Anyone that wants to dive deep into the local Seattle art scene is in the right place. Galleries, museums, supplies, schools, shows, events and more will all be covered thoroughly right here.
We will start with the best Seattle Art Galleries and Museums, where you can see some of the city’s most impressive exhibitions and collections. Following that you will read about where you can get all of the materials and supplies you’ll need at some of the top art stores in your area.
Up next we will get into shows, festivals, and events that happen throughout the year. Art walking tours present a terrific opportunity to explore a range of styles in a short amount of time, and we’ll also point you in the direction of the city’s best sculptures and statues.
Local art classes and lessons will require their own section and there are numerous classes for both children and adults available. Some of our more seasoned readers may not want any lessons so we will also advise you where to discover art studios for rent near you.
Our final section will include a list of the best framing shops in town. Towards the end there will be a local map with all of these spots pinned on it, and we should mention that we have a separate post dedicated to Tacoma which you can access there if you are searching for info on that area.
Best Art Galleries & Museums In Seattle
If you want to check out the best art galleries and museums in Seattle you can head to:
- Seattle Art Museum at 1300 First Ave
- Asian Art Museum at 1400 E Prospect St
- Henry Art Gallery at 15th Ave NE + NE 41st St
- Frye Art Museum at 704 Terry Ave
- Center On Contemporary Art at 114 Third Ave S
- Rosetta Hunter Art Gallery at 1701 Broadway
- Northwest African American Museum at 2300 S Massachusetts St
- Hedreen Gallery at 901 12th Ave
- 4Culture at 101 Prefontaine Pl S
- Soil at 112 3rd Ave S
- Bellevue Arts Museum at 510 Bellevue Way NE, Bellevue
The Seattle Art Museum is located downtown one block from Pike Place Market and has global art collections, temporary installations, and special exhibitions from around the world that bridge cultures and centuries. Every First Thursday of the Month everyone is allowed to enter the museum for free and they are generally open from 10am to 5pm Wednesday through Sunday plus they are also connected with The Olympic Sculpture Park and another place we are about to mention next.
The Seattle Asian Art Museum, SAAM, is a museum of Asian art at Volunteer Park in the Capitol Hill neighborhood that you can take a look at from 10am to 5pm Friday through Sunday. As part of the Seattle Art Museum the SAAM exhibits historic and contemporary artworks from China, Korea, Japan, India, the Himalayas, and other Southeast Asian countries while also featuring an education center, conservation center, and library. The museum is located in the 1933 Art Deco building which was originally home to their main collection.
The Henry is internationally recognized for bold and challenging exhibitions, for pushing the boundaries of contemporary art and culture, and for being the first to premiere new works by established and emerging artists. Through individual experiences with art they inspire visitors to upend their expectations and discover surprising connections from 10am to 5pm Friday through Sunday and from 10am to 7pm on Thursday.
Located on First Hill the Frye Art Museum near you opened its doors in 1952 as the legacy of Charles and Emma Frye who were prominent early-twentieth-century local art collectors and business leaders. You can check out all the Frye has to offer from 11am to 5pm Wednesday through Sunday.
Center On Contemporary Art has been a vital part of the contemporary art community in the Northwest since the early 1980’s operating galleries and producing events for almost 40 years. If you want to see what they have on display visit them from 11am to 4pm Thursday through Saturday because they are closed to the public the rest of the week.
Rosetta Hunter Art Gallery is open from 10am to 3pm Monday through Wednesday and until 6pm on Thursday and has served the community since 1992 with gallery displays that contribute toward the educational and cultural activity on campus. There are also guest lectures and poetry readings that reflect, acknowledge, appreciate, promote, and serve the college’s multicultural population.
The Northwest African American Museum (NAAM) serves to present and preserve the connections between the Pacific Northwest and people of African descent and investigate and celebrate Black experiences in America through exhibitions, programs, and events. The museum is located in the historically African-American Central District neighborhood in the former Colman School that was built in 1909 but don’t go on Monday or Tuesday because they will be closed.
