frye art museum

Photo by Ryan K. Adams

What does 30 minutes in a person's life look like?

Artist Susie Lee asked and answered that question while spending time at the Washington Care Center, a long-term nursing facility and rehab unit.

What she created is a series of  highly-composed video portraits that are sometimes so quiet, you think they're still photos. The videos are silent. They last 30 minutes long -- real-time; there is no editing. And they feel so intimate, it can make viewers uncomfortable to watch.

Steven Miller photograph

 A new exhibit at Seattle's Frye Art Museum is full of items rich in double meaning. Like a large wax chair full of hundreds of arrows. Or a jar full of medicinal leeches. 

And then there's a stunner of a dress that stops you as soon as you walk in through the door. "You'll see a really beautiful dress, with wide wide sides. And it looks very sheer. It's organza," says Frye deputy director Robin Held. 

"Now the surface of the dress looks like it's covered in bugs."

It's actually covered with more than 2,500 black bows. But it doesn't stop there.