Sheraton Seattle last week celebrated the official grand opening of its newly renovated lounge, the centerpiece of which predates the Fountain Wine Bar concept by 30 years.
The bar was named for a George Tsutakawa fountain which had been sitting in Gerard Tsutakawa's studio since 2006. The son of the famed local artist claimed the fountain when the hotel removed it to make room for meeting space.
"Northwest Fountain" was commissioned in 1982 for Fuller's Restaurant, a standard-setter in local fine dining. In 1991, Fuller's Caprial Pence won the first Best Chef Northwest award bestowed by the James Beard Foundation. A decade later, the restaurant closed, leaving the fountain behind.
"The Sheraton had been exploring ways to create a suitable space to bring the fountain back for several years, and developed the perfect location with the new Fountain Wine Bar and Lounge," says publicist Jessica Dawson. "Gerard and his team completely restored the fountain, sandblasting and applying a new patina."
With the reinstallation of "Northwest Fountain," there are now three Seattle restaurants with Tsutakawa's work on display. According to Tony Erwin of Woodside/Braseth Gallery, which now represents Gerard Tsutakawa, there's a Tsutakawa piece at ART. And his first commission - a pair of walnut door panels sculpted in 1956 - can still be seen at Canlis.