Push/Pull to move into former Dakota Art Store

The art and comic store Push/Pull is moving above ground, into the former location of the Dakota Art Store.

Push/Pull art cooperative has been operating out of the Hotel Albatross basement on Shilshole Ave. since 2015, when it moved from the Greenwood Art Collective. Push/Pull director Maxx Follis-Goodkind tells My Ballard that in addition to occupying a larger space than Push/Pull’s current location, the store will be adding art supplies, “retaining the selection of professional quality materials found at Dakota Art, as well as introducing new and hard-to-find brands.”

Dakota Art Store closed in July after 9 years on the corner of 20th Ave NW and NW Market St. Dakota had been in Seattle since 1990; before Ballard, it was located on Roosevelt in the U-District. Now, Dakota’s remaining locations are in Mt. Vernon and Bellingham.

Push/Pull, for folks who haven’t yet had the pleasure, is a haven for local artists. The art cooperative promotes underground art and comics while actively seeking out marginalized and under-represented artists, the website states.

“Underground art is work that challenges the viewer to feel something, to think about something. Art that is made by professionals that learned all the rules about making art and then broke them. Art that is made by professionals that never learned any of the rules about making art and made it up as they went along. It’s creepy, weird, controversial, strange. Push/Pull exists to show the alternative possibility of what an art gallery can be.”

Follis-Goodkind says that the expanded gallery space will allow for more classes and events put on by the cooperative. Push/Pull has been offering online programming since the pandemic started, but plans to return to in-person classes with the new larger space.

Push/Pull has a strong presence in the Ballard and Seattle art scenes, Follis-Goodkind tells My Ballard. Along with featuring local artists in her Ballard shop, Push/Pull also produces events including the Exterminator City comic show series (now in a virtual format) and the monthly Ballard Night Out art walk. Their classes span a wide variety, from teen art jams to community figure drawing to boot camps for the professional-level Procreate app, Follis-Goodkind says.

Follis-Goodkind expects to open the new location at 2000 NW Market St on September 7. She’ll be hosting a closing party at their Shilshole Ave location during the next Ballard Night Out on August 19, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. She says visitors will receive a mystery bag instead of refreshments—mainly to encourage folks to keep their masks on.