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Pandemic can't steal Georgetown's color

Local artists step up to fight the current gloom with a burst of creativity.

SEATTLE — Georgetown is a bright and quirky tapestry, accented with public artwork along sidewalks and buildings. But these days, ugly sheets of plywood line Airport Way, boarding up businesses shuttered by the coronavirus pandemic.

"We're surviving," said John Bennett, one of the area's major landlords.

He and the Georgetown Merchants Association are color-bombing the problem with the help of the neighborhood's greatest human resource: its artists.

"Georgetown is full of artists," Bennett said. "We're the artist hub of Seattle. I figured, well, we have all these blank canvases. Let's go for it."

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Local artists David Johansson and Simon Makhuli are adding their personal touches to the boards nailed to the exterior of several buildings.

Just up the street, the artist who goes by the name 'Admit One' is dressing up the shuttered Jules Maes Saloon with a tribute to our region, featuring mountains and sound.

"Show a little bit of Northwest love," he said. "We're all here and there's still beauty in all this chaos."

There's even a nod to a certain local TV station.

"I might've told him to put that KING 5 logo on the one. I'm not sure. Maybe. Maybe not," Bennett said with a smile.

The storefronts of Georgetown have become a hip outdoor art gallery, one that the locals appreciate, even though they can't wait for it to disappear.

"On one hand, they're going to look great and it's going to be fun to see them," Bennett said. "On the other hand, I'd like them to go away really quick."

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