Supercute Hello Kitty Art Show at EMP Museum!




Exhibition Logo - Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty

In 1974, a small vinyl coin purse debuted in Japan with the first-ever image of Hello Kitty. Since then, Hello Kitty’s now-iconic face has adorned everything from children’s notebooks and backpacks to jumbo jets and widely-recognized celebrity outfits—and now she’s coming to EMP! Be the first to explore the new exhibit, Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty, and celebrate her arrival at the Hello Kitty Supercute Opening Party.


Snap a picture with Hello Kitty herself, and enjoy Hello Kitty games and kawaii (“cute”) crafts like origami and jewelry making, a Hello Kitty attire Supercute Fashion Parade in partnership with UNIQLO, Cuteness Manicures with Julep, a J-pop dance party featuring DJ Hojo of JK Pop, the Hello Kitty-shaped Time After Time Capsule, plus much more!

Friday, November 13, 2015; 7:00pm–midnight; EMP Museum
$25 ($20 EMP members), $10 youth 5–17, free for children 4 and under; all ages, 21+ beer garden

Kazuki Takamatsu - Final

In addition to all the great art by such luminaries as Gary Basemen, Paul Frank and Audrey Kawasaki, there will be a Fender Squier Hello Kitty Stratocaster, owned and played in concert by Krist Novoselic of Nirvana, and it will be exclusively on display at the exhibit which opens to the public on November 14, 2015.

Another special feature added to the exhibit is the “Time After Time Capsule,” a giant nine foot tall sculpture of Hello Kitty, by artist Sebastian Masuda. Visitors will be invited to add a personal object, postcard, kawaii (cute) craft, or special message to the time capsule which will journey to several cities and culminate in 2020 at the Tokyo Olympics.

Hello Kitty Food Truck

The Hello Kitty Cafe is bringing all things Hello Kitty to EMP during the opening weekend of Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty. The Hello Kitty Cafe truck is a mobile vehicle of cuteness that offers yummy macarons, delicious mini cakes, Hello Kitty cookies, bow-shaped water bottles, and other supercute goodies, each infused with unique Hello Kitty details for all to enjoy. This is the first Seattle appearance for the Hello Kitty Cafe truck, and you’ll be able to find them on EMP’s outdoor plaza.

Saturday, November 14, 2015; 10:00am–6:00pm; Outdoor Plaza at EMP Museum
Sunday, November 15, 2015; 10:00am–5:00pm; Outdoor Plaza at EMP Museum

More details and tickets at EMP Museum website

Hello Kitty coming to Seattle!

Hello Kitty meets Star Wars at EMP
Hello Kitty meets Star Wars at EMP

Hello! Super Cute Fun-Filled Hello Kitty show coming from Los Angeles to Experience Music Project in Seattle.

The first large-scale Hello Kitty museum retrospective in the United States will be on display at EMP Museum and is scheduled to open on November 14, 2015. Created in celebration of the pop icon’s 40th Anniversary, Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty is organized by Sanrio, the global lifestyle brand best known for Hello Kitty, and the Japanese American National Museum , where the exhibition originated. The show examines the history of Hello Kitty and her influence on popular culture, combining a product-based historical and sociological examination of Hello Kitty with more than 600 rare and unique pieces from Sanrio’s archives, and an installation of over 40 mixed media works by artists from around the world demonstrating Hello Kitty’s influence on contemporary art. Hello! invites the public to learn more about and gain new appreciation for the evolution of Hello Kitty, the role she has played bridging Japanese and American cultures in the U.S., and fans’ emotional connection to her. Hello! will be on view at EMP through May 15, 2016. Plans are underway for the exhibition to travel to additional museums across the U.S.

Hello KItty Abe Lincoln

“Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty offers an in-depth look at the evolution of Hello Kitty and her impact on pop culture around the world,” said Jill Koch, Sr. Vice President of Brand Management and Marketing of Sanrio, Inc. “After a successful run at the Japanese American National Museum, we are excited to bring the exhibition to EMP and share the experience with more fans. EMP, whose mission of reaching multigenerational audiences through powerful exhibits and programming focused on contemporary culture, is the perfect home for our retrospective.”

Hello! originated at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles, where it drew record-breaking attendance from visitors of all ages from around the world. The exhibition was co-curated by Dr. Christine Yano, author of Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty’s Trek Across the Pacific, and Jamie Rivadeneira, founder and owner of pop culture-inspired boutique JapanLA, located in Los Angeles.

Hello Kitty Gary Baseman

This should be a fun exhibit featuring artifacts from Sanrio’s archives including a variety of plush spanning a 40 year timeline, Hello Kitty’s first telephone, stationery items, and many more vintage products from the 1970s and 1980s along with contemporary objects such as the one-of-a-kind Hello Kitty dress worn by Lady Gaga, a couture bustier worn by Katy Perry, diamond jewelry, and a Hello Kitty talking robot, allowing fans to connect to Hello Kitty’s history and view her evolution as a true cultural ambassador.

