City of Bellevue
Photo Credit: City of Bellevue

The City of Bellevue is getting ready to unveil its latest public art installment, the city’s first Pride street art. Located in the south end of Downtown Park, this pavement treatment is a celebration of Pride Month.

Designed by local artist Esmeralda Vasquez, the artwork is slated for an official introduction at the upcoming Paws & Pride Dog Jog & Walk event, hosted by the Bellevue Downtown Association on June 1. Positioned at the intersection of Northeast First Street and 102nd Avenue Northeast, this is the city’s first artist-commissioned pavement treatment.

“We believe that the diversity in our city is our strength, and this new artwork further underscores our dedication to embracing and supporting our LGBTQIA+ community,” said Mayor Lynne Robinson. “We hope this new addition to our streetscape will foster a sense of belonging, and remind everyone that Bellevue welcomes you.”

Named “The Love Between,” the artwork features two large color-blocked hands in the colors of the bisexual flag positioned towards each other, as if they are each offering something to the other. Between the hands, a stem twists and flows through the center, representing the twists and turns that come with navigating life, especially as a queer individual.

It is bordered by flowers following the order of the rainbow Pride flag and the colors of the trans and non-binary flags. Vasquez created the design after conducting research and community outreach.

Vasquez’s selection for this project followed an open call for local artists in October 2023. A self-taught multidisciplinary artist and muralist, Vasquez draws inspiration from her experiences as a Latinx/LGBTQ artist from the Yakima Valley.

Beyond its aesthetic appeal, this new artwork symbolizes Bellevue’s commitment to fostering an inclusive environment, free from discrimination. It serves as a poignant reminder that Bellevue is a place where individuals from all walks of life can not only coexist, but also thrive.

Complementing this initiative are various city-wide efforts, including raising the Progress Pride flag, the Diversity Advantage Initiative, the Bellevue Police Department’s Safe Place program, and comprehensive staff training on privilege and micro-aggressions.

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