At Urban ArtWorks, we are constantly inspired by the dedicated volunteers and supporters who contribute their time and passion to join our vision of a world where all people have access to the transformative power of creating public art. Today, we are thrilled to shine the spotlight on Katy Basnaw, a dedicated volunteer and supporter who has been an integral part of many recent projects. Let’s dive into Katy’s journey with Urban ArtWorks and her thoughts on the transformative power of art in our communities.

How did you get involved with Urban ArtWorks?

Katy shared, “I found them online, just looking around for some volunteer opportunities. I signed up for the newsletter, and when there were calls for volunteers, I showed up!” Sometimes, all it takes is that first step to discover something.

What are some of the most rewarding aspects of being a volunteer with Urban ArtWorks?

For Katy, the rewards are boundless. She finds joy in “creating art, meeting all kinds of people, helping people create art, and seeing and sharing in their delight. Making the world a little more beautiful.”

As a volunteer at Urban ArtWorks, how do you feel you contribute to the community through art?

Katy’s role is pivotal in building a sense of community and pride in public spaces. She expressed, “Helping create an opportunity for people to feel like a part of their community. Supporting the feeling of contribution and ownership, building community and pride in public spaces.”

What is one of your favorite memories of Urban ArtWorks?

Katy faced the challenge of choosing just one favorite memory, but she shared a particularly fun project. “The huge wall at Gennesee Hill Elementary with Lis Rafailedes was just a fun project all the way through. Mostly, my favorite memories consist of just laughing with people in all the different projects. Artists, kids, teachers, other volunteer helpers, you name it. Just having fun.”

Is there a mural that has a message that resonated with you?

Katy couldn’t pick just one. She emphasized the importance of involving young minds in the creative process. “It’s quite honestly impossible to choose. I love the murals at the schools where the amazing artists have gone in and talked with the kids beforehand to talk about their vision, then seeing the kids bring it to life.”

How has your involvement with Urban ArtWorks influenced your personal growth and artistic development?

Katy explained, “I’ve been learning so much about helping manage paint days. It’s been fantastic. Also, I had never in my life painted on a mural! I had always wanted to! I still have a lot of learning and practice to go – but I absolutely love it.”

In what ways has collaborating with other volunteers and artists at Urban ArtWorks inspired you?

To seek out murals everywhere!

Can you share a memorable moment or interaction with a community member during one of the public art projects you’ve been a part of?

Katy recalled the kind words of community members because these interactions highlight the impact of Urban ArtWorks’ work on the community’s daily lives.

“All the kind people who came along during their work day and said how much they love the chalk art on the South Lake Union steps we were painting.”

How does volunteering with Urban ArtWorks align with your personal values and passions?

I love art that is accessible to all. Art that reflects the people and community, art that brings color and fun to the world.

How have you seen the impact of Urban ArtWorks on the community?

Especially with children, Katy has witnessed the transformative power of Urban ArtWorks. She noted,

“It’s such an amazing opportunity for them to create a lasting legacy with their own hands, to take part in a collaborative group art project, and meet actual working artists.”

Are there any specific skills or lessons you’ve learned through your volunteer work with Urban ArtWorks that you apply to other areas of your life?

Katy shared a valuable life lesson that can be applied beyond the realm of art.

“Going with the flow and having faith it’ll all work out!

What would you say to someone who is considering becoming a volunteer with Urban ArtWorks but isn’t sure if they should take the first step?

Please do it! It’s fun! You don’t have to be an artist! There are always lots of ways you can help be a part of creating something amazing.”

Katy Basnaw’s dedication to Urban ArtWorks and the communities we work alongside is truly inspiring. Her journey with Urban ArtWorks exemplifies the positive impact we can have when we work together to uplift one another. We are grateful for volunteers like Katy who help us bring art to the heart of our communities. If you’re considering joining our team of volunteers, take Katy’s advice and take that first step—it’s a journey filled with creativity, joy, and making the world more beautiful, one mural at a time.

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