The Hedreen Gallery at SU’s Lee Center for the Arts is open from 1pm to 6pm Wednesday through Saturday and is dedicated to the vibrancy of the local artistic community. Through a responsive program of exhibitions and events in a flexible project space they strive to catalyze artistic process and dialogue to connect artists, audiences, and resources with the community at large.
4Culture has four program areas of arts, heritage, historic preservation, and public art that put resources to use all over King County. They work to ensure access to cultural experiences for all from museum collections to theater productions to artists showing work in the gallery which is available from 9am to 5pm on weekdays.
Founded in 1995 SOIL is a not-for-profit cooperative space that is established, supported, and operated by local artists. SOIL is open from noon to 5pm Friday through Sunday and exists as an alternative venue for artists to exhibit, develop, and advance their work and is committed to exhibiting and celebrating art of diverse artists’ backgrounds, media, and content. The cooperative has been in existence for twenty-five years and has consistently shown a different exhibition each month which premier on First Thursdays.
Bellevue Arts Museum is one of the few museums in your area that grew out of an art fair as it was started by a handful of dedicated volunteers for the first fair in 1947 which eventually led to the founding of the Museum in 1975. After undergoing a series of transformations BAM opened the doors to its first permanent home designed by renowned architect and Washingtonian Steven Holl in 2001. Exclusively dedicated to art, craft, and design since 2005 the Museum has grown to be an important contributor to the region’s cultural vibrancy and a leading institution in its field and you can see what they have on display from 11am to 5pm Wednesday through Sunday.
Materials & Supplies Near You
The best places to buy art supplies and materials around town are:
- Art Primo at 415 E Pine St
- Dakota Art Store at 2000 NW Market St
- Artist & Craftsman Supply at 4350 8th Ave NE
- Blick Art Materials at 1600 Broadway
- Michaels at 15600 NE 8th St, Bellevue
Art Primo specializes in providing crafters, muralists, graffiti artists, and aerosol artists with the materials they need. They have been distributing art supplies at wholesale costs to internet retailers and college students in your area for years and are now open to the public.
Dakota Art Store has a wide variety of supplies for students, professionals, and everyone in between with a huge inventory that contains over 13,000 unique products from throughout the world and thousands more available upon request.
The Blick shop is located in the Capitol Hill district and sells a diverse selection of art supplies, craft tools, and one-of-a-kind gift products providing a great collection for professional artists, educators, and students alike at this local art supply store.
You probably know what the Michaels near you has to offer.
Shows & Events
Some of the top art shows, festivals, and events held here in this city would be:
- Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair in July
- Seattle Art Fair in August
- Deconstructed Art Fair in August
- Very Open House in December
- First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square
The Bellevue Arts Museum Arts Fair will include works by 132 juried artists on a unique BAM Arts Fair e-commerce platform created by The Garrigan Lyman Group. Visitors can communicate directly with artists via video conferencing, commission custom orders, filter products by medium, artist, item type, and other criteria while also enjoying exclusive programming featuring artist interviews and kid’s activities on the platform.
The Seattle Art Fair is a one-of-a-kind destination for the best in modern and contemporary art as well as a showcase for the Pacific Northwest’s thriving arts community. The fair brings together the region’s strong collector base, local, national, and international galleries, regional museums and institutions, and an array of innovative public programs. It was founded in 2015 by Paul G. Allen and is presented by Vulcan Arts + Entertainment and Art Market Productions.
The work of over 100 artists and craftspeople may be seen in four buildings at the massive Georgetown arts collective at Very Open House where you will find guest artists, music, poetry, dancing, demos, food trucks, and a whole lot more.
Every First Thursday of the month Pioneer Square has a fabulous art walk that brings out many of the best creatives in the region to show off their latest works.
Art Dealers & Appraisers
Art dealers and appraisers in your area can be a good place to buy new works or find out the true value of something you already own:
- Greg Kucera Gallery at 212 3rd Ave S
- Foster/White Gallery at 220 3rd Ave S #100
- Davidson Galleries at 313 Occidental Ave S
The Greg Kucera Gallery made a modest debut in the local art scene when it opened in 1983 beginning with a small group display of known Northwest artists including Alden Mason, Gene Gentry McMahon, Karin Helmich, and John F. Koenig.
