The Seattle Public Facilities District leases Safeco Field to the Seattle Mariners which manage operations and maintenance for all events in the facility.

Art

The Public Facilities District Board approved a budget of $1.31 million for public art in Safeco Field and its garage. This represents 0.5 percent of hard construction costs of the ballpark and garage approved budgets, matching the State's standards for art in public facilities. In addition, the Public Facilities District contributed management staff, legal services and other administrative costs, greatly increasing the value of the art program. Following an extensive public process and review, artists were selected by the Board and created the works described below.

Ross Palmer Beecher


Seattle artist Ross Palmer Beecher created two large "quilts" made from pieces of found metal stitched together with red wire similar to the stitching on a baseball. Pieces of discarded pop cans and other metal containers create the logos of all Major League Baseball teams. These logos are "sewn" onto license plates of the states from which that team hails, forming one of the quilts. The other quilt makes references to the history of baseball in the Pacific Northwest, recalling the Seattle Rainiers and earlier days of the Seattle Mariners.

Her work is mounted on facing walls at the Main Concourse level at the southeast entry.

Donald Fels


Donald Fels is from Fall City, Washington. He produced a series of a metal relief sculptures of a hand gripping a baseball to throw each of six basic pitches. Approximately 3 1/2 feet by four feet and made of laser cut, etched, powder coated steel and aluminum, the pitches are mounted to every fourth column of the parking garage's exterior. On the other 18 columns, Fels has etched one of the many rich idioms of baseball that have become commonplace in the American dialect. These include "out of left field" and "right off the bat". The idioms are sand blasted into the concrete columns and appear at eye level for the fans walking to Safeco Field along the west facade of the garage. Finally, Fels inlayed into the plaza sidewalk the outlines of a batter's box and pitcher's mound.


Tina Hoggatt


Issaquah artist Tina Hoggatt created a series of nine porcelain enamel on steel panels, each portraying a figure from the history of baseball representing each of the nine positions on the field. The nine players Tina chose to portray combine to tell the history and rich diversity of the game. They include players from the Negro League, the All American Girl's Baseball League, and the Japanese Major League in addition to Major League Baseball.

The works can be seen by fans walking the concourse in either direction.

Helen Lessick


Seattle artist Helen Lessick created an "ephemeral" public artwork, designed to be enjoyed and even collected by fans at the game. She designed and printed five series of "baseball cards" with images and text that relay interesting facts about the gear, rules, and other aspects of the game and its history. Cards were distributed during selected games during the opening season.

In addition to the cards, Ms. Lessick created five porcelain enamel-on-steel panels representing a sample of her baseball-card artwork that are permanently hung in the ballpark's northeast corner at field level.

Ries Niemi


An artist from Bow, Washington, Mr. Niemi designed and fabricated a number of artworks that were included in selected gates and fences around the ballpark.  Eight stainless steel cutout figures of pitchers captured in various points of the wind-up and release are integrated within selected fences on the north side of the ballpark facing Royal Brougham Way. In the northeast corner, the "Batter's Fence" portrays the trajectories of a number of balls leaving a batter's bat. A plaque bearing the name of the hit, such as "bunt" or "pop fly" designates each ball. In the southeast corner, five life-size steel cutout figures of catchers in various classic poses are integrated within gates and fences. Finally, his signature piece is prominently located above the northwest entry. Here are assembled ten, life-size steel cutout figures each assuming a classic pose of one of the nine player positions plus the batter.

Thom Ross


Seattle artist Thom Ross chose to capture "The Defining Moment", the most spectacular instant in the Mariner's history as of the day Safeco Field opened -- the moment that Griffey crossed the plate on Edgar Martinez' double into left field to score the winning run that beat the Yankees in the 1995 playoffs. Ross's work is based on a photo from the Seattle Times that captured the action of the throw home, the slide and the umpire's call while ecstatic players leaped in the background. Each of these figures is cut and painted stainless steel, mounted in relief to a wall at the top of the northwest entry stairs on the main concourse level. The figures in the background are mounted closest to the wall with Griffey extending furthest. Certainly a crowd pleaser, this work brings a hometown element to the art collection.

Stable


The artist group of Linda Beaumont, Stuart Keeler and Michael Machnic worked together to create a site-specific artwork involving many elements in the southwest entry rotunda. The centerpiece of their work is a dramatic sculpture hanging from the center of the ceremonial rotunda behind home plate. Up above fans entering the ballpark are a thousand translucent bats molded of polyprop resin and mounted to brushed aluminum spiraling forms. Lit with flickering incandescent light, the piece conveys the power and movement of the swing of the bat. Fans enter the rotunda through gates designed by the artists. The gates are adorned with geometric steel patterns that evoke references to the field of play. Each gate set includes an ellipse -- the pitcher's mound -- in which text from the literature of baseball is etched.

The floor of the rotunda is colored with a rich mixture of sea foam greens and blues, suggesting a churning sea. Lighter colors at the floor's center evoke whitecaps and waves breaking against the grand stair which is colored with a rich earth tone.

Here at the landing point, Stable designed a terrazzo compass rose, twenty-seven feet in diameter. This timeless icon to navigating at sea, referenced in the Mariner's current logo, will capture elements of the history of baseball including the history of this ballpark.

Gerard Tsutakawa


Seattle artist Gerry Tsutakawa created a cast bronze sculpture of the abstract form of a catcher's mitt or old-fashioned baseball glove. Standing nine feet tall and about twelve feet wide, this mitt identifies a natural place for fans to meet friends before or after the game. At the base of the "thumb", an aperture appears as an abstract symbol of the baseball in the mitt, where the ball is to be caught, or a hole where a fast ball burned through. Located just outside the northwest entrance to the Ballpark, the sculpture has become an icon of Safeco Field and is enjoyed by all, whether a ticket-holder or not.

Gu Xiong


Chinese-born, Canadian artist Gu Xiong created a 24-foot long porcelain enamel on steel mural located in the northeast corner of Safeco Field on the main concourse level. This painting, representative of Gu Xiong's vibrant style of densely layered imagery, tells the story of the fans as well as the players of the game. [A photograph of this artwork is featured at the top of this webpage.] The mural is divided into three parts, with the larger center panel painted with the diverse crowd of people who come to the ballpark. Interspersed among the enthusiastic faces are painted generic baseball cards, portraying classic poses found by players on the field. On the right panel is portrayed all manner of objects that might catch a foul ball in the stands -- ranging from a mitt, to a hat, bell or pop cup. On the left panel is depicted the array of items consumed or discarded at a game, such as hot dogs, popcorn boxes, and pop cups. On both side panels, Gu Xiong has painted the portraits of more than 40 of baseball's greatest players. The combination of historical reference and bright and active imagery has many fans stopping to look deeper and repeatedly into this commanding work.



Pictured above -- Gu Xiong's bright and active imagery comes to life in a 24-foot long porcelain enamel on steel mural, telling the story of fans as well as players of the game.

Ross Palmer Beecher created "quilts" made from found objects.
Tina Hoggatt created a series of nine porcelain enamel on steel panels, each portraying a figure from the history of baseball representing each of the nine positions on the field.
Ries Niemi designed and fabricated a number of artworks that were included in selected gates and fences around Safeco Field.
Thom Ross's "Defining Moment".
The artist group of Linda Beaumont, Stuart Keeler and Michael Machnic (Stable) created this dramatic chandelier.
Gerry Tsutakawa created a cast bronze sculpture of the abstract form of a catcher’s mitt.
Washington State Major League Baseball Stadium Public Facilities District