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The Power of Public Art

By December 15, 2023 December 19th, 2023 No Comments
A dark and light teal rectangle with three circles placed on top. Two circles with images of public art and the middle circle says

At the Public Art Archive, we have much to be thankful for! Most notably, we’re grateful for the power of creativity expressed through public art and the way it enhances our experience of the world around us. Creativity fuels everything we do, including our mission to make public art more public through preserving, promoting, and sharing the stories embedded in each artistic creation in the world of public art. 

Read on to learn more about the impact of public art! 

Public Art Has the Power to Transform Spaces

Public art has the power to transform environments, uplifting and bringing communities together, especially spaces that have been overlooked or neglected. Moreover, public art can nurture a sense of community pride and deepen public understanding of community identity and culture. 

Public Art Tells a Story

Transcend time with public art: through murals, sculptures, installations and other art forms, there is always a story or deeper meaning to uncover. Education and context are key components of public art — public artists invite us to contemplate their visions and learn about moments in history, culture, or social issues through their work.

A large colorful mural of an orchard painted on the side of a building in the city.

Courtesy: Steve Weinik, We dreamt an orchard this way 2023 City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program / Gina Kim, Vietnam Restaurant, 221 North 11th Street. Photo by Steve Weinik.

Public Art Ignites Our Imagination

Public art encompasses limitless forms of expression, from intimate indoor works to monumental murals and sculptures. Whether we find inspiration in a stunning mural or marvel at the craftsmanship of a complex sculpture, the vast creativity of public art challenges us and brings joy to our lives.

A painting of mountains with a pink and blue sunset in the background.

Black Rock Mirage (2023). By Rossitza Todorova. Reno Public Art. Courtesy: Reno Public Art

A large metal sculpture of a cactus with flowers growing out of it placed outside a school.

Bloom Where You’re Planted (2023). By Brad Oldham. City of Surprise, AZ. Courtesy: City of Surprise, AZ.

Public Art Is Accessible for All

The most significant component  of public art is that you can experience it anywhere — from cultural and historical districts to recreational and municipal spaces, both indoors and outdoors. The incredible variety of public art allows people from all backgrounds and cultures to discover all that it has to offer — and it’s free! (Want to experience public art near you? Check out our ‘Art Near Me’ feature on the Public Art Archive.)

A few blue and red curved sculptures placed beside on another outside.

Two Boxes of Oranges and Admonia Jackson (2023). By Nina Cooke John. City of Alexandria. Courtesy: Laura Hatcher

A large silver wavy sculpture that lives above a highway with cars passing by.

Bridge of Land and Sky (2023). By Cliff Garten. City of Hillsboro, Oregon. Courtesy: City of Hillsboro, Oregon

These examples are just a few of the ways public art shapes everything that surrounds us — the list goes on. We hope you enjoyed this month’s read and that we’ve broadened your perspective on the impact of public art in your life.

We wish you all a safe and fun holiday season!