Audrey Kawasaki


George Takei Guest of Honor at EMP’s “Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction”

Things to do in Seattle
Opening Night Party for Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction On March 27 with George Takei!

On March 27, step aboard EMP’s epic interstellar vessel, and make first contact with the museum’s newest original exhibit, Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction. Join EMP for Zero Gravity and travel across time and space to celebrate this enigmatic ship’s arrival with a stellar night featuring:
• Q&A with guest of honor George Takei
• Photo ops with amazing replicas, including: The Seattle Time Machine, Star Trek Command Chair, and the TARDIS
• The debut of Ninkasi’s space beer (Imperial Stout brewed with Oregon hazelnuts, star anise, cocoa nibs, and fermented with an Ale yeast that survived a trip to space and back.)
• An activity-packed Intergalactic Passport game
• Science fiction trivia with MovieCat
• Prize giveaways, galactic drink specials, and an oxygen bar
• Plus many more surprises at this space-themed party
Date: March 27, 2015

Time: 7:30pm-11:00pm

EMP Museum
325 5th Avenue N
Seattle, WA 98109

Ticket Info: $25 ($18 EMP members, $12 youth ages 5-17) All ages, cash bars with ID. Tickets can be purchase online at

Organized by EMP Museum, Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction will feature more than 150 artifacts from iconic films and television shows including Back to the Future, Aliens, Ghostbusters, Blade Runner, Dune, Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Terminator, Mars Attacks, and many others. In addition to featuring authentic objects from some of sci-fi’s most groundbreaking creations, the 3500 square ft. gallery will be transformed into an interactive space ark where visitors can embark on their own intergalactic adventure, discover an alien civilization, scout for new worlds to explore from the ship’s cockpit, and investigate alternate universes. Curated by EMP’s Brooks Peck, Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction opens to the public on March 28, 2015.

A peek behind the scenes at Experience Music Project’s “Spectacle: The Music Video”

Current Exhibit at EMP
Current Exhibit at EMP

We’re so lucky to have the EMP Museum here in Seattle. The building itself, designed by Frank O. Gehry, is a work of art, but the revolving treasures inside are always a treat, this new show, “Spectacle: The Music Video” is no exception.

The interactive exhibit goes behind the scenes in music video history, starting with the early pioneers who made the Skopitones. As the exhibit points out, Scopitone films are the 1960s ancestors of today’s music videos. They were distributed on color 16mm film with a magnetic soundtrack, and were made to be shown on a Scopitone film jukebox. The first Scopitones were made in France in 1960, and the Scopitone craze spread throughout Europe before crossing the Atlantic to the United States in mid-1964. By the end of the 1960s, they were gone. One of the things you notice is how much more sexy they are than videos made in the same era in the U.S.

In other areas of the exhibit you will be able to learn about video pioneers who used the medium to define their public identities like Devo, Beastie Boys, Michael Jackson, and Madonna, to artists like OK Go and Lady Gaga who follow in their footsteps today.

My favorite part of the exhibit is a special section dedicated to the four-time GRAMMY-winning duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis that includes the actual fur coats worn in the Thrift Shop video; The Heist flag and Macklemore’s fur jacket and wolf hat from Can’t Hold Us; as well as many other costumes, objects, original exhibit films, and photo ops.

DSC01278 - Copy

We were at the opening and were thrilled to see performances by Damian Kulash of OK Go and the ever-fabulous Waxie Moon and his girlie friends. But of course the highlight of the evening was a super secret surprise performance by Ryan Lewis and Macklemore. It was freaking awesome, of course.

Some of the EMP staff set up a special room so that guests could re-create a scene from the music video “Thrift Shop”:

While I wasn’t able to participate in that, I was inspired to go home and make up my own version of a music video, just for fun. In real life, I play a real estate broker, so this is my version of “Thrift Shop House Huntin” and I was able to use a photo from the opening at EMP, in front of a giant mural in the Spectacle exhibit:

Spectacle: The Music Video is open all summer at EMP and you can get more information about that and the other exhibits on the Experience Music Project Website. While you’re there, check out some other great exhibits, including “Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses” and “Hear My Train A-Coming: Hendrix in London”, as they’re both really great insights into our local music scene.

Also, if you’re in town on Sunday, June 1st, you may want to go to Madaraka Festival, a benefit concert and art sale to empower youth from Kenya. Madaraka Day commemorates the day that Kenya attained internal self-rule. It celebrates the spirit and meaning of the word Madaraka—Swahili for the authority to make decisions. Madaraka Festival will showcase the music, visual arts, initiatives, and innovations that embody the special relationship between Seattle and Africa. There will be music and special guests! Tickets on the EMP website. Tutaonana!

