What impact can public art have on a village? That’s a question Fairport resident Zak Steele and fellow volunteers in the new public arts committee are looking to answer.
As part of the Fairport Village Partnership’s ongoing effort to promote the village as a place to visit and live, the committee was formed as a spin-off to the FVP’s design committee in September.
Steele, project manager at Bayer Landscape Architecture, is chairing the new program, whose first task is to draft a plan for the commissioning, funding and guidelines of installing public art.
Why public art? For one thing, it helps the local economy by drawing more foot traffic to nearby businesses, Steele explained. “It increases general desirability and character of the village,” he added.
Fairport native Gian-Paul Piane is one of the 12 committee members. He chairs the FVP’s design committee and, in addition to working as an architect for SEI Design Group in Rochester, teaches design and furniture making at RIT.
The idea for forming a group came from the need to fill what Piane calls “holes in the fabric of the village” inside public buildings or out in the open air. There are currently several installations of public art in Fairport including the mural in front of the Village Hall, sculptures at the library and a mural at the Fairport Historical Society building, but Piane said public art consists of more than just paintings or sculpture.
“We don’t just think it’s sculpture or paintings,” he said. “It’s music and even art education. It goes beyond just physical media.”
For this reason, Steele said the committee will explore ways to bring events centered around the arts to bring residents together but also draw interest from visitors who are passing through.
“It adds another layer of cultural excitement for people coming in and for those who live here,” said Steele.
The committee hopes to have the first draft of their plan by January.
Historic Interpretive Signage
Project complete with installation of Kennelley Park Info Kiosk and replacement of North Bank Bulletin cases.
A three year project to research, write, design, produce and install 13 historic interpretive signs about the history of Fairport has concluded with the installation of a brand new information kiosk at Kennelley Park on Main St. and the replacement of three information bulletin cases on the North Bank along the Box Factory.
Solaris Time in Kennelley Park nears an End
Effort underway to keep it in Fairport; Funding, donors sought
The steel and glass sculpture known as Solaris, which has graced the Main Street entrance of Kennelley Park since August of 2008, may soon be moved to a new home. The question is where.
Intended as the first in a series of “rotating” exhibits, the piece was selected by the Design Committee of the Fairport Village Partnership and leased through funding made available by the Fairport Office of Community and Economic Development. Now, the 18 month term of the lease has expired. In the near term the artist has agreed to leave the work in its current location. But with the lease expired the art is on the market and funds, approximately $10,000, must be raised in order to retain it permanently in the village.
Those interested in public art or have ideas about funding or programming can contact the Fairport Village Partnership at 585-377-6010 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Read the full press release (PDF).