Public Art

The Seattle Convention Center’s public art program, one of the first of its kind in the nation, was established to provide an environment that enriches the experience of all who visit the meeting facility. Founded by Phyllis Lamphere, the art program has been a popular feature since the Center opened in 1988 and features over 100 works. Initially, art was incorporated into the building design as part of the State’s Percent for the Arts program. Since then, SCC has developed an ever-changing collection, readily accessible in the Arch building at no charge to the public.

The SCC collection expanded with the Summit building. Opening in 2023, the collection of artwork promotes SCC’s connection to communities, neighborhoods, and draws inspiration from the Pacific Northwest’s diverse cultures.
The Summit art program includes several key components, including a variety of free-standing artworks which were commissioned for the project, artistic elements have been integrated into the architecture of the building, and dozens of existing studio works were purchased for exhibition. In the longer term, the Center will continue to enhance Summit with artwork loans and Art Foundation donations. 


Our notable permanent collection in the Arch building consists of gifts and long-term loans from artists, galleries, other governmental entities, corporations, foundations and private collectors. Well-known artists represented include Alfredo Arreguin, Hilda Morris, Alden Mason, Jenny Holzer, James Washington, Jr., Tony Angell, Margaret Tomkins, Kenneth Callahan, Michael Spafford, Richard Gilkey, Guy Anderson, Ron Hilbert, Paul Horiuchi and Nancy Mee.  Some of the most popular works include Lebeg (Ann Gardner), Games (Jacob Lawrence), The Spirits Within (Alfredo Arreguin) and “A” Procession (Patty Warashina). 

The Summit collection features 23 commissioned artists selected based on open, invitational, or limited call processes. The commissioned artists include: Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes, Romson Regarde Bustillo, Kate Clark, Claire Cowie, Kimberly Deriana, RYAN! Feddersen, John Feodorov, Malynn Foster, Robert Hardgrave, Lauren Iida, Christopher Paul Jordan, Kenji Stoll, Satpreet Kahlon, Sheila Klein, Ulises Mariscal, Christian Moeller, Cathy McClure, Danielle Morsette, Joseph Steininger, Maki Tamura, Dan Webb, Andrea M. Wilbur-Sigo and Jennifer Angaiak Wood. In addition to these commissioned artists, 37 artists are featured in the Studio Works sub-set of the collection.


Rotating exhibitions provide a diverse array of local artists’ works, creating an ever-changing tapestry of talent. These shows are booked approximately two years in advance, following a screening process with the SCC’s Art Advisors. Since 1991, nearly 200 exhibitions have been featured in the Phyllis Lamphere Gallery on Level 2 of the Arch building.

Now Exhibiting: The Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators of Western Washington
January 24 - July 14, 2024

SCBWI is a global community of writers, illustrators, translators, publishers, librarians, advocates, and other industry professionals working to establish a more imaginative and inclusive world through the power of children’s literature.

Illustration showcase

Now Exhibiting: Youth in Focus
June 30, 2023 - March 2024

About Youth in Focus: We believe in the power of photography. But even more than that, we believe in youth. That's why we approach photography as a means of curiosity, exploration, and self-discovery. We create a safe, inclusive community, teach photography at no cost (or pay-what-you-can), and provide mentorship for South Seattle teens.

Youth in Focus