Channel your inner rock star at Spectacle: The Music Video opens at EMP


Spectacle: The Music Video opens at EMP May 17th!

Live the fantasy at EMP’s latest exhibit exploring the phenomenon of the music video.

EMP’s latest show is the first museum exhibition to celebrate the art and history of the music video through sight and sound. Discover the black and white musical Soundies of the 1940s featuring big band, jazz, and swing stars, and the French-made Scopitones of the 1960s. Relive MTV masterpieces and witness how megastars like Madonna, David Bowie, and Michael Jackson shaped—and re-shaped—their creative identities. Step into super-sized cinematic productions of today such as Steriogram’s Walkie Talkie Man directed by Michel Gondry, the crowdsourced Johnny Cash Project, and a special section dedicated to Seattle’s own Macklemore & Ryan Lewis—winners of four GRAMMY® awards including Best New Artist. With legendary props, interactive experiences, and more than 300 videos—and an in-depth examination of the special effects employed in their making—Spectacle: The Music Video traces the evolution of the genre and cements its place at the forefront of creative technology.


Celebrate the big opening party!

• OK Go Video Retrospective: See GRAMMY Award winners OK Go present a retrospective of their famously eccentric music videos and discuss their creative process.
• Big Screen Blowout: Prepare for audio visual thrills when EMP’s monumental Sky Church screen is taken over by Seattle’s premier tastemakers including VJs from Sub Pop Records, KEXP, Sync Music Video Festival, Decibel Festival, and World Famous.
• I Want My MTV: 80s Karaoke Lounge: Time travel to the golden age of music videos with Madonna, A-Ha, Duran Duran, Pat Benatar, and more.
• Behind the Screen: Experience the smoke and mirrors of music video effects, and see filmmakers’ mesmerizing tricks of the trade.
• Spectacle! Live!: Surprise performances will instantly transport you to the heart of some of the most move-inspiring music videos ever produced.
• We’re Gonna Pop Some Tags: Slip on your granddad’s clothes and step into Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ Thrift Shop video with other partygoers to create the ultimate fanvid.
• Super secret special guests!

EMP wants us to have fun, yo. So dress as your favorite music icon or video character, outfit yourself in primary colors a la OK Go, find inspiration in the original Material Girl, or slap on aviators and a fake moustache to channel the Beastie Boys.


A dozen free or low-cost musical events, classes and festivals in Seattle for families and youth

Racer Runts red upper

1. Racer Runts continues their all-ages show the first Saturday of every month with the next show scheduled for Saturday, April 5th at Cafe Racer 5828 Roosevelt Way NE in Seattle, from 4pm to 7pm.

2. Seattle School of Rock has announced their new Spring shows, plus you can sign up for summer camps:

3. There’s a great new class by Ed Hartman, the owner of the Drum Exchange, and it might be a good 3-hour class for budding composers at North Seattle Community College, Saturday May 17th, “How to License your Music”.

4. If you’re at the Seattle Center anyway, consider this panel discussion about the legacy of Kurt Cobain at EMP with Charles Cross, Bruce Pavitt, Jack Endino, Charles Peterson and Jacob McMurry called Come As You Are: The Legacy of Kurt Cobain (free and look at that line-up!)

5. Another free event at EMP for high school and college kids, “City of Music” career day on April 10, but must pre-register.

6. For a very in-depth and intellectual foray into pop music, you may want to look into this free 3-day conference on pop, rock and modern music at EMP called Go! Music and Mobility

7. Folklife Festival (FREE!) May 23-26 – BTW, you don’t need any kind of busking license to play anytime at the Seattle Center:

8. Another fun free music event, Honk Fest, is June 19-22 this year. It’s hard to join an existing band because most are made up of 21+, so maybe it’s time to start your own marching band. Anyone can sign up! HonkFest West

9. Vera Project is signing up now for new classes in Sound, Studio, Lighting, DJ classes and song writing.

10. And if you’ve ever wanted to learn to sing in harmony and barbershop quartet, there’s a fun camp called “Harmony Explosion” that our older son Max went to a few times. It’s July 10th-12th in Tacoma at UPS: Harmony Explosion

11. There’s a fun, free event, World Rhythm Festival at Seattle Center April 5th & 6th.

12. Youth of all ages enjoy music and performances at an accessible, welcoming venue, Fusion Cafe. There are 2-3 shows per month, featuring established local, regional and national bands as well as up-and-coming youth bands. Youth performers benefit from career development when placed on show bills with more established musicians, and show-goers get a safe place to socialize, listen to new or favorite music and learn about community and Y resources. All shows begin at 8 p.m., cost $5 (free for Y program participants) and are staffed by Y employees and volunteers.