Coming to a city near you: City Canvas, a one-time initiative bringing mural-based public art into downtown spaces throughout Connecticut. It's happening in seven cities, with the financial support of the state's Office of the Arts, part of the newly enhanced Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) into which the former Commission on Culture and Tourism was merged. Twelve cities applied, and seven were awarded funds for submitted projects. The rundown: Bridgeport / Bridgeport Arts & Cultural Council: Moving image light projections on a prominent downtown building. $158,000. Hartford / Real Arts Ways: interactive, water activated, public art piece highlighting Hartford’s history. $125,000. New Britain / New Britain Museum of American Art: new mural at the New Britain/Hartford busway terminal. $98,050. New London / Hygienic Art: Three murals extending the New London Wall to Wall Mural Walk along with trompe l’oeil parking garage adornments. $145,062. Stamford / Stamford Cultural Development Corporation:Illumination and animation of transportation center for Metro North/Amtrak passengers and travelers on I-95. $150.000. Torrington / Northwest CT Association for the Arts: Unifying artwork on the façade of the new Children’s Museum. $165,000 Waterbury / Arts & Culture Collaborative, Waterbury Region: large-scale mosaic with extensive community involvement / $108,744.48
DECD, in keeping with its recently unveiled Creative Placemaking arts strategy, says the City Canvas program is designed to enhance public spaces through the visual arts and to connect the urban regions of Connecticut. The art installations in the 7 cities are expected to get underway this spring, as municipalities and their respective partnership arts organizations collaborate in each of the local initiatives.