcedo and Washington State Poet Laureate Arianne True. Together, they will discuss how they negotiate the intersections of neurodivergence, art, and artistic careers. After a discussion, there will be a reading of Arianne’s poems and a section from the in-progress novel that Sarah began during her Town Hall residency in 2022, which has also been funded by 4Culture. Arianne True (Choctaw, Chickasaw) is a queer poet and teaching artist from Seattle, and has spent most of her work time working with...

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246. Behind the WHEEL: The Power of Homeless Women show art 246. Behind the WHEEL: The Power of Homeless Women

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

You’re invited to celebrate thirty years of homeless women organizing, writing, and creating change!  In 1993, homeless and formerly homeless women in Seattle came together to create (Women’s Housing, Equality, and Enhancement League) to organize for increased safety and shelter and advocate for changes to end homelessness.  Now, in 2023, it’s time to commemorate the 30th anniversary of WHEEL and 20th anniversary of WHEEL’s Homeless Remembrance Project, an initiative that has endowed the city with enduring memorials for homeless individuals. As if this weren’t enough,...

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245. Stephanie Land with Sara K. Runnels: Motherhood, Hunger, and Higher Education show art 245. Stephanie Land with Sara K. Runnels: Motherhood, Hunger, and Higher Education

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

When Stephanie Land set out to write her memoir, Maid, she never could have imagined what was to come. Handpicked by President Barack Obama as one of the best books of 2019 and later adapted into the hit Netflix series Maid, Stephanie’s escape out of poverty and abuse in search of a better life inspired millions. Maid was a story about a house cleaner, but it was also a story about a woman with a dream. In her new book, Class, Land takes us with her as she finishes college and pursues her writing career. Facing barriers at every turn including a byzantine loan system, not having...

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244. Alva Noë: Art is All Around Us show art 244. Alva Noë: Art is All Around Us

Town Hall Seattle Arts & Culture Series

What exactly is art and why does it matter to us? Philosopher of the mind Alva Noë explores the answers to these questions, arguing that we need art and philosophy to fully understand human nature. After all, our modern way of life is permeated with the aesthetic––the arts are an integral part of every human culture on the planet. Our lives supply art with its raw materials, but art, Noë argues, remakes life by giving us resources to live differently. Because of this, Noë believes that art is the truest way of understanding ourselves. He suggests that neither biology, cognitive science,...

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Every year, Town Hall selects exceptional local artists and scholars for paid residencies where they engage with Town Hall programs and collaborate with our programming team to develop original events for the community. For our Spring 2023 residency, we’re lucky enough to have both a Scholar- and an Artist-in-Residence. This Scratch Night will showcase their work in progress.

Scholar in Residence: Sally James

Sally James is a writer whose curiosity about people has taken her from jails to hospitals to schools to research labs. Once a staff member of daily newspapers, she has been an independent writer on medicine and science for many years. Most recently, she’s reported stories for the South Seattle Emerald, Parentmap, Seattle and Seattle Business magazines, and other outlets. She is the mother of three adult children and lives in Seattle with her husband and a noisy cat. She is a former president of the Northwest Science Writer’s Association, a nonprofit supporting science communication.

Focus while in Residence: In the words of Sally, “The Year 12 project is asking about a pivotal time in a young person’s growth when what’s swirling around us in news, music, or culture may leave a permanent imprint on our identities.

Laura Kastner, Ph.D., a clinical professor of psychology at the University of Washington, will join James onstage to talk about the brain changes that happen around age 12. Kastner is the author of several books about adolescence and parenting.

You can participate in Sally’s Year 12 project here: Share your Year 12 Stories!