Sunday, April 5, 2009

Local Arts Stimulus

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

April 5, 2009
Sunday Symposium on The Politics of Public Art

I have never been a big supporter of public art. Generally, I find public art pieces to be ostentatious. They tend to draw too much attention to their material and ideas without integrating fully into the environment they inhabit.

Janet Zweig's public art proposal has me speaking up on the issue for the first time in my life. Her proposal for Wisconsin Ave. is a stunning blend of environment, material and insight. Seamlessly attaching to "old world" light poles, the pieces would ingeniously blend into their environment. By combining the mechanical flap signs of train stations with "flip book" animation, considered the earliest form of the "moving picture," she provides pedestrians with unique commentary on the activity of the street.

However, even more important to me is her commitment to match the city investment in the project ($60,000) in jobs for local filmmakers and artists conceiving and creating the images. She is providing our art community with a much needed stimulus package.

Further, it turns her art project into more than public art: community art.

Jonathan Jackson
Artistic director, Milwaukee Film

Click here to join the Facebook cause in support of Janet Zweig's public art proposal in Milwaukee.

No comments: