CoCA has documented the shifts and changes in contemporary art through exhibitions drawing from artists and curators near and far. It was home to many Seattle firsts, from James Turrell to Nam June Paik. It has hosted readings and workshops by Kathy Acker and William S. Burroughs. Its revival of the Northwest Annual maintained a place for local artists' voices in an increasingly crowded conversation.
Center on Contemporary Art (CoCA) was founded in 1980 with the intention to foment and create contemporary art in Seattle. Beginning with Four Light Installations by James Turrell, it has served as a conduit for conversation and CoCA has regularly anticipated currents in both art and Seattle.
This digital archive is a work in progress. We have only recently begun to dig through the treasure trove of materials that languished in a storage space for almost a decade, much of it analog video and audio tapes, photos on paper and a unique collection of promotional materials from over 30 years of exhibition, special events and happenings. Yet, we are missing so much information: who are the people in the photos, who took them and when, what was going on and how did it affect the people who were there. What was the most memorable CoCA exhibition or event you attended? If you have any of the answers or have materials you would like to add, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The CoCA Archives project was launched by Anna R Hurwitz, CoCA Outreach & Development Director. It has been realized through the hard work and dedication of Lead Archivist, Joel Irving and CoCA Historian Barbara Alfeo, with the assistance of Nicole Figley and Sandra Whittington. We would like to sing the praises of Pedro and Wanda Pelayo for their generosity in providing work and storage space. To learn more about CoCA's more recent history and what the organization is doing today, please visit cocaseattle.org.
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