Jade Hotel.  Photo Se
Jade Hotel. Sacramento CA. Photo Seumas Coutts. 2016

For decades, the neighboring Jade and Marshall hotels in downtown Sacramento were home to many of the city’s low-income residents. Unfortunately, the Jade and most of the Marshall building will soon be demolished to make way for a new Hyatt Place Hotel. Since it closed, the Jade has been empty and quiet, awaiting its imminent demise. That is, until the beginning of this month when thirty artists began to fill the old hotel with art installations for a unique, temporary art exhibition that opens to the public on Friday, February 5th and closes forever on Saturday, February 13th.

The idea for the Art Hotel emerged from a meeting between local artist Shaun Burner and the owner of the soon to be demolished Jade Hotel. While Burner initially met with the owner to discuss painting a mural on the side of the building, they ended up discussing the idea of filling the entire hotel–bedrooms, bathrooms, and even hallways–with art. While most ideas for such large-scale projects remain just ideas, Burner set the plan in motion. As a result, the M5Arts collective–a group of artists who believe in the power of art to transmit knowledge and communicate ideas–was formed to execute the project.

jade Hotel Sacramento CA.  Photo Seumas Coutts.  2016
jade Hotel Sacramento CA. Photo Seumas Coutts. 2016

Although the concept of creating site-specific art installations in structures other than art museums and galleries is not a new one, these types of projects are uncommon in Sacramento. The Art Hotel will provide visitors with the chance to experience and interact with many different genres of art made by local and global artists. The Jade’s rooms will be filled with paintings, sculptures, performance art, dancers, and even some futuristic virtual reality installations. While there will be plenty to see and interact with on any given day that the Art Hotel is open, there will be even more action in the form of performances and live music at the opening and closing receptions.
The curator, Seumas Coutts, Ph.D., believes Sacramento is ripe for this type of project. While Coutts noted that the gallery scene in Sacramento is solid and supportive of Sacramento artists, he says, “The models in Sacramento are kind of dated and locked up. Everyone has to fight for their own and people are not working together. We (M5Arts) are taking the scraps from that and trying to get people to work together and explore other ways of doing things.”

The Art Hotel will be open from Friday, February 5th to Saturday, February 13th. The Jade Hotel (Art Hotel) is located at 1118 7th Street in Sacramento, California. Visit http://m5arts.com for more information.

Words Justina Martino

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