Foster/White Gallery was founded in 1968 and is a top gallery on the West Coast and a major landmark in the Pioneer Square arts district with a diverse and remarkable display of modern paintings, sculptures, and glass that have garnered worldwide recognition. They maintain a high degree of aesthetic quality by representing young, mid-career, and established artists whose works vary in scale but are similar in material expertise.
In 1973 Sam Davidson established Davidson Galleries and throughout its history the gallery has had eight different venues the majority of which have been in historic Pioneer Square. Davidson Galleries is a founding member of the Seattle Art Dealers Association and the First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square.
What is better than walking around outside on a beautiful day and seeing some cool art at:
- West Seattle Art Walk at California Ave SW & SW Alaska St
- University District Art Walk at 5031 University Way NE
- Pioneer Square at 117 S Washington St
- Magnolia Art Experience at 3555 West McGraw St
- Downtown Bellevue Art Walk at 450 110th Ave NE, Bellevue
The West Seattle Art Walk takes place on the second Thursday of each month from 5pm to late. This great Art Walk near you is organized by businesses in the area that feature a diverse spectrum of art and highlight the city’s dynamic artist community.
Pioneer Square is a historic neighborhood famed for its Renaissance Revival architecture, First Thursday art walks, nightlife, wonderful restaurants, and eccentric businesses.
Scott is a fine artist and proprietor of Scott Ward Art who came up with the idea for Magnolia Art Experience (MAX) and he is also the co-owner of Current and Furbish.
The Downtown Bellevue Art Walk offers a handpicked array of elevated experiences that place you on the cutting edge of innovation, art, culturally influenced cuisine, and style.
Sculptures & Statues
Many of you will want to take selfies by these sculptures and statues:
- Olympic Sculpture Park at 2901 Western Ave
- The Fremont Troll at Fremont Way N
- Black Sun at 1247 15th Ave E
- Chief Seattle at 2701 5th Ave
- Troy Pillow Sculpture at 416 Rainier Ave S
- Waiting For The Interurban at N 34th St
The Olympic Sculpture Park was developed and administered by the Seattle Art Museum and is a free and public park that debuted on January 20, 2007 which includes a beach and a 9-acre outdoor sculpture gallery.
The Fremont Troll is one of the city’s most popular public sculptures as well as one of its most Instagrammable. People climb on top of its craggy shoulders, lean against its Volkswagen Beetle, and even push their heads into the creature’s snout in order to get a good shot with the landmark.
Isamu Noguchi’s 1969 sculpture Black Sun can be found in Volunteer Park on the park’s man-made reservoir’s eastern side across from the Asian Art Museum. The Space Needle, Olympic Mountains, and Elliott Bay can all be seen from the sculpture.
Tilikum Place now has an outdoor life-size sculpture of Chief Seattle by local artist James Wehn.
Troy Pillow is a local sculptor that makes one-of-a-kind kinetic sculptures that captivate the viewer’s attention and engage the imagination through simple design and dynamic movement. His public outdoor sculptures can be found in parks throughout Seattle.
Waiting for the Interurban is one of the city’s most popular interactive artwork and it was created by artist Richard Beyer in 1979 honoring the light rail Interurban line that once connected downtown to all of its communities. Six individuals are seen under a shelter along with an inquisitive canine with a human face.
Seattle Art Classes
Whether you need lessons for kids or are an adult who wants to grow his skills you have some options. Some of the best local art schools and classes would be:
- Cornish College of the Arts at 1000 Lenora St
- Seattle Artist League at 10219 Aurora Ave N
- Pratt Fine Arts Center at 1902 S Main St
- Gage Academy of Art at 1501 10th Ave E #101
- The Miller School of Art at 9610 8th Ave SW
- The Studio Fine Art Classes at 15600 NE 8th St #O-13, Bellevue
- Encompass Fine Arts at 4317 Factoria Blvd SE D, Bellevue
The Cornish College of the Arts was founded in 1914 and offers Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in the performing and visual arts in your area as well as a Bachelor of Music degree and they also have year-round public events and extension courses.
