June 25, 2011

Does your mayor believe creativity drives the energy, spirit and future of Oklahoma?

Businessman James Pickel and
Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett
attend an art opening at City Arts
Center, May 31, 2011.

There is an article in the Los Angeles Times today about a public art project in New York; New York City's Public Art Fund and the overwhelming support for the arts Mayor Michael Bloomberg has demonstrated.

But, first, for those of you who may not understand what we mean by public art, let's turn to our reliable friends at Wikipedia. Here is their collaborative definition of public art:
The term public art properly refers to works of art in any media that have been planned and executed with the specific intention of being sited or staged in the physical public domain, usually outside and accessible to all. The term is especially significant within the art world, amongst curators, commissioning bodies and practitioners of public art, to whom it signifies a particular working practice, often with implications of site specificity, community involvement and collaboration. The term is sometimes also applied to include any art which is exhibited in a public space including publicly accessible buildings.
The L.A. Times article is really an inspiring read, especially the way one arts leader describes the Bloomberg as being "on bard with the idea that creativity drives the spirit and energy and future of New York."
Here is an excerpt:
Reached by email, Bloomberg says he makes public art a priority not just because it exposes people "of all different backgrounds and ideologies" to culture but because it reconnects citizens to their own city.

Public art, he wrote, "encourages us to look at our neighborhoods in a new light and with new appreciation. New York City has many of the finest museums in the world, but there's something special about encountering artistic works in an open and public place and as a part of one's everyday life."

Pasternak says she has not seen a more supportive administration when it comes to public art.
Whether you live in a rural or urban location, is your town or city mayor on board with the idea that creativity drives the spirit and energy and future of Oklahoma?