Meet the Picasso of southeast Seattle | KUOW News and Information

Meet the Picasso of southeast Seattle

Feb 9, 2018

You may not know Ari Glass now, but you will soon. This Southeast Seattle native has set his sights high.

He’s wanted to be an artist ever since childhood, inspired by masters like Pablo Picasso.

“When I see Picasso,” Glass says, “I want to learn from him, recreate that for myself and my environment. I want to be a south end Picasso.”

Like Picasso, Glass works in a range of media, including ceramics, textiles and paints.

In his small loft under the Mt. Baker light rail station, Glass contemplates a commission he received to create a mural for the exterior of a nearby grocery store.

“Everybody will see it riding on the train,” he says with satisfaction. “I want to do a piece that’s uplifting, powerful, for the community.”

Glass cobbles together a living from commissions, teaching gigs and design work. He and his partner have a baby on the way. Glass feels the pressure to support his family, but even more important, the pressure to use his art to help create the kind of world he wants his child to grow up in.

“Artists have the key role in shaping the future of where we’re trying to go. When I create new work I keep that in mind.”