The Seattle Artist League is a new art school with small class sizes and studio workshops that make hands-on instruction available to anybody who wants to include art into their daily lives.
Pratt Fine Arts Center is a non-profit arts education and resource center in the Central District’s Squire Park neighborhood that employs 155 teaching artists and offers over 600 classes per year.
Gage Academy of Art is a creative and approachable contemporary art school that is unabashedly independent and fiercely committed to excellence in the arts of painting, drawing, sculpting, and printmaking. Gage is accessible to anybody with a willingness to learn whether you are an inquisitive newbie, a professional artist, a working creative, or a retired passion-seeker.
Mark Takamichi Miller is a well-established professional artist whose solo exhibitions in New York’s Chelsea galleries and Los Angeles’ Chinatown area have received favorable reviews in the New York Times, Art in America, and other metropolitan newspapers. Prior to establishing the Miller School of Art he taught at universities around the country for over 25 years including the University of Washington, the University of Oregon, and Cornish College of the Arts.
For over a decade Encompass Fine Arts has been spreading a passion of the arts and changing the lives of young artists from their South Bellevue location. Their classes are aimed to help students build a firm foundation in all art mediums by improving skills and comprehension as they are dedicated to the greatest quality in art education by delivering small group sessions in a fun and relaxed studio atmosphere from sketching to drawing to painting and beyond.
Art classes are also available at other places we have mentioned like M. Rosetta Hunter Art Gallery and Seattle Art Museum.
Studios For Rent Near You
When you can’t wait to get that next project started rent some space at one of these art studios in your area:
BallardWorks has been open since 2004 and is an artists’ work space building in the Ballard area adjacent to the Ballard Locks. Painters, printmakers, sculptors, and mixed media artists can work in one of their 22 cheap studios.
Paul D. McKee is a local artist that launched Project-106 in 2013 to provide much-needed artist studios following the closure of the 619 building which housed over 100 creatives. Method Gallery and seven professional studios are set in 4,000 square feet in historic Pioneer Square.
A frame can transform a regular looking piece or picture to that next level and some of the best places for art framing in Seattle are:
- Northwest Art & Frame at 4733 California Ave SW
- Frame Central at 901 E Pike St
- Museum Quality Framing at 519 15th Ave E
- Annie’s Art and Frame at 2212 NW Market St
- Seattle Custom Framing at 2815 2nd Ave #105
- New Dimensions Frame & Mirror at 206 105th Ave NE, Bellevue
- Bellevue Museum Quality Framing at 207 Bellevue Way NE, Bellevue
Northwest Art & Frame can be found in the heart of West Junction offering a wide range of custom and ready-made picture frames as well as pro custom and ready-made professional framing designers and personnel to help guide you through the entire framing experience.
Frame Central first opened its doors in 1987 and has multiple locations here and in Portland.
Adrian Hanauer developed Museum Quality Framing in 1988 which also has locations in Bellevue and Tacoma.
For almost 20 years Annie’s Art & Frame has been family owned and run consistently offering quality custom frames, artist prints, and unique gifts in your area.
Seattle Custom Framing creates the ideal framing for your taste and budget offering a wide range of mouldings and supporting Belltown’s custom photo framing, mounting, matting, laminating, and presentation needs since 2005.
New Dimensions Frame & Mirror, previously Dimensions Design Center, has provided the design community and the general public with the most unusual and broad range of mirrors, bespoke frame mouldings, and fine art since 1985.
Bellevue Museum Quality Framing does exactly what their name suggests.
You are all welcome to check out our other posts on:
- The Spokane Art Scene
- The Vancouver Art Scene
- The Portland Art Scene
- All Our Posts On The Pacific NW
Have Fun Enjoying The Seattle Art Scene
At the moment that is all we have to share about local art here. We listed the best galleries, museums, events, shows, supply stores, dealers, appraisers, walking tours, sculptures, classes, studios, and framers near you.
Those who are still reading this probably love art as much as we do. If so go ahead and use the comments to share your own tips or to let us know if you think we got anything wrong.
We hope you enjoy your time at the best Seattle Art Galleries, Museums, Supply Stores or doing whatever it else you plan to do with the info.